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Volume 9
Number 28
July 14, 2004

Editor: Joseph Trainor

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Luminous objects described as "fireballs" were seen by thousands of people in the southern USA last week.

The flap began Monday, July 5, 2004, in Clearwater, Florida (population 108,787) at 1 a.m. Eyewitness Tarey Wolf reported, "The UFOs approached from the north. About 1 a.m. I was floating in my pool and saw three semi- transparent objects in formation. I almost through they were ghostly-looking birds, then I realized they were craft."

The objects "were semi-transparent, ghostly, cylindrical with small wing-like protrusions. They went in and out of clouds, and it seemed like they were trying to match the nighttime cloud cover but were unsuccessful. Very fast from one horizon to the other."

On Thursday, July 8, 2004, Tarey's roommate "at about 3 a.m. let the dog out and noticed a very bright star, like seven planets in conjunction. It was stationary, though, not moving. It was big and round and bright."

On Tuesday, July 6, 2004, "two witnesses reported seeing what is described as a large green fireball over the town of Elk City, Oklahoma (population 10,510) at about 9 p.m. The object was described as being about the size of a tennis ball at arm's length. Its movement was from northwest to southeast."

"A meteor shower Wednesday night," July 7, 2004, "lit up the sky from Texas to western Tennessee, prompting a flood of reports to law enforcement officials throughout a five-state region."

"The lights flashed across the sky shortly after 9 p.m. in portions of Texas, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Louisiana and Tennessee."

"A spokesman for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) said the sighting was a meteorite, probably several."

"'The first part was a fiery red, and it had a greenish glow behind it and a long red tail,' Barbara Hayes, who lives in Bossier Parish, Louisiana (population 98,310) told Shreveport, La. television station KSLA-TV."

"A spokesman for the National Weather Service in Fort Worth (Texas) said the sightings were not tied to any weather event."

"'Whatever the object was, it had to be pretty high up in the sky and pretty big for such a large number of people to have seen it,' forecaster Mike Berry of Shreveport said."

"Astronomers said Thursday," July 8, 2004, "that a flying bright object that had plenty of people in several states perplexed Wednesday was likely a large meteor. The meteor burned up at 40 miles above Earth's surface around 9 p.m. on Wednesday," July 7, 2004.

"Experts said the object was traveling at a speed of about 30,000 miles per hour (48,000 kilometers per hour)."

"A video taken by a Texas law enforcement officer captured the object many were referring to as a 'fireball' Wednesday night."

"Reports of meteor sightings poured into newsrooms and weather centers in portions of Texas, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Louisiana and Tennessee."

"Stargazer Bob Moody is a member of the Arkansas- Oklahoma Astronomical Society. He was testing a new telescope at the Coleman Observatory in the hills of Van Buren, Arkansas (population 18,986) when the meteor passed overhead."

(Editor's Note: This is the first "Coleman" lexilink this week, but it won't be the last.)

"'We saw something in the sky that lit up the ground like a searchlight,' Moody said, 'I noticed my shadow first because my back was to it and, as I turned around, it was just ending its burn...whatever it was. It was an extremely bright yellowish bright light.'"

According to Moody, meteors hit Earth's atmosphere almost every week. He said that because Wednesday's meteor burned up at such a high altitude, it is unlikely that any fragments of the object made it to the ground."

"Moody said the largest 'fireball' to pass over the Arkansas area was recorded in 1920." (See the Tyler, Tex. Morning Telegraph for July 8, 2004. Many thanks to Steve Wilson Sr., Mary Lou Jones-Drown and Jim Hickman, executive director of Skywatch International, for these news stories.)


"Juan Acuna looks scared. He first runs away from the press and then argues that he's tired of telling his story to the press out of a fear that no one will believe him, anyway."

"The fact of the matter is that around 2 a.m. on Sunday," July 4, 2004, "he went to drop off his brother- in-law and, on his return home, he lived through an indescribable situation that he still cannot understand."

"'I was on my way to the smallhold where I live, and two animals crossed my path--a large one and a small one. One bit my leg while the other went for my face. I shielded myself with my arm to defend myself. Later I jumped into the Fiscal Canal" on the outskirts of Parral, near Temuco in southern Chile, "and managed to come up in front of my brother-in-law's house, with my clothing all ripped. They called the ambulance, and I was taken to the hospital, getting there at 5:30 a.m.'"

"The resident says that the creatures were tremendously strong and that he was in fear of his life all the time, since he still couldn't figure out what they were."

