September 26, 2010

The Echo Flight UFO Debate Continues


After the last four articles published here at RU covering the witness statements obtained from primary Echo Flight witnesses Walter Figel and Eric Carlson, an already fiery online “debate” grew even more heated.

Apparent supporters of Robert Salas and Robert Hastings began posting statements to our blog stating that RU researchers would never have a chance of catching up to Robert Hasting’s 30+ years of UFO experience – we shouldn’t even try, give it up, game over.

It took RU’s Stephen Broadbent no longer than a few minutes to determine that most of the apparent “supporters” were actually a single person (same IP) posting under various names. That raised a few eyebrows.

The lengths that some grown men go…

Setting aside the drama, one good thing that came out of those comments was another promise that Hastings would produce the mythical “audio tapes” that he’d been promising to publish for many months, which would apparently show that James Carlson and his father are liars. Having already waited for the tapes that were promised over five months ago, no one was holding their breath. So we were pleasantly surprised when we were told that Robert Hastings finally turned up the goods in an article titles “The Echo/Oscar Witch Hunt” at UFO Chronicles.

The Walter Figel Tapes

I’m not certain who the witches are and who exactly is doing the hunting, but one thing is for certain – Robert Hastings and Robert Salas sure don’t want anyone to know what Walter Figel is now saying. I read through Hasting’s recent article very carefully, and his only reference to recent events involved telling readers that James Carlson and Eric Carlson are lying about everything.

He failed to directly respond to Walt Figels more recent comments in 2010, and when James Carlson attempts to reference the comments on the forums that Robert Hastings frequents, James’ posts get deleted. There is certainly a cover-up going on, that’s for sure. Just not the sort of cover up Hastings and Salas would like you to believe.

However, after reading Hasting’s article, I admit to being a bit frustrated with Mr. Figel. Despite his recent comments clarifying the matter to James, it’s clear what he was saying to Hastings and Salas according to those recordings, at least as far back as 1996. After reading Hasting’s article, I decided to contact Walter Figel myself. I did so because Hastings keeps calling James a liar, so I needed something in my hands that would prove one way or another that Figel’s more recent comments about the Echo Flight case were real.

While Hastings failed to produce the promised audio tapes where he and/or Salas supposedly had post-2008 contact with Figel, with claims supposedly proving that James and Eric are now lying – there are still questions that need to be answered. Even though these older recordings don’t prove anything new (except that Hastings most likely does NOT have any more recent interactions with Figel proving anything he’s been claiming about James) – they do require clarification from Figel.

Walter Figel Responds

I wrote an email to Figel and cc’d Eric and James asking Figel, point blank, why he said what he said in those recordings. He responded to me, asking for the link. James responded to his request with the following email, providing Figel with the transcripts.

James wrote:

Robert Salas just published the following transcripts of a conversation he had with you in 1996. He never mentioned anything about your testimony until well after 2002.

Did you actually do this interview, and if so, why is it so different from what you have repeatedly told me, and from what my father has repeatedly claimed?

James ends his email with a comment that makes it very clear to me that he’s not only being as truthful as he can be, but he’s only interested in the truth, and clearing his family name – he has no interest in UFOs or “debunking” the nuclear missile stories found throughout Ufology. He is only interested in the case that his own father was a primary witness to. James continues:

I would very much appreciate some clarity here. I understand that you don’t want to get involved, but you are involved. You can’t get rid of that involvement, not after you’ve basically said that my Dad is a liar. I don’t care what a bunch of wack-jobs waiting for the next flying saucer pick-up have to say about me, because they’ve been doing that for years, but I will not just sit and let them do the same thing to my father.

If you are not willing to fix this — and that means making a cohesive statement of one thing or another, and calling Salas and Hastings and telling them, one way or the other, then please tell me, because this back and forth is ridiculous. These people are telling everybody that I never spoke to you — that I have made the whole thing up from the very beginning. If I am that dissociative, somebody should tell me

Walt finally responded at length to both James and I. He listed the major points that he believes are at issue here. Figel clearly states as of Sept 24th, 2010 – that not only does he believe UFO’s were not involved at Echo Flight, but Figel also reveals some shocking insight into some of Salas’ other claims regarding issues beyond the Echo Flight case. Here is what Figel had to say on the matter.

James,

First – your dad has not lied about anything nor do believe that he is even capable of lying about anything at all. He was, is, and always will be an honorable man. You should remember that always – I will.

Second – Bob Salas was never associated with any shutdown of any missiles at any time in any flight and you can take that to the bank. Just think about this for a split second. He is a person wrapped up in UFOs to the Nth degree. Yet he could not remember he was not at Echo. Then he thought he was at November – wrong again. Then he thought he was at Oscar – wrong again.

