Page 12 - The 'X' Chronicles Newspaper - August 2019
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12            The Real Story Behind the Myth of Area 51

          The Real Story Behind the                      How To Explore Area 51                          who asked for the CIA’s U-2 history in 2005.
                                                                                                                A newly revised document restoring
                   Myth of Area 51                       Fact or fiction, aliens are a big tourism draw. In  numerous references to Area 51 that had been

                                                         1996, the state of Nevada renamed Route 375 as  redacted in earlier versions was furnished by the
                                                         the "Extraterrestrial Highway," and destinations  CIA a few weeks ago, he said.
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                                                         such as the Alien Research Center and the Little  “It’s the first time that there must have been a
                                                         A'Le'Inn (in the town of Rachel with a          senior-level decision to acknowledge the term
                                                         population around 54) dot the road.             ‘Area 51’ and its specific location,” he told
            "This is Earth technology. You got                   To  Area 51's west, there's the  Alien  Reuters on Friday.
             folks claiming it's extraterrestrial        Cathouse which is advertised as the only alien-        Chapter 2 of the CIA history recounts
            when it's really good old American           themed brothel in the world. Geocaching also    how Richard Bissell, the CIA officer then
                                                         attracts visitors here since the highway is     overseeing development of the U-2 plane by
                                                         considered a "mega-trial" with over 2,000       Lockheed, first spotted the site on an aerial
                                                         geocaches hidden in the area.                   scouting mission over Nevada in  April 1955,
          "They flew them [over Area 51]..and pitted our
                                                                 Then there's the actual base.  While    accompanied by an Air Force officer and two
          own fighters against them to develop tactics,"
                                                         getting inside is not in the cards for most,    others.
          says Merlin, "They learned that you can't out-
                                                         curious civilians can actually drive up to front       The four men landed their plane near an
          turn it, but you can outrun it. And it's still going
                                                         and back gates. Locals will direct you, and the  old, abandoned air strip at the edge of a salt flat
          on today.... Now, instead of seeing MiG-17s and
                                                         website Dreamland Resort is a great resource    known as Groom Lake near the northeastern
          21s, there's MiG-29s and SU-27s."
                                                         full of maps, driving directions, and first-hand  corner of the Nevada  Test Site, the nuclear
                 The flights are ongoing. In September
                                                         accounts.                                       proving ground then controlled by the Atomic
          2017, an Air Force Lt. Col. was killed under
                                                                 However, one should be careful when     Energy Commission.
          mysterious circumstances when his plane
                                                         planning a trek to Area 51. It's the desert, after
          crashed in Nevada and the Pentagon would not
                                                         all, so bring plenty of water, snacks, and have  IDEAL TEST SITE
          immediately ID the aircraft. It seems he was
                                                         proper weather gear—for the hot days and the           The group agreed that Groom Lake
          most likely flying a foreign jet obtained by the
                                                         cold nights. Phone service and GPS probably     would “make an ideal site for testing the U-2
          United States.
                                                         won't work, so have printouts and actual maps.  and training its pilots.” Bissell subsequently
                 Even so, the alien conspiracies gained
                                                         Gas stations are few and far in between, so carry  asked the Atomic Energy Commission to add the
          ground in 1989 when Bob Lazar claimed in an
                                                         spare fuel and tires.                           area to its Nevada real estate holdings, the
          interview on Las Vegas local news that he'd seen
                                                                 Also, remember the government doesn't   account says.
          aliens and had helped to reverse-engineer alien
                                                         really want you peering into  Area 51. Both            “AEC Chairman Admiral Lewis Strauss
          spacecrafts while working at the base. Many
                                                         Merlin and Pocock confirmed that they have      readily agreed, and President Eisenhower also
          have disregarded this as fiction and are even
                                                         been closely observed or even intimidated by    approved the addition of this strip of wasteland,
          offended at the notion, including Merlin, who
                                                         guards and security (including an F-16 fly-by).  known by its map designation as Area 51, to the
          has spent years talking with former  Area 51
                                                         Do not trespass under any circumstances or      Nevada Test Site,” the document says.
          engineers and employees angered by all the fuss
                                                         arrests and heavy fines await you. []                  To make the barren new facility seem
          about E.T.                                                                                     more appealing to its workers, managers of the
                 "Some are even mad because they                                                         U-2 program dubbed the facility “Paradise
          worked on these things and built these amazing CIA          acknowledges                 its
                                                                                                         Ranch,” which was later shortened to “the
          planes," Merlin says. "This is Earth technology.  mysterious Area 51 test site                 Ranch.”Photos of the site and a newly
          You got folks claiming it's extraterrestrial when                                              declassified map outlining and labeling the
          it's really good old American know-how."       for first time                                  location were also included in the document.