"'I think they may come back. I felt their claws...look at my body! They were always going for my face. I jumped into the canal because they couldn't go into the water. They followed me along the (canal's) edge and then flew away. They were dog-faced and had wings. This is not a normal situation, I told myself. They were much stronger than me. They got on top of me,' he noted."

"Meanwhile, the district attorney of Parral, Ricardo Encina, noted that the man's injuries had been evidenced but couldn't tell what had caused them."

"'He has, in fact, defensive injuries on his arms, shoulders and back. He's very affected by what happened. We've initiated actions such as a search of the site. We've spoken to the victim, and he has an appointment to see the physician. Then we'll know what we're up against.'"

"The district attorney dismissed the possibility that the wounds were caused by a human."

"'All I can think of is that it's not an attack by a person, since these aren't the cutting wounds we're used to seeing when a knife is involved. Nor does he show bruises, as though someone had given him a beating. Nor does he have the scratches characteristic of someone who falls down by being drunk. That's not what it is, but I couldn't tell you the exact nature of his injuries,' he stated."

"Ricardo Encina confirmed that a few days ago there were reports of hen slayings near Parral, but it wasn't possible to determine what kind of animal was involved." (See the Chilean newspaper Diario de la Discusion for July 5, 2004, "Alleged winged creatures cause panic among peasants." Muchas gracias a Scott Corrales para esto articulo de diario.)

(Editor's Comment: From Acuna's description, these entities resemble the winged, dog-like humanoids that haunt the cemeteries of Cambridge, Massachusetts, which H.P. Lovecraft wrote about in his 1926 short story "Pickman's Model.")


"On Wednesday, June 16, 2004, a veteran deputy sheriff in Lake County, Ohio and his wife observed an unusual triangular-shaped aircraft from two separate vantage points at nearly the same time."

"The wife spotted 'the unusual object while driving east along State Route 91 near the intersection" of Ohio Routes 91 and 306 "near Willoughby Hills, Ohio (population 8,595).

"Deputy Sheriff Kevin Coleman reported both sightings to the National UFO Reporting Center" in Seattle, Wash.

(Editor's Comment: There's that name again. And it's not

the last "Coleman" encountered this week, either.)

"Deputy Sheriff Coleman reports that the high-flying object he saw was traveling from west to east last Wednesday," June 16, 2004, "was nothing that he was familiar with. The object was apparently higher than a jet airliner that was also flying through that area."

"'I was concerned to find out if that object was just reflecting sunlight. But after studying this for the length of time that I could, it did not seem to change in intensity or seem to be reflecting light in any way,' he said, 'It had an angular shape to it, giving me the impression that it was self-luminous. In my opinion, it was self-luminous.'"

"'It was definitely traveling in an easterly direction of the Perry Nuclear Plant when I first saw it,' Coleman said, 'The thing seemed to slow down and get bigger. The object was just 'gone,' not accelerating or flew off somewhere; it simply disappeared. I had a good visual on it. There was no question about it moving off.'"

"The near simultaneous sighting by Coleman's wife of a boomerang-shaped aircraft hovering only 100 feet (30 meters) from the ground was far more dramatic, according to Coleman, and the duration of the sighting was over one minute and documented due to traffic circumstances."

"First viewed to her right and in a northerly direction, Coleman's wife thought the object was some type of military aircraft that was probably in a holding pattern. 'My wife thought the plane was somehow related to the events of September 11th (2001) or even in some kind of investigation related to 9/11, Coleman said." (Many thanks to Ohio ufologist Kenny Young for this report.)


On Monday, July 5, 2004, at 7 p.m., Joe M. "was in Castro Valley, California, on my patio, watching a commercial airliner about six miles (9,600 meters) up in the air, using a pair of Tasco binoculars. The skies were clear and blue with no clouds."

"I zeroed in on the tail fin of a jetliner. I was trying to see the commercial airline's logo that was on the tail fin, when I suddenly noticed above the tail fin, about a mile above the plane (at 11,200 meters), two white circular discs motionless in the air."

"I stopped following the plane and looked at the two discs with my binoculars. The discs were at an 8 o'clock and a 1 o'clock position on an imaginary clock. The white disc that was at an 8 o'clock position had a long white rod spinning around the disc. The other disc did not have any rod (moving) around it."

"I focused in as close as I could on these two white discs but, at seven miles high, it was hard to see if they had any port windows (portholes--J.T.) on them. There was definitely no strobe (navigational) lights on this craft like jet airliners have."

"At seven miles up, I could hear no sound at all."

