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Due to the statement regarding the Ohio Flare Explanation for a number of UFO sightings from March 26, 1997 which may also explain Arizona, , certain outrage has ensued, the likes of which we have never seen before. Below is a sampling of livid E-mail (and also some kinder, gentler E-mail) that came in fast and furious after the flare announcement.

Dear Kenny,

You are wasting your time comparing the Arizona sightings to flares. No way, no how. Are you telling me that thousands of people are lying? Many people could see the actual structure of the "boomerang" and the "black triangle". How does that fit into the T.A.S.K. flare theories? How did flares fly thru several states?

What happened in Arizona was a low fly over by alien spacecraft..Period...

Tom King

What a load of crap!! Eyewitnesses in Arizona report an object that flew silently over their neigborhoods at an altitude low enough to hit the object with a tennis ball. Daytime sightings of similar objects (and hockey-puck shaped objects, as well) confirm that at least some of 'em WERE NOT FLARES. That has, and will continue to be, my mantra as long as folks like "KENNY" continue their efforts to squeeze a square peg into a round hole. They can ask whomever they like. I can assure them that the military was NOT dropping potentially flammable objects over downtown Phoenix on the end of a parachute on the night of the March 13th.

Regardless of how ubiquitous these maneuvers may be. What everyone seems to be forgetting here is the duration of these sightings: up to an hour, according to news sources. Unless those flares were made of plutomium, then so much for that theory. As the air-traffic controller who witnessed these objects said to refute HIMSELF on NBC recently, "they were probably flares, but on the same plane and the same distance from each other?"

Now, no less a personage than the Governor of Arizona is calling for an investigation, a serious request apparently, despite his cartoon antics. Gee, you'd think that he'd know if they were flares or not, huh? Especially sense they had the potential to make his fire-cracker hot town a little warmer. Maybe he KNOWS they weren't and that's why he's calling for an investigation. I mean, the military has said as much. I suppose they're just covering up for the next time they want to drop napalm on his largest city.

Oh, and while I'm on the subject. I've heard that Richard Motzer is now claiming (sorry Rich if I've heard incorrectly) that since computer enhancement shows that these lights bob around a bit in relationship to one another, then that's further proof that they are flares. Oh really? Has he never seen the video footage compiled by Lee Elder of multiple discs (20 an up) hanging in the air over Mexico? The ones bobbing ever so slightly in relationship to one another...almost like balloons on a string. But they're not folks, they're not, regardless of how much we'd like them to be...

We don't know for sure if the 6 or so lights photographed over downtown Phoenix were interconnected or not. Just because some people reported seeing a triangular shaped object(s)that night doesn't mean that they were one and the same. But to maintain that they were smoke, coming from flares, observed by thousands of people for up to an hour is laughable.

By the State Director for MUFON in Kentucky, I can promise you Kenny that the object that glided silently over the apartment building in Lexington last month in front of a number of witnessess wasn't smoke either. Neither were the blackish, unmarked, helicopters that buzzed the building the following day and night, even at 3:00 AM in the morning!!

Bright, intelligent, well-meaning people can jump to erroneous conclusions. This we know. Like that poor soul over in Great Britain who's squandered a substantial amount of his time and resources trying to pin the crop-circles on some very creative wind vortices. Or the learned folks who tried to pin them on some horny badgers. These folks deserve our, well, pity because they're so clueless. But those who attempt to throw up a deliberate smoke-screen because of their inability to "cope" (and you know who you are), deserve our scorn. And nothing less.

Jerry Washington
State Director, Kentucky/MUFON


I don't know where to start with your FLARE theory: Tim Edwards just told me that TWO Flare experts with 40 years in the business said the Phoenix sightings WERE NOT FLARES: Just watching those Phoenix's UFOs on video tape and their extreme rapid motion would, I think, rule out any type of Flare Theory.

Now, those F16s in Ohio could have been dropping flares at the same time as these reported UFO sightings so you have a mix of flares and UFOS: Does everybody think the same there ?? This and our brilliant Kent Jeffreys are in the same boat....No Where !


Bob C

To all,

They were dropping flares to confuse the sighters and create an alternative explanation for these sightings.

I saw two dark triangles. There was no mistake. There they were, hovering directly over my house and making no sounds. I was clear and cogent in my assessment of what I saw and any explanation that does not adddress the large dark triangle will not wash.

They may be gov`t issue but they are there.

Steve Neeley
Ohio Regional Director Skywatch International
Hardin County Ohio Skywatch & Sighter Support


I can't believe you are seriously considering flares as a possible explanation. Bob has an awfully good point. I suppose those flares have been abducting people all over Ohio, too?

