our speaker tonight:
donald e. keyhoe
Donald Keyhoe (left) with Charles Lindbergh (center) and party during Lindbergh's 1927 national tour. The tour commemorated Lindbergh's historic trans-Atlantic solo airplane flight aboard The Spirit of St. Louis.
DONALD EDWARD KEYHOE -- like many born at the end of the 19th century -- would over the course of his life witness an astonishing progression of technological achievement.
In 1897 -- the year of Keyhoe's birth at Ottumwa, Iowa -- electrical power generation was still in its infant stages, and gaslight was the predominant method of illumination for homes and businesses. Likewise, motorized vehicles were both a rarity and a rich-man's novelty. And it would be six more years before the first powered flight by Orville and Wilbur Wright would briefly ascend at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.
But exactly what influences and inspirations Keyhoe drew upon during that time of radical change is unknown. For although he would become a prolific writer, Keyhoe said little publicly about his own life -- leaving his biography up to 1950 as little more than a series of briefly-described stepping stones.
In 1920 he graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis, Maryland with a commission as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Marine Corps. In his time in the service he became a naval aviator. An injured arm from a plane crash in 1922 would have him leaving the Corps in 1923 and entering government service.
First serving as editor of Coast and Geodetic Survey publications (which required extensive technical knowledge), Keyhoe became Chief of Information for the Aeronautics Branch of the U.S. Department of Commerce (predecessor to the Federal Aviation Administration). In 1926 Keyhoe managed the national tour of Floyd Bennett, who had piloted Admiral Richard Byrd on his attempt to reach the North Pole. Then, in 1927, Keyhoe performed the same duty for the national tour of Charles Lindbergh after his history-making solo trans-Atlantic flight.
Sometime afterward, Keyhoe left government service to become a writer of aviation adventure stories for the pulp press, as well as non-fiction aviation pieces for major national magazines -- one of which was True. It was from this connection that in 1949 Keyhoe would chance upon a story which would propel him into the national spotlight and set the course for the last half of his life. It started with a telegram from Ken Purdy, the editor of True...
NEW YORK, N.Y., MAY 9, 1949
HAVE BEEN INVESTIGATING FLYING SAUCER MYSTERY. FIRST TIP HINTED GIGANTIC HOAX TO COVER UP OFFICIAL SECRET. BELIEVE IT MAY HAVE BEEN PLANTED TO HIDE REAL ANSWER. LOOKS LIKE TERRIFIC STORY. CAN YOU TAKE OVER WASHINGTON END?
KEN W. PURDY, EDITOR, TRUE MAGAZINE
Like many, Keyhoe was only vaguely aware of the ins-and-outs of the phenomenon and was personally skeptical. Thinking it to be "a strange assignment", he nonetheless maintained an open mind as his research began to chip away at his skeptical leanings...
Going over the cases, I realized that Purdy and his staff had dug up at least fifty reports that had not appeared in the papers. (A few of these proved incorrect, but a check with the Air Force case reports released on December 30, 1949, showed that True's files contained all the important items.) These cases included sightings at eleven Air Force bases and fourteen American airports, reports from ships at sea, and a score of encounters by airline and private pilots.
Eventually the heft and quality of the witnesses and the detailed reports themselves led Keyhoe to a startling conclusion. His article in the January, 1950, edition of True -- provocatively titled "The Flying Saucers Are Real" -- opened with the stunning statement...
For the past 175 years, the planet Earth has been under systematic close-range examination by living, intelligent observers from another planet.
Captain Ed Ruppelt, head of the Air Force investigation known as Project Blue Book, would later write...
The article opened with a hard punch. In the first paragraph Keyhoe concluded that after eight months of extensive research he had found evidence that the earth was being closely scrutinized by intelligent beings. Their vehicles were the so-called flying saucers. Then he proceeded to prove his point. His argument was built around the three classics: the Mantell, the Chiles-Whitted, and the Gorman incidents. He took each sighting, detailed the "facts," ripped the official Air Force conclusions to shreds, and presented his own analysis. He threw in a varied assortment of technical facts that gave the article a distinct, authoritative flavor. This, combined with the fact that True had the name for printing the truth, hit the reading public like an 8-inch howitzer. Hours after it appeared in subscribers' mailboxes and on the newsstands, radio and TV commentators and newspapers were giving it a big play. UFO's were back in business, to stay. True was in business too. It is rumored among magazine publishers that Don Keyhoe's article in True was one of the most widely read and widely discussed magazine articles in history.