"The discs were in the sky motionless for about five minutes. Then the spinning rod disappeared from the craft. It did not go in the craft. It just disappeared."

"Then, about five seconds after the rod disappeared, both craft just shot off at an astonishing speed towards the west and were gone from view in just a few seconds."

"Thinking back now, I think that the rod on the disc was recharging the one craft. Whether it was being recharged by the sun's rays or whatever was below the craft at seven miles down, I have no idea. It was truly an amazing sight to witness."

"I would estimate that, by looking at the commercial plane that was below these craft, the size of the two discs was an astounding quarter of a mile in diameter (about 1,400 feet or 420 meters--J.T.) Whatever these two craft were, I honestly believe the pilots flying them were not of this Earth. I have never seen any aircraft shaped like that or moving at such an astounding speed." (Email Form Report)


On Sunday, July 4, 2004, two hundred members of Grupo CAFE and Grupo Sirio-Mayab, two ufological groups in Mexico's Yucatan state, attended a skywatch in the city of Tikul.

Clear skies that Sunday night "allowed a light to be seen around 7 p.m. coming from the direction of a nearby radio mast. It first moved in a straight line and then descended somewhat before ascending again, all of this in a zigzag motion, which dismissed any possibility that it was a satellite."

"Seconds later, like maybe 20 (seconds), the object disappeared again, but this time upwards as if leaving the atmosphere. A video of the event was taken using a SONY Hi-8 camera. The person who shot the event was Prof. Silvestre Leal Campos, director of the Sirio-Mayab group."

Also witnessing the UFO's overflight were Jorge Castro Aledos and Guillermo Contreras Cruz, Grupo CAFE's correspondent in Tikul. (Muchas gracias a Scott Corrales y David Triay Lucatero del Grupo CAFE para estas noticias.)


On Monday, July 5, 2004, the male eyewitness reported, "I had just arrived home" at his apartment in Rosemont, a suburb of Montreal, in Quebec province, Canada "between 8:30 and 8:50 p.m. and took my guitar and then it all happened. The weather was cloudy and overcast. My balcony is on the third story and directly facing west. Looking to the horizon as I was strumming my guitar, I noticed an object way too low and bright to be an airplane. The brilliant red light was much too low to be classified as an airplane or a helicopter."

"The entire sighting lasted between 40 to 60 seconds, and (the object) then took an awkward plunge and rushed into itself. I could not determine the shape of the object because it was very bright, and the brightness increased and became intense."

"My wife also noticed her neighbourhood friend talking about the strange object and was concluding that it looked like something alien." (Many thanks to Canadian ufologist Brian Vike for this report.)


On Monday, July 5, 2004, at 7 p.m., "several self- luminous UFOs, of a potent magnitude with blue and white tints, flew from the east, the Rio de la Plata, to the northeast, over the Avenida Nueve de Julio, and to the barrio Santa Fe," in Buenos Aires, the capital of Argentina.

According to Argentinian ufologist Ricardo E. D'Angelo, "numerous objects" were seen in the northern part of the city, "from the dome of El Congreso (the Capitol building--J.T.) all the way north to the Rio Parana. I received reports from other ufologists in the northern part of the city, notably Carlos Turus and Daniel Valverdi, and they reported the bright objects over both the Rio de la Plata waterfront and the residential neighborhoods of Santa Fe. They described the event as 'a truly strange phenomenon.'" (Muchas gracias a Ricardo E. D'Angelo para estas noticias.)


"It sounds like something out of The X-Files."

"A mysterious force is rendering keyless car remote controls impotent in Waldorf," Maryland (population 22,312).

"Some frustrated drivers are looking skyward for the answer. But the experts say the fault isn't with UFOs or secret NASA satellites. It's radio interference."

"Keyless entry technology uses radio frequencies that aren't regulated by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)."

"Bruce Romano, who works in the Office of Engineering and Technology at the FCC says if there's interference, that's too bad. The primary user of that slice of the radio spectrum is the government."

"Officials say they'll decide if whatever car interference is from military or government transmissions."

Waldorf, Md. is on Route 5 about 25 miles (40 kilometers) south of Washington, D.C. (See the Baltimore Sun for July 6, 2004, "Mysterious force knocks out keyless entry systems." Many thanks to Jim Hickman, executive director of Skywatch International, for this report. Don't forget to visit Jim's Web site at www.thehickmanreport.com)

(Editor's Comment: I sure hope this isn't some goofy unexpected side-effect of the HAARP array.)