Third – There is no record about anything happening at November or Oscar except in people’s minds that are flawed beyond imagination. Salas has created events out of the thin air and can’t get the facts straight even then. My best friend to this day was the flight commander of the 10th SMS at the time. He and I have discussed this silly assertion in the past couple of years – he thinks it is all madeup nonsense for sure. I put both Salas and Hastings in touch with him and he has told them both that an incident at November or Oscar never happened. In addition he was subsequently stationed at Norton AFB where the engineers tested the possible problems. No little green men were responsible.

Fourth – I have always maintained that I do not nor have I ever believed that UFOs exist in any form at any place at any time. I have never seen one or reported that I have seen one. I have always maintained that they had nothing to do with the shutdown of Echo flight in Montana.

Fifth – The event at Malmstrom has a hand written log from me that was turned in just like all the other logs that I wrote over several years. I would think that if I wrote something like that in the log, there would be copies, it would have been classified at the beginning and then released along with the classified SAC messages and base reports. Nothing in that urgent SAC message even hints of UFOs at all and I think that it would if the official logs or telephone calls had referenced that fact.

Sixth – When it happened, neither your dad nor I were “visibly shaken” by the events. It was just another day with a unexpected event in our lives. It was rather underwhelming at the time. No one rushed out to see us, no one made us sign any papers, no one interrogated us for hours on end.

There is no Air Force “cover-up” it just did not happen the way Salas and has portrayed the course of events. I am sorry that you are all caught up in a pissing contest with these people, I really am. They are just not going to let go no matter what you say or do. He has made a 15 year career pandering about the country talking about things he has no knowledge about. I am not at all interested in taking them on – it’s not worth my effort – I have more important things to do with my life. I much rather just stay out of it.

Hopefully, we can move on. I did read about a briefing on the 27th here in DC. I am here in VA about 10 miles away. Interesting. Hopefully this helps you and confirms to you at least that your dad is a straight shooter and does not lie to anyone.

Sincerely,
Walt Figel

While I am still personally not satisfied with the lack of explanation for why he said what he said to Hastings and Salas back in 1996 and 2008 – there is plenty of room for speculation. Maybe the ground crew were joking (he did say he didn’t take them seriously) and Figel was reporting to Hastings and Salas what he thought they wanted to hear – that someone mentioned “UFOs” related to Echo flight.

Maybe he assumed they would report his statements without spinning it to support the reality of UFO’s – which he repeats he does not believe in. Or maybe Figel saw an opportunity to be an “authority” with someone writing a book on the issue, and a chance for a little bit of fame. Who knows at this point. But what is especially revealing is when you look at the points Walter made beyond the simple matter of the recording clips Hastings published.

Witness Walter Figel is Not Invited to the Press Conference

Figel’s following points are rather powerful, I must admit.

-> He confirms James father is an honorable man and has not lied about Echo Flight.
-> He writes: “Bob Salas was never associated with any shutdown of any missiles at any time in any flight and you can take that to the bank.”
-> Walt’s friend, the flight commander of the 10th SMS agrees that the UFO nonsense about Echo Flight is made up – and he apparently told Hastings and Salas that an incident at November or Oscar never happened, yet they’ve never reported that statement to the public.
-> Nothing in the released SAC message (from the declassified documents on the case) contained “even hints of UFOs at all.” Walt maintains that if he’d written anything about UFOs – it would have been reflected there, but it’s not.
-> Walt admits that Eric Carlson’s statement was true that no one made them sign anything, and no one raced out to interrogate them.

Walt’s final statement was probably the most powerful…because he makes such an excellent and revealing point, as he writes:

“I did read about a briefing on the 27th here in DC. I am here in VA about 10 miles away. Interesting.”

Upon seeing this comment, my eyes froze at that line. What an important point.

Yes, indeed, why would Hastings and Salas hold a press conference on the 27th in DC, and not invite Walt Figel, one of their primary and most important witnesses to one of the allegedly largest nuclear missile silo UFO shutdowns in the history of Ufology? Why would they not have retired Lt. Walt Figel standing in front of the cameras admitting that yes, indeed, a UFO was involved at Echo Flight?

At the time of the conference, he is located only 10 miles away, yet they didn’t invite him. I wonder why?



Filed under: UFOlogy,UFOs — Tags: , , , , , — RyanDube @ 2:56 pm




September 12, 2010

An Interview With Malmstrom AFB Witness Eric Carlson


For those of you following along with this story (or for those of you who are just coming along now), I have the pleasure to introduce you to one of the men who has been at the epicenter of a storm within the Ufology community.

It has been a longstanding legend within Ufology that a UFO was sighted over the Silos at Echo Flight and Oscar flight, and that those UFOs were related to the electronic malfunction and shutdown of the nuclear missiles protecting the United States of America from the Communist threat.

The major source of these stories has been a man who alleges that he was a witness to at least Oscar flight, and that he has insight knowledge about events at Echo flight.

