Claim: Original Calvine UFO Photo

Rory

Senior Member.
because you can't. the angle dont work esp as we see how steep the hill is from this vid.

Sorry, I don't get that: seems to me if you were close to the fence, low on the ground, and looking up somewhat you'd have the top of the fence and just sky:

1662168392063.png

But then there's the question of where's the tree?
 

deirdre

Senior Member.
of where's the tree?
treeS. they said they hid under trees.

there would have to be enough trees immediately nest to the fence for them to lie that low and still be under the cover of trees.


this is him standing just a few feet from the fence and looking back , up a pretty steep hill, to the tree cover area
1662170800055.png
 

Rory

Senior Member.
treeS. they said they hid under trees.

The tree that's in the photo. If they were that close to the fence - which surely they'd have to be if that's the spot - then how is the branch in the picture?
 
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deirdre

Senior Member.
The tree that's in the photo. If they were that close to the fence - which surely they'd have to be if that's the spot - then how is the branch in the picture?
it can't be. that's what i'm saying.
you cannot be under that line of trees and get that shot with your camera. so either a heck of alot of trees died and disintegrated, or that isn't the spot/view.
 

Rory

Senior Member.
Right. And I guess it don't matter anyway: even if someone finds a place where the fence posts lines up and the tree branch lines up and there's something that looks like a 32-year-old palm frond on the fence it's not like it tells us anything major - 'cept that the already dubious 'reflection theory' is off the table.
 

Vattic

New Member
There was a pub/restaurant near me that regularly flaunted the laws when hiring people. A bunch of my younger brother's friends worked in the kitchen there as chefs while under 16. Using deep fat fryers and the like. You can't use law as a rule for determining their age.
 

Rory

Senior Member.
You can't use law as a rule for determining their age.

Oh, I didn't think we were, thought it was just a quick general side chat unrelated to the thread.

Seems like when we get down to it there isn't anything to be used to determine their age, other than Lindsay's words that they were "young".

And anyway, even if we did know how old they were it don't help none.
 

Daves!

Active Member
Right. And I guess it don't matter anyway: even if someone finds a place where the fence posts lines up and the tree branch lines up and there's something that looks like a 32-year-old palm frond on the fence it's not like it tells us anything major - 'cept that the already dubious 'reflection theory' is off the table.
exactely in 32 years some trees maybe fallen or removed or long gone of age. The weather can be harsh towards poles which could have been fallen or whatever.Landscapes can change in decades. So for me this is dwelling far too long, just to recreate a scene of 32 years ago and is pointless.
I don't understand what it's going to proof realy.
 

JMartJr

Senior Member
Finding A site that is a perfect match today does not imply it would have been a perfect match back then. Funding A site that is not a match today but , who knows, maybe was back then doesn't gain gain us anything. In neither case is there particular reason to say it was THE sight, rather than just a site that is similar to the site IF we make assumpions about the image that maybe may not be correct.

This strikes me as the geographical equivalent of colorizing the image -- it can be done and can look very good, but is based on assumptions that are unproven.
 

Tomer

Member
This thread is pretty rubbish. It's mostly people arguing and speculating wildly about the characters involved. Suggest it be archived and a new thread be started.
 

Rory

Senior Member.
This thread is pretty rubbish. It's mostly people arguing and speculating wildly about the characters involved. Suggest it be archived and a new thread be started.

Yeah, been thinking a more focused summary of the actual info might be good - though I wonder what for?

What would you think would be discussed in a new thread? Seems like it's kinda dead until anything new comes forward.
 

JMartJr

Senior Member
An alternate point of view: The proliferation of threads on this topic makes it very hard to know what has been considered and posted about, what has been established, what has been sufficiently disproven to be discarded. An alternate approach of a single, if rambling, thread would be the look at the discussion of the Kumbargaz, Turkey UFO. To me, having one thread to look at is vastly superior -- or at least vastly easier to keep up with. I susect it would be easier for a visitor as well, who may not even know that there are multiple threads on this subject.

My $0.02, your mileage may vary, etc.
 

Biggles79

New Member
An alternate point of view: The proliferation of threads on this topic makes it very hard to know what has been considered and posted about, what has been established, what has been sufficiently disproven to be discarded. An alternate approach of a single, if rambling, thread would be the look at the discussion of the Kumbargaz, Turkey UFO. To me, having one thread to look at is vastly superior -- or at least vastly easier to keep up with. I susect it would be easier for a visitor as well, who may not even know that there are multiple threads on this subject.

