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Just a couple of nights ago – while I was promoting my latest book, The Black Diary – I was asked by a caller to the radio show why I “insist” on stating that the Men in Black are supernatural in nature, rather than “accepting” that they are the secret agents of a clandestine agency within government. The answer to that question is very simple: it’s the witness testimony which makes me come to the supernatural conclusion. I have always said that the most important people in the collective field of Forteana are not the writers, the researchers, the radio-hosts, or the TV producers. It’s the witnesses who are the most important. Time and time again I am approached by people who have been terrorized by the MIB. On only a small number of occasions do the witnesses describe the MIB as looking human. For the most part, they look anything but human.

I know all too well why so many people assume that the MIB are agents of governments, of military agencies, and / or of clandestine projects buried deep within the world of officialdom. It largely comes from the Men in Black movies, starring Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones. Yes, the trilogy makes for fun viewing. But, by presenting the MIB as the agents of a classified organization, the makers of the movies instilled in the minds of many the image of the Men in Black being “secret agents.” But, the Hollywood portrayal is actually very different to what the witnesses tell us – and that’s a very important issue to be aware of.

It’s worth noting that the man who largely began the whole MIB phenomenon in the early 1950s – Albert Bender, of Bridgeport, Connecticut – was confronted not by agents of the FBI, CIA, etc., but by grim-faced, shadow-like characters with shining eyes and who left behind them an odor of brimstone when they quite literally vanished. Bender’s strange story – which comes across like something akin to H.P. Lovecraft meets The X-Files – is told in Gray Barker’s 1956 book, They Knew Too Much About Flying Saucers and in Bender’s own book, Flying Saucers and the Three Men.

When, from 1966 to 1967, John Keel immersed himself in the wave of sightings of what became known as “Mothman” in the town of Point Pleasant, West Virginia, he was flooded with accounts of local encounters with both MIB and Women in Black. They were often described as looking not quite human. Their skin resembled plastic. They wore wraparound sunglasses that often only partially masked their huge, oversized eyes. They were clearly unaware of our customs and manners. Some of them didn’t even know how to eat food or drink water – as bizarre as it certainly sounds.

Things get even more disturbing: people who have encountered the MIB have fallen sick – and quickly, too. A kind of paranormal infection, we might say. The MIB are able to place people under some form of mind-control, something which compels the targeted person to open the door and let them in, regardless of the time of day or night. Witnesses to UFO activity who have been visited by the MIB talk of poltergeist activity occurring in the home – and in the immediate aftermaths of the MIBs’ vanishing acts.

There are reports of people encountering the MIB while in altered states. In the late 1960s, voice-over actor Peter Beckman and a friend had a very sinister encounter with a pair of MIB while on mescaline – and while listening to the soundtrack to the movie, Rosemary’s Baby. Peter said of the MIB who quickly turned up and managed to get into the house: “They were dressed in square, Eisenhower-era cop-clothing, or FBI clothing – which in 1969, 1970 was not that unusual. They came in and sat on the couch. They were pale and sickly; their clothes hung real loose and they looked as though they might expire at any moment. They appeared to have either trouble breathing, or trouble even being.  I don’t believe they said a thing. If they did, it has disappeared from memory. Very odd, indeed.”

Similarly, I have three cases where people encountered the MIB while on DMT. In one such case, the witness described how both MIB seemed “surprised” that the witness could see them. Not only that, the MIB seemingly have the ability to invade peoples’ dreams and turn them into definitive nightmares. The old black cars of the MIB vanish in the blink of an eye. There are even a few, very strange, stories of the MIB shapeshifting into the form of a large, black dog with glowing, red eyes.

So, that’s why I “insist” the Men in Black are not human: because the vast majority of all the witnesses to the MIB describe them as being non-human.

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Nick Redfern works full time as a writer, lecturer, and journalist. He writes about a wide range of unsolved mysteries, including Bigfoot, UFOs, the Loch Ness Monster, alien encounters, and government conspiracies. Nick has written 41 books, writes for Mysterious Universe and has appeared on numerous television shows on the The History Channel, National Geographic Channel and SyFy Channel.
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