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Best cases - Rockefeller Briefing Document

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Topic started on 31-3-2008 @ 12:28 PM by IsaacKoi
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“Top 100 UFO Cases”
By Isaac Koi. Copyright 2007-2008.

PART 11: Consensus lists : The Rockefeller Briefing Document

Earlier parts of this article have indicated the diverse lists of cases that are nominated by individual ufologists as being the “best cases” (see Part 3) and various problems in relation to conducting polls of individual ufologists on this issue (see Part 5, Part 6, Part 7, Part 8 and Part 9).

What if, instead of attempting to obtain a consensus of individual ufologists, the most respected existing UFO research groups got together and made a list of the top cases?

Of course, anyone that has read the preceding parts of this article would know that it would be too much to expect complete consensus among those involved in UFO research as to which existing UFO research groups are “the most respected”. However, I think it is fair to consider that most of the more serious (and more conservative) ufologists would include the following in any such list:

So, could MUFON, CUFOS and FUFOR reach agreement on the best available evidence for the existence of UFOs?

If so, what cases would they put forward?

It may surprise some readers that this exercise has, in fact, already been performed, with funding provided by Laurance Rockefeller. In 1995, MUFON, CUFOS and FUFOR all endorsed a document (“the Rockefeller Briefing Document)” as containing “the best available evidence for the existence of UFOs”.

The Rockefeller Briefing Document is referred to by numerous names including:

    (1) “The Best Available Evidence Report” (“BAE”)
    (2) “UFO Briefing Document”
    (3) “Best Available Evidence: Unidentified Flying Object Briefing Document”
    (4) “The Rockefeller UFO Report”
    (5) “The Bootsie Report”
    (6) “Briefing Document on Unidentified Flying Objects”
    (7) “The UFORC Briefing Document”

[edit on 31-3-2008 by IsaacKoi]

reply to this post:   copyright & usage 

reply posted on 31-3-2008 @ 12:28 PM by IsaacKoi

A letter of endorsement dated 15 December 1995 was signed by Dr Mark Rodeghier (President of CUFOS), Richard Hall (Chairman of FUFOR) and Walter Andrus (President of MUFON) in relation to the Rockefeller Briefing Document. That letter (see Footnote 11.01) included the following:

“We believe that this Briefing Document on Unidentified Flying Objects presents the best available evidence for the existence of UFOs. Although just a brief sample of the scientific and military evidence available worldwide is given, it represents some of the most carefully documented incidents. … We, the undersigned, endorse the information contained in this Briefing Document as the best available evidence from open sources”.

Yet, the Rockefeller Briefing Document is rarely mentioned in most discussions of the “best cases”. Indeed, Don Berliner - one of the co-authors of the Rockefeller Briefing Document - stated in 2007 that it had had “very little impact” (see Footnote 11.02). (This is very similar to the situation in relation to the National Enquirer’s “Blue-Ribbon” Panel (see Part 10).)

Although rarely mentioned, copies of the entirety of the Rockefeller Briefing Document are available in html format and as a PDF document on various websites. The full document appears to have been placed on the Internet by the International Space Sciences Organization (“the ISSO”, founded by Joe Firmage), with a statement (that I have no cause to doubt) that this was done with the permission of the UFO Research Coalition.

The relevant part of the ISSO website can be found at the link below (see Footnote 11.03):

One of the co-authors of the Rockefeller Briefing Document (Antonio Huneeus) has described it in one book as “… a project to distill the data to a few representative cases that could be backed with either official and/or scientific documentation” (see Footnote 11.04).

Originally, in 1995, a limited number of copies of the Rockefeller Briefing Document were printed for distribution to members of Congress and world leaders. The relevant number of copies various from source to source, from 300 (see Footnote 11.18) to 1,000 (see Footnote 11.06). In comments upon a draft of this article, Don Berliner indicated that “almost all of the initial press run of 1,000 copies went to ‘influential persons’, and when a much smaller supplementary press run is added in, the total distributed to the primary target is at least 1,000” (see Footnote 11.34). This version of the Rockefeller Briefing Document was printed in large format (8.5 x 11 inches), with a light blue cover.

Relatively lengthy extracts circulated on the Internet from 1997 onwards, apparently without the permission of the UFO Research Coalition.

A mass market paperback version was eventually published by Dell in 2000, which can be purchased via Amazon (see Footnote 11.07) and other booksellers for a few dollars. The mass-market paperback edition was accompanied by an introduction by Whitley Strieber. I note in passing that the Random House website incorrectly states that the Rockefeller Briefing Document was “compiled by” Whitley Strieber (see Footnote 11.08).

Both versions of the Rockefeller Briefing Document consisted of three Parts and several Appendices. The three Parts were:

    (1) Part 1 : Overview : This relatively short section begins with a brief summary of government secrecy relating to UFO documentation, and then proceed to summary “the case for UFO reality” (with brief comments on visual evidence, radar evidence and physical evidence) and then a brief discussion of the reported characteristics of UFOs (particularly their shapes, speed, acceleration and manoeuvrability).

    (2) Part 2 : Case Histories : This is the longest section of the book. It seeks to summarise various specific cases. Most of the specific discussions are between 2 to 6 pages long, with a few footnotes to some specific documents and articles by ufologists. However, most of those discussions consist of fairly uncritical presentations of reports by witnesses, with few summaries to potential explanations or relevant statements by skeptics that have looked at those cases. The general absence of references to relevant articles or books by skeptics is notable. While this may simply be the result of a desire to keep the relevant discussions relatively brief and uncluttered by too many footnotes, it does mean that in relation to most of the relevant sightings the reader could go away and look in a book by a skeptic, or do a quick search of the Internet, and find a potential explanation of the sighting which is not mentioned or addressed at all within the Rockefeller Briefing Document. In comments upon a draft of this article, Don Berliner indicated that he “was particularly concerned with the limited time available for members of our target audience to spend on this report, and so there was no effort to make it a scientific document”. He also asked “How many times do I have to explain (not to you, but to the complainers) that the report was not written for the private UFO community, but for important people who know little of the subject and must be carefully fed relevant information?” (see Footnote 11.34).