My $0.02, your mileage may vary, etc.
As a visitor-turned-member, I agree 100%.
 

Tomer

Member
Yeah, been thinking a more focused summary of the actual info might be good - though I wonder what for?

What would you think would be discussed in a new thread? Seems like it's kinda dead until anything new comes forward.

I figured a shorter thread with a summary of the useful information, timeline, links to the various podcasts discussing it, the star ornament theory, etc, and new information that comes out could be added summarily.

There's probably no point, it will receive the same inane comments and become overcrowded again.
 

deirdre

Senior Member.
I figured a shorter thread with a summary of the useful information, timeline, links to the various podcasts discussing it, the star ornament theory, etc, and new information that comes out could be added summarily.

There's probably no point, it will receive the same inane comments and become overcrowded again.
they added a summary to the Opening Post on page 1.
 

Scaramanga

Member
Article:
At around 9pm on the evening of Saturday, 4th August 1990, two men on a hillside near Calvine, a small hamlet situated just off the main A9 road, some 35 miles north-west of Perth in Scotland, managed to take six colour photographs of a large, diamond-shaped craft in the fading summer daylight. They watched as it hovered close to their position for some ten minutes, only to shoot off vertically at relatively high speed. When providing their witness statement, the men also recalled seeing what were believed to be RAF jets making multiple low-level passes in the area at the same time. It is still unclear whether the jets were accompanying the strange craft, or just happened to be flying through the area at the time. Calvine lies close to the only main road through that part of the Scottish Highlands, one which is a relatively busy thoroughfare even on summer evenings, and the valley it follows was a popular low-flying route for RAF aircraft. Indeed, Calvine sits in the middle of Low Flying Area 14 (LFA 14) and UAP Media UK member & aviation author Graeme Rendall recalls using various mountainside locations in the general vicinity of Calvine for low-level aviation photography back in the early 2000s.


Article:
retired RAF press officer Craig Lindsay. Craig was involved in the Calvine case back in 1990 as the go-between for the Daily Record and the MOD. During his involvement in the case, Craig acquired an original print of the elusive photograph. Along with the photo, Craig had also kept the original envelope containing the photograph sent by the Daily Record to the MOD. In May 2022, David travelled to interview Craig in Scotland and was shown the original print and in June, Craig agreed to donate the photograph to the Sheffield Hallam University Archives, handing it to Dr. Dravid Clarke and Vinnie Adams. The image now resides in its new home at the Sheffield Hallam University folklore archives.


Source: https://twitter.com/PostDisclosure/status/1558134359768662022


Long a near-mythological image in UFO culture. But what does it show? The original account talks of six color photos, and here we have one (it is in color, but rather washed out). They also discuss it "hovering." It's not being chased by the jet in this photo. I wonder if a simple explanation might be that it was something like a kite?

2022-08-12_11-26-16.jpg


HD Image: https://web.archive.org/web/2022081....wordpress.com/2022/08/watermarked-jpeg-2.jpg
TIFF file: Source: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1FCOQiQKciRJsZ4pm26hdrFuVv1uzMk-k/view


Older discussion with more info on the location: https://www.metabunk.org/threads/claim-1990-calvine-ufo.11574/

Thead summary by @Rory

Here is what I think gives it away as a hoax. Look at the shadows on the jet plane. It's a fifth of the size of the UFO yet has quite distinctly different shading on near side, upper side of wing, etc. Yet the UFO has absolutely no comparable shadows at all. Other than a slightly darker underside, there is absolutely nothing on the UFO to indicate from which direction the light is coming. Which is odd as the photo was actually taken just a few minutes before sunset and even in the diffuse light the plane clearly shows the light is coming from a specific direction, but the UFO does not.
 

NorCal Dave

Senior Member.
Just an idea here. I was struck by how thorough Clark and his friends are researching this photo, but I don't get their conclusions. They seem to go with it being some sort of Top Secret, to this day, US stealth aircraft that has the ability to silently hover for 10 minutes before ascending straight up with no visible means of lift or propulsion. Unless it's a blimp or balloon, this would infer an anti-gravity device.

I see two big problems with that:

1. Any technological advance has antecedents. No matter how secret and advanced the SR71 or the B2 are, they are direct descendants of the Wright Brothers first plane and modern cell phones can trace back to Bell and Marconi. One can trace these things back and see each advancement that led to the next generation. Yes, some may be done in secret like the B2, but the creators are still building on what came before.