I really don't mean to criticize you Kenny, but I feel you totally ignore some of the evidence, i.e. abduction reports. I would like to know if there has been a significant increase in this type of event coinciding with the increase in the visual sightings in Ohio. Do you (or anyone have) this data? If not, I think we should be trying to collect it. It is worth looking at.


Dear Kenny,

It boils down to this. I saw the Strange lights and videotaped them. I also have videotaped and photographed "flares". My statement is: flares are not what we saw on March 13. The visual and videotaped evidence isn't the same. Further more I know of no witness who states he saw flares. This includes current military witnesses.

So are you and T.A.S.K. calling me and Bill Hamilton a bunch of liars?

Now, we don't go around advertising how the Ohio sightings were the boomerang craft from Arizona cruised over Ohio. You guys are way out of line.

Tom King

Hi Kenny,

First of all, I've stayed out of the arguments because in most cases we're killing one another over distant encounters. For those involved or informed about the Phoenix sightings, however, your comparison may seem a little unfair to them. I would almost agree with your concept, except that I just got off the phone with Peter Davenport of the National UFO Reporting Center in Seattle. He will be posting a report on the events in Phoenix. Whether we like it or not (and up until an hour ago I was convinced on the flares) we have something very strange going on over Arizona. There may have INDEED been flares, but something else was there that is not easily explained.

Also, just brought to my attention, flares with parachutes would not be dropped in that kind of area, and no chutes were ever found.

Francis Ridge
UFO Filter Center

Ken, my man, your word speaks the truth! Don't let these inhumane smart-alecs ruffle your feathers.Fly like the "phoenix" that you are! First the age of Aquarius, now the dawning of the age of the Phoenix, she must arise from the ashes.The summer solstace is at our doorstep. Whenever I see Mount Rainier I remember that fifty years ago something happened here. Newspapers all over the world were carrying the story of nine mysterious flying objects seen by Kenneth Arnold on June 24th, 1947, over Washington's Cascade mountains. Hundreds of others also witnessed this miraculous event. Shortly afterward, the first week of July, the infamous Roswell crash occured.Whoever or whatever it was, we are now invited to welcome its presence, trusting in ourselves, the unknown and unknowable! Keep on truckin' brotherman!


Your recent Net article, which attempted to debunk the Ohio sightings with reported information from the very government which has been covering up the UFO phenomena, was itself not very credible. That you then attempted to debunk the Arizona sightings by analogy to the Ohio sightings, leads me to believe that your reasoning is just as Fuzzy as the reasoning to the "True believers" you attempt to denigrate. In addition, your attempts to label those who choose not to believe the government's line, as something akin to simple village idiots only detracts from your reasoning.


I agree with you on science, but the evidence here in Phoenix is that it points away from the Flare explanation. There were no flares over Phoenix that night according to the National Guard. We also had flare experts testify that they did not see flares that night. A flare maker said that the analyzed images on the videos are not flares. I saw the lights thru a telescope - no parachutes, no aircraft, no smoke, no flames or sparks hence no flares. I am familiar with military flares and have seen them often. The college boys from Cal Tech used to try to fool us, but we just did not fool that easy. We have seen these over MOAs and they illuminate the terrain for night ops. These lights illuminated nothing! They may as well have been shining out of a black hole.


Bill Hamilton


Perhaps the Arizona and Ohio Sightings were a combination of Overlay.

"Another deeper understanding is revealed as one examines this pattern. Every year there appear UFO reports that go beyond terrestrial technology. I believe that our military is aware of this and has a contingency plan in place. When a truly authentic sighting occurs, the wheels of overlay begin to turn immediately.

Before too much attention is drawn to the REAL sighting, the Black Project boys are flying in our craft to divert and draw away researchers and reporters to another location not far away from the original sight(usually by a secure facility) in order to distract and confuse the truth. For researchers, hot on the trail as hound dogs; the dead end comes with an off limits area or hoaxed crop circle. In either case, the truth gets diluted, and on most occasions, lost.

For those who are willing to sacrifice truth for power, there can be no peace. For those who are willing to sacrifice power for truth, eternity will not hide their honor!"

-From The Art of Overlay

Best Regards, Tim Hagemeister Director-NACOMM~<>~

There has been vehement opposition to the flare theory, primarily from
those who contend that the Ohio and Arizona happenings are E.T. related events.
Here is a sampling of various reasoning used to justify the flare explanation.

Please be informed that over 9 months of time-consuming research has been applied into this investigation, and the flare explanation is not meant to deflate or dismiss these events, or the possibilities of ET visitation to earth. By objectively investigating and reporting on these events, it is my singular motivation to convey fact.