A new crop circle "was found near the village of Wylatowo" in Poland "the morning of Monday," July 5, 2004. "It is composed of four elements. There are two circles" measuring "6.0 meters (9.8 feet) and 9.5 meters (31.5 feet) in their diameter. Next, the third element was found--it is composed of 12 rings. Every ring is 12 meters (40 feet) in diameter and one meter (3.3 feet) wide. The fourth element of the agroformation measured 18.5 meters (61 feet) in diameter, and it has the ring with the circle inside."

Video of the Wylatowo crop circle was aired in the news broadcast of the show Panorama on Polish National Television Channel 2 on Tuesday, July 6, 2004, at 6:45 p.m. (Many thanks to Polish ufologists Robert K. Lesniakiewicz and Adam Piekut for this news story.)


"Thousands of sick Cambodians are flocking to the northern village of Phum Trapeang Chum to be cured by a mystical cow named Preah, who is curing their complaints, its owner has claimed."

"Puch Pich, a farmer, said up to 400 people have been turning up daily for the past two weeks to be slobbered over, after the 13-month-old white bovine apparently cured his wife, Kong Mich, of a chronic illness."

"People have been braving Cambodia's notoriously bad rainy season roads to travel here from around the nation, paying 500 riel (about 17 cents USA--J.T.) per person for four licks on the limb or body part of their choice."

"'The cow won't lick people who don't put in their money...and if she doesn't think you believe in her powers, she won't lick you, either,' Puch Pich said."

"Ros Sath, 68, told Agence France Presse that before he underwent the unconventional treatment he could barely walk a few meters, thanks to a stiff leg."

"'After the cow licked me four times, I felt comfortable again, and I can walk 300 to 400 meters without getting exhausted,' he said."

"The curative powers of Preah (Khmer for God--N.A.B.) were revealed when Kong Mich took the animal out to graze, said Puch Pich, who has owned the $445 cow for five months."

"'The cow was always wanting to lick my wife's arms and legs and, two months after she started, she completely recovered from an illness we'd spent a lot of money trying to fix,' he said, amid the chaos on his farm, which is located 90 kilometers (54 miles) north of Phnom Penh," the capital of Cambodia.

"The couple's theory was first tested on a 72-year- old visually-impaired from the village whom Puch Pich claimed regained his sight after four licks."

"'Then the news really spread,' he told AFP. Some of the hundreds of pilgrims are bringing water for 'take- away' licks while others are touching the grass the cow has touched while eating, hoping to store up some of its magic."

"Puch Pich attributes the cow's powers to its birthplace at the nearby farm commune of Banteay Rengver, which Cambodians believe was also the site of a mystical cow that was stolen by Cambodia's rival, Thailand, in ancient times."

(Editor's Note: UFO Roundup correspondent Krishnari Bai Dharapurnanda thinks the cow may be the reincarnation of a famous Hindu maharishi who lived in Kannauj, in Uttar Pradesh state, India back in 700 A.D.)

"Cambodians are highly superstitious, particularly in the countryside where people continue to blend animist practices with Buddhism." (See the New Straits Times for July 8, 2004, "Mystical cow licks away disease." Many thanks to Nguyen Ai Binh for this news story.)


Last week the Baltic nation of Estonia "was accused of amorality and gross historical insensitivity after it allowed veterans of the Nazi Waffen-SS to parade through its capital, Tallinn."

"The event saw veterans of the 20th Estonian SS Division attend a church service, lay flowers at a war memorial and attend a celebratory concert."

"The planned unveiling of a memorial to Estonian SS troops was cancelled at the last minute, however, and is not expected to take place until the autumn."

"Jewish groups pointed out that the Estonian volunteers of the SS were responsible for the almost- complete annihilation of the country's Jewish population during the Second World War (1939-1945)."

"The Tallinn City Council gave yesterday's (Tuesday, July 6, 2004) event its blessing. It said that it was 'a political matter' but, despite pressure to the contrary, failed to provide an explanation of why it had agreed to the comemmoration."

"When asked to comment, Estonia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said the matter was not within its conjecture, while a government spokesman who apparently specialises in the subject did not respond to inquiries."

"Officials said that anything concerning Estonia's SS fighters was 'highly sensitive.' Estonian SS units were formed in 1942 on the personal order of Adolf Hitler, whose troops then occupied the Baltic country. Their fighting prowess was said to have impressed the German Wehrmacht."

"Organisers said the celebration was held to mark the 60th anniversary of the battles fought by the Estonian SS against the Soviet Army and to comemmorate the 10th anniversary of the withdrawal of Russian troops from the country."