    Part 3 : Quotations : This Part is sub-divided into various sections (e.g. sections relating to quotations attributed to members of the U.S. Military, U.S. Presidents, members of the U.S. Congress, astronauts, scientists and others). This section contains one of the longest collections of UFO-related quotations that I have seen in my collection of approximately 1,000 UFO books. In my opinion, the Quotations section highlights one of the two major problems with the content of the Rockefeller Briefing Document - the unevenness of references to sources and further reading. Some quotations are accompanied by fairly full references (e.g. to a specific newspaper for a specific date, or a specific issue of a specific UFO publication). Quite a few other quotations, in common with UFO-related quotations in many other books and on numerous websites, are accompanied by descriptions which are somewhat vague. This makes it difficult to determine validity of an allegation by James Moseley (editor of “Saucer Smear”) that several of the quotations are “… misleading or taken out of context” (see Footnote 11.09). See Annex A for a discussion of this difficulty in relation to one particular quotation: a quotation attributed to Harry S Truman that “I can assure you that flying saucers, given that they exist, are not constructed by any power on earth”, with the reference “April 4, 1950, White House Press Conference” (see Annex A).

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reply posted on 31-3-2008 @ 12:29 PM by IsaacKoi

The relatively few discussions of the Rockefeller Briefing Document in the UFO literature rarely to bother to list the cases which the Rockefeller Briefing Document focuses upon. For example, the COMETA report briefly refers to the Rockefeller Briefing Document book as “clear and documented”, but does not indicate which cases were highlighted within that book (see Footnote 11.10).

One of the very few discussions of the Rockefeller Briefing Document within a UFO book is positively misleading, with Michael Hesemann and Philip Mantle making the rather odd (and completely inaccurate) suggestion in their book “Beyond Roswell” (1997) that “in this ‘Rockefeller Report’ … the Roswell incident marks the central theme” (see Footnote 11.11). Considerably more accurate is the comment by Grant Cameron that Roswell was “almost ignored” in the Briefing Document (see Footnote 11.12).

The cases actually focused upon were:

The case selection appears to have been based on fairly conservative criteria. There appears to have been a deliberate (and entirely sensible) effort to avoid the more sensational reports, e.g. those involving reports of occupants or abductions. Michael Lindemann has commented that “Apparently, the authors and sponsors of this project intend to maximize their credibility by minimizing any sensational aspects of the subject” (see Footnote 11.13). The UFO Research Coalition itself has referred to the cases (going rather too far) as “non-controversial” case histories (see Footnote 11.14). In comments upon a draft of this article, Don Berliner indicated that “We wanted to convince the readers of the acceptability of UFOs as a matter for serious consideration, not to frighten them off. To the amazement of many in the private UFO community (ranging from certified loonies to gullible hobbyists) our goal was _not_ to convince the readers that UFOs are alien spacecraft” (see Footnote 11.34).

Grant Cameron’s detailed discussion of the Rockefeller Briefing Document includes the following comments on its contents: “The BAE contained nothing that could be considered new and explosive. It contained no new sightings, or disclosures, but rather a review of some of the more dramatic documented UFO sightings and incidents that had occurred since 1947. The cases chosen were all non-controversial. Therefore, cases like those describing abduction by aliens were not included, ‘Abductions were left out because we wanted to deal with official evidence,’ said Huneeus, ‘and the more official sounding evidence, and the more scientific evidence, the more solid facts. Abductions just get too controversial, and it is complex, and that was left out too.’ Cattle mutilations, and UFO contactee material suffered from the same problems as abduction cases, and thus met the same fate” (see Footnote 11.12).

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reply posted on 31-3-2008 @ 12:30 PM by IsaacKoi

For a further indication of the contents and respective lengths of the different sections of the Rockefeller Briefing Document, I think it may be useful to set out below the table of contents for the mass-market paperback edition:

The Letter of Endorsement..........................................vii

Part 1. Overview.........................................................13
Government Secrecy.................................................15
The Case for UFO Reality.........................................18
The UFO Cover-Up...................................................29
Summary of Quotations.............................................33

Part 2. Case Histories..................................................43
1944-45: "Foo Fighters" Over Europe and Asia.......47
1946: "Ghost Rockets Over Scandinavia"................50
1947: First American Sighting Wave.......................54
1952: Second American Sighting Wave...................60
1956: Radar/Visual Jet Chase Over England............64
1957: Third American Sighting Wave......................67
1958: Brazilian Navy Photographic Case.................71
1964: Landing Case At Socorro, New Mexico.........78
1967: Physiological Case At Falcon Lake, Canada..81
1975: Strategic Air Command Bases UFO Alert......78
1976: Multiple Witness Case In The Canary Islands.91
1976: UFO Dog-Fight Over Tehran........................98
1980: UFO Incidents at Rendlesham Forest, England.105
1981: Physical Trace Case In Trans-en-Provence, France.112
1986: Jet Chase Over Brazil..................................121
1986: Japan Airlines 747 Case Over Alaska.........128
1989: Multiple Witness Case At Russian Missile Base.133
1989-90: UFO Sighting Wave In Belgium............139
1991-94: Recent Cases..........................................145

Part 3. Quotations..................................................151

U.S. Government UFO Projects and Studies.....211
Congressional Hearings on UFOs.....................219
International Agreements and Resolutions.......223
Example of Air Force Policy............................231
The Roswell Case..............................................233
Characteristics of IFOs and UFOs....................236
Terminology of UFOs.......................................238
CUFOS, FUFOR and MUFON.........................242

Source Materials…………................................244

As noted above, the Rockefeller Briefing Document was funded by Laurance Rockefeller. Laurance Spelman Rockefeller, a billionaire, was born on 26 May 1910 and died on 11 July 2004 at the age of 94. He was “a venture capitalist, financier, philanthropist, a major conservationist and a prominent third-generation member of the Rockefeller family” (see the wikipedia entry in relation to Laurence Rockefeller at Footnote 11.15 and his obituary in the Washington Post at Footnote 11.16). During 1993 to about 1995, he was involved in an initiative seeking disclosure of UFO information held by the government, particularly in relation to Roswell (for a detailed discussion of relevant documents by Grant Cameron, see Footnote 11.17). He had also supported Dr. John Mack's Center for Psychology and Social Change and paid for at least two meeting sessions of the Starlight Coalition (see Footnote 11.18 and Footnote 11.12).

