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Scientists Wonder If Extraterrestrial Life Has Visited Earth

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Article by Albert McKeon                      October 15, 2019                       (northropgrumman.com)

• When people think of UFOs, they typically think of craft flying over their heads. No one talks much about the possibility that intelligent extraterrestrials may already be here among us on Earth. Last year, after writing a paper on theoretical ways for SETI to detect an alien presence, NASA physicist Silvano Colombano was accused by Fox News of claiming that aliens have indeed come to Earth. Colombano was quick to correct the Fox News story, saying that he believes an alien visit is only theoretically possible. However, Colombano also stated that “reports of unidentified aerial phenomena should be the object of serious study.” But mainstream scientists are loath to even discuss an extraterrestrial presence, much less study it.

• So the discussion about UFOs and extraterrestrials has been relegated to ‘claims’ and ‘theories’. Claims such as a New Hampshire couple being abducted by aliens one summer evening in 1961; or theories such as Harvard Professor Avi Loeb assertion that the rogue “asteroid” Omuhamuha may have been an alien probe, which “elicited some derision from scientists.”

• The vast majority of our efforts to discover intelligent extraterrestrials has been by looking out beyond our planet. The ‘Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence’ or ‘SETI’ employs more than 130 scientists, educators and administrative staff in a quest to “explore, understand, and explain the origin and nature of life in the universe and the evolution of intelligence.” They do this by monitoring telescope arrays that study the characteristics of red dwarf stars and newly-discovered exoplanets. Unfortunately, SETI has recently had to cross a large number of potential exoplanets off of their list for having “unsuitable environments”.

[Editor’s Note]   So this is where the line is currently drawn. The compromised media welcomes any news on a ‘scientific research group’ like SETI (also compromised) searching for life on other planets, but they will attack you as soon as you suggest that the aliens are already here. Organizations such as Fox News and SETI only exist to do the Deep State’s bidding, which in this case is to make it sound like smart people are doing everything possible to find other extraterrestrial life or even a viable explanation for UFOs, but alien civilizations beyond the Earth simply do not exist. They have most of the world believing this. The Deep State and the elite they protect does not want people to know that they have been fleecing the natural and economic resources of the Earth and its inhabitants for the past seventy years in order to develop advanced technologies and create a secret space program to rival the other space programs, both human and extraterrestrial, that exist all around us and throughout the galaxy. And they will stop at nothing to prevent the population from “waking up” to this reality.

 

Of course, whether extraterrestrial life has actually touched the soil of Earth — or floated above it, observing us all — has been a burning question for almost as long as humankind could look at the stars. The many claims of alien sightings, often buttressed by grainy photos of UFOs, and the many theories about outer space creatures already living among us could fill enough books to weigh down a spacecraft that’s collecting samples of our planet.
One thing is for certain: The public and private agencies that deal with all things space focus on finding life away from Earth. They are not researching, at least publicly, the scientific possibility of whether aliens have already been on our planet. For that matter, governments answer stories of UFO sightings on Earth by pointing to the weather or by saying the claim couldn’t be corroborated. There are no official records of aliens visiting Earth.

Claims and Theories of Aliens Visiting Earth

Discussion about aliens on Earth can be, for the sake of argument, placed into two camps: claims and theories. Claims are those that appear on the covers of supermarket tabloids or occasionally make for a fun feature in a mainstream news publication. For instance, a New Hampshire couple that spoke of being captured by aliens on a late-summer evening in 1961 as they drove through the White Mountains is the first widely-publicized alien abduction claim, a tale that started a legion of others.

Theories of alien visits can also spread like wildfire in the mainstream news if they are made by someone with authority. It happened only recently. Avi Loeb, the chair of Harvard University’s astronomy department, didn’t propose that aliens were even close to Earth. Rather, he and a colleague posited that Oumuamua, a cigar-shaped comet or object that whizzed by the sun in 2017, might have been a probe sent to the vicinity of Earth by an alien civilization. The theory, published in The Astrophysical Journal Letters, elicited some derision from scientists.

      Silvano Colombano

The minor controversy led NASA physicist Silvano Colombano to say that scientists essentially rock the establishment when they theorize about extraterrestrial life. “General avoidance of the subject by the scientific community” creates a catch-22, Colombano told Quartz. He means that scientists might appear crazy for posing questions about aliens, but society will never know about alien life or any possible alien missions to Earth if no one in the scientific community examines the concept.