You can read many of his claims at the CUFON website, or you can check out the book published by Robert Salas called Faded Giant, with James Klotz listed as contributor. Robert Salas and Robert Hastings are actively promoting this book, and speaking at an upcoming National Press Conference in Washington DC on September 27th.

The Interview with Retired AF Captain Eric Carlson

After we were contacted by James Carlson, and provided with information from his research and interviews, we carefully reviewed the claims by Salas and Hastings, and eventually decided two things. There were two primary witnesses to the Echo Flight event – Walt Figel and Eric Carlson. These two men were in E-Flight LCC, watched the systems fail, and responded in the manner they were trained to respond. No one out there – no one- would know better than these two men what really happened in the control room on that day.

Walt Figel provided his feedback to James, which we’ve published previously on this blog. He does not want to be a part of the debate, and wishes to be left alone after providing his final statement, so we will respect that. However, Captain Eric Carlson remains an excellent witness, and told his son that he would be willing to talk to anyone who is truly interested in the truth.

So – I contacted the retired Captain and he agreed to the interview. It is provided below. I have only edited grammatical or spelling errors, but left his responses exactly how he provided them to me. Without further ado, I would like to introduce you to Echo Flight witness Eric Carlson.

Question and Answer

Ryan: According to the stories, on Thursday Morning, March 16, 1967, you (Captain Eric Carlson) and First Lieutenant Walt Figel were serving as the Echo-Flight Missile Crew in the E-Flight LCC. According to Salas, “more than one report came in from the security patrols and maintenance crews that they had seen UFOs.”

According to Salas, a UFO was even sighted directly above one of the E-Flight silos. At an estimated 08:30, Salas claims that an alarm sounded reporting to you and Figel that one of the Minuteman missiles you were responsible for had become inoperable.

First – lets touch on this claim. Could you describe what you remember about this specific part of the story? Was there such an alarm at all and was it unusual?

Eric: There were no reports called in to either me or Lt Figel on the morning of March 16, 1967.  The report that we had lost ten missiles is accurate.  It was not uncommon to lose one missile or even two to no-go status, it was unheard of to lose all ten.

I recall that both Lt Figel and I were Kept rather busy completing our checklists, which included calls to the wing command post and maintenance control.  Shortly after completing the check lists we received a call from the senior controller at SAC headquarters, a general.   He wanted to know my status and I informed him that E-2 thru E-11 were in no-go status.  He asked me if I was sure and how did I know they would not launch.

I advised him that my tech order indicated they would not launch.  I am sure he was concerned because our targets would have to be covered by someone else.  He then asked it E-1 would launch and I advised him that that was the launch control center where we were.  I recall wanting to tell him that I sure as hell hoped it wouldn’t.

The Alleged UFO Sighting and System Failure

Ryan: The stories claim that when Figel called the security guard on the surface, the guard reported that no maintenance had taken place and that a UFO had been hovering over the silo. Do you recall Figel making this phonecall, and did he tell you that anyone on the other end of the line mentioned anything about a UFO?

Eric: There was no call, at any time, telling us about any UFOs.

Ryan: Reportedly, the entire flight of ICBMs went into “no-go” status – and once you and Figel completed the checklist procedure you learned that all systems were offline due to a guidance and control systems malfunction. Could you elaborate on the accuracy of that claim?

Eric: The voice reporting system did report a guidance and control system malfunction.

Ryan: Did either you or Figel (or anyone else) eventually determine what caused the system malfunction? Or was there any speculation? In other words, did you eventually receive any follow-up information about what the engineers learned about the malfunction?

Eric: I don’t know if anyone eventually determined the cause.  I have not read the report of investigation.  There was no way for either Figel or myself to make that determination and there was no follow-up from engineers.  Any report they made would have been classified and I had no need to know.

The After-Effects of the Experience

Ryan: According to the story, when Captain Don Crawford’s crew relieved you and Walt, you were “still visibly shaken by what had occurred.” Do you recall having such an emotional reaction to the event, and if so, why?

Eric: I do not recall being “shaken” by what had occurred.  I do not believe Lt Figel nor I had any emotional reaction other than perhaps surprise.

Ryan: Do you have an insight or experiences to report related to the reported Oscar Flight incident where allegedly another UFO was sighted which reportedly sent the missiles into “no-go” status?

Eric: The event at Echo became what could be referred to as the talk of the town.  Everyone knew about it and many crew members kidded me about it.  There was never any talk, at any time, about a similar event at Oscar.  I can only conclude from that that it never happened.

Ryan: Why would crew members kid you about a malfunction – was it because it was rare for all of the silos to go down at once? During the jokes and discussions with other crew members, did anyone mention anything about a UFO being sighted above the silo when the malfunction occurred?

