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UFOs: Generals, Pilots and Government Officials Go On the Record Hardcover – August 10, 2010
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"At last, a serious and thoughtful book about this controversial subject. Skeptics and true believers will find a treasure trove of insightful and eye opening information. This book is bound to set the gold standard for UFO research."
—Michio Kaku, Ph.D. Author of Physics of the Impossible and host of Sci Fi Science on the Science Channel
“I was astonished by the care and precision of Leslie Kean’s research in this terrific book. Her analysis is carefully reasoned and to the point; her craftsmanship in organization and writing are superb. Her expose' raises important questions: Why does the US government create public distrust by neglecting this important topic? Why do its agencies avoid investigating cases of interference with flight operations and instead issue absurd cover-up stories? This book is ultimately an appeal to all scholars for an "extraordinary investigation of an extraordinary phenomenon.”
—Rudy Schild, Ph.D., Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
“Like me, Leslie Kean is an agnostic on the issue of UFOs. Her book is a fine piece of journalism - not about beliefs, but about facts. Kean presents the most accurate, most credible reports on UFO's you will ever find. She has fought long and hard to discover the facts and let the chips fall where they may. She may not have the final smoking gun, but I smell the gunpowder.”
—Miles O'Brien, former CNN space/science correspondent
“I find explanations offered by UFO enthusiasts and conspiracy theorists to be implausible, but I also have little patience with "deniers" who ridicule credible reports. Leslie Kean has found a thoughtful path between extreme views, documenting the UFO mystery with intelligence and insight. She makes a strong case for U.S. participation in official, international UFO investigations and for public dissemination of the results. The fascinating first-hand accounts make this a thought-provoking book, even for those of us who don’t know much about UFOs.”
—Neal Lane, Ph.D., Rice University; former Director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy
“If you don't know much about UFOs, you must read this book. If you think that UFO reports are nonsense, this book will disabuse you of that notion. Leslie Kean's UFOs informs readers at every level of knowledge and belief. It could, and should, become the "tipping point" that leads to public acceptance of the reality of UFOs and all of its implications.”
—Don Donderi, Ph.D., Department of Psychology, McGill University (Ret.)
“In an area of study where there aren’t many, this is a serious book. It is credible, clear, and compelling, without any farfetched jumps in logic and assumption. Its credibility begins on the first page with John Podesta and continues with case studies of extraordinary quality to the very end. Leslie Kean not only makes the case for, but calls for, a whole new concrete and realistic perspective on UFOs that has more honesty and integrity than any other that I have read. This is a book for anyone with an open mind.”
—John L. Petersen, Founder & President of The Arlington Institute
“In these pages we are confronted head-on by the UFO phenomenon as revealed firsthand by highly credible government officials and military aviation experts. Their credibility and integrity cannot be questioned, and their firsthand observations cannot be ignored. Leslie Kean provides a challenging analysis and she writes with penetrating depth and insight. The revelations in this book constitute a watershed event in lifting the taboo against rational discourse about this controversial subject.”
—Harold E. Puthoff, Ph.D., Director of The Institute for Advanced Studies at Austin
“When I started reading Leslie Kean’s UFOs, I found it very difficult to stop. This is an unprecedented assessment of what may be the greatest challenge ever presented to mankind. In an outstanding piece of investigative journalism, Kean provides a well-written and convincing appeal for change in dealing with a phenomenon that can no longer be ignored.”
—Jean-Claude Ribes, Ph.D., Paris Observatory (Ret.)
“For anyone who questions why - after more than fifty years of denial, ridicule, and dismissal - many scientists, academics, political figures, and military personnel still insist that the subject of UFOs should be taken seriously, this book provides the answer. Leslie Kean offers compelling documentation that physical objects, with flight characteristics not yet achievable by known technology, are being routinely reported in our skies. They represent a mystery that needs to be solved.”
