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Volume 9
Number 7
February 18, 2004

Editor: Joseph Trainor

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"It's been said that the Devil is in the details, but residents in the Sicilian village of Cannetto di Caronia are leaving town, thinking the Devil is in their appliances."

"This small village near Messina, on the Mediterranean island" of Sicily, south of Italy, "was evacuated this week after a mysterious outbreak of spontaneous fires among residents' furniture and electrical appliances, everything from refrigerators and televisions to washing machines and cell phones."

"'This has been going on for three weeks now, and there is no explanation for it,' Mayor Pedro Spinnato told The Scotsman. 'We cannot risk a tragedy through these fires, so I will have no other option but to evacuate the village. We have had electrical engineers in to examine cables and wires, but they can find no explanation. It is not just electrical fires. Furniture is also catching fire for no reason. Already people are blaming these events on evil spirits, and I'm being asked to get the local priest to perform an exorcism.'"

"Local authorities originally theorized problems with a railway's overhead electrical cables were to blame, but the blazes continued to be sparked even after electricity was completely shut off."

"'For the time being, there is no scientific explanation for it, and I have never heard of anything like this before happening in Italy,' civil protection chief Tullio Martella told The Scotsman."

(Editor's Note: Maybe not in Italy, but there was a case identical to this one three years ago in Chile.)

"Some 40 houses have reportedly been evacuated to help protect local citizens, some of whom believe supernatural forces are responsible for the phenomenon."

"'I've never seen things like this before,' (Roman) Catholic exorcist Gabriele Amorth told the Italian newspaper Il Messagero. 'Demons occupy a house and appear in electrical goods. Let's not forget that Satan and his followers have immense power. With cases of demon behavior, it is normal for domestic appliances to be invaded and for demons to make their presence known via electricity.'" (See The Scotsman and Il Messagero for February 12, 2003. Many thanks to Michael Strainic and Mary Lou Jones-Drown for this report.)


On Sunday, January 11, 2004, at 4:45 p.m., hundreds of people in Parma, a large city 140 kilometers (84 miles) southeast of Milano, watched as a lone airplane spread chemtrails through the southwestern sky.

The chemtrails were also seen in nearby Fornovo di Taro.

According to an eyewitness, "We noticed a lot of contrails in the southwest corner of the sky, over the Appennine Mountains. One airplane was travelling from east to west, and the contrails were neat and straight. Suddenly, a lot lower, there appeared a bright orange spot, apparently flying in formation with the plane as the plane was making the contrails. This object was moving with the plane but did not make any contrails itself."

Fabrizio, another witness, reported, "I reached to grab my binoculars and, when I looked, the UFO was a bit ahead of the plane. My binoculars were 12X, and I clearly saw the plane. But when I brought the binoculars to focus on the UFO, the object disappeared."

Unfamiliar with chemtrails--the long-lasting, puffy contrails often seen in the USA--the Italian witnesses commented that "while the plane was in motion, the contrail made a point-like fold, and this way the contrail remained for a long period of time and then gradually vanished. Do you have any explanation for this?"

(Editor's Comment: Your best bet is to visit Google and type in "chemtrails.")

Also on January 11, 2004, a couple in Fossacesia, a town 40 kilometers (25 miles) south of Pescara, spotted a UFO at 5:55 p.m. "I was with my girl friend Carlotta," the witness reported, "We parked the car on the side of the road, the side opposite to the entry gate. We got out and crossed the road to visit her grandmother's apartment. That's when I saw a bright light turning on a horizontal angle for about five seconds. I pointed it out to Carlotta, but she had already seen it. We both followed it with our gazes. The object moved along in a horizontal line. Then it disappeared, like an explosion or disintegration. It seemed like a comet, horizontal course, no visible contrail, like a phenomenon maybe known but for us inexplicable."

On Thursday, January 1, 2004, "two 18-year-old women left a New Year's Eve party at 2:10 a.m." in Thiene, a small city in the foothills of the Dolomite Mountains about 150 kilometers (90 miles) west-northwest of Venezia (Venice) and had a UFO encounter.