Eric: The crew members of the 10th SMS were a tight group.  We were the first minuteman squadron activated and did a lot together.  When soomeone in the squadron had difficulties, that were not related to their skills or qualifications, kidding took place.  At no time were UFOs mentioned to me.

The Follow-Up Air Force Investigation

Ryan: CUFOS reports that subsequent investigations by Boeing engineers turned up no explanation for what could have caused the shutdown, and some speculated that only a high energy electromagnetic pulse (EMP) could have entered the shielded system to cause the failure. Were you aware of any of the subsequent investigations after the shutdown of Echo and/or Oscar, and are able to shed more light on what was actually determined?

Eric: I have no information that sheds light on the incident other than the official investigation or the Echo incident.  To the best of my knowledge there was no report or investigation of any Oscar incident.

Ryan: Had you ever had any conversations with the security guards or staff who allegedly saw the UFO hovering over the silo? What, if anything, did you learn from those conversations about the alleged sighting(s)?

Eric: I have never had any discussion with security personnel regarding UFOs.

Ryan: Do you know if Walter did? According to the stories, he was the one that answered the phone. Of course, you were right there, so I’m sure you would have known if someone told him a UFO had been sighted?

Eric: I am sure that if Figel had any discussions with security personnel about UFOs that he would have mentioned it to me.

Ryan: According to many former USAF personnel, the USAF allegedly frowned upon the reporting or even internal acknowledgement of such UFO events and/or sightings. Is this how you felt while you were serving in the USAF?

Eric: I never felt constrained in any way regarding reporting any unusual activities around missile sites.  In fact, I believe we were encouraged to report unusual incidents or events.

Ryan: Finally – I would like to give you an opportunity to share whether you were ever contacted or interviewed by Hastings, Salas or any other Ufologists before, and your perspective on the stories that they’ve put out there about the events that occurred at Echo Flight and Oscar Flight.

Eric: I was contacted by both Salas and Hastings and would neither confirm or deny anything they told me.  I really didn’t want to get involved in a pissing contest with either.  Hastings told me he had written a book and I told him that sounded interesting.  He sent me a copy and while I cannot attest or comment on anything other than the Malmstrom incident I found that particular incident full of errors.  A producer for some UFO TV series contacted me one time and a reporter from the Great Fall newspaper also contacted me one time.  There were no follow-ups from either.

Ryan: This is interesting! Hastings only called to talk to you after he’d written the book? Or was he calling you while he was writing his book in order to confirm information he’d learned from Salas?

Eric: Hastings called after he had written the book.  I don’t know what his motive was.

Final Words

We’ve learned recently that Robert Salas was recently interviewed on Coast to Coast, and repeated many of the claims that these two witnesses report are not true. James Carlson has been working diligently and honestly to uncover and report the truth about the Echo Flight incident that his father was a primary witness to. We can only hope that in the spirit of truth and unbiased reporting, that Coast to Coast will consider interviewing James and his father Eric Carlson, for a glimpse of the real story.

I would also recommend to our readers, that if you do decide to purchase and read Faded Giant, that you take what Salas has reported with a grain of salt, because unfortunately the real witnesses at Echo Flight do not support his claims.







September 8, 2010

Malmstrom AFB Missile/UFO Incident – Part III


In part 3 of this Malmstrom AFB UFO series (there will be four parts in total for anyone who is wondering), I am going to provide a brief update as to the recent testimony of Eric Carlson. Anyone familiar with the alleged Malmstrom UFO incident knows that Captain Eric Carlson, along with First Lieutenant Walt Figel were key witnesses in the events that took place at Echo Flight on March 16, 1967.

It’s important to understand the scope of what is involved in this analysis. For some reason, a lot of readers – particularly Ufologists and/or various UFO researchers – are under the impression that the intent of this report is to debunk any and all claims of UFO activity at nuclear missile sites around the country during this time period.

The reality is that James Carlson’s research, interviews and analysis is centered upon one thing and one thing only; proving that this particular incident occurred exactly as his father, a primary witness, described it as occurring – not as Robert Hastings described it in his book, and not as Robert Salas has detailed in his account.

Since our tagline here at RealityUncovered is that we are passionate about the truth, then this is an easy enough situation to get a good grasp on and shake out the truth. There are real witnesses and real people involved. In the previous posts, you’ve seen feedback from Walt Figel that states unequivocally that he was not aware of any UFO involvement in the Echo Flight malfunction. It seems inconceivable that this primary witness statement could so directly contradict the claims that Robert Salas and Robert Hastings have made regarding Echo Flight. Yet it does. This also calls into question the accuracy and veracity of Salas’ claims regarding Oscar Flight events as well.