                                                                                                                Richelson said he could recall at least
          The Truth Is Out There
                                                         (Reuters) - August  16, 2013 - National security  two previous government documents in which
                                                         scholars at George Washington University have   an incidental reference to Area 51 appeared, but
          Today,  Area 51 is still very much in use.                                                     he assumed those were inadvertent because they
                                                         some good news and bad news for UFO buffs -
          According to Google Earth, new construction                                                    were devoid of any other details or context.
                                                         the U.S. government has finally confirmed the
          and expansions are continuously happening. On                                                         The multiple detailed references to Area
                                                         existence of Area 51 in Nevada, but it makes no
          most early mornings, eagle-eyed visitors can
                                                         mention of little green men or alien spaceships.  51 in the latest CIA account - the document’s
          spot strange lights in the sky moving up and
                                                                 The government acknowledged the         index lists at least 12 mentions - show that they
          down. No, it's not a UFO. It's actually the semi-  existence of the mysterious aviation test site  were deliberate, he said. The intelligence agency
          secret contract commuter airline using the call-  known as Area 51, a remote installation about 80  had little to say about the disclosure.
          sign "Janet" that transports workers from Las                                                         “What readers of the CIA study will find
                                                         miles northwest of Las  Vegas, in a newly
          Vegas's McCarran Airport to the base.                                                          is that CIA tests its U-2 and A-12 reconnaissance
                                                         declassified CIA history of its U-2 spy plane
                 As for what's happening these days in                                                   aircraft at the site in Nevada sometimes referred
          America's most secretive military base, few                                                    to as ‘Area 51,’” CIA spokesman Edward Price
                                                                 After decades of extreme secrecy
          know for sure. Merlin has some educated                                                        said. “What readers won’t find are any
                                                         surrounding the site, stoking conspiracy theories
          guesses, including improved stealth technology,
                                                         about UFOs and experiments on alien             references to aliens or other conspiracy theories
          advanced weapons, electronic warfare systems
                                                         spacecraft, the CIA lifted its veil on Area 51 in  best left to the realm of science fiction.”
          and, in particular, unmanned aerial vehicles.  response to a public records request from              Among the more sensational pieces of
          Chris Pocock, noted U-2 historian and author of  George  Washington University scholars in     UFO conspiracy lore linked to Area 51 is that
          several books about the matter, told Popular                                                   the remains of a flying saucer that supposedly
                                                         Washington, D.C.
          Mechanics he thinks classified aircraft, more                                                  crashed near Roswell, New Mexico, in 1947,
                                                                 Publicly released online on Thursday by
          exotic forms of radio communication, directed                                                  were brought to the site for reverse engineering
                                                         the university’s National Security Archive, the
          energy weapons, and lasers are currently under                                                 experiments that attempted to replicate the
                                                         400-page CIA history contains the first
          development at the base.                                                                       extraterrestrial spacecraft.
                                                         deliberate official references to  Area 51, also
                 While the lore around Area 51 may be
                                                         known as Groom Lake, as a site developed by            Richelson said the CIA document makes
          nothing more than imaginative fiction, that    the intelligence agency in the 1950s to test fly  no mention of any such theories. But he pointed
          won't stop people from gawking just beyond     the high-altitude U-2 reconnaissance plane.     to one passage that discusses the relationship
          those chain link fences. "At the most basic level,     Other top-secret aircraft were tested   between U-2s and unidentified flying objects “in
          anytime you have something secret or                                                           the sense that people sighted U-2s in a time that
                                                         there    later,  including   the   supersonic
          forbidden, it's human nature," says Merlin. "You                                               they were very secretive and at very high
                                                         reconnaissance  A-12 aircraft, code-named
          want to find out what it is."                                                                  altitude and didn’t know what they were, and in
                                                         OXCART, and the F-117 stealth ground-attack
                                                         jet, said archive senior fellow Jeffrey Richelson,  that sense they were UFOs.” []
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