The UFO Research Coalition (UFORC) has written the following background to that draft (see Footnote 11.19) : “In February 1995, Marie ‘Bootsie’ Galbraith met with the heads of the newly created UFO Research Coalition - Mark Rodeghier and George Eberhart (CUFOS), Richard Hall and Don Berliner (FUFOR), and Walt Andrus and Tom Deuley (MUFON) - to discuss proposals for funding. It was decided to produce a full and serious summary report on the case for UFO reality to be published privately in 1,000 copies and to be funded by LSR via the Marie “Bootsie” Galbraith project at BSW. (A ‘Briefing Summary’ had already been suggested by Don Berliner in November 1994 with an outline for evidence, investigations and conclusions, most of which were incorporated into the final document.)”

That summary also states : “Don Berliner was chosen to be the author. (Midway through the project, Antonio Huneeus joined Berliner to help with some research and editing of the document, MRG authored two pages on Government Secrecy and also served as editor. (The time of preparation for the document was ten months, with an additional two months for printing. The total cost was under $50,000.)”

(I note in passing that a cost of around $30,000 was stated by Fraser Seitel, Mr. Rockefeller's spokesman, as reported in the New York Observer on 8 April 1996 under the title, "Rockefeller Greets Aliens! A Rich Guy's UFO Dream” – See Footnote 11.20).

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reply posted on 31-3-2008 @ 12:30 PM by IsaacKoi

Michael Mannion’s book “Project Mindshift” (1998) includes the following summary by one of the co-authors of the Rockefeller Briefing Document, Don Berliner (see Footnote 11.21): “There is a group that is not terribly well-known called the UFO Research Coalition, composed of the Fund for UFO Research, the Mutual UFO Network, and the Center for UFO Studies. We work together on certain funding projects. A woman who was handling UFO matters for Laurance Rockefeller came to us with the idea for the report. As an individual, I made a proposal. It was accepted, and I ended up writing most of the report. The copyright is owned by the UFO Research Coalition. Rockefeller’s only involvement was financial. He didn’t even approve the outline or anything like that”.

Mannion also quotes Don Berliner as saying: “This report has gotten to a great many influential people, but we haven’t seen much of a result yet. However, we knew all along that the chances of anything happening quickly were very slim. The idea was to educate people in high places; people who, if they were sufficiently impressed, could make a difference. We have learned to be patient. It still may pay off big, but it hasn’t yet. The report had a different purpose from any other UFO book. It was aimed at people who knew very little about the subject – and who had very little time. They are busy people. You don’t give them a big book to read. We have gotten some very good comments from some impressive names but as yet, it has not turned the world on its ear. We stirred up a bit of a hornet’s nest with the report because UFO enthusiasts could not get copies. But that’s not what it was for. However, we are hoping to publish it commercially now”.

The “woman who was handling UFO matters for Laurance Rockefeller” mentioned by Don Berliner was Marie “Bootsie” Galbraith. Mrs Galbraith was the wife of Evan Griffith Galbraith, an investment banker and the U.S. ambassador to France from 1981 to 1985. She was engaged by Laurance Rockefeller, and coordinated the writing and distribution of the Rockefeller Briefing Document. Grant Cameron has quoted Antonio Huneeus as stating that Mrs Galbraith “was the executive producer of this thing” and that she “did not really write a great deal in terms of actual writing, but she must have proofread and edited and digested it so many times. Every single page was approved by her up to the last comma. In the end, she decided that she wanted her name there as a co-author” (see Footnote 11.12).

Although the quote above indicates that Don Berliner has stated that he “ended up writing most of the report”, Grant Cameron has suggested that Berliner prepared a preliminary draft of the Rockefeller Briefing Document and that he “was not involved with the later stages of the documents creation”. Cameron has stated that the original idea had “Huneeus only lending his assistance with the writing and editing” but that this led to far greater involvement, quoting co-author Antionio Huneeus as stating that “I ended up doing almost half of the book, because they weren’t too satisfied with the Berliner draft” (see Footnote 11.12).

The role, if any, of Dr Steven Greer in developing the concept behind the Rockefeller Briefing Document, and selecting the cases to be covered, is considerably more controversial. That controversy culminated in allegations of piracy and threats of legal action, and still continues today. For example, in comments upon a draft of this article, Don Berliner stated that “To this day, I have not seen anything written by or for Greer that relates to the BAE. That includes his list of the best cases, which probably resembles ours, as would such a list drawn up by any of a few dozen people I could name” (see Footnote 11.34).

On 1 June 1997, Michael Lindemann’s “CNI” electronic newsletter reported on an event on 9-10 April 1997 in Washington DC hosted by Dr. Steven Greer's Project Starlight Coalition for members of Congress and invited press. Lindemann stated that a briefing package made available by Dr Greer included a document which “reproduces nearly the entire text of the ‘Unidentified Flying Objects Briefing Document: The Best Available Evidence’ … While Greer's version credits Berliner as author, it deletes all reference to the other UFO organizations, the co-authors and Rockefeller, and instead states on the replacement cover: ‘Concept, Title and Strategy: Steven M. Greer, M.D.; Case Selection: CSETI Project Starlight Team’”. Lindemann accused Dr Greer of "deplorably bad judgement", “plagiarism”, “treachery” and “stupidity” (see Footnote 11.22).

Dr Greer responded in a document entitled “Reply to Michael Lindemnan/CNI article”, posted by him to the UFO UpDates internet discussion List on 3 June 1997. Dr Greer claimed that Lindemann’s comments “were serious, defaming, false and libelous”. He stated that he met with Mrs Galbraith and subsequently provided an outline of the Briefing Document, including its title and “inclusion and exclusion criteria for cases”. He claimed to have created the “title, concept, criteria and strategy for the use of the [Briefing Document” and to have spent “numerous hours” the Briefing Document with Mrs Galbraith and “in selecting specific cases to be used”. Mrs Galbraith and others “offered to take on the task of completing and writing the [Briefing Document]” which was “to be a collection of classic, if traditional, UFO cases of strong evidential integrity”. He claimed that “it was always the explicit and repeatedly stated intention of Mrs Galbraith, BSW, Mr. Rockefeller and CSETI to create a BAE which would be a PUBLIC DOMAIN, NON-COPYRIGHTED DOCUMENT which would be used to brief VIPs, world and national leaders” (see Footnote 11.23).