According to Italian ufologist Carmelo Scuderi, the women "saw in the sky, above the house of one of them, a silent multicolored sphere emitting light rays. The object was described by one of the women as 'like the bright turning disco sphere they used to have in the 1970s and 1980s.' The sphere rotated on its own axis while simultaneously swinging like a pendulum. One girl tried to snap a photo of it. The girls then went inside the house, but when they came out, they found that the sphere had disappeared." (Grazie a Carmelo Scuderi per questi rapporti.)


On Sunday, February 8, 2004, just after midnight, Tim Lock was outdoors in the woods at Wraxall and Failand in Bristol, UK when "approaching from the northwest came a white light with a red tinge piloting above the trees, moving sharply about but hovering over the same area, as if it had lost something. It moved up, down, forward, backward, up, down, forward and so on. We also saw three smaller shooting-star objects shoot about under it from the left at about 15 minute intervals."

Tim and his companions kept the strange object in view until 2 a.m. "I filmed it on my camcorder, and my mother and girl friend also observed it. I watched it until I fell asleep at 2 a.m. I then awoke around 3:30 a.m., and it was gone. It was real white with a halo around it that was fuzzy. We tried to think logically about what it was" but couldn't come up with any ideas.

On Tuesday, February 10, 2004, Raymond Mulhall, 17, "spotted a UFO over Meanwood in Leeds," UK. "This sighting was witnessed by 8 people, two of whom were policemen. The object was about 50 feet (15 meters) across and 20 feet (6 meters) high. It moved across the sky without a single noise. It appeared to land in an area nicknamed the Witches Quarry."

"An hour later," Ray reported, "I arrived at the Witches Quarry and found damaged trees and three triangular depressions in the ground. These were 25 feet (7.7 meters) apart and depressed into the ground to a depth of 8 inches (20 centimeters). There was a strange heat emanating from the ground that I found rather creepy, so I left and returned home." (Email Form Reports)


"The Russian-United States crew aboard the International Space Station (ISS) has reported an unidentified object outside their orbiting craft, said space officials on Tuesday," February 10, 2004.

"U.S. astronaut Michael Foale and his Russian colleague Alexander Kaleri last week observed 'a 20- centimeter (8-inch) long strange object of soft material,' which was floating in space, said a NASA representative in Russia, Sergei Puzanov."

"'For the moment, it's not clear what it is. U.S. and Russian experts are studying photos sent by the (ISS) crew to Earth to try and determine its origin,' he said, adding that it posed 'no danger to the station or its crew.'"

"It could be a piece of the station's insulation or a strap used to attach some technical equipment to the outside of the station, according to Russian experts quoted by the Interfax news agency."

"'It is possible we will never manage to find out what it was,' said a spokesman for Russian mission control in Moscow, Valery Lyndin."

"According to Lyndin, there was a similar incident on the now-scrapped Russian space station Mir."

"The cosmonauts saw 'a shining object' which they filmed, but experts who studied these images 'were unable to establish what the object was,' he added." (See the Interfax report for February 10, 2004, "Something's out there." Many thanks to Jim Hickman for this news story. And don't forget to visit Jim's Web site, The Hickman Report, at http://www.thehickmanreport.com)


On Monday, February 9, 2004, at 8:25 p.m., Sam S. was outdoors at his home in Fresno, California (population 427,652), a large city located 182 miles (267 kilometers) southeast of San Francisco, when he saw a UFO approaching from the north.

The object, Sam reported, consisted of "alternate red flashing lights in close proximity, all of them blinking. Looked like random red sparkles in a group. I sent an email to our local news station, KSEE-TV, Channel 24," but received no reply. (Email Form Report)


"The Regional Council Health Commission, through its president Juan Gonzalez Enrique declared Grisi Siknis an epidemic after confirming that the communities of San Juan de la Bodega, Florida, Bulkian, Leymus, Tusku Tara, Santa Fe and Santa Isabel in the municipalities of Waspam and Wawa Bar, near Puerto Cabezas" in eastern Nicaragua "are being affected by Pauka Prukan (another name for the strange disease, alleged to be caused by sorcerers--J.T.)"

"Faced with the terrible affliction, which according to anthropologists, sukias (similar to brujas in Mexico-- J.T.) and medicine men, is transmitted through the sorcery of dilmen (Translated: wizards), and people's minds can be controlled from unknown places."