I believe we, as UFO investigators and sincere TRUTH SEEKERS, owe the public an honest effort in our quest to unravel the UFO mystery. The flare theory is a viable explanation to offer for these and other events. There is no denying the controversies and witness discrepancies, but yet it is misleading to throw out this valuable data when researching the reported happenings.

I do not believe in throwing out certain data that would damage our pet theories. Were I to disregard these known findings in the face of the present publicity furor, then I would be guilty of utlizing the very pigeon-hearted tactics used by the debunking celebrities. If this data does not conform to our personal world views, then we must all deal with it in our own way, but please don't discount the possibilities. Keep in mind our intention: to advance an adequate explanation to a reported anomalous event. At this stage of the game, the FLARE THEORY meets this criteria.

I have personally investigated 12 Ohio cases in the past 3 years and am satisfied that a core of these reports remain unexplained. However, the March 26th Ohio event does not fall within this category. I am very comfortable in stating that some of the objects sighted on March 26th were flares.

Again, I'm not in this to 'butter up' the belief system of the ET believer, and I will also not withhold my findings to protect any belief system.

I would ask every UFO researcher to share our commitment: discard your belief system and conduct UFO research with unshakable objectivity, sincere scrutiny and honest reportage, never fearing to publicize findings that may be in deviation of your world-view.

Only then will the truth be unravelled.

Kenny Young

On 23 June 1997, Chris Rutkowski wrote:

Standing off to one side a bit, I can see where both sides are coming from on this issue. And I will note that they both raise some very good points. As an astronomer, I know only too well that the odds are greatly in favour of there being sentient life elsewhere in the universe (I doubt that there is such here on Earth, but that's another matter...).

In my talks about this subject, I note the theories of stellar evolution and exobiology, including the Drake equation and other calculations. I try to help formulate answers to Fermi's classic "Where are they?" I tend to agree that the ETH is a viable explanation for some UFO cases. I also agree, though, that the number of cases to which this might apply is very, very small and that the ETH is invoked much more often than is warranted.

As Jenny Randles notes in the 50th anniversary book "UFO 1947-1997", one basic tenet of ufology is: "If you can't explain 9 out of 10 sightings, you're not trying hard enough."

Kenny's refutation that the Arizona flap was due to a formation of some aircraft seems eminently reasonable to me, judging from the descriptions and comments that have been posted, including the video. I've had some cases that were similar, too. The fact that the "dark" UFO was implied by the position of lights makes me more than a bit suspicious of the incident, too. The fallability of witnesses' observational capabilities is well-documented and it seems more reasonable to think the focus of the Arizona case might be better explained as military activity (not necessarily flares, BTW) rather than a giant extraterrestrial mothership.

This is *not* to say that the ETH sbould be ignored, only that ufologists should be very careful in interpreting and evaluating sighting reports. I've been called a skeptic by some hard-core "believers" because of my caution, and I think this is what Kenny was getting at. But I've also argued *against* CSICOP members regarding the UFO issue, giving some the opportunity to call me a "believer." In reality, I am neither.

Hard-core believers *and* hard-core debunkers are both controlled by deep-rooted belief systems which restrict their world view and skew their thinking. If ufologists and other researchers are not careful, their personal views can and will interfere with their approaches to this subject.

Paul Devereux's comments on another ListServ which implied I was critical of his Earth Lights theory because I was a firm believer in the ETH as the main UFO explanation only showed how belief systems operate even among those who do not hold the ETH as a main concept. He is unable to understand that Earth Lights are not needed as an explanation within ufology except in very specific and rare cases where other explanations such as aircraft and stars are more tenable. He might be arguing now, I suppose, that the Arizona cases might have been Earth Lights, and he *might* be correct!

But when one steps back for a long, cold look, you tend to see the forest as well as the trees. If you're lucky, you can even see the mountain.

Chris Rutkowski
University of Manitoba - Winnipeg, Canada

It was just flares. Some Christians believe they can see the image of the virgin Mary in a potato. UFOERS believe flares are Ufos. There was a press release a day before the sighting that they were going to shoot off flares.

My god there are a lot of nuts in this field! Most of them seem to be members of MUFON. - The Spook

I say let them think it is an alien space ship, I'm sure that this will create another wave of abductions too. It seems that MUFON is trying to create an alien hysteria over these flare events. Where are the other UFO organizations, any comments from them? It seems the media didn't care about this story that much the day after it happen. Why now?

Everytime I hear this, the Arizona craft gets lower and lower to the ground. I wonder when this statement will be released, " That martian spacecraft landed in my backyard and six aliens came out and greeted my family and me.

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