The UFO Research Coalition responded in a lengthy document entitled “Comments on Steven Greer’s June 3rd Letter on the Internet to Michael Lindemann”, posted by Steven Kaeser to the UFO UpDates internet discussion List on 3 June 1997. That response alleged that Dr Greer’s remarks had been “egregious, self-serving and false”, and that his proposal for the contents of a Best Available Evidence briefing document “bears no resemblance to anything in the UFORC Briefing”. The response briefly mentions “written affidavits” from Don Berliner and Antonio Huneeus and “many witnesses to events over this time frame and to in-house documents” opposing Greer’s claims. The response alleges that “Greer exaggerates and frequently misinterprets events. Greer is known to have evangelical ideas of his own ‘mission’ and importance”. The UFORC contended that “the methods and style of the two parties, Greer and UFORC, are totally different”. In relation to Greer’s claim that the Rockefeller Briefing Document had been intended to be a “a PUBLIC DOMAIN, NON-COPYRIGHTED DOCUMENT”, the UFORC asked for proof of this and stated that “Certainly the UFORC, [Laurance Rockefeller] and [Mrs Galbraith] are unaware of such intentions” (see Footnote 11.14).

On 5 June 1997, a revised article by Michael Lindemann was posted to the UFO UpDates internet discussion List which concluded that “Steven Greer and several members of CSETI/Starlight Coalition did participate in the original discussions about the document. However, Greer's proposal for the document was far different than the document that was eventually published by the UFO Research Coalition, and his removal from participation in the document was a consequence of a general falling out with Marie Galbraith and Laurance Rockefeller” (see Footnote 11.24).

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reply posted on 31-3-2008 @ 12:31 PM by IsaacKoi

These references to the dispute regarding Dr Greer’s involvement may be helpful to anyone that wishes to consider the detailed summary of the background to the Rockefeller Briefing Document that has been produced by Grant Cameron. That summary is available online at the link below, and includes the comment that “the evidence clearly shows, however, that Greer was using the title, and detailing the strategy and concept of the BAE long before the UFORC’s first meeting”:

The controversy surrounding Dr Greer has tended to dominate the limited discussion that has occurred in relation to the Rockefeller Briefing Document.

For example, one of the longest of the few discussions of the Rockefeller Briefing Document in a UFO book is a three page discussion in Susan Wright’s book “UFO Headquarters” (1998)). It is limited to the dispute between Greer and the UFO Research Coalition regarding its production (see Footnote 11.25).

The details of the controversies between Dr Greer and the UFO Research Coalition are unlikely to be of interest to many individuals today. As noted above, the Briefing Document itself is hardly a frequent topic of discussion in UFO books or online.

Indeed, not to put too fine a point on it, the Rockefeller Briefing Document has basically sunk without a trace.

Given the frequency of challenges by skeptics for ufologists to produce a list of their “best cases” (see, for example, Part 2 of this article) one might expect ufologists to respond that such a list has been produced (or at least endorsed) by the leading UFO research groups and refer skeptics to the Rockefeller Briefing Document. Yet this is not done. Why? Several factors occur to me.

reply to this post:   copyright & usage 

reply posted on 31-3-2008 @ 12:31 PM by IsaacKoi

The first of these factors relates to the rather unwarranted aura of mystery that initially surrounded the Rockefeller Briefing Document. For example, in one press report Don Berliner was reported as saying that the report was only to be given to “really top people” and “I guess the only reason I have a copy is I wrote the thing" (see Footnote 11.20). Mrs Galbraith reportedly stated “We just want the right people to know … It's like your children are going to announce their engagement and they haven't even told their mommies and daddies, and then their mommies and daddies read about it in the newspaper. They would be upset, wouldn't they?” (see Footnote 11.18), leading one commentator to comment “Ahem. Yes. The briefing document is frankly not that exciting, content-wise” (see Footnote 11.18). The aura of mystery which first surrounded the Rockefeller Briefing Document inflated its intended role (which, in effect, was one of advocacy – not original research) and led to conspiracy theories.

For example, the author Jim Marrs discussed the Rockefeller Briefing Document in his book “Alien Agenda” (1997) in terms which implied it was a major study by a shadowy group. Jim Marrs relied upon the “multidisciplinary and multinational” study funded by Laurance S Rockefeller as evidence that “certain members of the world’s wealthy elite have expressed a more than casual interest in UFOs and their occupants”. Marrs implied that Rockefeller was not merely a member of “the world’s wealthy elite”, but was somehow acting on their behalf. Jim Marrs stated that “Since the wealthy elite - through mechanisms such as the Federal Reserve System, the World Bank, and the International Monetary Fund along with private groups such as the Council on Foreign Relations and the Trilateral Commission - exert a substantial degree of control over the world’s governments, it would stand to reason that they would be very concerned with UFOs and life in space. Such a group would desire to be foremost in any alien contact so as to gain control of or suppress any alien technology that might unbalance the status quo” (see Footnote 11.26). (In comments on a draft of this article, Don Berliner made the following comments on this quotation from Jim Marrs’ book : “Why not include the International Olympic Committee and the Federation Aeronautique Internationale? Why is it that some people insist on dragging everyone and everything into one grand, unsupported conspiracy, and thus losing whatever credibility they ever had?” – see Footnote 11.34).

Similarly, during one radio program, a telephone caller (Michael C. Luckman, author of the book “Alien Rock”, of the New York Center for UFO Research) referred to Briefing Documents as “the secret report that's gone to a thousand world leaders” (see Footnote 11.27). Nothing in the contents of the report could legitimately be described as “secret” – all the relevant information had been published already.

A representative of the UFORC has acknowledged the “frustration” that existed when the Rockefeller Briefing Document was circulated, stating that “many in ufology felt slighted that it hadn't been released to the general public” (see Footnote 11.28). With the benefit of hindsight, Don Berliner has commented that “I suppose our refusal to give a copy of the BAE to every self-styled ‘world's most important Ufologist’ was bound to lead to accusations of conspiracy” (see Footnote 11.34).