Colombano himself got caught up in the debate last year, when Fox News reported he claimed aliens have indeed come to Earth, pointing to a document of his on the space agency’s website. But Colombano was quick to correct the Fox News story, saying it was taken out of context and that he believes an alien visit is only theoretically possible. “My perspective was simply that reports of unidentified aerial phenomena should be the object of serious study, even if the chance of identification of some alien technology is very small,” he told Live Science.

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FAIR USE NOTICE: This page contains copyrighted material the use of which has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. ExoNews.org distributes this material for the purpose of news reporting, educational research, comment and criticism, constituting Fair Use under 17 U.S.C § 107. Please contact the Editor at ExoNews with any copyright issue.

The Pitfalls of Searching for Alien Life

Listen to “E32 7-15-19 The Pitfalls of Searching for Alien Life” on Spreaker.
by Diane Peters                     July 3, 2019                        (thewire.in)

• In October 2017, a telescope at the University of Hawaii picked up a cigar-shaped object which had sling-shotted past the sun at 196,000 miles per hour. Scientists at the university dubbed it ‘Oumuamua’, Hawaiian for scout (depicted above). At first it was labeled an asteroid, and then a comet, but it certainly came from another solar system.

• Avi Loeb, the chair of Harvard University’s astronomy department, and Shmuel Bialy, a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard, published a paper in The Astrophysical Journal Letters theorizing that the object could be “light sail”, floating in interstellar space as debris from advanced technological equipment. “Alternatively,” they wrote, “a more exotic scenario is that Oumuamua may be a fully operational probe sent intentionally to Earth vicinity by an alien civilization.”

• While scientists theorizing about alien life may find a rapt public audience, they can also draw cynical, even hostile reactions from their fellow scientists. Paul Sutter, an astrophysicist at Ohio State University, tweeted: “No, ‘Oumuamua is not an alien spaceship, and the authors of the paper insult honest scientific inquiry to even suggest it.” Or they may draw sarcasm, as Neil deGrasse Tyson once quipped to CNN: “Call me when you have a dinner invite from an alien.”

• The threat of being written off as a kook looms large for researchers. Many academics “won’t touch it with a ten-foot pole,” said Don Donderi, a retired associate professor of psychology at McGill University in Montreal who now teaches a non-credit course called “UFOs: History and Reality” in the school’s continuing education department. No one at McGill seemed to mind when Donderi began writing about the paranormal in the 1970’s. But when he applied for a grant to investigate UFO sightings he was rejected. At his retirement, Donderi offered to give a free seminar on his UFO and alien abduction research, and was again turned down.

• Donderi notes that people who speak at UFO conferences “aren’t all equally good enough.” Meanwhile, those engaged in the search through bona fide organizations have come up with minimal results. Astronomers have been trying to communicate with alien life using radio waves since 1959, work that has continued by the SETI Institute to the present, but have found nothing. As a psychologist, Donderi believes that cognitive dissonance keeps the search for ET intelligence in limbo. “[A]cademics will bristle at conclusions that point to aliens,” says Donderi.

• Physicist Richard Bower of Durham University in England studies parallel universes. “We used to say that life is incredibly rare and we’re lucky to live on a habitable planet,’’ Bower said. “But we’ve now observed so many planets that are plausible habitats. It seems, based on scientific evidence, there’s no reason to think that planets like the Earth are rare.” Still, Bower is “less comfortable” with excessive speculation. Simply looking for alien life is too binary: if you don’t find it, you’ve got nothing. It is better to focus on questions that we may soon have the evidence to answer.

• We may be finding nothing because we’re doing it wrong. NASA physicist Silvano Colombano maintains that long-held assumptions have limited the earnest search for extraterrestrial intelligence, and that the “general avoidance of the subject by the scientific community” means no one questions them. Colombano suggests the search for alien intelligence is based on “cherished assumptions” that are holding it back, e.g.: that interstellar travel is unlikely, that alien civilizations use radio waves, that other life must be carbon-based, and that UFOs have never visited earth. Colombano makes a case for discarding these dusty beliefs, and instead imagine how alien societies’ technology might have evolved.

• Donderi concludes that the evidence is rising and feels that cognitive dissonance is at the moment collapsing. “[W]e’re at the beginning of the change,” he stated. Researchers expect more data about interstellar objects when the Large Synoptic Telescope in Chile starts operating in 2022.