James Contacts His Father

The second primary witness to events within the facility, Captain Eric Carlson, responded to direct queries from his son James recently (Aug 25, 2010) with a response that really leaves very little doubt as to what he reports happened at Echo Flight. The reason James Carlson decided to contact his father again was because he noticed that people were questioning the lack of input from Eric Carlson, James’ own father. James wrote (in the RU forum):

“Many peoplehave asked why my father hasn’t been interviewed to the extent that Col. Walt Figel was. I asked him, therefore, to give me some kind of a written statement. It’s actually pretty fun to read; if anybody believes that this statement is not from my father, then ask him yourself. As Salas has repeatedly insisted that my father confirms his version of this event, I think it’s necessary to examine the contents of this statement.

To enable a fuller understanding of my Dad’s communication with me, I’d like to point out a few facts first:

(1) Salas says my father confirms his story;

(2) throughout my interest in this event, Robert Hastings has repeatedly stated that my father told him I have severe mental problems that have worried my family, implying that the arguments I’ve made, and the issues I’ve examined cannot be trusted as a result of these mental problems; I am seriously considering a lawsuit directed at Robert Hastings for slander and defamation of character;

(3) critics, particularly Robert Hastings, have suggested that my father has memory problems, and that his testimony, to a great extent, cannot be trusted for that reason. With these facts in mind, I ask that you please give his statement the attention it deserves”

A Statement From Primary Witness – Captain Eric Carlson

Eric responded to his son’s query as follows (emphasis mine).

“Let me start by stating that, as best as I can recall, my only contact with Salas and Hastings has been on the phone. I did tell Salas that he could release my name to whomever he wished, don’t know why he needed my permission. I have talked to a newspaper writer in Great Falls, several years ago, and a TV producer from one of those UFO shows. With both these individuals I denied any knowledge of any UFO’s at Malmstrom. In addition, I stated that there was no, repeat no, incident at Oscar flight as Salas maintains. The man is either lying or delusional.

My onlly contact with Hastings was a call I received from him regarding his book. I stated that his book sounded interesting and he later sent me a copy which I read and gave away to Gabriel or Kier. At no time did I mention anyones mental status; yours, mine, his, or Salas’, although in retrospect I could comment on Salas’.

My memory is quite good regarding the events at Malmstrom and there is no doubt in my mind that there were no reports of UFO’s and no incident at Oscar flight. I will be willing to discuss this with anyone who is truly interested in the facts.


Be sure and let me know when you write something else as your e-book was factual and interesting.”


Following up this statement from his father – I decided to take Mr. Carlson up on that offer. As of tonight, I’ve interviewed retired Captain Eric Carlson myself. Unless his father has shared the interview with him, even James himself is unaware of the answers his father provided in response to my direct questioning about this event. James requested that he be left completely out of the loop and unconnected to the interview, as he expected opponents and critics to accuse him of tampering or otherwise affecting the witness. I was impressed by this, and moved forward with coming up with questions for Eric. I will be publishing this final interview in the last update – part 4 – of this series.

In closing I would like to refer readers to a press release that James Carlson issued on September 6th, directly taking Hastings and Salas to task for their upcoming National Press Conference to be held on September 27th at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. It is certainly the hope of James Carlson, and probably the hope of readers out there who are also passionate about the truth – that maybe, with any luck, there will be a reporter present who has read Captain Eric Carlson’s statement, and Walt Figel’s statements earlier in this blog, and will ask Robert Hastings and Robert Salas direct questions at the National Press Conference about those witness statements.



Filed under: UFOlogy,Ufology History,UFOs — Tags: , , — RyanDube @ 4:50 am




September 1, 2010

The Malmstrom AFB Missile/UFO Incident – Part II


In our last blog update, we heard from James Carlson, the son of one of the Echo Flight witness Eric Carlson (witness to the fact that it was a non-event, that is). In that update, James detailed, in the prolific prose for which he is now very well known for, the current dilemma that Robert Hastings and Robert Salas find themselves in.

Witness Walt Figel, upon being interviewed by James Carlson, reports that there was no UFO. Hastings claims there was a UFO event. So – what’s the story?

James Carlson has been working hard to get to the bottom of this discrepancy, and all he has received for his efforts up until now has been attempted discrediting by Hastings – with claims that James has never spoken to Figel.

In this update, James goes a step further and provides email evidence to support his direct contact with Echo Flight witness Walt Figel. As we progress in this story, RU is working to obtain final evidence to confirm the new information James now offers, which directly counters what Hastings and Salas are reporting about Echo Flight.

But first, we will continue with James’ comments in our forum – comments aimed directly at Robert Hastings and Robert Salas and challenging them to provide proof for their claims about Walt Figel and Carlson’s father. Make sure to read through to the bottom of this post, where James provides evidence of his communications with witness Walt Figel.

James Writes:

“If Walt Figel was aware – as Hastings has continuously asserted for some years now – that a UFO shut down the missiles at Echo Flight, and that my father was aware of this as well and has simply lied about the event, while Figel told the truth, then I challenge him to prove it.