—Stuart Appelle, Ph.D., Dean of the School of Science and Mathematics, State University of New York, Brockport
"Leslie Kean’s astonishing book is the finest piece of investigative journalism ever written on this subject. She has an incomparable ability to ‘give voice’ to a constituency of exceptionally qualified and unbiased first-hand observers. They are not from the fringe, not groupies, and not delusional. Rather, they are high-level military, intelligence, aerospace, and government officials who speak with authority while providing reports that document actual, physical craft. Kean’s book represents the first important step toward a new U.S. government openness about UFOs. It brings forward a reality otherwise buried for far too long inside official mystery, and elevates the discourse above that of small-minded public discussions."
—Christopher C. Green, MD, Ph.D., Harper University Hospital, Wayne State University School of Medicine
About the Author
LESLIE KEAN is an investigative journalist who has been published internationally and nationally in the Boston Globe, Baltimore Sun, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Providence Journal, The Nation, International Herald Tribune, Globe and Mail, and Journal of Scientific Exploration, among other publications. She is coauthor of Burma’s Revolution of the Spirit and cofounder of the Coalition for Freedom of Information. She lives in New York.
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Top Customer Reviews
The intended audience is not the committed reader steeped in the lore of UFOs or discussions of the ETH and competing origin-hypotheses. Plenty of books explore these subjects and their readership is, against the mainstream, pitifully small and marginalised. Such works, however well-researched, are often self-published or condemned to share shelf-space with political CTs, channelling and new-age mush, undeservedly consigned to the ghetto of the kooky, ridiculed fringe.
Readers familiar with the works of Allen Hynek, Jacques Vallee, Tim Good, Jerry Clark, Stan Friedman, Richard Dolan and writers of similar calibre will find little new here, though they will find a few interesting nuggets. They are already persuaded of the evidence, and not the target audience for this book. These writers, collectively, have never effected political attitude-change: the contributors to this book are such serious, credible, high-profile people they just might.
Kean's target audience is professional academia, those involved in politics and the media, the skeptically-minded scientist with little familiarity with the subject matter due to its long contamination with fringe elements, and the concerned, civic-minded man or woman in the street who has never read a book on the issue and knows little of the powerful evidence for the existence of persistent strange aerial phenomena. The book is carefully crafted to bring the subject out of the UFO conference fringe and place it firmly centre-stage into the political and academic mainstream where it belongs; to make it a respectable and important subject for discussion. The argument is: These are responsible officials going on the record, and here is serious evidence of something real. You are irresponsible if you ignore this subject, or allow it to continue to be marginalised.
To this end, the book's tone is deliberately sceptical. The tag-line "Generals, Pilots and Government Officials go on the Record" describes exactly the content: only incontestable cases with multiple official witnesses plus supporting evidence have been chosen for inclusion. The author worked for years to contact and gain the confidence of these military pilots and high-profile government officials and to bring them together at the National Press Club in DC in November 2007. High priority is given to cases involving air force encounters; documented, confirmed, official. The contributors are truly international, confirming the global reach of the phenomenon.
This cautious tone, the international perspective and the author's avoidance of contamination by book jacket-cover endorsement from anyone associated with the "UFO community" sets this book apart from other work on the subject. This will be extremely difficult for a debunker to deal with, and that is the intention. Journalistic standards are high, so there are no "anonymous whistleblowers", no ID kept secret, nothing flaky or un-checkable. These establishment people have gone ON THE RECORD, and write in total around half the content of the 302 pages of the book. Introducing the section written by Nick Pope, Kean writes: "He is yet another example of the many officials and military officers who, as they became acquainted with UFO investigations by accident, flexed their skeptical muscles only to find themselves absorbed by the unexpected power of the evidence they had initially expected to disprove." The accumulated evidence presented is virtually un-debunkable.
Kean contrasts the relatively open way the UFO subject has been managed in recent decades by nations such as France, Belgium, the UK, Brazil, Peru and others, with the history of stonewalling and ridicule from all government and military bodies in the USA. Since the closing of Blue Book, the phenomenon no longer officially exists in the USA even though pilots, operators of military facilities and ordinary folk encounter it all the time. It's an Orwellian environment. What is to be done?