From that beginning, Keyhoe would go on to become not only the pre-eminent civilian authority on the phenomenon but the public face of legitimate and serious civilian inquiry. His reign as such would last just 15 or so years, but during that time Keyhoe would gain unprecedented access to Air Force files and draw on numerous connections he had established in government and industry to author several well-received books on the subject, pen comprehensive magazine articles, become head of the largest civilian organization on the subject (NICAP, the National Investigations Committee on Aerial Phenomenon), and voice his thoughts in an uncounted number of newspaper, radio and television interviews.
One of those television interviews -- a January, 1958 broadcast of the Armstrong Circle Theater entitled "UFO: Enigma of the Skies" -- ended in controversy, as reported in the January 23, 1958, edition of the Los Angeles Times...
Flying Saucer Comment Cut Off TV Show
The sound portion of a Circle Theater television program was cut off last night when Donald Keyhoe appeared to imply that material now before a Congressional committee would prove the presence of flying saucers.
Keyhoe, a former Marine Corps major who has written that he believes some flying saucer reports have a basis in fact, was making the following statement when the sound faded:
"We are meeting in secret with a Congressional committee. If these meetings were public it would be proved..."
A CBS network spokesman in New York said the sound was cut because Keyhoe had started to digress from the teleprompter and "nobody knew what he was going to say." The program originated in New York.
Later CBS issued a statement signed by Keyhoe saying the incident was "due to a misunderstanding on my part about the rules for approval of script changes."
"I wish to make plain that this not an attempt at censorship by Circle Theater or CBS," the statement read.
Two months later, in March 1958, Keyhoe would make another television appearance on ABC's Mike Wallace Interview. And although Keyhoe made many speeches on the subject, the vagaries of recording technologies and transcriptions, as well as the extent to which such speeches would be archived, resulted in the fact that it would be this interview which would remain the fullest record of Keyhoe's spoken thoughts on the subject.
And so, without further ado, ladies and gentlemen, our speaker tonight -- Major Donald E. Keyhoe...
WALLACE: Good evening. Tonight we go after a fantastic story, the story that flying saucers from other worlds are visiting our planet, just as we are exploring outer space with our own rocket satellites. Our guest is former Marine Air Corps Major Donald Keyhoe, who has the support of scores of prominent businessmen, military men, and some scientists in his campaign to prove that flying saucers exist.
If you're curious to know why Major Keyhoe charges that the Unites States Air Force is deliberately deluding us when it calls saucer stories the bunk, if you want to hear his own evidence that the saucers are real, and his reaction to the claim of two Americans who say they've spoken with men from Venus, we'll go after those stories in just a moment.
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WALLACE: And now to our story. Major Donald Keyhoe is the director of the National Investigations Committee on Aerial Phenomena. As head of this private group, interested in flying saucers, he's repeatedly attacked the United States Air Force, and others, for claiming that flying saucers are apparently flights of fancy and not flights by Martians or men from the moon. Independent surveys show that millions of Americans do share his belief in these celestial saucers.
WALLACE: Major Keyhoe, first of all, let me ask you this; most people in the United States, in spite of the fact that I say that millions do believe, I think you will agree that most people in the United States don't believe in flying saucers from outer space. They probably hold the view of columnist Bob Considine, who wrote that flying saucers are products of, for the most part, quote, pranksters, half-wits, cranks, publicity hounds, fanatics in general and screwballs, end quote. How do you feel about Mr. Considine's charge?
KEYHOE: Well, I know where he got the story. He got it from Colonel Watson out at the Air Technical Intelligence Center in Dayton. In fact, the colonel went even a little farther and he said behind every sighting was an idiot, a crackpot or a religious fanatic. That included a lot of high-ranking Air Force pilots, incidentally, and many airline captains, people who are qualified to see these things. But, he's just following on an Air Force policy.
