Keyhoe became its director and continued his attacks on the Air Force. officials to try to discover the truth of the matter. Robert Sarbacher, a physicist and consultant to the Defense Department's Research and Development Board.Other contemporary critics also charged that the United States Air Force was perpetrating a cover-up with its Project Blue Book. Smith, who worked for the Canadian Department of Transport, was interested in flying saucer propulsion technology and wondered if the assertions in the just-published Scully and Keyhoe books were factual. Other correspondence, having to do with Keyhoe needing to get clearance to publish another article on Smith's theories of UFO propulsion, indicated that Bush and his group were operating out of the Research and Development Board.Roswell has been described as "the world's most famous, most exhaustively investigated, and most thoroughly debunked UFO claim." The 1948 death of Air Force pilot Thomas Mantell (the so-called Mantell Incident) may have contributed to a distrust of governmental UFO studies. Air Force may have planted the seeds of UFO conspiracy theories with Project Sign (established 1947) (which became Project Grudge and Project Blue Book). Ruppelt, the first director of Blue Book, characterized the Air Force's public behavior regarding UFOs as "schizophrenic": alternately open and transparent, then secretive and dismissive.Mantell died when his airplane crashed following the pursuit of an aerial artefact he described as "a metallic object..tremendous size" (Clark, 352). Ruppelt also revealed that in mid-1948, Project Sign issued a top secret Estimate of the Situation concluding that the flying saucers were not only real but probably extraterrestrial in origin. government group called the "Interplanetary Phenomenon Unit" allegedly established by General Douglas Mac Arthur that was "supposedly formed to investigate crashed and retrieved flying saucers".Notable persons to have publicly stated that UFO evidence is being suppressed include Senator Barry Goldwater, British Admiral Lord Hill-Norton (former NATO head and chief of the British Defence Staff), Brigadier General Arthur Exon (former commanding officer of Wright-Patterson AFB), Vice Admiral Roscoe H.Hillenkoetter (first CIA director), astronauts Gordon Cooper and former Canadian Defence Minister Paul Hellyer.Project Blue Book was called in and, after inspecting the film, Mariana claimed it was returned to him with critical footage removed, clearly showing the objects as disc-shaped. Frank Scully's 1950 Behind the Flying Saucers suggested that the U. government had recovered a crashed flying saucer and its dead occupants near Aztec, New Mexico, in 1948. Marine who wrote a series of popular books and magazine articles that were very influential in shaping public opinion, arguing that UFOs were indeed real and that the U. His first book, Flying Saucers Are Real also came out in 1950, about the same time as Frank Scully's book, and was a bestseller.It was later revealed that Scully had been the victim of a prank by "two veteran confidence artists". In 1956, Keyhoe helped establish NICAP, a powerful civilian UFO investigating group with many inside sources.
Project Sign, based at Air Technical Intelligence Command at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base and its successors Project Grudge and Project Blue Book were officially assigned to investigate the flying saucers.Initially, the target of the aerial barrage was thought to be an attacking force from Japan, but Secretary of the Navy Frank Knox speaking at a press conference shortly afterward called the incident a "false alarm." A small number of modern-day UFOlogists have suggested the reported targets were extraterrestrial spacecraft. One USAF top secret document from 1948 stated that Swedish Air Force Intelligence informed them that some of their investigators felt that the reported objects were not only real but could not be explained as having earthly origins. Paul Santorini publicly stated that in 1947 he was put in charge of a Greek military investigation into reports of ghost rockets sighted over Greece [Timothy Good 1988, p 23; Donald Keyhoe, p 142].Again, they quickly concluded the objects were real and not of conventional origin.Edward Ruppelt's book The Report on Unidentified Flying Objects, reports that many people within these research groups did in fact support the hypothesis that the flying saucers were from outer space.Keyhoe later founded NICAP, a civilian investigation group that asserted the US government was lying about UFOs and covering up information that should be shared with the public.