 

In October 2017, a telescope operated by the University of Hawaii picked up a strange cigar-shaped object (artist rendering in top image), which had slingshotted past the sun at a more-than-brisk top speed of 196,000 miles per hour. Scientists at the university dubbed it ‘Oumuamua, Hawaiian for scout, and at first labelled it an asteroid, then a comet, but agreed that it came from another solar system.

Avi Loeb

Around the world, telescopes were quickly aimed toward ‘Oumuamua’s path, and scientists dove into the data. One of them, Avi Loeb, the chair of Harvard University’s astronomy department, published a paper in The Astrophysical Journal Letters the following year theorising that the object could be artificial. “Considering an artificial origin, one possibility is that ‘Oumuamua is a light sail, floating in interstellar space as a debris from advanced technological equipment,” he and co-author Shmuel Bialy, a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard, wrote. “Alternatively, a more exotic scenario is that ‘Oumuamua may be a fully operational probe sent intentionally to Earth vicinity by an alien civilisation.”

   Don Donderi

That’s not something you read every day in a serious scientific journal. The paper went viral, and Loeb began fielding an onslaught of media calls while fellow scientists weighed in. In terms of his colleagues’ reaction, Loeb said, “almost all of them reacted favourably, and they thought, you know, it’s just an interesting idea.”

Even so, he added, there were some adverse reactions as well. One cutting tweet by Paul Sutter, an astrophysicist at Ohio State University, reads: My publicist asked me for a quote on the ‘Oumuamua story making the rounds. Here it is:
“No, ‘Oumuamua is not an alien spaceship, and the authors of the paper insult honest scientific inquiry to even suggest it.”

Richard Bower

Feel free to use that, @fcain, @tariqjmalik!  — Paul M. Sutter (@PaulMattSutter) November 6, 2018
Also read: India Planning to Launch Own Space Station by 2030, ISRO Chief Says

All this hubbub took place in the aftermath of news reports that the Pentagon had been collecting data on UFO sightings for years. Clearly, the hunt for alien intelligence is alive and well in our solar system, and it’s hot news. Indeed, Loeb’s article was approved for publication in mere days.

                Silvano Colombano

But while scientists tossing around the idea of alien life may find a rapt public audience, they can also draw cynical, even hostile reactions from their fellow scientists, a response summed up by acclaimed physicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, who once quipped to CNN: “Call me when you have a dinner invite from an alien.”

This paradox has ripple effects. The threat of being written off as a kook can loom large for researchers, especially young ones. A lot of academics “won’t touch it with a ten-foot pole,” said Don Donderi, a retired associate professor of psychology at McGill University in Montreal who now teaches a non-credit course called “UFOs: History and Reality” in the school’s continuing education department.

Loeb says many discoveries have their roots in theories that were initially dismissed. He thinks open-mindedness keeps scientific inquiry moving forward while shutting down new theories “reduces the efficiency of science.”

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FAIR USE NOTICE: This page contains copyrighted material the use of which has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. ExoNews.org distributes this material for the purpose of news reporting, educational research, comment and criticism, constituting Fair Use under 17 U.S.C § 107. Please contact the Editor at ExoNews with any copyright issue.

The UFO Community Still Believes — and Science is Starting to Listen

by Chabeli Herrera                March 19, 2019                   (orlandosentinel.com)

• Over the past two years, scientists, politicians and professionals have increasingly been willing to touch the taboo subject of UFOs and perhaps lend a little credence to those who still believe.

• In December 2017, the New York Times reported that the U.S. had funded a secret, $22 million project to study UFO claims from 2007 to 2012. Declassified video taken in 2004 by two Navy F/A-18F fighter jets off the coast of San Diego showed a craft with no apparent propulsion moving at alarmingly fast speeds. Navy pilot Commander David Fravor who witnessed the Tic Tac-shaped craft told the Washington Post that it was “something not from Earth.”

• Harvard’s astronomy department chair, Avi Loeb, along with colleague Shmuel Bialy, wrote in a publication in Astrophysical Journal Letters that an interstellar object seen passing through our solar system called Oumuamua “is a lightsail, flowing in interstellar space as a debris from an advanced technological equipment.” Loeb theorized that, “Oumuamua may be a fully operational probe sent intentionally to Earth vicinity by an alien civilization.”

• NASA’s Ames Research Center scientist Silvano Colombano went on record recently to suggest that NASA and the scientific community should be more open-minded in its approach to the search for extraterrestrial intelligence. NASA is preoccupied with finding biosignatures through its Center for Life Detection Science than interested in analyzing alleged UFO sightings.