WALLACE: Well now, you're not suggesting that Bob Considine is in the pay of the Air Force. He's an...
KEYHOE: No, I mean the colonel.
WALLACE: ... independent newsman with a considerable reputation.
KEYHOE: I mean the colonel. No, I have every respect for Bob Considine.
WALLACE: In spite of the fact that he suggests that pranksters, half-wits and screwballs are responsible for the stories about flying saucers.
KEYHOE: Well, I wish I could show him, at any time, a list of about 800 witnesses, some of the big names in aviation, including up to the rank of colonel in the Air Force. They're still flying, and they're still carrying passengers. They've never been grounded. They're still guiding airliners in -- the radar men are -- night after night in bad weather. If they're screwballs and incompetents, why are they still on the job?
WALLACE: Major Keyhoe, where do you think flying saucers are coming from?
KEYHOE: I don't know. The... there is an indication that they could be using Mars as a base. I don't mean they originate there, but every time Mars has approached us, in the last ten years, there's been a noticeable increase in, in saucer sightings. And that's been mentioned officially. In fact, the Canadian official project, on the basis of that, set up an observation station in Canada.
WALLACE: You say the Canadian official project, what do you mean by the official...?
KEYHOE: There was an official project called "Project Magnet," and they set up an observatory at Shirley Bay to try to track these things. And...
WALLACE: What happened to the official project? You say there was a project.
KEYHOE: Yes. They ran for about a year and they had one sighting on the gravimeter, which indicated that something, a very large object, had flow over there, but they finally decided that they were spending a little bit much money on it, I suppose.
WALLACE: [Inaudible] certain they wouldn't have thought that they were spending too much money on it, if they believed that that kind of phenomena existed.
KEYHOE: A lot of people on the project are still working up there on their own time. And certain government officials have still kept the lid on the reports in Canada, just as they do down here.
WALLACE: What is your theory? In other words, you suggested that they come from Mars or from other planets, from other solar systems, possibly, throughout the universe. Is that correct?
KEYHOE: Yes, and there are a lot of scientists who've said the same thing.
WALLACE: What is your theory as to the kind of people who fly these, or the kind of beings who fly these saucers?
KEYHOE: Well, that's speculation. Willy Ley said recently they'd be just like the man next door, the invaders from space. And his reasons may be good. But most of the top scientists have said that the odds are that beings from other worlds would not be like us; some of them would be. Dr. Harlow Shapley, for instance, said that there probably were at least a hundred million inhabited planets in the universe. And, Menzel, who doesn't believe in saucers, at all, says, that he goes that high or even higher. And among those, by -- there must be by the law of averages -- a certain number of planets that could be like the earth. And if evolution started the same time, why, you might have the same type of being.
WALLACE: What do you think of the intentions of these people -- for lack of a better name -- of these people who are in these flying saucers?
KEYHOE: Well, there's been no evidence of any hostility during the last 10 years -- what we call the modern phase, there've been sightings before then. There have been some accidents -- air force pilots chasing these things. Captain Mantell was killed chasing one in '48. And two pilots disappeared chasing one in '53 over Lake Superior. But I think those were just accidents.
WALLACE: Just accidents. Why don't they try to communicate with us? What's your theory about that?
KEYHOE: Well, I'll follow some of the theories the Air Force people have said, suggested... they suggested to me back in '52 and '53, at which time we were cooperating... I had a lot of very good friends in the Air Force at that time. The policy was to give out the information. They were about to tell the people everything they had. And the theory was then that perhaps these beings were so much different from us that communication would be a very hard thing. They might not, for instance, have speech sounds like ours. That's one answer. Another thing, they might not be able to exist in our atmosphere. We're going to land on the moon, we'll have to wear space suits, or else build air-conditioned buildings up there -- air pressured. And there could be lots of factors like that.
WALLACE: Well, do you think they're down here, when we do see them, to look at us?
KEYHOE: I think that it's probably a long-range survey.
WALLACE: A long-range survey?
KEYHOE: That's right.
WALLACE: And yet, no attempt, as far as we know in any case, of communication with us.
KEYHOE: There have been claims of communication, but those, most of those, have been by individuals. The Air Force has not admitted that there's ever been one. And, I don't know... our committee hasn't found any cases that we would accept as absolutely verified.