There appears to have been a bit of a backlash against the hype surrounding the Rockefeller Briefing Document. For example, in 1996 Paul Thompson (Nebula Editor) commented as follows: “The briefing document is frankly not that exciting, content-wise. … The effect of all this material is rather like reading a textbook for UFOs 101. … All in all, the story of the document's creation is more interesting than the material it contains. Because of its origin and aura of exclusivity, many UFO buffs will seek out the briefing document, but it contains no information that can't be found in the works of J. Allen Hynek, Timothy Good, Jacques Vallee, Richard Hall, and the Condon Committee Report. … The briefing is not a soul-shaking document, nor is it worth pirating. If it had been published commercially, it would have attracted far less interest. “I predict its effect on world leaders will be exactly nil” (see Footnote 11.18).

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reply posted on 31-3-2008 @ 12:32 PM by IsaacKoi

Secondly, there were various problems with the release and circulation of the Rockefeller Briefing Document. Grant Cameron, in his detailed summary of the background to the Rockefeller Briefing Document, has commented that there was no “coordinated effort to control the media covering the story. The Rockefeller effort to produce a UFO briefing document was provided to reporters like Luckman who in turn traded off the information to the gossips columnists in New York. ‘If they had controlled the publicity then they at least could have steered it in the direction that they wanted,’ explained Huneeus. ‘Instead they left it in the hands of people like Luckman. The gossip columnist never cared about the contents of the document. The big new item to them was the fact that Rockefeller was a believer in flying saucers. That was the angle that Luckman was pushing, because he was a publicist and he knows what sells and what doesn’t sell.’
When the report was finished a further uncoordinated effort to distribute the report led to further set-backs. Each member of the committee was allowed to distribute their copies to whomever they wanted to. There was no overall plan as to who should receive the important document, and there was no follow-up after the documents were sent. ‘Each person would send it to someone he knew,’ said Huneeus, ‘and that was it. There was no really much follow-up or anything. That is why perhaps the report had so little impact.’”
Grant Cameron has commented on the position specifically in relation to the White House, commenting as follows:
“Despite the fact that the restricted printing of 1,000 copies of the final BAE was intended only for the top people in government, a review of the collection of 991 pages of documents released by Gibbons’ OSTP office, shows that there is no record of the report in the files. This would mean that the 169-page final report was never provided to the President’s Science Advisor, or that the report was lost or removed on purpose. As Gibbons was the main link to the President on UFOs for Rockefeller, it means that the President also may not have seen the report that Rockefeller financed for VIPs like the President. To help establish if the President did or did not receive a copy of the report, members of the committee that produced the report were asked. Most could not provide much help, admitting that they did not know for sure who had received the 1,000 copies produced."

As noted above, Michael Mannion’s book “Project Mindshift” (1998) includes the following comment by Don Berliner: “We have gotten some very good comments from some impressive names but as yet, it has not turned the world on its ear” (see Footnote 11.21). Neither the relevant “very good comments” nor the “impressive names” are detailed in that book. More recently, in comments upon a draft of this article, Don Berliner has acknowledged that “about the only impact of the BAE of which I am aware are the positive references to it in the COMETA Report. What discussions of it have gone on behind ornate closed doors is anyone’s guess (see Footnote 11.34).

Co-author Antonio Huneeus has referred to the responses to the Rockefeller Briefing Document, stating: “Marie Galbraith did show me some of the letters that she received from some of these Senators after the document was sent . . . people in the House of Lords, and former Senators, and stuff like that. They were mostly just polite letters. They were people that knew her and her husband. It was the typical letter saying, ‘Thank-you very much for sending a copy of the briefing document. We will put it in our library’. There was no concrete action, just polite letters acknowledging receipt of the document” (see Footnote 11.12).

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reply posted on 31-3-2008 @ 12:32 PM by IsaacKoi

Thirdly, and in my opinion far most importantly, if the Rockefeller Briefing Document is supposed to contain the “best available evidence” (as stated in the letter of endorsement signed on behalf of MUFON, FUFOR and CUFOS) then one might expect UFO research groups to exert considerable efforts to bring this publication to the attention of scientists and sceptics. This has not been done.
Below I shall consider this issue in the light of the relevant contents of the websites of each of MUFON, FUFOR and CUFOS in addition to looking at the website of the UFO Research Coalition itself.
(a) UFORC : The UFO Research Coalition has a website at the link below:
There is no mention whatsoever of the Rockefeller Briefing Document on that website. However, the website is rather rudimentary and several pages display a message stating the webpage is “Under Construction” (although it does not appear to have been updated in the last four or so years). So perhaps the absence of any reference to the Rockefeller Briefing Document on this website should not be a cause for much comment.

(b) MUFON : the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON) has a website at:

The only reference on the MUFON website to the Rockefeller Briefing Document is its inclusion in the long list of books within the MUFON library.

The MUFON website does not contain any summary of the Rockefeller Briefing Document or any recommendation to read it. There is no mention of the endorsement of the contents of the Rockefeller Briefing Document, no extracts are provided and there is no link to any such extracts.

The bulk of the content of the MUFON website comprises sections relating to MUFON’s organizational structure, the titles of numerous individuals within the organization, material relating to the payment of membership dues and the purchase of items from the MUFON store.

It is interesting to note that there is a section on the MUFON website relating to “Famous Cases”. The cases selected for inclusion on the list on that webpage differ considerably from the cases endorsed by MUFON as comprising the “best available evidence”, although there some degree of overlap.

The relevant webpage is at:

The cases listed by MUFON on that webpage are:

    (1) Aurora Texas Crash
    (2) Maury Island Incident
    (3) Piedmont Missouri Case
    (4) Heflin Photos
    (5) Valentich Dissapearance
    (6) Incident at Exeter
    (7) Travis Walton Abduction
    (8) RAF Bentwaters Case
    (9) Phoenix Lights
    (10) Japanese Airlines Flight 1628
    (11) Kecksburg Crash
    (12) 1952 UFOs over Washington DC
    (13) Betty and Barney Hill Abduction
    (14) 1976 Iran UFO
    (15) American West Airlines Case
    (16) Cash Landrum Case
    (17) Pascagoula Mississippi Case
    (18) Mantell Case

Material is actually currently available on the MUFON website for 4 of these cases:
(1) Aurora: Texas Crash Part 1 MUFON Case File.pdf

(2) Travis Walton abduction: Walton Part 1 MUFON Case File.pdf

(3) Incident at Exeter: Part 1 MUFON Case File.pdf

(4) Iran encounter: Iran Part 1 MUFON Case File.pdf

The material provided in relation to these four incidents is quite extensive (indeed, surprisingly so given the general lack of reference on the internet to this section of the MUFON website – possibly because it is rather hidden away). However, the selection of these four cases as a priority for presenting detailed information is rather at odds with the strategy implicit in the Rockefeller Briefing Document. While the Rockefeller Briefing Document has a rather pronounced tendency to avoid the most controversial aspects of the UFO phenomenon (including abductions and accounts of crashed UFOs), two of the four cases on the relevant section of the MUFON website fall into these categories.