• MUFON (Mutual UFO Network) does analyze UFO sightings. It has 3,500 members in 42 countries. Barbara Stusse, 80, has been coming to MUFON meetings for three years. She says that her mother saw a UFO in 1947. In 1965, she read about Betty and Barney Hill and “believed it”.

• Kathleen Marden is MUFON’s director of experiencer research. She was 13 years old in September 1961 when her Aunt Betty Hill and her Uncle Barney Hill saw a UFO in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. There were two hours they couldn’t account for, and Barney was sure he’d seen eight to eleven figures dressed in black shiny uniforms that were “somehow not human”. Under hypnosis, the Hills related how they were abducted and physically examined inside the UFO. “They examined their hands, they took their shoes off, they examined their feet, they did tests on them that appear to be testing their nervous systems, as well,” says Marden. She has written about the government’s ‘tampering’ with the Hill case. But lately Marden has seen a recent shift in the credence that people give to the UFO phenomenon, with the 2017 New York Times article being the turning point.

• Trish Bishop of Kissimmee, Florida, relates her story of March 2013 at dusk when she saw a tall, muscular man wearing a formfitting tan colored uniform, boots and gloves was lingering in her backyard at the edge of a forest. But his face wasn’t human. His eyes bulged far out of their sockets. His jaw was over-sized. And his skin was white as chalk. Paralyzed with fear, she pretended not to watch the man while she called for help on her phone. Then man appeared to be climbing invisible steps. When he was about 10 feet off the ground, he turned his back to her and pulled himself up “into a UFO?” she thought — and he was gone. After four years, she got the nerve to report the incident to MUFON.

• The challenge with UFO and alien sightings has always been the lack of evidence. Bishop said she was too scared to take a photo of her alien. Little to no consequential evidence exists in other cases. University of Central Florida psychology professor Alvin Wang thinks that people project their predisposition to believe in conspiracy theories, and seek out others who reaffirm that belief. “[T]hey get …confirmation support, when they are members of UFO believers community,” said Wang.

 

He appeared as if a hologram at first — then solid — suddenly there and clear as you or I, at the edge of the forest behind Trish Bishop’s home in Kissimmee.

It was a Thursday in March 2013, the glow of the afternoon tucking in for the day behind the trees. He stood tall, at least 6-foot-3, perhaps 220 pounds and certainly muscular, wearing a formfitting tan colored uniform, boots and gloves. He lingered by the crape myrtle tree in the middle of the backyard.

When he turned around, it was his face, she remembers, that stopped her.

Bulging eyes jutting so far out of the sockets that Bishop wondered whether he could close them. Skin white as chalk.
And a jaw so large, it dispelled any notions the government worker had of the visitor being human.

“If you compare a human jawbone to his, we would be a chihuahua to a pit bull,” Bishop said.

Paralyzed with fear, she watched as what she believed to be an alien appeared to climb invisible steps, stopping often to snatch glances at her from where she sat on her back porch, fumbling with her phone to appear as though she couldn’t see him.

Her finger was pressed on the number “9” to dial for help.

When he was about 10 feet off the ground, he turned his back to her and pulled himself up — “into a UFO?” she thought — and was gone.

Bishop sat stunned. “I’ve got a freaking alien in my backyard,” she thought.

It would be four years before she told anyone her story, before she’d discover the Mutual Unidentified Flying Objects Network, a nationwide organization 50 years old, and file her report under case number 84886 with the local Florida chapter.

But she worried: Who would believe her?

These days, more people than you’d think.

Across restaurants and meeting rooms in the United States, MUFON groups still gather every month to discuss cases like Bishop’s with the enthusiasm that once gripped the nation during the Cold War, when UFO sightings still made a splash on the front page.

The Space Coast group, made up of some former NASA employees and engineers, has 118 members, the largest in the state. Across the U.S. they number 3,500, with additional offices in 42 countries.

For many years, they were alone entertaining UFO theories. No more.

In the past two years, scientists, politicians and professionals have increasingly been willing to touch the taboo subject and perhaps lend a little credence to those who still believe.

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FAIR USE NOTICE: This page contains copyrighted material the use of which has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. ExoNews.org distributes this material for the purpose of news reporting, educational research, comment and criticism, constituting Fair Use under 17 U.S.C § 107. Please contact the Editor at ExoNews with any copyright issue.

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