WALLACE: All right. Now, let's go at it from another point of view, if I may, the Air Force point of view. They agree, undoubtedly, objects have been seen in the sky. But the Air Force has said time and time again -- this is a quote from Richard Horner, assistant secretary of the Air Force for research and development -- all, but a small percentage of these reports , of unidentified flying objects, have been definitely attributed to natural phenomenon that are neither mysterious nor dire. End quote. Weather balloons. Mirages. Ordinary sky phenomena like meteors or airplanes themselves. What about that?
KEYHOE: I'll answer that, but I'd like to make several points in doing it. In 1947, the Air Technical Intelligence Center at Dayton -- the top Air Force intelligence men and scientists under contract -- sent a secret document to the Commanding General of the Air Force, saying that whatever these things were, they were real. In 1948, ATIC, the same group, sent a top-secret estimate to the Commanding General, Hoyt Vandenberg, said these were interplanetary spaceships.
In 1952, there was an intelligence analysis of the maneuvers of these things, as seen by radar, triangulation, radar photographs. And in '53, the Central Intelligence Agency and the Air Force had a special panel of scientists meet at the Pentagon, to tell them what to do. And after they got through, this group said, you don't have proof that these things exist, not scientific proof. But you have a very strong circumstantial case. We suggest you quadruple the investigations, set up special observation posts, and in the meantime release everything you got the American people. Now, you've got four documents there they've been sitting on all this time. Now, that... and they have been spending a lot of money investigating flying saucers. If they don't exist, why the money? Why did the intelligence teams rush out every time there's a sighting?
WALLACE: Now then, you have mentioned four documents that you claim exist. We've heard, in the past, that you have claimed that these documents existed. We've seen your literature in which you talk about the existence of those documents. So, we spoke with the Air Technical Intelligence Center at the Pentagon earlier with this week, and this is what we're told officially by them, "Three of the four documents Major Keyhoe refers to, simply do not exist. The fourth document does exist. You can have a copy of it, Mr. Wallace, and you can see that it doesn't say what Major Keyhoe claims it says." We have a copy of it and I quote to you from the copy.
The Air Force document says just this, "The panel recommends that the national security agencies take immediate steps to strip the UFOs of the special status they have been given and the aura of mystery they have unfortunately acquired. We suggest an integrated program designed to reassure the public of the total lack of evidence of inimical forces behind the phenomena." And again, as I point out, secretary Horner says it's simply ain't so. Now, why? The point, the point really at issue here, it would seem, Major Keyhoe, is this -- why do you believe that the Air Force says that nothing is going on? Why do you believe that the... it's a fairly serious charge that you make.
KEYHOE: I know it is.
WALLACE: You make the charge that the United States government is withholding from the people of the United States certain very important information. Why? What would their motive be for withholding that kind of information from us?
KEYHOE: Well, I'll answer that, but I would also like to show you some proof that they are withholding. The reason that was given to me, when they were working with me back in '52 and '53, was first that they were afraid of hysteria. Remember the Orson Welles show back, way years back, when he scared people into the hills with a...
WALLACE: I do.
KEYHOE: ...idea of invading Martians. Then, they were also afraid that it would upset organized religion. That was a smaller factor, but there was some fear of it. Later, they were afraid that these accidents when the interceptors had chased these things and had been lost or had crashed, might be considered a proof of hostility.
Now, I would never have put my name on anything if it were a matter of personal opinion. I've talked to, and read the reports of, hundreds of pilots and radar men and guided missile trackers, who've seen these things. And some of them are very more important names. Now the Air Force says they have [Inaudible] this down to 1.9 percent. But you'll notice the word "current" in there, they mean we are currently explaining.
Now, I have in my possession a copy of Special Report Fourteen, which is their bible on this. In the back, it has a table showing that thirty-two hundred and one cases they examined, nineteen and a half percent were unsolved. And they admit they still are unsolved. You add up what they've had since then; it makes over twelve percent of the reports and those are mostly from the best possible sources.
WALLACE: Well now wait just a second. I'll use your figures. The Department of Defense released an official bulletin on November 5, 1957, saying that from June of '55 to June of '57, a two-year period, just a fraction over two percent of all investigated unidentified flying objects had to be listed as unknown. Two percent, so that's your one point nine...