In this case, we would have to assume that some sort of anti-gravity tech has been developed over time in complete secrecy, to this day. If the US has anti-gravity tech, why spend so much on Musk and Boing's space launch vehicles? To keep tech from the '70s/'80s that goes back to the '50s, secret 30-40 years later just in case? That doesn't make sense.

2. Even if the US had some sort of anti-gravity tech in the late '80s and it's so classified that it's still secret today, why in the world would they be farting around with it in Scotland? It may be fairy rural, nevertheless, its more densely populated than Nevada, a US state that has lots of closed military air space, including Groom Lake (Area 51) which is just for testing stuff like this.

In 2020, population density for Nevada was 11.03 persons per sq. km.[/EXhttps://knoema.com/atlas/United-States-of-America/Nevada/Population-density#:~:text=

Scotland is a fairly small country with a reasonably high population density of approximately 64 people per a square kilometer.
Content from External Source
https://www.scotland.com/culture/demographics/#:~:text

This leaves us with a hoax, or a gross misinterpretation of what someone saw. While looking for various things that look like the UFO I came across these. Octahedral radar reflectors. One puts them on their boat to increase their radar reflection:

1663982477873.png1663982525743.png1663982593997.png

They do look something like our UFO/stealth craft. Is it possible that some sort of radar reflectors was suspended by balloons for training exercises?

The obvious negative is, I can't seem to find any military thing that looks like this.
Content from External Source
 

Duke

Active Member
Here you go!
artworks-000352107507-cpwflf-t240x240.jpg
I don't know of any that would be big enough to be mistaken for a large distant UFO vehicle, though.
That's just a larger version of the boat mounted radar reflector you looked at previously. Similar to the reflectors used on Mogul balloons.

Not a perfect match, but somewhat similar in shape are towed, air-to-air target "darts." These are bigger (over 15 ft long) than the reflectors, and are aerodynamically designed to be "fly" behind the tow a/c.

https://www.ordtech-industries.com/2products/Aerial_Target/OMI_TDU10.html
 
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DavidB66

Senior Member
They seem to go with it being some sort of Top Secret, to this day, US stealth aircraft that has the ability to silently hover for 10 minutes before ascending straight up with no visible means of lift or propulsion. Unless it's a blimp or balloon, this would infer an anti-gravity device.
I think I suggested somewhere earlier that the object might be some kind of test rig for 'stealth' materials, either radar-deflecting or radar-absorbing. This would fit with the hints from anonymous military sources that it came from the US Navy base on the Mull of Kintyre, as the US Naval Research Laboratory has specialised in radar-avoidance technology. To be seen in mid-air, the test materials would need to be attached to a buoyant blimp or a towed drogue. The claim of 'ascending straight up' would still be a stumbling block. On balance I think a hoax is more likely, but if anonymous inside sources are correct in saying it was a hi-tech military project (as David Clarke now thinks), it needs to be something more prosaic than anti-gravity!
 

NorCal Dave

Senior Member.
First of all, to correct my previous post as I seem to have messed up my EX /EX tags. One of the few times I didn't use "preview" I guess. The second half should read:

In 2020, population density for Nevada was 11.03 persons per sq. km.
Content from External Source
https://knoema.com/atlas/United-States-of-America/Nevada/Population-density#:~:text=

Scotland is a fairly small country with a reasonably high population density of approximately 64 people per a square kilometer.
Content from External Source
https://www.scotland.com/culture/demographics/#:~:text

This leaves us with a hoax, or a gross misinterpretation of what someone saw. While looking for various things that look like the UFO I came across these. Octahedral radar reflectors. One puts them on their boat to increase their radar reflection:

They do look something like our UFO/stealth craft. Is it possible that some sort of radar reflectors was suspended by balloons for training exercises?

The obvious negative is, I can't seem to find any military thing that looks like this.

On balance I think a hoax is more likely, but if anonymous inside sources are correct in saying it was a hi-tech military project (as David Clarke now thinks), it needs to be something more prosaic than anti-gravity!

Agreed. I'll have to go back and listen to the Q&A video again or wait for Clark's upcoming article to see what they think the secret craft is. I was trying to give him the benefit of the doubt and see if there was something that could have been mistaken for something it's not.

At this point it's just anonymous sources saying it's Top Secret. The two people on the record said hoax. The complete refusal to consider a hoax seems to be based on Robinson's reports. But his first report said the photo had fine grain typical of Illford XP1 specialty B&W film. But then in the Q&A video he said after looking again, it had coarser grain like a regular ASA400 B&W film. However, the MoD report and Linsday both say they photos were in color. I don't know.