"'We urgently need economic support to treat Grisi Siknis immediately, as it is penetrating deeper every day into native (indigenous) communities,' said the Health Commission president." (For more on this strange disease, see UFO Roundup, volume 9, number 3 for January 21, 2004, "Spider sorcery causes havoc in Nicaragua," page 5.)

"Pauka Prukan, known to the media as Grisi Siknis, is affecting other ethnic groups such as the Mayagnas and the Sumos in the Rio Coco" region.

"'We urgently need to hire as many sukias and medicine men who may be available and have them on notice, as Grisi Siknis has become a regional epidemic and must be dealt with as such.'"

"Delegations of native communities in Rio Coco and Puerto Cabezas have joined arms against the Grisi Siknis epidemic and are calling on the state to find an immediate solution to this dreadful malady."

Gonzalez "believes that the legislative authority (Nicaragua's Congreso --J.T.) must earmark emergency funds to treat Grisi Siknis since funds are required to pay the medicine men, sukias and unkuly (prophets--S.C.), as well as transportation costs to get them to the affected communities."

"Guillermo Espinoza, mayor of Puerto Cabezas, is concerned by the way the collective madness is spreading throughout the region and is now attacking Puerto Cabezas' communities. 'On February 2 (2004), there were six cases of Grisi Siknis in Wawa Bar. We are seeking help to treat these cases urgently to avoid a greater outbreak.'"

"The six persons affected were transfered from Wawa Bar to Bilwi and taken to a house belonging to one of the city's medicine men for treatment. According to Eddy MacDonald, an advisor to the Regional Council Health Commission, Miskitos (indigenous people--J.T.) showing signs of Grisi Siknis are being treated with additional medicine." (See the Nicaraguan newspaper La Prensa for February 8, 2004, "Nicaragua: Grisi Siknis spread continues." Muchas gracias a Scott Corrales y Gloria Coluchi para esto articulo de diario.)


"More than 10,000 birds died mysteriously in eastern China's Jiangsu province, dropping like rain from the sky, state media reported on Thursday," February 5, 2004.

"Farmers and other witnesses in Sangongdian," a village near Taizhou, a city 225 kilometers (140 miles) northwest of Shanghai, "saw flocks of bramble finches fall from the sky on Tuesday, February 3, 2004."

"Most of the birds were dead when they hit the ground, and some were injured. The birds look like sparrows and are small in size."

"Officials from the local centre for disease prevention and control rushed to the scene. Samples from the dead birds were taken to a laboratory in Nanjing for testing and to determine the cause of death."

"Experts from the Jiangsu Province Agriculture Department said that because the birds died in flight, the cause of death may have been contamination in their food, water or environment."

"They did not immediately say whether there was any connection with the spreading bird (avian) flu outbreak in Asia. China said on Thursday," February 5, 2004, "that 56,417 birds in the country had been infected with bird flu and 49,236 of these had died."

"China, the second largest producer and fifth largest exporter of chicken meat, has reported five confirmed cases and 18 suspected cases of avian flu."

"The flu has been reported in nine other Asian countries and blamed for 17 deaths in Vietnam and Thailand." (See the Beijing Youth Daily for February 5, 2004, "Mystery as dead birds rain down." Many thanks to Chen Jilin for this newspaper article.)


"There have been some pretty strong wind storms in the Maritimes (provinces of eastern Canada--J.T.) this winter, but this is ridiculous."

"An orange substance that fell during a snowstorm in western Cape Breton," Nova Scotia in January 2004 "may be dust from Prince Edward Island, officials said Wednesday," February 11, 2004.

"Residents from Margaree to Richmond County reported a layer of thick orange dust buried in snowdrifts."

"Nova Scotia's Environment Department was brought in to investigate, and a sample was sent to a laboratory in Sydney, N.S. Early results indicate the orange dust is not hazardous."

"Aurelle Landry, district manager for the department, said they're looking at the possibility the dust originated on Prince Edward Island," 60 miles (100 kilometers) west of Margaree Valley, N.S.

"He said high winds and cold temperatures can cause soil to become dry and easily airborne."

