The following is an excerpt from a July 1967 English-language Sputnik magazine article from the former Soviet Union reproduced in full in an FBI file. This article introduced to the United States government a wide variety of ancient astronaut claims, including Japanese spacesuit statues, the Star of Bethlehem as UFO, medieval UFO paintings, and other claims. This article was read by Erich von Daniken, and nearly all of its evidence is reproduced point for point in Chariots of the Gods (1968) and it successors. The article introduced to a wide audience the fictive Dropa stones.
This article was also used as the sole basis for accepting the ancient astronaut theory in a 1968 NSA monograph.
Because this article is still under copyright, I have only excerpted a portion of the opening passage about the Dropa stones. The full article can be viewed in the FBI's UFO files here.
Visitors from Outer Space
Expanding knowledge about the universe usually means more puzzles than discoveries. As man unravels each new mystery, he is assailed by fresh doubts and torments, for he has caught a glimpse of another mystery lying ahead. For the explorers – in any field – it is probably this yet undiscovered territory vaguely seen in the distance that sparks the search for knowledge.
A report by a Chinese archaeologist startled the world when it was published in 1965 for he had out of old bits of knowledge pieced together an amazing theory of space-ships on a visit to the earth 12,000 years ago. The German magazine, “Das Vegetarische Universum”, wrote of his research:
“For a quarter of a century archaeologists exploring caves in the Bayan-Kara-Ula Mountains, on the border of China and Tibet, have been finding odd-looking stone discs covered in unreadable patterns and hieroglyphs. A total of 716 such discs have been discovered, apparently dating back several thousand years.
“Like a gramophone record, each disc has a hole in its center from which a double groove spirals its way to the circumference. The grooves are not sound-tracks, but the oddest writing in China and indeed the rest of the world.”
Archaeologists and decipherers of ancient writing racked their brains trying to solve the secret of the spirals. The result of the research by the Chinese archaeologist was so shattering that the Peking Academy of Pre-History banned publication of his work. Eventually permission was obtained and the professor and his four colleagues published their collective effort under the intriguing title “Groove Writing Relating to Spaceships which, as Recorded on the Discs, Existed 12,000 Years Ago.”
When deciphered, one of the hieroglyphs […] read, “The Dropas came down from the clouds in their gliders. Our men, women, and children hid in the caves ten times before the sunrise. When at last they understood the sign language of the Dropas, they realized the newcomers had peaceful intentions…”
In the opinion of Chinese archaeologists, the Bayan-Kara-Ula hieroglyphs are so mysterious that their interpretation and use for scientific research require the utmost care.
To obtain further information, the discs were scraped free of adhering rock particles and sent to Moscow for study. Scientists there made two important discoveries. The discs were found to contain a large amount of cobalt and other metals – a shaking discovery. Further investigations revealed that the discs vibrate in an unusual rhythm, as if they carried an electric charge or were part of an electric circuit. The 12,000 year old discs remain a challenge to science.