KEYHOE: What's the period, again?
WALLACE: Fifty-five to '57. The rest were determined to have been balloons, airplanes, hoaxes, and a category, about 12 percent, called insufficient information, which means that the report was so flimsy that there was simply nothing to check on. I must confess that they have... they've certainly shown me no classified material, but they have opened their files quite willingly to us in our preparation for this program tonight, and they've given us very convincing evidence, Major Keyhoe, that it is largely -- I shouldn't say largely, I'll say ninety-nine and forty-four, one-hundredths percent -- a hoax. Now, you mentioned...
KEYHOE: A hoax?
WALLACE: Well, let... [CROSSTALK]
KEYHOE: [CROSSTALK] ...calling a lot of good pilots hoaxsters.
WALLACE: No, no, no, not hoaxes. I thank you for correcting me, not just a hoax. But, let's say, misinformation or sightings of objects which seem to be one thing but are, in fact, another. I'm glad that you corrected me about hoax, because it is, by no means, that much a hoax. But, you mentioned a Dr. Donald Menzel, who's a professor of Astrophysics at Harvard, before. Now, I think you will agree that he's one of the world's most distinguished astrophysicists. Is that not so?
KEYHOE: I think there are others who are equally capable, but...
WALLACE: But he's...
KEYHOE: ...do not agree with him.
WALLACE: He is one of, he is one of the world's most distinguished astrophysicists, though. I think we can agree on that. In any case, he stresses, you see, that pilots are not expert observers. That they, as well, as others, can see flying saucers when it's only, to quote him, the wrapper off somebody's lunch around in the air, end quote. But, again, let's come back to the point, the most important point, Major Keyhoe, and that is, why, why will the Air Force, why will the United States government withhold information from United States citizens? For what reason?
KEYHOE: Because they're treating them like children. The way they did with the H-Bomb at first, and the way they were doing with, they've been doing with other things. Now, I'm not attacking the United States Air Force. I'm attacking a small group in there that has been persistently keeping this from the public, just as they've kept other things. For a long time you couldn't even mention the idea that we could be hit by missiles from submarines from the gulf and from both coasts very easily. I knew that years and years ago and tried to get it out, but at the time was discouraged about it.
Now I... you mentioned these... that this denial of these documents. Now, I'd like to tell you something that happened on the Armstrong Circle Theatre. I had requested that those points be in the script and I was discouraged from it, at first, by their writer. Then later, some of our board of governors insisted that we had those points included.
So I said either, I don't go on or we have those in there They said all right. So the script was completely rewritten. Now those were in the script as it was first rehearsed. But when the second rehearsal came along, and the Air Force saw the mimeograph sheet, the Air Force representatives, according to the Armstrong writer said they would immediately deny on the air, even though it meant denouncing their own former project chief.
Now, the source for this is Captain Edward Ruppelt, who was the head of Project Blue Book for two years. And at that time he was considered good enough that he briefed President Truman on these things. He was the top man. Rank didn't mean anything, it was the experience that counted. All right, he says these things existed. He put it in a book which was cleared by security and review in the Air Force.
On December 5, 1955, that was cleared. It's in his book. He's never been hauled in and court-martialed. Now, I have here, and if you'll allow your camera to come in on it; this is a sheet from the script of the Armstrong Theater, which was deleted. This was crossed off, and I was told that I couldn't say it on the air. Now that was censorship by intimidation. This can be matched up with the other sheets from the Armstrong Circle script and any typewriter expert will show you... [CROSSTALK]
WALLACE: [CROSSTALK] Well I'm certain that, I'm certain that...
KEYHOE: [CROSSTALK} ...they ordered it taken out.
WALLACE: I'm certain that people believe you. The only thing is that, the next morning, I distinctly remember reading a report by you, Major Keyhoe, to the effect that no censorship, no pressure of any kind had been put upon you.
