The long awaited public screening of Ray Santilli's film footage, allegedly shot following the crash of a flying saucer near Roswell in 1947, took place at the BUFORA UFO Conference at Sheffield on August 19th. Reaction to the film, as before, was very mixed but a majority of those present either withheld judgement or opined that it must be a hoax.
The footage screened was principally a replay of the autopsy sequence first shown in London on May 5th. Some of those unfamiliar with such dissections showed evident revulsion or gasped aloud as the strange "alien" corpse was carved up and opened out by a surgeon clad in white protective clothing. The goriness of this sequence was equally unappetising the second time around. Clearly the body was not long dead at the time of autopsy since there were no obvious signs of decomposition and a slight trickle of blood resulted from each scalpel cut. Few supported the thesis that this was a cleverly constructed plastic dummy stuffed with offal to simulate internal organs.
Appended after the autopsy was a brief display of the panels bearing supposed alien characters that have been referred to previously. The suggestion by some skeptics that the symbols spell out the words "VIDEO O TV" requires a huge leap of the imagination and this surely derives from some madder realm of the Internet. The symbols are not very impressive and some do resemble Greek characters or others, possibly from ancient middle eastern script.
Nor are the "control panels" very convincing, two of which are held up for display by a man whose face is not visible. These thick panels each contain two hand impressions for hands with six digits: five fingers and a thumb. In semi-circular grooves below the position of the fingertips there appear to be control buttons and there are also separate depressions with a button for each thumb. Further longer arc-shaped grooves with additional buttons run parallel to and beyond the fingertip grooves. Other control buttons or sensors are seen within the hand impressions below where palm and wrist would fit. These "control panels" look to be clumsy "low technology" stuff such as might have been thought up for a 1950s sci-fi B movie.
Meanwhile the Internet rumour mill has gone into overdrive in the attempts by some groups to discredit the Santilli film. One example of deliberately false information put out for this purpose has been the postings of a certain "Kevin O'Crean" of "Hassop Cottage, England". In his latest bluster (August 18th) this "person" claims that BUFORA has officially disavowed the Santilli film and "stated categorically on World TV that they consider it a hoax." [see CNI News of Aug 21 - ed.] An alternative version of this malicious claim, which also appears to be circulating on the Internet, is that "the head of BUFORA" stated on CNN that the Roswell film was a hoax made in Brazil 6 or 7 years ago and that Santilli knows this. Further, "the head of BUFORA" was alleged to have stated that he didn't believe that aliens had ever made contact with earth and that UFOs didn't exist as extraterrestrial vehicles.
Much of this story is completely untrue. It relates to what was said by Philip Walton (who is a BUFORA functionary) and is solely his personal opinion. In no way does it represent BUFORA's official position. Walton is not the head of BUFORA; that is John Spencer. Philip Mantle, who is BUFORA's Director of Investigations, and who organised the Sheffield conference, confirmed on August 25 that there had been no "official" change of position either by BUFORA or himself. The claim about the Brazilian sci-fi film, he said, was an unproven rumour and has no basis in fact, as also the charge that Santilli knows that this is the case.
I can reveal that "Kevin O'Crean" himself is a hoax. There is no such person and all of the tendentious and misleading claims from this Internet source should be viewed with grave suspicion. It seems that "Kevin O'Crean" is almost certainly an irresponsible group of students who live at Hassop Cottage, near Bakewell, Derbyshire. They say that the MUFON Encounters Sysop on Compuserve has now refused to post their "Kevin O'Crean" articles on the Forum as "the truth is beginning to hurt." The sysop is a sensible guy, since "O'Crean's" travesty of the truth was becoming insulting!
Skepticism regarding the film footage is understandable, but much of that which we have heard is based solely on speculation and basic denial that aliens could possibly exist. Santilli maintains, correctly, that so far no one has been able to prove that the film is a fake. Currently one can choose any of the following speculative scenarios to explain away the film:
(1) This is a Brazilian sci-fi movie made in the 1960s, 1970s or 1980s. (Let's see a copy of the alleged movie!)
(2) The alien body is the corpse of a human suffering from Turner's syndrome. (Let's see some photos of other humans suffering from this condition.)
(3) The alien body is the corspe of a human suffering from Laurence-Moon-Beadle syndrome. (Likewise, let's see some other photos.)