In the third and final section of the book, the author explores the nature of UFO secrecy in the US. She sticks to the facts as known and documented, and acknowledges the unsupported speculations frequently put out by various people in the UFO field about the cover-up inhibit understanding of the issue and serve to marginalise the subject. Her reasoning is logical, thorough and grounded.
In Chapter 26, "Engaging the US Government," Kean lays out the reasoned objective sought by the CFI:
"The coalition is asking for responsible action on the part of the United States concerning UFOs. We make this request not as an accusation of wrongdoing in the past, but as an invitation to join an international, cooperative venture under way now...we are seeking the creation of a small government agency to investigate UFO incidents, and to act as a focal point for action at home and for research worldwide."
Her objective is to bring about legitimization of the subject, so that scientific interest might be encouraged and government grants enable scientists in the academic, research and aviation fields to pursue serious study free of ridicule. She is not impotently shouting for "Disclosure" whilst remaining forever shut outside. She, and the impressive contributors to this book, ask for official recognition of the UFO issue as real, and for the establishment of a small agency to co-ordinate international study as a first step. No assumptions about the origin of the phenomenon are made: just that it exists, and needs to be acknowledged as real. It's a reasoned, achievable objective, unarguable in the face of the unassailable evidence presented here. That's why this book might be the catalyst for permanent recognition of legitimacy: in other words, a game-changer.
The production quality of the book is first class and the writing from all contributors literate, straightforward and completely free of typos. It has a logical structure, is an easy and absorbing read containing nothing extraneous, concerned with the facts and testimonies. It builds a compelling argument. If you haven't read it yet, maybe you should.
With my own scientific background I am intensely curious to learn more about the bloodwork done on the Peruvian fighter pilot. But even without knowing more, this book has utterly changed me.
I sincerely hope this book becomes a bestseller, because the public, particularly the American public, has a right to know these facts.
Since those days I have read quite a number of books on the subject and I don’t know a whole lot more than I did back then. I don’t know what UFOs are, where they originate, or what they are doing here, but I damn sure want to know before they pat me in the face with a long handle shovel.
Most of the books I’ve read on UFOs start with the premise that UFOs are extraterrestrial spacecraft and then go about presenting cases that the author says can’t be explained otherwise. Leslie Kean’s book is different, and stands out from all the others, in that it takes an agnostic approach to the subject. As an investigative reporter she doesn’t even know if there is such a thing, and sets out to find out.
I became familiar with Ms. Kean through her appearances on the History Channel and the old H2 Channel. She impressed me, and when I saw that she had written this book I bought it.
Ms. Kean starts out completely neutral on the subject and only on the premise that there is something happening in our atmosphere that astronomers, military and commercial pilots, and average people on the ground have been seeing for years, and that is picked up routinely by commercial and military radar. She then goes on to establish and document proof that this is truly the case, before pursuing the question of what’s being seen.
The title of the book is “UFOs - Generals, Pilots, and Government Officials Go on the Record”, so I’m thinking WOW, she has a bunch of Major Donald Keyhoes, Dr. James McDonalds, Senators, Congressmen, Governors and the like, finally coming clean on UFOs. She does, but alas, they are not United States officials (dream on Sailorman) at least most of them. She does however present some pretty impressive information from files released from countries like France, Belgium, Brazil, United Kingdom and many other countries that are more open, public, and official about their investigation of the UFO phenomena, and in reporting their findings. She also reproduces interviews with many of these foreign commercial and military pilots, government officials, UFO investigators, professors, etc., many of whom are now retired.
While I still didn’t get my answers to what UFOs are, where they originate, or what they are doing here, I did learn that a lot of other countries take this phenomena very seriously, consider it a national defense and/or public air safety issue, and have set up and still operate official government agencies to study and try to understand it. Also, that the United States does too, but keeps it all secret (DUH, among one heck of a lot of other things) and are less than cooperative with other countries openly studying it.
This is certainly not you run-of-the-mill UFO book. It’s an easy read, full of new information, well documented, and well worth its price and the time it takes to read it. Buy it, read it, and enjoy it. You’ll learn a few surprising things; at least I did.