In particular, few ufologists would place the “Aurora Texas Crash” within a list of the top few, or top four, cases. Indeed, many experienced ufologists that have spent a bit of time looking into the relevant stories have concluded that the “crash” was a hoax. For example, Kevin Randle (the author of several books on Roswell) has said “The Aurora Crash was nothing more than a hoax” (see Footnote 11.29). Jerry Clark (author of the “UFO Encyclopaedia” and not generally regarded as a “debunker”) has said “The Aurora airship crash never happened, at least in this reality” (see Footnote 11.30).

The divergence in the strategic approach is made even more evident by the contents of the MUFON webpage devoted to purchasing books, reports and CD-ROMs at the link below:

That webpage does not include the Rockefeller Briefing Document. It is notable, however, that the first book on that page is “ ‘The World's Best UFO Cases’ by MUFON UFO Journal editor Dwight Connelly”. The title of Connelly’s book may suggest that it has the same objective as the Rockefeller Briefing Document, and that it contains the “best UFO cases” as selected by MUFON. However, the cases selected for Connelly’s book are quite, quite different from those in the Rockefeller Briefing Document.

Dwight Connelly’s book includes discussion of the following:

    (1) Betty & Barney Hill case (1961)
    (2) Buff Ledge abductions (1968)
    (3) Pascagoula: Hickson/Parker (1971)
    (4) Travis Walton abduction case (1975)
    (5) Kentucky abductions (1976)
    (6) Allagash abductions (1976)
    (7) Kelly Cahill encounter (1993)
    (8) Apparent abduction on video tape (1996)
    (9) DNA analysis of possible alien hair (1992-1998)
    (10) McMinnville photos (1950)
    (11) Physical traces: the Delphos case (1971)
    (12) Father Gill's New Guinea sighting (1959)
    (13) Best animal abduction/mutilation research
    (14) Roswell
    (15) Best crop circle research
    (16) New Berlin UFO repair case (1964)
    (17) Best implant research
    (18) Injuries: The Cash-Landrum encounter
    (19) The Stanley Romanek case

While the book edited by Dwight Connelly contains a lot of interesting information from several of the most famous UFO researchers, I wonder how many ufologists would agree that its contents do indeed represent “The World's Best UFO Cases”. In particular, I doubt that many ufologists would be keen to endorse a book which contains:

(a) Several chapters on various alien abduction accounts (a subject put to one side in the selection of cases for the Rockefeller Briefing Document”), including at least one relatively lengthy chapter devoted to an accounts involving anonymous witnesses;
(b) Four of the chapters relate to crop circles (one of which is entitled “most crop circles are not hoaxes”);
(c) A chapter on alleged alien implants;
(d) A chapter entitled “A truly mysterious Bigfoot encounter (1973)”;
(e) Material on “animal abduction/mutilation”.

Certainly, this material is based on entirely different criteria to those used to select cases for the Rockefeller Briefing Document.

In the introductory section of his book, Dwight Connelly himself acknowledged that “crop circles, animal mutilations, implants, Bigfoot, and other areas” that he included in his book are “too much on the fringe for some researchers” (see Footnote 11.31). He also acknowledges that all but one or two of the articles on his book have been covered in the MUFON UFO Journal, “leading one of my colleagues to say that this book should be called ‘The Best of the MUFON UFO Journal’ ”(see Footnote 11.32). The book is prefaced by an “Important Notice” stating that it is not published by MUFON “nor does it necessarily represent the views of the MUFON staff or Board of Directors” (see Footnote 11.33).

reply to this post:   copyright & usage 

reply posted on 31-3-2008 @ 12:33 PM by IsaacKoi

(c) FUFOR: the Fund for UFO Research (“FUFOR”) website is at the link below:

There is no mention whatsoever of the Rockefeller Briefing Document on the FUFOR website.

Notably, it is not included within the catalogue of items that can be purchased from FUFOR, nor is it mentioned on the webpage at the link below which includes a list of examples of the allegedly “hundreds of ‘classic’ cases, well-documented reports that have stood the test of time and thorough investigation”:

The FUFOR website does not indicate if these are considered the best cases. They are merely referred to as “examples”. Those cases overlap to some extent with the contents of the Rockefeller Briefing Document but by no means replicate the contents of the case histories which FUFOR had endorsed as containing the “best available evidence”. The cases on the FUFOR website are as follow:

(1) 1 May 1952 Davis-Monthan AFB, Tucson, Arizona : Air Force Bomber Encounter With Discs

(2) 14 July 1952 Newport News, Virginia : Formation of Discs Below Airliner

(3) 13 August 1960 Red Bluff, California : Highly Maneuverable Ellipse With Red Light Beam

(4) 24 April 1964 Socorro, New Mexico : Ellipse Leaves Landing Marks

(5) 3 September 1965 Damon, Texas : Patrol Car Illuminated by UFO

(6) 14-20 March 1966 Southeastern Michigan : Sheriffs Watch High-Performance Discs, Also Tracked on Radar

(7) 18 October 1973 Mansfield, Ohio : UFO Beams Green Light Onto Helicopter

(8) 1 September 1974 Langenburg, Saskatchewan, Canada : Shiny Dome-Shaped Objects Leave "Crop Circles"

(9) October-November, 1975 Northern U.S. : UFOs Intrude Into SAC Base Weapons Areas

(10) 19 September 1976 Tehran, Iran : Jet Interceptors Disarmed by UFO

(11) 1 January 1978 Santa Monica, California : Veteran Pilot Encounters UFO With Portholes

(12) 8 January 1981 Trans-en-Provence : Disc Leaves Extensive Ground Traces

(13) 4 March 1988 Lake Erie : Coast Guard Encounter With Giant Ellipse

(14) 1989-1990 Belgium : Interceptor Pilots, Gendarmes Encounter UFOs

(15) 25 May 1995 West Texas : Airline Crew Reports Cigar With Pulsing Lights

(d) CUFOS: The website of Center for UFO Studies (“CUFOS”) is at:

Of the members of the Research Coalition, the CUFOS website has the most extensive discussion of the Rockefeller Briefing Document.

