"To the Stars" Downgrades Debris from "Extraterrestrial Metamaterials" to "Potential UFO Material," Warns Investigation Could Go "Nowhere"
I grew up in what used to be known as the “Burned-Over District,” a place where the flames of the true faith—whatever that was—burned so brightly that they scorched all they touched. In nineteenth-century upstate New York, evangelicals spoke of their conversations with the Holy Spirit to rapturous audiences. Joseph Smith preached about visitation from the angel Moroni, and the Spiritualists vouchsafed that they were in direct contact with ghosts from another plane of existence. What all had in common was an unyielding faith in things unseen, and also an unwavering demand that no evidence be admitted against their beliefs, for faith was, as Jesus said, a blessing for those who believed without proof: “Blessed are those that have not seen yet have believed” (John 20:29). The cynic might argue that this type of faith exists precisely to hide the fact that there are no facts to support it. Even Jesus had to show his wounds to Doubting Thomas.
George Knapp Claims Pentagon Fears Demons in Flying Saucers; Plus: New Russian Video Game about Egypt Markets to "Ancient Aliens" Crowd
The Same Russian Troll Accounts Tweeting Election Propaganda Were Also Tweeting about UFOs and Ancient Mysteries
I’ve received quite a bit of criticism for my conclusion that the Russian government has purposely promoted UFO and ancient astronaut beliefs as part of their propaganda efforts aimed at destabilizing the West. As part of that campaign, Russian trolls and bots made more than one million tweets to influence the 2016 election. Twitter recently deleted those tweets in an effort to clean up its service, but NBC News published a spreadsheet containing 200,000 tweets from Russian propaganda accounts sent in 2016 and 2017. A significant, though not overlarge, number of Russian propaganda tweets were about UFOs, ancient astronauts, and ancient mysteries.
Here are a few representative samples of the Russian retweets. I have stripped them of the linked articles to avoid promoting bottom-feeding clickbait and propaganda sites.
As we learned from the many revelations about the Pentagon’s UFO research initiative, the company contracted to conduct much of the program’s research, Bigelow Advanced Aerospace Space Studies, adopted the position advocated by paranormal researcher Hal Puthoff that flying saucers are intimately connected to poltergeists and may actively create poltergeists as they pop in and out of reality. Puthoff is a former employee of BAASS owner Robert Bigelow’s previous paranormal research organization and current VP of To the Stars Academy of Arts and Science, and he was a paid consultant on the Pentagon research program, where he helped to direct it toward bonkers investigations of poltergeists and super-secret paranormal propulsion systems.
Alien Metal Update: 2009 Harry Reid Letter Released as To the Stars Launches "Project ADAM" to Study Supposed Extraterrestrial Metals
If you have ever wondered why exposing the lies and the fraud of fringe history matters, just consider the alternative. We learned recently, as I reported this Sunday in my newsletter, that a teacher in the Miami-Dade Public School system posted to the official school district website a lesson plan [UPDATE: since removed from the internet] endorsing Ivan Van Sertima’s claim that the Olmec came from Africa, along with Gavin Menzies’s claim that the Chinese reached America before Columbus, and Islamic claims about a Muslim presence in pre-Columbian Cuba. (That last one was endorsed by Turkish Pres. Erdogan.) The lesson plan asks students to research fringe history claims and then write a persuasive letter to the publisher of their social studies textbooks asking for pseudo-historical ideas to be included. Both Andy White and Carl Feagans wrote about this, and I recommend their posts. The story was first shared on Facebook by Pablo Benavente, whom I thank for calling our attention to this travesty.
I'm an author and editor who has published on a range of topics, including archaeology, science, and horror fiction. There's more about me in the About Jason tab.
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