Join Plus+ and get exclusive shows and extensions! Subscribe Today!

Ufological Shades of Gray: Poles, Power Plants and Political Protests

Has Earth been visited by intelligent life from outer space? If so, what is their purpose for coming here… are they studying life on our planet, or are they merely trying to utilize resources that may exist here? Or, thinking about it logically, would any civilization advanced enough to be able to reach Earth even need the kinds of resources our planet can offer?

Normally, when I begin talking about UFO phenomenon, especially when it is somehow related to political activity occurring in the world at large, I am careful about the use of the “A” word. That’s right, I see that all too often when reports of strange, otherwise unidentifiable objects begin to appear around various locales, people’s natural tendency always seems to gravitate toward the obvious “alien” meme that has positioned itself heartily over the majority of ufological circles… when in fact, there is often far less evidence to support this than many would like to admit. Not to say that there’s much more proof to the contrary, necessarily; indeed, the phenomenon has managed to remain remarkably vague for the better part of the last century, despite a few rather remarkable instances where humans have claimed they were abducted by strange beings which, for lack of any better term, could only be described as “aliens.”

But the argument here is not about whether alien life exists or not, or even whether or not aliens have visited Earth. Instead, what I’m getting at is that there are a number of instances where UFO phenomenon might not necessarily constitute alien technology. Then again, there are also a few instances where, thanks to the assertions of certain political and religious groups, we are indeed supposed to believe that aliens are working behind the scenes… but is there any truth to such claims?

Over at the blog for OpenMinds, a recent reprint of an article from the early 1980s details a subject that has remained one of the more curious and revealing as far as subjects pertaining to ufology; this deals with none other than purported UFO sightings over and around nuclear facilities. One electrifying incident occurred in 1950, when a group of Atomic Energy Agency officials observed a pair of silvery objects hovering over the nuclear facility at Oak Ridge, Tennessee. Indeed, researchers like Robert Hastings in his bookUFOs and Nukes have dealt with the problem of UFOs and their interest in our atomic aspirations; speaking with Hastings on the subject, as well as renowned ufologist Stanton Friedman, the general consensus among many researchers is that this interest is indeed of an extraterrestrial variety, and stems from the sudden appearance of atomic weaponry during World War II. In other words, this sort of interpretation of UFO phenomena holds that our use of devastating weaponry of an all new variety in such a way acted as a sort of beacon, through which humanity called attention to itself. With any luck, the entities behind the UFO enigma are actually serving as “guardians” of a sort, eager to monitor our activities and prevent us from harming ourselves.

In my opinion, this line of thought can be a bit dangerous for a number of reasons. For one, we simply don’t know whether UFO phenomenon really constitutes alien beings, and furthermore, if they were extraterrestrial in nature, we can in no way be certain that the beings these craft represent have humanity’s best interests in mind. On the other hand, if we’re looking at some form of terrestrial technology, their interest in nuclear sites is quite obvious: this presence is interested in monitoring the richest and most plentiful power (and weapons) sources on Earth.

This sort of thinking is somewhat in line with the classic “Nazi UFO” interpretation of UFO phenomenon, in that it not only supposes that Nazis were developing saucer-type aircraft toward the end of the Second World War, but also for the obvious use in military operations. Thus, urban legends about underground bases at the South Pole and other such fables have emerged over the years; in the minds of at least a handful of researchers, it seems plausible that not only did Hitler escape death himself, but that much of the modern UFO enigma has to do with research the Nazis were perfecting as far back as the late 1940s.

There are a few obvious problems with this logic too, however. If anything, while knowledge of certain very advanced technologies did exist in Nazi Germany, resources toward the end of the War were not as plentiful as the technical and intellectual property they had amassed. In other words, while the Nazis may very well have been aware of certain new kinds of “exotic” technology, it seems unlikely that they would have been capable of utilizing it with the limited resources they had prior to the fall of the Reich. They did indeed have the kind of technology that an underground base might have required, however; researcher Joseph P. Farrell has outlined a variety of less often discussed information about Nazi underground facilities; but is it likely such facilities might have been built at the South Pole? In my opinion, much of the perceived threat associated with the polar regions, at least as it pertains to there being any kind of Nazi presence in that locale, stems from misreading of statements by the likes of Rear Admiral Richard E. Byrd during exploration of the South Pole such as Operation Highjump, which I discussed in my article The Odd Exploits of Admiral Byrd: “Bitter Reality” At Earth’s End? over at The Gralien Report. Regardless, while there are bits of truth one will find as they dig into this mystery bit by bit, as is often the case, a handful of sparing facts end up getting twisted and overblown, and the myth we’re left with is about as incredible as any supposed extraterrestrial visitation going on.

And then there’s the Raellian movement, a religious group who have made the news recently after their involvement with protests organized by that have been occurring nationwide. Arguably, these controversial events have been overtly politicized in a number of locales, in which case the connection between these events and the Raellian movement is often (but not always!) overlooked. Here, we do indeed see what many profess to be an extraterrestrial presence: and apparently the alien visitors aren’t fans of women wearing bras.

There are, of course, slightly more clandestine (and interesting) examples of supposed alien connections to not just UFOs and strange phenomenon in general, but also to mystery cults and religions. And yet, when we look at the UFO-alien mythos on the whole, a majority of what constitutes “serious” research may, in truth, more closely resemble a sort of religion itself. Put in plain terms, there are a lot of belief systems that begin to emerge when one studies the UFO enigma, and while many are indeed justifiable in terms of their appearance and the possibilities they present, this alone cannot substantiate the extraterrestrial “meme” necessarily, either. Perhaps a better approach would be not to come to any conclusions at all, and withhold any unfounded judgement in the absence of conclusive evidence.

Then again, our political systems have done a pretty good job with hard-wiring most of us (in the West, at least) in terms of seeing things as being either “black” or “white.” Maybe, as this instance seems to call into account, there are also times where it is indeed alright to find those shades of gray between the polar extremities of human thought.



Micah Hanks is a writer, podcaster, and researcher whose interests cover a variety of subjects. His areas of focus include history, science, philosophy, current events, cultural studies, technology, unexplained phenomena, and ways the future of humankind may be influenced by science and innovation in the coming decades. In addition to writing, Micah hosts the Middle Theory and Gralien Report podcasts.
You can follow Micah on and