KEYHOE: I'm sorry, Mr. Wallace, that... I know that statement almost by heart. I said that CBS and the Armstrong people were not to blame for cutting me off the air when I tried to mention the fact that a Senate Committee was working on the secrecy angle. I never mentioned this that night to anyone because I had promised that I wouldn't say anything about it on the air that [INAUDIBLE] the Armstrong people. It was taken out and I will do this -- I will ask the United States Air Force to have the Marine Corps put me on active duty for a court-martial if that is not the case.
WALLACE: Major Keyhoe, I understand you have three new reports on file which in your opinion -- you have them currently on file, and they're new reports -- and these, in your opinion, would convince every person in this country that flying saucers are a fact. Is that correct?
KEYHOE: It should convince a lot of people because of the, the names involved.
WALLACE: Tell us about it.
KEYHOE: I told your interviewer in Washington that I couldn't mention the names because they were too high. One of them is a top scientist in this country, whose name would be known to everybody.
WALLACE: But, why wouldn't he want his...?
KEYHOE: Because he's afraid of the official ridicule.
WALLACE: He's afraid of official ridicule?
KEYHOE: That's right.
WALLACE: More afraid of official ridicule than of possibly alerting the country to a serious national danger?
KEYHOE: You’d be surprised how many people give us reports and they say, "Please keep my name confidential." I'll give you one report which came to us, the name has to be left out. In 1951 a UFO circled the fleet in Korean waters. It circled at a high-speed and they launched several planes to try to get a close in on it. They got a radar lock on it, that is the radar was guiding the planes toward the object. This was picked up by radars on fourteen naval vessels. This object circled about... oh, for a half an hour or more and then it took off at a speed way over -- in excess of a thousand miles an hour.
This report was certified and nine members of our board of governors saw it, signed it, and agreed that they had seen it, and agreed to the contents. There is another report that just came in from four top missiles designers -- engineers at one of the big plants in this country. They saw an elliptically-shaped object and two small round disk-shaped objects flying with it, over California, November 11, 1957, at a speed of at least five thousand miles an hour. These men are well-qualified, hey know what they see, with broad daylight, not a cloud in the sky. There've been cases, even where the Air Force has shot at these things. Now, if there's nothing there and they don't exist, why do they shoot at them?
You mentioned Mr. Horner. The day after Mr. Horner said that the Air Force was not concealing anything, Captain Gregory Oldenburg, a public information officer at Langley Field, refused to let an ad be inserted in the Langley Base Flier... their newspaper, which asked that anybody interested in UFOs, please communicate and form a little group. He said, "I must refuse to do this, because the dissemination of information on UFOs is contrary to Air Force policy and Air Force regulation 200-dash-two." And I have a copy of it here, in case you want to see it.
WALLACE: Well, Major Keyhoe, I must say that the Air Force tells us they don't question your motives, but they do question the accuracy of a good deal of your information and for that reason they say you have been, and were they to -- in a sense -- throw open an invitation to all the people who sight UFOs, to get in touch with them, once again, they'd get all kinds of cranks, hoaxsters and so forth. And, you see, they run down every one of these sightings and it has cost them a tremendous amount of money, to no avail over the past few years.
KEYHOE: That's what they told you.
WALLACE: That is what they told me. Now, sir, in a moment I'd like to ask you this: in the past few years millions of flying saucers enthusiasts have become excited about the stories of two men, George Adamski and Howard Menger. Both of them claim to have seen flying saucers. Menger claims to have been given a ride in one, by some creatures from Venus. Adamski says he's chatted with a man from Venus in the California desert. I'd like to get your reaction to those stories. And we'll get Major Keyhoe's reaction in just sixty seconds.
[COMMERCIAL FOR PARLIAMENT CIGARETTES]
WALLACE (to camera): Why don't you try Parliament yourself?
All right, Major, about George Adamski and Howard Menger, both men claim to have talked with men from Venus. Menger claims that he's even taken a ride on a flying saucer. Do you believe them?
WALLACE: You think they are hoaxsters?
KEYHOE: We do not accept any reports of these so-called contactees without more evidence. We've asked them to submit their claims and take lie detector tests. We don't throw them out, we simply say we'll give you a fair chance. I think that's the least important part of the picture. The most important part is the weight of evidence from hundreds of competent people. I'd like to name a few -- Captain Richard Case, American Airlines; Captain C.S. Charles, Eastern Airlines; Captain T. Kravitz, TWA; Robert Dickens, TWA; Colonel Don J. Blakeslee, US Air Force, a wing commander. I could get down a list of, people who know what they're doing and they're still on duty, they're still flying.