I still go back to: If this was so secret it's still classified to this day, why is it flying around Scotland near the town of Calvine? If it's US Navy super-secret radar research, why do it at Mull of Kintyre? They have the Fallon Naval Air Station smack in the middle of Nevada.

Not a perfect match, but somewhat similar in shape are towed, air-to-air target "darts." There are bigger (over 15 ft long) than the reflectors, and are aerodynamically designed to be "fly" behind the tow a/c.

Here's a few pictures of the darts. If one were to put 2 of them back-to-back it might look like our craft:

1664035527223.png1664035543565.png
 

Duke

Active Member
I still go back to: If this was so secret it's still classified to this day, why is it flying around Scotland near the town of Calvine? If it's US Navy super-secret radar research, why do it at Mull of Kintyre? They have the Fallon Naval Air Station smack in the middle of Nevada.
There are a number of possible, even likely, answers to your questions:

If the object shown in the Calvine photo is a classified/stealthy ISR platform, why was it flying around Calvine/Scotland?

The photo was taken two days after Iraq invaded Kuwait, a military action that threatened to both impact oil production/shipments from the ME, and spread military conflict across the region. Specifically the US/UK were concerned Iraq might continue on into Saudi Arabia, and such concerns would have justified the use of the most capable/survivable ISR platform available, even if that platform was still in EMD. Knowing whether the West had to act immediately or had time to build up forces was critical relative to logistical decisions.

It would make sense to stage that ISR platform closer to the ME during conflict to a facility/base where we had a high degree of confidence in both security and support capabilities. The obvious choice would have been somewhere in the UK where we have bases/personnel and operate under the "special relationship" with the Brits.

The Harriers are also reasonably explained. Ever classified a/c suffer from inflight emergencies (IFE), anything from lightning and bird strikes to system failures and human errors. It's not uncommon for an a/c that has declared (or had declared) an IFE to have another a/c join the mishap a/c for a visual inspection of any damage, take video if possible, and (hopefully) escort the mishap a/c to a emergency landing if necessary.

I can say with a high degree of confidence, if the object in the photo is/was a classified ISR platform, if was not a manned USAF aircraft. US Navy? Non DoD/OGA drone? Maybe, I don't know. What I do know is it's entirely possible it could still be classified, because there are USAF a/c from that period that have not been made public.

One other possibility is the Brits were developing an advanced air defense radar system called UKADGE--United Kingdom Air Defense Ground Environment at this time. Could the object have been brought to the UK to be tested against this new radar system? Sure, foreign comparative and dissimilar testing of military equipment among friendly nations is very common.
 
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Rory

Senior Member.
Very much in agreement with your posts Dave. To note, though:

If this was so secret it's still classified to this day, why is it flying around Scotland near the town of Calvine?

Calvine is a hamlet. Not sure of the exact population but I think somewhere around 10 to 30.
 

kasparovitch

Active Member
Something I think wasn't as yet discussed here (unless I missed it as this is running at such a pace) is the angle the picture was taken. From the fence and visible tree's top I'd guess the angle is almost 90º relative to ground and if so objects might be seen from bottom and not from a side as it would be more intuitive. Thus the shinning and shadow sides in the diamond-shaped craft might be facing north and south for instance and fighter's shadows should then be interpreted accordingly.
 

JMartJr

Senior Member
Calvine is a hamlet. Not sure of the exact population but I think somewhere around 10 to 30.
Yeah. And the general area is pretty empty even today. But not totally -- about two miles East is Blair Atholl, which lists a modern population of about 2700 people. (https://profile.id.com.au/campbelltown/about?WebID=120) Presumably fewer back in the day...
Capture.JPG

The potential military whatever-it-was testers would have to take that into account, especially if the object had to get there and then leave, traversing more territory. The area is on the edge of Cairngorms National Park, which would have a low population density but might be expected to have visitors with cameras.

Just bopping around Scotland on Google Maps (and wishing I was bopping around Scotland in person!) it looks like the Pitlochery area is reasonably remote, but not as remote and unpopulated as some other areas. Of course, without knowing what they were doing and what they were testing, it is impossible to know whether this might be as remote a spot as would have met the needs of the test. Or even how important it was to go relatively unobserved.
 

Rory

Senior Member.
Yeah. And the general area is pretty empty even today. But not totally -- about two miles East is Blair Atholl, which lists a modern population of about 2700 people

Those numbers surprised me. I think the reason might be that they're for Blair Atholl, Australia. ;)

Blair Atholl, Scotland had a population of 566 in 1991 (density ~190 per square km). Not sure about now.