"Landry expects to have a definite answer from the laboratory by next week." (See the Victoria, B.C. Times- Colonist for February 12, 2004. Many thanks to Mike Strainic for this newspaper article.)

(Editor's Comment: The only problem here is, the snowstorm that buried western Cape Breton came from the northeast--the open Atlantic Ocean. Charles Fort, you should be living at this hour.)


"Two earthquakes struck a remote region of northern Pakistan on Saturday," February 14, 2004, "toppling walls and triggering landslides that killed at least 17 people and injured 30 others. Some 150 homes were damaged."

"At least one person was reported missing. Rescue crews were trying to reach the area in the rugged Hindu Kush mountain range, which is covered by a thick blanket of snow. Officials feared the death toll would rise as temperatures plunged overnight."

"The temblors, measuring 5.7 and 5.5" on the Richter scale "were about 90 minutes apart. They were centered 125 miles (200 kilometers) northeast of Peshawar and were felt 90 miles (150 kilometers) away in the capital, Islamabad."

"Authorities have sent doctors and police teams to remote villages to provide relief and assess damage, said Syed Ahmed Hussain, the mayor of the Mansehra district."

UFO Roundup correspondent Karim Afzal Khan reported, "In Saidu (100 kilometers or 60 miles northwest of Mansehra--J.T.), there is much talk about the Masters of Shambhala. The souk (market) gossip claims the Masters caused the earthquakes to seal off some of the ancient Uighur tunnels. This will prevent the Allied forces (in Afghanistan--J.T.) from getting to Shambhala, if they attack after the snow melts, which is what some people say." (See the Duluth, Minn. News-Tribune for February 15, 2004, "Earthquakes kill at least 17," page 2A.)

(Editor's Note: For more on Shambhala, see the feature story in this issue.)


With Spirit operational once again, it was a busy week on Mars for both of the Mars rovers.

On Monday, February 9, 2004, Opportunity took "up- close images of the crater wall" in Meridani Planum, showing "wavy rock layers eaten away by Martian dust and embedded with small, dark 'spherules,'" which have geologists puzzled.

Opportunity's images "suggest the crater's bedrock wall is made up of layers of either fine volcanic ash or ancient Martian dust compacted over time. The origins of the darker 'spherules' are still a mystery."

Also on Monday, "Opportunity's twin rover, Spirit, has started riving itself to a larger crater on the other side of Mars."

On Tuesday, February 10, 2004, "the Spirit rover rolled across the surface of Mars, shattering a one-day distance record on the planet, NASA said. The drive covered more than three times the greatest distance that NASA's Sojourner rover traveled in one day on its 1997 mission to Mars, mission manager Jim Erickson said."

Spirit is "on its way to investigate a crater nicknamed 'Bonneville,'" which is about 800 feet (240 meters) from where the rover landed in Gusev Crater.

But progress on Spirit's journey was hampered Wednesday, February 11, 2004, "when frigid temperatures on Mars" prevented NASA "from sending commands to the Spirit rover for a planned drive" to Bonneville Crater. "The cold prevented the rover from rotating an antenna."

Opportunity finished up the week by taking close-up images of the exposed bedrock at its landing site. (See USA Today for February 10, 2004, "Rover zeroes in on crater wall," page 7D; USA Today for February 11, 2004, "Spirit sets Mars distance record," page 3A; and USA Today for February 12, 2004, page 14D.)


"European scientists officially ended their hunt for the missing Beagle 2 Mars lander" on Wednesday, February 11, 2004 "by announcing an investigation into the disappearance of the spacecraft in December (2003)."

"The investigation, to be conducted jointly by the British government and the European Space Agency (ESA), is routine following the loss of any spacecraft."

"Beagle 2, part of the European Space Agency's Mars Express mission, was scheduled to land on the Red Planet on December 25 (2003). It has not been heard from since it separated from the mother ship in mid-December." (See USA Today for February 12, 2004, "Agency gives up on lost Beagle 2 lander," page 14D)


Concerning the rumors of a secret underground FEMA base off Highway 160 just west of South Fork, Colorado (See UFO Roundup, Volume 9, Number 6 for February 11, 2004, "Underground base stirs fears in Colorado," page 9), ufologist Christopher O'Brien writes, "I have a feeling I should respond to this post in your current UFO Roundup service."

