Mar 18, 2021 I Nick Redfern

A Student of Einstein, Dead Aliens, and a “High Order of Classification”

As many of you will know, I'm not much of a believer in the claims that the U.S. government (or, in fact, any government) has in its hands the remains of dead aliens. Certainly, when I was in my twenties, I most definitely was a believer in the "secretly pickled aliens" scenario. As time went along, though, I came to the conclusion that such stories were created - by the world of intelligence - to camouflage far more disturbing issues. Namely, top secret, high-altitude experiments using people that went disastrously wrong. On top of that, many of the people who have come forward to claim knowledge of dead aliens held at Area 51, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, and the U.K.'s Porton Down base did so either (a) in anonymous fashions; or (b) turned out to be hoaxers. There is, however, one person whose story I still think about, a story that came from a well respected figure who had no reason to lie about such a controversial matter. The story dates back to 1983, when I was still a teenager.

The source of the story was Dr. Robert Irving Sarbacher, of the Washington Institute of Technology Oceanographic and Physical Sciences, and who died in 1986. It was in 1983 when Bill Steinman - a UFO author fascinated by the alleged "UFO crash" at Aztec, New Mexico in March 1948 - came forward with something incredible. Sarbacher, in 1959, wrote a huge book (it runs to 1417 pages, no less!) titled Encyclopedic Dictionary of Electronics and Nuclear Engineering. I should stress that I have a copy of the book and unless you're conversant in the field of nuclear engineering, it will make for very heavy reading. Back to 1983: that was when Bill Steinman, on a tip, decided to try and contact and engage Sarbacher on the subject of UFOs and dead aliens. Steinman got and incredible response in the form of a letter. Sarbacher wrote the following to Steinman:

"Dear Mr. Steinman: I am sorry I have taken so long in answering your letters. However, I have moved my office and have had to make a number of extended trips. To answer your last question in your letter of October 14, 1983, there is no particular reason I feel I shouldn't or couldn't answer any and all of your questions. I am delighted to answer all of them to the best of my ability. You listed some of your questions in your letter of September 12th. I will attempt to answer them as you had listed them. 1. Relating to my own experience regarding recovered flying saucers, I had no association with any of the people involved in the recovery and have no knowledge regarding the dates of the recoveries. If I had I would send it to you. 2. Regarding verification that persons you list were involved, I can say only this: John von Neuman was definitely involved. Dr. Vannevar Bush was definitely involved, and I think Dr. Robert Oppenheimer also."

Steinman continued: "My association with the Research and Development Board under Doctor Compton during the Eisenhower administration was rather limited so that although I had been invited to participate in several discussions associated with the reported recoveries, I could not personally attend the meetings. I am sure that they would have asked Dr. von Braun and the others that you listed were probably asked and may or may not have attended. This is all I know for sure. 3. I did receive some official reports when I was in my office at the Pentagon but all of these were left there as the time we were never supposed to take them out of the office. 4. I do not recall receiving any photographs such as you request so I am not in a position to answer. 5. I have to make the same reply as on No. 4."

There was more to come to Steinman from Sarbacher: " I recall the interview with Dr. Brenner of the Canadian Embassy. I think the answers I gave him were the ones you listed. Naturally, I was more familiar with the subject matter under discussion, at that time. Actually I would have been able to give more specific answers had I attended the meetings concerning the subject. You must understand that I took this assignment as a private contribution. We were called 'dollar-a-year men'. My first responsibility was the maintenance of my own business activity so that my participation was limited. About the only thing I remember at this time is that certain materials reported to have come from flying saucer crashes were extremely light and very tough. I am sure our laboratories analyzed them very carefully. There were reports that instruments or people operating these machines were also of very light weight, sufficient to withstand the tremendous deceleration and acceleration associated with their machinery. I remember in talking with some of the people at the office that I got the impression these 'aliens' were constructed like certain insects we have observed on earth, wherein because of the low mass the inertial forces involved in operation of these instruments would be quite low."

Sarbacher signed-off: "I still do not know why the high order of classification has been given and why the denial of the existence of these devices. I am sorry it has taken me so long to reply but I suggest you get in touch with the others who may be more directly involved in this program. Sincerely Yours, Dr. Robert I. Sarbacher."

Of course, none of this proves anything. Yet, if nothing else, it's a fascinating story from a man who was undeniably well-respected in his field.

Nick Redfern
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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