Call Walt Figel, Robert, as you have promised to do time and again for the past four-and-a-half months. Your problem has come about because nobody has ever required any real standards of proof from you as a result of your ridiculous and silly claims. You’ve never attempted to apply any form of peer review to your assertions, and you’ve grown lazy, because most people who have adopted your point-of-view don’t require proof and don’t need confirmation.

The rest of the world still does, Robert, and you are unable to provide it, or you would have done so already. If I’m wrong, show me – prove it.

Make another phone call to your primary witness at Echo Flight, and show the world that Walt Figel says there was a real UFO at Echo Flight on March 16, 1967, and that my father has been lying about this for over forty years. Frankly, I’m sick of your crap, and your slanders and attacks and your continuous claims that I’m lying and that you can prove it. However, you don’t have the will or the time to do so.

I’ve got some news for you – you knowingly lied about what Figel told you regarding Echo Flight. You’ve repeatedly claimed that he confirms your UFO myth, and that my father has been lying about the event for years. You’ve claimed over and over and over again that my assertions are lies and bluff, and that you can prove this easily, and yet, in the four-and-a-half months since I spoke to him, you’ve produced NOTHING.

You and Robert Salas are frauds – you have knowingly lied to your audience about UFOs at Echo Flight. You knew long ago that Figel’s discussion of this event did not “prove” UFOs were involved at Echo Flight, but you have repeatedly claimed that they do, and your primary source for this – according to your own statements – is Walt Figel. You’ve also claimed that Walt Figel’s assertions are proof that my father has lied about this event, and you knew that wasn’t true as well.

You once offered to give me Walt Figel’s phone number so I could speak to him and thereby discover that my father had lied to me about this event. I didn’t need it, because it was easy enough to track him down on my own. But, maybe you should use it now. Do what you have been insisting you could do for the past few months and prove to the world that I haven’t spoken to Figel and that Figel hasn’t personally refuted every one of your conclusions regarding this incident. So far you’re just a lot of talk, and a lot of insulting rhetoric. In light of your prior comments, that’s pretty pathetic, don’t you think?

I have been 100% honest with the members and readers of this forum.

-> I have outlined a complete record of the events in March, 1967

-> I have backed that up with both documented evidence and the testimony of those individuals who were actually involved in that event.

-> I have asserted and proven that previous versions of this very real incident are incomplete, factually incorrect at times, and improperly confirmed.

In fact, the only possible conclusion that can be reached is that these individuals (Hastings and Salas) have very carefully and very consciously distorted the facts in order to create a paradigm supporting an event that they have invented – for whatever reason.

I think they did it for money, but maybe they did it for other reasons. The fact that they DID it, however, can’t be denied by anyone who looks at the evidence, unless they just dismiss everything and insist that I’m lying – which is what Hastings has recently suggested. I suspect that after reading the complete record of my communications with both Walt Figel and Frederick Meiwald below, he will alter his claims to suggest that Walt Figel, Frederick Meiwald, my father, and I are ALL lying, and that Robert Salas is as honest and golden as the sunrise.”

Communications Between James Carlson and Echo Flight Witness Walt Figel

James continues: “Please keep in mind that ALL of this has been part of the record since last March (2010) at the latest. If you still think I’m lying, it should be very easy to confirm, so do so. I am absolutely sick of people suggesting that I have lied about this matter without once attempting to confirm such slanderous assumptions. Robert Salas, Robert Hastings – even Frank Warren – don’t want an open discussion or dialogue regarding this matter; they want people to think I’m lying!

In fact, Hastings’ commentaries generally start with that assumption! When was the last time someone demanded any affirmations of the degree they’ve demanded of me from someone who claimed they SAW a UFO? I’m willing to bet Hastings has NEVER demanded such a level of proof – I’ll bet he simply accepted their claims without examination. I know for a fact he hasn’t applied any such need for immediate proof to Robert Salas, because if he had, Salas could never have been so inconsistent regarding his own claims – and inconsistency is the single most consistent and common factor characterizing those claims!

Please find attached the complete text of my written communications with COL.(Ret.) Walter Figel, Jr., currently living in Colorado.

I have also included my communications with LTCOL.(Ret.) Frederick Meiwald, the commander of Oscar Flight who Robert Salas insists was with him the day the missiles at Osar Flight supposedly failed as the result of extreme interference by a UFO that emptied the command post of all security personnel during an armed event, and injured one security policeman to such an extent that he required a medical evacuation via helicopter. He asserts as well that he doesn’t believe in UFOs, which is a strange thing to say in light of Salas’ claims that a man under his command was injured and evacuated as a result of said injury by a UFO. In any case, in my final letter to him, I extended my sympathies regarding his mother, and promised not to disturb him again. I haven’t written to him, nor have I heard from him since.”