"As you know, I have been investigating the San Luis Valley for over ten years. I have investigated rumors of underground facilities on the Colorado/New Mexico border and (to my knowledge) this construction project located just west of South Fork, Colorado--where the road snakes its way up toward Wolf Creek Pass--is simply a mundane expansion of State Highway 160 from a two-lane to a four- lane highway."

"I don't know who Rose King is, but I think she is mistaken and maybe even a bit alarmist in her report. They've been doing obvious road work in the canyon and constructing an obvious passenger car tunnel as anyone from the area can attest."

"By the way, Masonic Park is a summer home/retirement community for Masons and has never had anything strange associated with the location. Several really good UFO sightings have occurred between there and Creede, Colorado, but that's about it."

"Also, it's not the 'San Juan Valley' but the San Luis Valley."

[UFOINFO Note: Christopher O'Brien's San Luis Valley Event Log is available to read on the UFOINFO site.]

From the UFO Files...


Nearly everyone familiar with the American seer Edgar Cayce has heard of Egypt's Hall of Records, said to be hidden somewhere beneath the Giza plateau.

But how many are aware of a similar ancient Hall of Records, said to be tucked away in India?

About 150 kilometers (90 miles) east of Lucknow, on the south bank of the Ghagara River, stands Ayodhya, one of the seven holy cities of the Vaishnavi. The city is famous as the birthplace of the Hindu god Rama and as the capital of India during the previous world-age, the Tetra Yuga.

Ayodhya is also the supposed site of India's Hall of Records.

The Hall, alleged to be guarded by a sect of Gnani Yogis, might never have become public knowledge, except for a war in modern times--the so-called "Indian Mutiny" of 1857.

The war had seen incredible atrocities committed by both sides. After the insurgents' defeat in 1858, hundreds of Indian P.O.W.s--Hindu and Muslim alike--were massacred at Gwalior.

For a few of the Gnani Yogis, this was the absolute last straw, and they talked about striking directly at Queen Victoria by unleashing "weapons of mass destruction," the fearful weapons of the Drona Parva, against London itself.

(Editor's Note: The Drona Parva is a book of the ancient Indian epic called the Mahabharata. It describes energy weapons that make the hydrogen bomb look like a Fourth of July firecracker.)

Such talk alarmed the Sages of Shambhala. They were determined that the weapons should remain buried beneath "the Dark Pyramid of Hari-Yupuya" (in what is today Pakistan--J.T.). To stave off the Indian public's growing thirst for vengeance, Shambhala encouraged certain Hindu leaders to launch the samaj movement in the 1860s. In northern India, these leaders became revered as mahatmas. (Hindi for great souls--J.T.) These included Karsondas Mulji, Swami Dayananda Sarasvati, Baba Khem Dass and Swami Shiva Dayal Singh. These men founded a number of groups such as Arya Samaj and Sanathan Dharm Rakshini Sabha (Translated: Society for the Protection of the Eternal Religion--J.T.)

Into this Hindu religious renaissance came a young British officer named James Churchward (1850-1936). India had fascinated young Jimmy for years, ever since age seven when he'd read about Meerut, Lucknow, Cawnpore, Delhi and all of the Mutiny battlefields in the Times. He was also very much interested in ancient history and, arriving in India in 1869, spent all of his off-duty leave time visiting the country's centuries-old temples.

During these visits, Churchward made the acquaintance of an aged Hindu rishi (priest), who became like a father to him. As Churchward himself wrote, "Do tell us some more about the old priest, is a request I have received from many readers of my last book, The Lost Continent of Mu. What am I to tell? This old Rishi was simply one who for one reason or other had taken a great fancy to me as a young man. He taught me how to learn to read ancient writings and inscriptions. It was a hobby of his and mine also."

In February 1870, while on leave, Churchward met the old Rishi in Faizabad, and the two men walked 6 kilometers (4 miles) to Ayodhya. Here the Rishi took his young English chela (disciple) on a Cook's Tour of the ancient sacred sites, visiting the Babri Masjid mosque, the nearby Ram Janam Bhumi shrine, the Lakhshmana Ghat, the temple of Kala Rama and the white, fortress-like Hanuman Gadhi temple.