WALLACE: Major Keyhoe, what would you like to see done about flying saucers that is not currently being done? What steps would you like to see taken?
KEYHOE: I think the American people should write to their congressman and insist that open hearings be held by the Senate Committee on permanent... on the Permanent Committee on Government Operations, which has been looking into this for six months.
WALLACE: An Air Force spokesman told us this last week, he said, "Members of the Senate Subcommittee have talked with us already and they have shown no interest in conducting any hearings on this issue."
KEYHOE: I talked with the chief investigator within the last two weeks. I gave him a lot of information and I gave him data on one case, where an airliner was sent to chase one of these things and the, and the passengers kept in ignorance of it at that time. That involves two government agencies, besides the Air Force, which has refused to release the report. And I'll say this: if you were to get -- if the, if the Committee were to get Ruppelt, Major Fournet, several colonels that were on that time, Major General Garland, who was on the project, there would be a big revelation because the Air Force is simply treating the American people like children. They don't trust them with the facts.
WALLACE: You know here is an interesting, I think, an interesting question, Major. The United States and Russia started sending satellites into the sky and we may be hitting the moon with a rocket soon, possibly Mars. You believe that creatures from outer space have space stations on Mars. What's going to happen when we start firing rockets at the moon or at Mars?
KEYHOE: That question has already been brought up. We expect to have a base on the moon within the next five years. It's possible that there is a base on there. I don't say that there's any proof of it. I...
WALLACE: Is it possible we're going to start an interplanetary war when we start sending our rockets to the moon and to Mars?
KEYHOE: In 1955, General Douglas McArthur said the next war would be an interplanetary war and we'd have to unite against people from other planets.
WALLACE: One last question, Major Keyhoe. Have you ever seen a flying saucer?
KEYHOE: I've seen them tracked on and radar, but I take the word of about 800 of the best witnesses in this country and abroad.
WALLACE: But you yourself, have never seen a flying saucer?
KEYHOE: I've just been a reporter, and a careful one.
WALLACE: Thank you very much, Major Donald Keyhoe. As you've just heard, the flying saucer controversy is deadlocked in contradictory statements and interpretation of facts. As for Major Donald Keyhoe himself, like most of us, he's never seen a flying saucer, which may just make him like a mystic who's never seen a ghost. But one must give him credit, he has much faith. In a moment, I'll bring you a rundown on next week's guest, one of the giants of the entertainment business.
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Next week, we go after the story of a giant in show business. You see him behind me now. He's Oscar Hammerstein II, who's collaborated on some forty musicals including the Rodgers and Hammerstein classics "Oklahoma!", "Carousel", "The King and I", and "South Pacific", the last of which is soon to be released as a Hollywood film.
If you're curious to hear Oscar Hammerstein talk about the changing face of show business, about the suggestion that his books and lyrics are naive and stickily sentimental. And if you want to hear Oscar Hammerstein discuss the controversial social and political beliefs that shape his day's work, we'll go after those stories next week. Till then, for Parliament, Mike Wallace, reminding you to help keep the Red Cross on the job for us. Give generously. Good night.
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THE INTERVIEW had come at the mid-point of Keyhoe's prominence. Already fighting the public perception of the 'contactees' as representative of all 'believers', Keyhoe also faced an increasingly-hostile Air Force counter-campaign, a growing lethargy of the press in providing serious coverage, and the organizational pressures of running the largest civilian UFO organization. The cap to his time in the spotlight would come in the 1960s, with the emergence of new players such as Dr. James E. McDonald and Phillip Klaas onto the public scene, and a cacophony of voices covering the spectrum of belief across the swelling ranks of the media.
But none of them would match the ultimate legacy left behind by Keyhoe, who nearly single-handedly blazed the way for serious research into the subject, earning for himself and the subject hard-earned legitimacy and respect... and endowing it to those who followed in his path.
1. The full video of the interview -- including commercials -- is available at the Harry Ransom Center.
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