[Note from author – Oscar Flight witness communications will be published in the blog in the next post. For the sake of brevity, I’ve omitted James’ initial emails to Figel do to their length, but you can read them in their entirety in the forum.]

Walter Figel’s Response to James on Thursday, February 18, 2010:

Thursday, February 18, 2010 8:10 PM

From Walter Figel, Jr. Fri Feb 19 01:10:36 2010

James

First – you are not bothering me at all

Second – you are welcome to call me any time that you would like

Third – Your dad and I always got along and there is no problem between us at all that I am aware of

Fourth – If I can be of any help to you, please ask away

I hope that your dad is well

Home phone [WALT FIGEL’S HOME TELEPHONE NUMBER]

Cell [WALT FIGEL’S PRIMARY CELL TELEPHONE NUMBER]

I am retired from [FORMER EMPLOYER] but I still do some consulting for them

I am home this week

Please feel free to call any time to about 10:00 pm

I am home this evening

I will be home all day Friday except from 11:30-13:30 for a lunch appointment

I will be at my son’s house Sat and out to dinner that evening

Sunday I’ll be in Colorado Springs with the boys for an art exhibit

Monday I fly to Albany

Walt

After publicly reporting the things that he learned on the phone directly from Walt Figel, James found himself under direct attack from Hastings and his supporters. James went back to Walt for some support to defend himself.

Re: Request

Sunday, February 28, 2010 5:14 PMFrom: “James T. Carlson” To: ” Jr.Walter Figel” < [WALT FIGEL’S EMAIL ADDRESS] >

Dear Mr. Figel,

If you don’t have the time or desire to contact me again regarding this matter, please tell me.

Robert Hastings is now stating “As for Col. Walt Figel not confirming what I’ve written, how would you know, given that you have been too cowardly to call him, to hear what he told me directly, despite my pleas that you do so? His comments posted on this thread are verbatim excerpts from my taped conversation with him. As others posting here have previously noted, you are the *only* one who thinks that Figel agrees with your position. Talk about deep denial. (Drew Clueless doesn’t count here, given his 100/1 inaccuracy-to-accuracy ratio when attempting to interpret anything anyone else has posted here.)”

Some kind of response from you would be appreciated, particularly some discussion regarding the issues I asked you about on 2/19, but if you don’t intend to respond, knowing that would be helpful as well.

Thanks in advance.

Most sincerely,

James Carlson

Albuquerque, NM

Unfortunately – James found himself in the middle of a situation that truth-seekers here are RU are accustomed to. Discover the truth, report it with evidence, and come under harsh attack from believers and of course the promoters of false claims. Standard situation – unfortunately, until James came to RU, he was fighting this fight alone.

Walt Figel, understanding this characteristic of the horrid UFO community, Walt responds on March 2 with the following comment (emphasis mine):

I am not a fan of Salas, Hastings, or the whole UFO crowd

I have never seen one and flatly don’t believe they exist at all

I just want you to be clear of my position on UFOs

They make good science fiction – nothing more

I have read both of their books

There are many inaccurate statements and events in the books

I have told them both that

For instance, Oscar flight NEVER had any problems and Salas was NEVER involved in any of them at all just for starters

I think that they are just enjoying the notariety of the situation

Let me know when to call and I will do so tonight

Regards

Walt

About a week later, after once again coming under attack by Hastings and his supporters, James is forced yet again to ask Walt for confirmation regarding some of Hastings more recent claims.

Forwarded Message: Re: telephone conversation

Re: telephone conversation

Thursday, March 11, 2010 3:26 AM

From: “James T. Carlson” To: ” Jr.Walter Figel” < [WALT FIGEL’S EMAIL ADDRESS] >

Dear Col. Figel,

I’ve had a couple of emails from different people today regarding some statements I wrote; specifically RobertHastings wrote them a letter stating the following:

“I re-interviewed Walt Figel on Monday evening. Salas re-interviewed him on Tuesday evening. We have both conversations on audiotape and we are currently transcribing them. We asked Figel to address James Carlson’s interpretation of his statements and position on various things. James will not like what Walt had to say.

Figel has given Salas and me permission to publicize his statements as we see fit. I will post a comprehensive rebuttal to James’ flawed claims in the next few days, providing verbatim excerpts from the conversations. I may even make key portions of the original audio tape available online.”

[snip]

If you would please send me a quick email or telephone me, I would very much appreciate it. I’ve told the above gentlemen what I believe to be the truth, and that the email from Robert Hastings is probably just more of his garbage, but if I’m wrong, I’d like to know, so I can correct my errors. And if my acts got you more involved in a discussion you didn’t want to get further involved with, I am sincerely sorry for that.