(Editor's Note: Sad to say, the Babri Masjid mosque no longer stands. It was destroyed by an angry Hindu mob during rioting in 1992.)

As they walked along, the Rishi talked about the legendary Uighur Empire of central Asia. "'When the great flood swept up and over eastern and northeastern Asia, it destroyed the Uighur capital, drowning all of the inhabitants and buried a great library which had been brought there by the Naacals from the Motherland (also known as Lemuria or Mu--J.T.) Many years afterward, the Naacals of the west, whom the flood did not reach, went to the ruins of the capital city, dug the tablets out and carried them to a temple in the west (Afghanistan--J.T.) There they remained until the mountains were raised, which destroyed the temple and buried them again. Many, many years afterward, the descendants of the Naacals, who survived the mountain rising, went and dug them out again, and brought them to the temple (in the Himalayas--J.T.) where they now repose.'"

"Bapu (Hindi for Father--J.T.), is this library the only complete one in existence?" Churchward asked.

The old Rishi shook his head. "I think not, my son. We have a legend which states that when our Rishi (holy) city, Ayodhya, was sacked and burnt by the invading army, the Naacal library was in the secret archives of the temple and never discovered by the enemy. So that if our tradition is correct, buried beneath the ruins of that temple, the Naacal library still remains intact, as it has never been dug out."

Not until nearly the end of his life, sixty years later, did the retired Colonel Churchward actually sit down and write about his experiences with the old Rishi. As if he knew that his young friend would someday write those books, the Rishi had a curious request to make of Churchward.

"It has been suggested to me that in my writings I withold all names of places, routes, passes, etc. in Tibet, Kashmir and northern India generally, which might be of value in a political sense. The reason given for witholding this information is a perfectly valid one," Churchward wrote, "I feel it my duty and pleasure to comply with the suggestion."

I can't prove it, but it is my theory that the Sages of Shambhala, through the old Rishi, used James Churchward as a conduit to make the people of the West aware of the existence of the second Hall of Records.

By having Churchward delete specific "names of places, routes, passes, etc.", Shambhala ensured that their enemies could not use Churchward's books as a road map to pinpoint the location of their hidden underground city.

Sounds simple enough. The Hall of Records is situated beneath one of the old temples in Ayodhya. Easy to find, right?

Think again. There are over 1,000 temples and shrines devoted to Rama and his wife, Sita, in this city by the Ghaghara. Go ahead and take your pick.

And that doesn't include temples that have been destroyed since Ayodhya's glory days during the Tetra Yuga.

As you walk along the Lakshmana Ghat north of town, where, according to the Mahabharata, Rama's brother, Lakshmana, killed himself after breaking a vow, you come to a creek. Here in 8,000 B.C. stood the fortress-palace of a king, Bhunda Chand, who raised a large army and defeated invaders from the west on the Jhumda River (now the Jhelum River in Pakistan--J.T.). Bhunda Chand was assassinated in that palace, and the throne went to his younger sister, Yasmina Devi, who founded an empire in northern India and presided over a glorious renaissance.

Today not a stone of that palace remains. Standing in its place is an ice cream parlour. With plenty of fruit flavors but no Rocky Road. Sic transit gloria mundi.

(See The Children of Mu by James Churchward, Paperback Library, New York, N.Y., 1968, pages 186, 187, 213, 214, 215 and 223. Also India: The Rough Guide, edited by Greg Ward, Penguin Books, London, 1995, pages 286 and 287; The Masters Revealed by K. Paul Johnson, State University of New York Press, Albany, N.Y., 1994, pages 107 to 120, and Initiates of the Theosophical Masters by K. Paul Johnson, State University of New York Press, Albany, N.Y., 1995, pages 64 and 65.)

Well, that's it for this week. Join us in seven days for more UFO, Fortean and paranormal news from around the planet Earth, brought to you by "the paper that goes home- -UFO Roundup." See you next time.

UFO ROUNDUP: Copyright 2004 by Masinaigan Productions, all rights reserved. Readers may post news items from UFO Roundup on their Web sites or in news groups provided that they credit the newsletter and its editor by name and list the date of issue in which the item first appeared.


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