Also a bit more like 4.5 miles to Calvine, as the crow flies.
 
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JMartJr

Senior Member
Those numbers surprised me. I think the reason might be that they're for Blair Atholl, Australia.
Mea culpa! On the other hand, Pitlochery, while further away but still in the general area, does have around 2500 folks living there-at. And I double checked it's the one in Scotland! :D So I think the general idea that the area does have enough people to not be an ideal place for secret testing of big flying stuff. While again acknowledging that without knowing more, how important avoiding being seen would have been is hard to say...

https://www.highlandperthshire.com/regions/pitlochry/
(PS --I confess to looking at the number of houses on Google Earth for Blair Atholl, wondering how 2700 people could live there, but wondering if maybe the "town limits" were bigger than I might assume, then noticing a cluster of small buildings to the NE and wondering if they could account for it. On re-looking, I expect they are tourist cabins...)
 

NorCal Dave

Senior Member.
The photo was taken two days after Iraq invaded Kuwait, a military action that threatened to both impact oil production/shipments from the ME, and spread military conflict across the region. Specifically the US/UK were concerned Iraq might continue on into Saudi Arabia, and such concerns would have justified the use of the most capable/survivable ISR platform available, even if that platform was still in EMD. Knowing whether the West had to act immediately or had time to build up forces was critical relative to logistical decisions.

Well, you'd know better than me about that kind of stuff. Maybe for the rest of us though, could you plese spell out some of the acronyms at least once so we know what's what. ISR? EMD?

I can say with a high degree of confidence, if the object in the photo is/was a classified ISR platform, if was not a manned USAF aircraft. US Navy? Non DoD/OGA drone? Maybe, I don't know. What I do know is it's entirely possible it could still be classified, because there are USAF a/c from that period that have not been made public.

So, the US Military had operational high-tech aircraft in early '90s, meaning it was developed in the late '70s-'80s that is still so vastly superior to anything we're aware of now, it has to remain classified? It's still better than the B2, the soon to be revealed B21, the F22 and the F35? Like I said, you know better than me.

But, as of now, they Calvine Photo team is still claiming it's a secret US craft with no visible means of lift or propulsion that can hover for at least 10 minutes, silently, before ascending. What can that be, if not a blimp/balloon or something supported by a blimp/balloon? How is it levitating?

The Harriers are also reasonably explained. Ever classified a/c suffer from inflight emergencies (IFE), anything from lightning and bird strikes to system failures and human errors. It's not uncommon for an a/c that has declared (or had declared) an IFE to have another a/c join the mishap a/c for a visual inspection of any damage, take video if possible, and (hopefully) escort the mishap a/c to a emergency landing if necessary.

Except no one can find any mention of Harriers in Scotland at that time. Even if they were trying to assist, where did they come from. Maybe it's a Hunter, as Flarky has suggested. Or, I suppose it could all be cloak and dagger stuff with Top Secret bases staffed by Top Secret Aircraft and support aircraft and such. I'm just leery of things that start to require multiple conspiracies to work.
 

Duke

Active Member
Well, you'd know better than me about that kind of stuff. Maybe for the rest of us though, could you plese spell out some of the acronyms at least once so we know what's what. ISR? EMD?
Intelligence/Surveillance/Reconnaissance
Engineering and Manufacturing Development

So, the US Military had operational high-tech aircraft in early '90s, meaning it was developed in the late '70s-'80s that is still so vastly superior to anything we're aware of now, it has to remain classified? It's still better than the B2, the soon to be revealed B21, the F22 and the F35? Like I said, you know better than me.

But, as of now, they Calvine Photo team is still claiming it's a secret US craft with no visible means of lift or propulsion that can hover for at least 10 minutes, silently, before ascending. What can that be, if not a blimp/balloon or something supported by a blimp/balloon? How is it levitating?
There are any number of reasons why systems stay classified. Declassification of such things is process, not calendar, driven.

Assuming those performance characteristics/parameters as reported by the witnesses are accurate, I don't know what it could have been. That said, I don't know that I trust the jugdement/recollections of the two men when it comes to defining aircraft performance parameters
Except no one can find any mention of Harriers in Scotland at that time. Even if they were trying to assist, where did they come from. Maybe it's a Hunter, as Flarky has suggested. Or, I suppose it could all be cloak and dagger stuff with Top Secret bases staffed by Top Secret Aircraft and support aircraft and such. I'm just leery of things that start to require multiple conspiracies to work.
I previously discussed the supposed records check undertaken to identify the Harriers. I'd like to see the process and level of detail involved of the effort. Specifically I'd want to know if the researchers looked at individual a/c maintenance records to eliminate them one by one. Just looking at squadron ops records isn't sufficient.
 