Tell me what I can do to fix it, and I promise you I will do so — whatever it is; just tell me how you’d like it done.and that the email from Robert Hastings is probably just more of his garbage, but if I’m wrong, I’d like to know, so I can correct my errors. And if my acts got you more involved in a discussion you didn’t want to get further involved with, I am sincerely sorry for that. Tell me what I can do to fix it, and I promise you I will do so — whatever it is; just tell me how you’d like it done.

Regards,

James Carlson

[PRIVATE INFORMATION DELETED]

Albuquerque, NM

Walt Figel Provides a Full Writeup in Response to Hastings’ and Salas’ Claims

Walt wrote a fantastic response to James – a detailed and full review of the situation and his take on it. In this author’s opinion, Walt’s statement is the final word on the matter, and Hastings and Salas have much to answer for. Walt wrote (emphasis mine):

Re: telephone conversation
Thursday, March 11, 2010 9:03 AM
From Walter Figel, Jr. Thu Mar 11 14:03:27 2010

Re: telephone conversation.eml

James

I guess you must have posted something somewhere that got Hastings attention
He did call and we did speak for a bit, so did Salas.
You should know that both calls were very cordial as was ours.

However, I think you guys have a pissing contest going that I would rather not get in the middle of. I have no vested or financial interests in UFOs and actually not even a passing interest in them. Guess I am different from most people. But, I could really care less about the subject.

I reasserted that I personally never did see a UFO at any time.
I do not personally “believe” that UFOs had anything to do with Echo flight shutting down that year.
I repeated that I never heard about an incident at November or Oscar flight and have no knowledge that they ever happened and that I doubted they did.
That is obviously a personal opinion as I can not prove the negative.

I repeated that Colonel Dick Evans was at the alternate command post at Kilo which is in the same squadron as November and Oscar and he never mentioned anything about a shutdown at either of these two flights.

If it did happen, I personally don’t know anything about it.

One of their books said I had a personal log – I did not.

The only log I ever filled out was the official log that all flights kept and that I do not and never did have a copy of that log. Obviously I can not remember what I wrote that morning.

One of the books says that the flight shut down in “seconds” – that is not an exactly accurate statement.

It obviously took some time for your dad and I to run the appropriate checklists and make all the calls that we had to make to the command post and maintenance. We were near the end of the checklist when the second missile shut down and shortly threafter the rest of them followed suit.

That sequence of events took several minutes not seconds, but that is all a very minor point in fact and doesn’t change the facts of the overall sequence of events that morning.

I told him that when someone mentioned UFOs, I just laughed it off as a joke and assumed someone was just kidding around. I never took it seriously.

I also told them that no one from any UFO office in the Air Force ever interviewed/deriefed your dad and/or me and that I do not remember ever signing any papers about anything.

In fact, I told them that until he mentioned it, I did not even know there was an office that monitored sightings of “UFOs” in the Air Force.

When your dad and I came topside the next day – no one ever said anything about UFOs and there was no “large gathering” of people on site that morning.

There may have been later that afternoon, but I would have no knowledge of that as we were long gone back to the base as usual.

I did not know the targeting office’s name or even know that he was there.

I did say there was a VRSA recording reporting a “Channel 9 – NO GO” reported.
They said that the maintenance crews had no such report at the LF.
I told him that I did not know how the system worked at the missile site so that I do not know if that is possible or not.

I have always maintained that I do not personally believe in UFOs.

I am not convinced that November or Oscar ever happened.

But these are obviously personal opinions and I can not state them as facts or prove them – they are my personal beliefs.

I also believe these statements are accurate.

I also believe that is what I said 2 years ago, but I don’t have recordings.
So my knowledge is very slim and I have no records about anything at all.
In addition, that was 43 years ago and memories fail – especially about things that were not especially important to me at the time.
Today, I can’t remember what time my wedding was and that I assure you is more important to me then and now. And that was in 1971.

So if this is a help, so be it.
But I would rather stay out of any long standing debate about UFOs and leave that to the experts and researchers and those who know or at least truely believe that they know. After all they may be right and proven so some day.

As for me, I’ll just go my way as a skeptic until proven wrong.

As you can see, I cc’d Hastings so that you both have the same piece of paper. I don’t think that there are any inconsistencies in what I said to either of you. If there are, I’m sorry, that is not my intention at all.

Good luck in your pursuits. Stay professional and all will benefit.
Regards to your dad, I wish him well. It’s been many years.

With that said, I hope that this tug of war is over and the three of you can resolve your differences about the whole affair.

Walt

With Walt’s final, well-written words, I close this post.

In the next update, you will have an opportunity to read, for the first time anywhere online (other than our forums), James’ exchange with LTCOL.(Ret.) Frederick Meiwald, the commander of Oscar Flight, regarding Hastings’ and Salas’ claims about the event.

Stay tuned. There’s more to come.



Filed under: UFOlogy,UFOs — Tags: , , , — RyanDube @ 3:18 pm






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