The late Mac Tonnies was not just known and respected for his work in the field of Martian anomalies: he also had a deep interest in the field of what he personally termed the Cryptoterrestrials. It’s a term he coined in the early 2000s, when his research into this particular arena began. For Tonnies the Cryptoterrestrials fell into two, clearly delineated groups. In essence, it goes like this: for Tonnies at least some UFO encounters and incidents – and particularly so alien abductions – were not the work of extraterrestrials. Rather, they were the work of an extremely ancient race of humanoids that developed alongside us, but who chose to stay away from us, aside from when they needed certain things from us; those “certain things” being our DNA, cells, eggs, sperm and so on – due to the fact that their civilization, today, is degrading and decaying and requires new blood. So, they use us to beef up their race – at least, to the extent that they are able to do so. Complicating this already controversial scenario, Tonnies also speculated on the possibility that there is another group of Cryptoterrestrials in our midst.
Like that other group that he was pursuing, Tonnies suggested they, too, were equally careful to remain hidden whenever and wherever possible. Tonnies suspected that this second group were possibly Martians – nothing less than the descendants of earlier Martians who fled their world in an ancient, unclear time, when Mars was facing near-destruction, whether due to war, atmospheric collapse or both. Tonnies took things to an even more controversial level when he pondered on the scenario of both groups working together, in tandem, and as a means to save themselves and to protect themselves from us, the admittedly violent and destructive human race. Tonnies wondered what it might be like for the two-tiered Cryptoterrestrials – one of an ancient human type and the other a ragged band of Martians - fighting to live on, and having to share the Earth with us, their worst potential enemy possible. Tonnies concluded that it would make good sense for the two groups to band together and carefully mask their real origins and intents.
Tonnies made a very good point when he noted that the two, primary, dominating types of aliens that are reported by eyewitnesses are (A) the bug-eyed, insect-like Grays; and (B) the very-human-looking Space Brothers of the type that George Van Tassel met out at Giant Rock in the 1950s. Tonnies suggested that the Space Brothers were not aliens, but Cryptoterrestrials. As for those Martian Cryptoterrestrials, Tonnies felt that they may have been here for so long that they now consider themselves as citizens of the Earth – but, obviously not as humans. At some point, Tonnies speculated, both groups may have agreed to band together; presenting themselves to us as something very different to what they really are: (A) an offshoot of us and (B) a race of stranded Martians whose technology may not be sufficient enough to allow them to return to their home planet of Mars – or what is left of it. That Tonnies’ theory was so controversial, alternative, and almost unique – Martians and ancient humans working together to save themselves, and to hell with us when they are done with the human race – inevitably ensured that Tonnies would get some flak. And, guess what? He did. Nevertheless, Tonnies did have more than a few points in his favor. On this particular point, he said to me:
“The cryptoterrestrial theory has met with mixed reactions. Some seem to think that I’m onto something. Most UFO researchers are, at best, extremely skeptical. Others think I’m parroting John Keel’s ‘superspectrum’ [Keel was the author of the acclaimed 1975 book, The Mothman Prophecies], a variation on the ‘parallel worlds’ theme that in turn shares memes with Jacques Vallee’s ‘multiverse.’ Both ideas suggest that we somehow occupy dimensional space with our ‘alien’ visitors, doing away with the need for extraterrestrial spacecraft while helping explain the sense of absurdity that accompanies many UFO and occupant sightings. Keel and Vallee have both ventured essentially ‘occult’ ideas in cosmological terms; both the ‘superspectrum’ and the ‘multiverse’ require a revision of our understanding of the way reality itself works. But the cryptoterrestrial hypothesis is grounded in a more familiar context.”
He added: “I’m not suggesting unseen dimensions or the need for ufonauts to ‘downshift’ to our level of consciousness. Rather, I’m asking if it’s feasible that the alleged aliens that occupy historical and contemporary mythology are flesh-and-blood human-like creatures that live right here on Earth. Not another version of Earth in some parallel Cosmos, but on Earth. While I can’t automatically exclude the UFO phenomenon’s ‘paranormal’ aspects, I can attempt to explain them in technological terms. For example, I see no damning theoretical reason why ‘telepathy’ and ‘dematerialization’ can’t ultimately be explained by appealing to cybernetics, nano-technology and other fields generally excluded from ufological discourse.” In finality, Tonnies provided these words: “The cryptoterrestrial hypothesis manages to alienate champions of the extraterrestrial hypothesis and those who support a more esoteric, ‘inter-dimensional’ explanation. It offers no clear-cut reconciliation. It does, however, wield explanatory potential lacking in both camps.”
Interestingly, Tonnies wondered if the pale-faced, skinny, mannequin-like creeps known as the Men in Black – who also surfaced in the early 1950s - are part and parcel of the Cryptoterrestrials and their agenda. And that the MIB are possibly Martians, too, and doing a pretty good job of moving among us - and without much in the way of being found out. Despite the imagery and storylines that are presented in the phenomenally successful Men in Black movies, the fact is that the real MIB are not from the U.S. Government. They are not ufological 007’s. They don’t even look human – and they don’t act like us, either. Rather, with their black suits, black fedoras and gaunt, plastic-like faces, they are clearly not from anywhere right around here.
The phenomenon of the Men in Black began in the early 1950s, and with a man named Albert Bender – who passed away in 2016 at the age of ninety-four. It was shortly after he created a UFO research group – the International Flying Saucer Bureau – in his home town of Bridgeport, Connecticut in the early fifties, Bender was visited by a trio of menacing men in dark suits. They were not from the CIA, nor the FBI or the Air Force. The three “men” quite literally materialized in Bender’s attic bedroom. They made it abundantly clear that he should leave Ufology behind him. He did: Bender closed down the IFSB and quit ufology; only returning briefly in 1962 to write a book on his experiences. Its appropriate title was Flying Saucers and the Three Men. Bender spent the rest of his life living quietly with his wife and family in Los Angeles, California. Since the days of Albert Bender there have been literally hundreds of reports of disturbing encounters with the MIB. Threats from the Cryptoterrestrials? Tonnies was sure he was on the right track.