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Ann K

Senior Member.
But, as of now, they Calvine Photo team is still claiming it's a secret US craft with no visible means of lift or propulsion that can hover for at least 10 minutes, silently, before ascending. What can that be, if not a blimp/balloon or something supported by a blimp/balloon? How is it levitating?
Perhaps you need to rethink the "island and reflection" theory. Occam's razor suggests that to be far more likely than secret and mysterious craft, or the sci-fi-like "anti-gravity" hypotheses.
 

Mauro

Active Member
Perhaps you need to rethink the "island and reflection" theory. Occam's razor suggests that to be far more likely than secret and mysterious craft, or the sci-fi-like "anti-gravity" hypotheses.
Indeed! And @NorCal Dave directly showed the 'staged' hypothesis is quite good too, producing an almost perfect reconstruction. Double Occam.
 
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DavidB66

Senior Member
Except no one can find any mention of Harriers in Scotland at that time. Even if they were trying to assist, where did they come from. Maybe it's a Hunter, as Flarky has suggested. Or, I suppose it could all be cloak and dagger stuff with Top Secret bases staffed by Top Secret Aircraft and support aircraft and such. I'm just leery of things that start to require multiple conspiracies to work.
I'm trying to keep an open mind between the 'hoax' and 'secret project' hypotheses, but there is one strong argument against the latter. It seems clear from David Clarke's researches that there was genuine confusion and uncertainty in the UK Ministry of Defence for at least several months after the incident was reported to them. The declassified internal documents, and later reminiscences by people involved, all indicate that to begin with no-one in the MoD had any knowledge of a secret project which might explain the 'sighting'. Nor do any UK military personnel seem to have observed the mystery object, since if they had, this would surely have been fed back to the Defence Intelligence branch which investigated such cases. It seems to me that this almost rules out any involvement of UK military aircraft - whether Harriers, Hunters, or anything else - in the incident, if the photo is not a hoax. (I say 'almost' rules it out, because I suppose there is a possibility that the mystery object was actually something genuine but small and relatively close to the camera, like a cardboard box blowing in the wind. In that case the pilot of the military aircraft shown in the photo might simply not have seen it.)

This leaves open the possibility of an American secret project which somehow got loose over the Scottish countryside, but it seems mindboggling that no-one in the UK MoD would know anything about the project, or that it would take them months after the incident to find out about it.
 

Duke

Active Member
I'm trying to keep an open mind between the 'hoax' and 'secret project' hypotheses, but there is one strong argument against the latter. It seems clear from David Clarke's researches that there was genuine confusion and uncertainty in the UK Ministry of Defence for at least several months after the incident was reported to them. The declassified internal documents, and later reminiscences by people involved, all indicate that to begin with no-one in the MoD had any knowledge of a secret project which might explain the 'sighting'. Nor do any UK military personnel seem to have observed the mystery object, since if they had, this would surely have been fed back to the Defence Intelligence branch which investigated such cases. It seems to me that this almost rules out any involvement of UK military aircraft - whether Harriers, Hunters, or anything else - in the incident, if the photo is not a hoax. (I say 'almost' rules it out, because I suppose there is a possibility that the mystery object was actually something genuine but small and relatively close to the camera, like a cardboard box blowing in the wind. In that case the pilot of the military aircraft shown in the photo might simply not have seen it.)

This leaves open the possibility of an American secret project which somehow got loose over the Scottish countryside, but it seems mindboggling that no-one in the UK MoD would know anything about the project, or that it would take them months after the incident to find out about it.
If this was a US classified a/c, someone within HMG/MoD would have been aware of its existence if only to grant clearances for it to operate in or transit through UK airspace. The number of people within HMG/MoD who would been read into such a program would have been both small and highly compartmentalized, and most of them would have been only defensively briefed.
 

Duke

Active Member
I am guessing that is a term of art unknown to me, can you explain what you mean? Thanks!
It means, assuming you have the security clearance and a need to know, you are in briefed and given only the specific knowledge you need to do your job. Personnel so briefed are usually not 100% dedicated/co-located to the particular program, but those who tangentially affect the program or mission in some way as a function of their duties. In some cases, they would know officially the system exists, but very little else.
 
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