(4) "I have little doubt that the body was a doctored human corpse. If such is the case it would make this one of the most despicable and deplorable hoaxes ever perpetrated. It would mean that those who put together this atrocity butchered the body of a once-living human being (a woman in this case) solely out of greed." -- Kent Jeffrey of the International Roswell Initiative. (If this is the case, it should be proved and criminal proceedings instituted. Pathologists who have seen the footage have not noticed any external signs that the corpse was doctored in order to attach extra digits, enlarge the size of the head, the eyes, etc.)
(5) The body is a cleverly constructed latex dummy and contains offal to simulate internal organs. The technology to produce such a hoax did not exist until the mid 1970s and so the film must be a hoax produced in the last 20 years, but most likely in the last 5-10 years. (This is the position of circlefakers John Lundberg and Rod Dickinson, who are associates of the CFX Creature Effects people at Pinewood Studios. A report by CFX mentions evidence of a "possible" molding seam line down one arm of the alien corpse in one segment of Santilli's film. If this is all the evidence they think they can see, it doesn't amount to much. Naturally, they say that special effects are so good these days that one wouldn't be able to see any flaws!
On August 26, we heard that three photos had been mailed anonymously to the Fortean Times in London showing "the Santilli alien corpse under construction by special effects people." Editor Bob Rickard was said to be unimpressed and the dummy did not much resemble the corpse in the film. [CNI News has learned from an independent source that Bob Rickard is investigating these latest photos and intends to report his findings in the Oct 13 edition of Fortean Times (#83) - ed.]
(6) Santilli is a con-man and a fraudster whose company is in receivership, etc, etc. So too is Philip Mantle (who had a big bust-up with the Quest UFO Group a few years back); and therefore the whole thing is a scam which has been used as a trick to pack the punters in at BUFORA's annual conference... Santilli is being investigated by the Serious Fraud Squad, etc. (This is the position of the Quest UFO Group, which -- dare I say it? -- might just have something to do with sour grapes.)
(7) The alien corpse is a victim of secret nuclear testing. Alternatively she was an adolescent Japanese atom bomb victim from Hiroshima or Nagasaki. The US military carried out tests on many such wretched creatures in New Mexico during the 1940s. (Objection: Nuclear radiation doesn't cause one to grow extra digits or enlarge one's head and eyes and lose one's navel. Mutations caused by radiation afflict the next generation(s). This autopsy is (supposedly) only two years after the first atomic weapons tests in New Mexico and the Hiroshima bomb.)
(8) The alien corpse is a victim of secret germ warfare or genetic engineering carried out by the US government. This is rumored to be the conclusion which the Channel 4 [British] documentary on Roswell, including sequences from Santilli's film, will put forward when the TV programme is screened nationwide [in England] on August 28th. (The same objections apply to germ warfare testing as to nuclear testing, above. Genetic engineering was barely even thought about in the 1940s and 1950s; if the "freaks" were genetically engineered, then the film must have been made at a much later date, say, the 1980s. This is highly unlikely.)
(9) The film was made as part of a "Psy Op" by the CIA or other US intelligence agencies. It was deliberately staged during the late 1940s or 1950s to deceive the Soviets for reasons which are unknown. An alternative version of this scenario is that it was produced to trade with particular foreign governments (Brazil has been suggested) for intelligence material or material relating to genuine UFO events in which the US government was interested. I am told this is the thinking in some CIA circles who are familiar which the format of such psychological operations, though this is speculation rather than anything definite.
My own position: The film is either a cleverly prepared deception -- possibly in category (9) -- or it is the genuine article. Alternatives such as some of those above, suggesting that it is some other legitimate scenario, unconnected with Roswell or aliens, are simply not convincing. It is obviously too soon to reach a definite verdict until a lot further testing of the film has been done and the cameraman (who we know exists) has been thoroughly questioned.
Michael Hesemann [German UFO investigator and filmmaker], who spoke about the Santilli film at the Sheffield conference, expressed a similar viewpoint. He said:
"This film may very well be authentic. I don't say this film is definitely the real thing. I only say that everything we checked out checked out in favor of it. Indications that it may be a hoax didn't check out. We have more indications that it may be the real thing than we have against it."
He went on to say that he had never found a more open and cooperative guy in any motion picture company than Ray Santilli. Michael has spent hours talking to Santilli and getting information from him about the film and its origins. He has also recently travelled to New Mexico to do research on the spot which has turned up a number of new factors. Michael's research contrasts starkly with the strident speculation by many of those voices on the Internet who have never bothered to talk to Ray Santilli, let alone travel to New Mexico. [More on this in next bulletin.]
Original file name: .CNI - Santilli.Sheffield 8.28
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