It includes it within the catalogue of items that can be purchased from CUFOS (with the description : “The famous briefing document prepared by the UFO Coalition for politicians and members of the media”). Also, there is a passing mention of the Rockefeller Briefing Document in a review by Gildas Bourdais of the COMETA report. These two brief references to the Rockefeller Briefing Documents can be found respectively at the following links:

That’s it.

The CUFOS website has longer descriptions of numerous other books, as part of the helpful guides produced by CUFOS at the links below. The first link is a Recommended Reading List for the General Reader while the second link is a Recommended Reading List for the Advanced Reader and Serious Researcher:

It is possible that neither list has been revised since the publication of the Rockefeller Briefing Document. I note, for example, that both the Recommended Reading List for the General Reader and the still refers to the “3 Vols” of Jerome Clark’s UFO Encylopedia, when in fact a substantially revised 2 volume edition has been available for several years. However, if CUFOS has not considered it necessary to update its list of recommended reading to include the Briefing Document then skeptics could hardly be blamed for thinking that CUFOS does not really consider the Briefing Document to be very significant.

For the sake of completeness, I should refer to Dr Steven Greer. The Rockefeller Briefing Document is not referred to on the Disclosure Project website or on the CSETI website (both of which are associated with Dr Greer). Comments were sought from Dr Greer upon a draft of this article, but a polite and prompt response from a CSETI co-ordinator indicated that they had no comments to make other than to state that “our version of that document” was provided to “members of congress and President Clinton in April 1997 when we did a small briefing with 12 witnesses in Washington DC” [see Footnote 11.35]. The response from CSETI also mentioned that “We have a newer briefing document from 2001 on the Disclosure Project web site”.

The “newer briefing document” is available on the Disclosure Project website, but payment must be made to access it. Ironically, given the disputes about copyright in relation to the Rockefeller Briefing Document, the complete text of the Disclosure Briefing Document is available free of charge on various websites – including at the one below.

[edit on 31-3-2008 by IsaacKoi]

reply to this post:   copyright & usage 

reply posted on 31-3-2008 @ 12:33 PM by IsaacKoi


Given the endorsement of the Rockefeller Briefing Document by UFORC, MUFON, CUFOS and FUFOR as containing the “best available evidence”, one might expect ufologists (particularly those associated with those four groups) to have actually promoted it in the years since its publication.

However, most statements about the Rockefeller Briefing Document (including by representatives of UFORC, MUFON, CUFOS and FUFOR) have been limited to arguments about copyright and credit.

There has been virtually no discussion of the contents of the Rockefeller Briefing Document, or the criteria for including (and excluding) cases from this document.

reply to this post:   copyright & usage 

reply posted on 31-3-2008 @ 12:34 PM by IsaacKoi


[Footnote 11.01] Letter of endorsement presented by Berliner, Don with Galbraith, Marie and Huneeus, Antonio in their “UFO Briefing Document” (1995) at page vii (in the introductory chapter entitled “The Letter of Endorsement”) of the Dell paperback edition. Available online at:

[Footnote 11.02] For the comments by Don Berliner, see the email posted by Eustaquio Andrea Patounas on 14 January 2007 on the UFO Updates discussion List at:

[Footnote 11.03] is a short url for an archived webpage at:

[Footnote 11.04] Antonio Huneeus in “Of Heaven and Earth: Essays Presented at the First Sitchin Studies Day” (1996) (edited by Zecharia Sitchin) at pages 143-144 (in the unnumbered chapter entitled “Exploring the Anunnaki-UFO link”) of the The Book Tree softcover edition.

[Footnote 11.06] See Michael Lindemann’s article “UFO Briefing Document shows ‘Best Available Evidence’”:

[Footnote 11.07] Mass-market edition of Rockefeller Briefing Document available to purchase on Amazon’s website at:

[Footnote 11.08] See the Random House webpage at:

[Footnote 11.09] For relevant comments by James Moseley, see “Saucer Smear” Volume 46, No.6, 5th June 1999. Available online at:

[Footnote 11.10] COMETA report (1999) at Chapter 9.1, page 51 of the translation of the report appearing at:

[Footnote 11.11] Michael Hesemann and Philip Mantle in their “Beyond Roswell” (1997) at page xiv (in the Introduction) of the Michael O’Mara hardback edition.

[Footnote 11.12] For Grant Cameron’s interesting and detailed account of the background to the Rockefeller Briefing Document, see: /part7.htm

[Footnote 11.13] Michael Lindemann in his article “UFO BRIEFING DOCUMENT SHOWS ‘BEST AVAILABLE EVIDENCE’ : Rockefeller-Financed Report To Be Sent To World Leaders”. Available online at:

[Footnote 11.14] For the UFO Research Coalition’s comments, see:

[Footnote 11.15] For the wikipedia entry in relation to Laurence Rockefeller, see

[Footnote 11.16] Washington Post, 11 July 2004, “Philanthropist Laurance Rockefeller Dies”. Article available online on various websites, including at:

[Footnote 11.17] For a detailed discussion of relevant documents by Grant Cameron, see his website, particularly at:

[Footnote 11.18] See article by Paul B. Thompson (Nebula editor) entitled “The Rockefeller UFO Report: or, How a Millionaire and a Socialite New Ager are Trying to Influence World Leaders about UFOs”. Available online on various websites, including:

[Footnote 11.19] Statement by the UFO Research Coalition available online at:

[Footnote 11.20] New York Observer, 8 April 1996, article entitled "Rockefeller Greets Aliens! A Rich Guy's UFO Dream”. Available online at:

[Footnote 11.21] Don Berliner is quoted by Michael Mannion in his “Project Mindshift” (1998) at pages 154-155 (in Chapter 5) of the Evans hardback edition.

