Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Stanton Friedman: Derivative UFO Researcher?

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Stanton Friedman is notorious for his incessant use of the term “Cosmic Watergate” which he applies to his conjecture that the U.S. government and its Air Force have been covering up the real story of what happened at Roswell in 1947.

But the Watergate reference derives from noted UFO researcher Raymond Fowler as found in an article by Mr. Fowler in the May 1976 issue of Official UFO magazine.

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Mr. Fowler applied his phrase for all UFO accounts, whereas Mr. Friedman applies his sobriquet to the Roswell incident only.

Click here for a look at the Fowler piece in Official UFO:

Mr. Freidman’s use of his term stems mostly from the period of 2000 forward and was used “officially” in his book:

Top Secret/Majic: Operation Majestic-12 and the United States Government’s UFO Cover-up (Marlowe and Co. 2005)

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While Mr. Friedman was the first person to re-invigorate the Roswell episode by his 1978 interview with Jesse Marcel, his contribution was snubbed by Charles Berlitz and (discredited?) William Moore in their book, The Roswell Incident of 1980, the book that got the Roswell story back in the public arena.

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But everything by Mr. Friedman about Roswell after his initial interview with Marcel is reactionary, not revolutionary or original, by a long shot.

While some UFO researchers, such as Jacques Vallee, offer imaginative conjecture and hypotheses, Mr. Friedman maintains a defensive, non-original stance on Roswell and UFOs generally.

He has done the same with the MJ-12 documents, which were dealt with or publicized by others (Moore, again and his cohort, Richard Doty, and Canadian Arthur Bray et al.).

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Mr. Friedman has co-opted, as he did with the “UFO Watergate” mantra, the MJ-12 controversy, providing some interesting interpretations and insights while offering nothing that would clinch the truth or falsity of the documents.

Mr. Friedman is the face of “ufology” and has provided UFOs with a patina of respect and sanity.

But as a revolutionary UFO thinker, Mr. Friedman, like most of his fellow ufologists, falls short.

After all, Friedman’s many years at the forefront of the UFO mystery has produced nothing like a “smoking gun” although he has to be given props for a good try.

1 comment:

cda said...

I do wonder.

Before Friedman first spoke to Marcel in early 1978, what were Marcel's views on UFOs? He obviously knew a little about them as he claimed, to a few, to have actually handled portions of a UFO long before. We can assume Friedman showed Marcel his research papers (promoting ETs and the official cover-up) after he first met Marcel. Did these papers convert Marcel into a full ET believer? Did Friedman use the term 'Cosmic Watergate' in these early interviews with Marcel?

Also, remember that Friedman only got a passing mention in the acknowledgement section of the first Roswell book (by Berlitz & Moore), whereas he expected a major acknowledgement at the front. This niggled him. But Berlitz was then a big name and had to appear on the title to sell the book at all, after the "Philadelphia Experiment" the year previous.

I guess we shall never know what really took place in Marcel's early interviews with Friedman, but it would be interesting if we did.