[Footnote 11.22] Michael Lindemann’s “CNI” newsletter, 1 June 1997. Available online at:

[Footnote 11.23] For Dr Steven Greer’s comments, see:

[Footnote 11.24] The relevant article by Michael Lindemann is a revised version of his article entitled “Details of Steven Greer’s Washington DC Briefings”. It is available online at:

[Footnote 11.25] Susan Wright in her “UFO Headquarters” (1998) at pages 159-161 (in Chapter 8) of the St Martin’s Press softcover edition.

[Footnote 11.26] Jim Marrs in his “Alien Agenda” (1997) at page 394 (at the end of the Appendix) of the Harper Collins paperback edition.

[Footnote 11.27] “NPR Talk of the Nation Science Friday”, 3 July 1998. Transcript available via Lexis-Nexis.

[Footnote 11.28] Steven Kaeser in an email to the UFO UpDates discussion List dated 30 May 2000. Available online at:

[Footnote 11.29] For Kevin Randle’s comments, see his email dated 24 May 1999 to the UFO UpDates discussion List at:

[Footnote 11.30] For Jerry Clark’s comments, see his email dated 25 May 1999 to the UFO UpDates discussion List at:

[Footnote 11.31] Dwight Connelly in his “The World’s Best UFO Cases” (2004) at pages 6-7 (in the introductory section) of the Bookseller softcover edition.

[Footnote 11.32] Dwight Connelly in his “The World’s Best UFO Cases” (2004) at page 9 (in the introductory section) of the Bookseller softcover edition.

[Footnote 11.33] In Dwight Connelly’s “The World’s Best UFO Cases” (2004) at page 2 of the Bookseller softcover edition.

[Footnote 11.34] Email from Don Berliner to Isaac Koi dated 29 May 2007.

[Footnote 11.35] Email from Debbie Foch (on behalf of CSETI and Dr Greer) to Isaac Koi dated 17 August 2007.

reply to this post:   copyright & usage 

reply posted on 31-3-2008 @ 12:46 PM by Hope_for_reason

I actually think that was the best post I have ever read on ATS. Thank you for restoring my faith in this website.

So from what I gathered whilst reading this, is that a case could be made for Dr Greer being a bit of a disinfo agent?

Thanks for the great read.


reply to this post:   copyright & usage 

reply posted on 31-3-2008 @ 01:30 PM by Balez

Oh dear...

You have just done something amazing!
So much information, this will take me some time to go through!

Thank you very much!
S&F (dont think i even need to mention that, it's quite obvious)

reply to this post:   copyright & usage 

reply posted on 31-3-2008 @ 02:04 PM by WitnessFromAfar

Originally posted by IsaacKoi
There has been virtually no discussion of the contents of the Rockefeller Briefing Document, or the criteria for including (and excluding) cases from this document.

Isaac, thank you once again for such a detailed and comprehensive report. I did not know of this Rockefeller Briefing.

I can assure you that many members here at ATS will reference this report in the future. Thank you for bringing it to our attention! In reading the main page of the forum here over the past few weeks, it seems that everyone is suddenly very interested in having their own list of 'Best Cases' to use during the debates we have (both here and in the 'real world').

Thank you for not only providing this article summarizing the UFO Coalition's answer to the request for such a list, but also for supplying your own version, in the Top 100 Cases Thread.

For those who are not aware, Isaac is also a writer on the TinWiki, where many of his articles can be found, and where he backs up his research in wiki form. After learning about the TinWiki project, I've been studying the format for posting there and preparing some of my personal favorite cases for archiving in Wiki form. It's a great idea, and Isaac is the type who will help you if you decide to get involved and have questions.

Another great post! Star and Flag!


reply to this post:   copyright & usage 

reply posted on 31-3-2008 @ 02:38 PM by Ogre14t

reply to post by Hope_for_reason

That's what I got out of this too, plus an ear full from the wife about her fears of comming home to see me wearing a tinfoil hat hahaha (slight sidenote). All in all awsome post.

reply to this post:   copyright & usage 

reply posted on 31-3-2008 @ 04:57 PM by IsaacKoi

Many thanks for the flattering comments that have been posted in this thread or sent by U2U.

It's nice to be appreciated...

reply to this post:   copyright & usage 

reply posted on 31-3-2008 @ 08:22 PM by crackerjack

WOW!!! I just finished giving a star to each of your posts . Now I will grab myself a coffee, unplug the phone and dive myself into this

Thanks for upholding the ATS flag, Springer should really promote you up the ranks.

reply to this post:   copyright & usage 

reply posted on 31-3-2008 @ 08:42 PM by TheBottomLine

Once again, IsaacKoi does not disappoint. Great research......great work!!! From your:

1. Intros of the data to be presented
2. Background material
3. Methodology
4. Scope of presentation
5. Theoretical analysis
6. References
7. Conclusion

You've done it again. I agree w/ "crackerjack" and would highly recommend to Springer that you become promoted within the ATS community. Outstanding job!!!!!

reply to this post:   copyright & usage 

reply posted on 31-3-2008 @ 11:14 PM by TeslaandLyne

reply to post by IsaacKoi

1. Foo fighters (1944-1945)
2. Ghost Rockets (1946)
3. Kenneth Arnold (1947) (see Case 1 in the “Top 100” thread)

1. might as well be around now cause all you see in videos and photos
are spots of light.

2. are still in videos today on youtube as luminous trails of stuck UFOs

3. a Horton Flying wing outfitted with an early German saucer mechanism
I don't think you have the Hudson Valley Sightings but one was
like a gigantic flying wing... using an upgraded Tesla design suspension.
See J. J. Thompson for part of the principle, Tesla the mechanism.

ED: Tinfoil hats may not be good when near UFOs at the static
frequencies they apparently use.
ED+: Any number of people could make these things, there are
hundreds of patents. Why does Rock persist on giving data we
already know. Documented news reports from 1945 to 1995 was
given in the Man Mae UFO book. Just news, no baloney.

[edit on 3/31/2008 by TeslaandLyne]

[edit on 3/31/2008 by TeslaandLyne]

reply to this post:   copyright & usage 

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