"Many Estonians regard the SS veterans as freedom fighters who fought alongside the Germans to stave off the Soviet occupation--the country was occupied by the Soviets before (1940) and after (1945) the war--and agree that they were military rather than fascist. They see nothing shameful or controversial in such events and view external (foreign) criticism as an attempt to blacken Estonia's name."

"Government sources say that Estonia is a free country that respects freedom of assembly and that the country's history is not as black and white as it is made out to be. Jewish groups strongly disagree."

"Yevgeny Satanovsky, president of the Russian Jewish Congress, said, 'The problem is that the SS is the same institution which had death squads (the Einsatzgruppen of World War II--J.T.). This meeting is absolutely amoral. They were members of a structure which was a structure of blood and death. Let their children look at their faces and see that there were rivers of (Jewish) blood in Estonia because of them.'"

"Mr. Satanovsky suggested that the country's apparently benign attitude towards SS veterans reflected ordinary Estonians' general indifference to the plight of the country's Jews."

"'Much of the population was absolutely neutral. They were not interested in the rivers of blood, in the extermination of their neighbours whom they had lived with peacefully for hundreds of years or in the assassination of women and children. Very few of them hid Jewish children. (But) they were interested in getting new property.'"

"Yesterday's event, organised by a group called the Union of Freedom Fighters, which claims 3,000 members, is not unprecedented. Similar events have been held eleven times since the country won its independence from the Soviet Union in 1991." (See the British newspaper The Independent for July 7, 2004, "Outrage as SS men hold anniversary celebration in Estonia." Many thanks to Gunther Steinert for this newspaper article.)


Sharp-eyed UFO Roundup reader Scott Ravers has found another "Lafayette" in the new hit movie Spider-Man 2.

Last week newsletter editor Joseph Trainor reported how he had seen the logo Lafayette News on a bookstore window behind the guitar-strumming Asian street singer. But that wasn't the only reference, Scott said.

"It's right after the scene where the coffee shop gets destroyed, and Doc Ock (Alfred Molina) runs off with Spider-Man's girlfriend (Kristen Dunst). Tobey Maguire looks through his glasses, and everything is blurry. He realizes that his spider powers are back. Then he lets his glasses drop to the sidewalk. In the background and right in front of Tobey is a corner street sign reading Lafayette Street and Astor Place."

(Editor's Comment: Another one developing "Lafayette vision!" Scott is absolutely right--I checked it out myself after I got his email. Yeah, like I needed an excuse to see this great movie again! That's two "Lafayettes" in one film. I can see one being a coincidence. But two!? What is going on here?)

Meanwhile, odd crimes and mysterious fires continued to feed the Fayette Factor last week.

"An Amber Alert has been issued across Indiana for Jacquelin Rodriguez Ortiz, 8, who was abducted today (Sunday, July 4, 2004) in Lafayette, Ind. (population 56,397) and is in extreme danger, police said."

"Carlos Alberto Ramirez Gonzalez, also known as Carlos A. Cordero, 26, took Jacquelin from the Cambridge Apartments at 2503 Grenadier Lane" in Lafayette, Ind., police said. "He and Jacquelin were seen leaving the site of the abduction in a gray, two-door, 1991 Ford Thunderbird with temporary (Indiana) plates, traveling in an unknown direction."

(Editor's Comment: There's your BOLO, readers. If you see this vehicle, call 911 immediately. The suspect might try to swap the Ford at a used-car lot.)

"Jacquelin is described as Hispanic. She is 4 feet, 6 inches tall, weighs 100 pounds, and has a scar on the right side of her chin. She was last seen around 6 a.m." on Sunday, July 4, 2004, "wearing a pink short-sleeve shirt, cream-colored capri pants with flowers and blue sandals."

In Pennsylvania, federal, state and local officials continued their manhunt for an alleged "phantom arsonist" who is still setting fires in Connellsville (population 9,146). On Thursday, July 8, 2004, KDKA-TV in Pittsburgh reported, "Federal, state and local fire officials are investigating yet another arson in this Fayette County community that's been plagued by" a series of mysterious fires.

"Connellsville police, fire and ATF (federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives--J.T.) are investigating another suspicious fire in the Fayette County town. The number of arsons has now reached 11 since the mysterious fires began in October (2003)."

In Tennessee, "a fire at the Cafe Lafayette caused smoke, fire and heat damage to the downtown Jackson, Tenn. restaurant early Sunday morning," July 4, 2004. "The Cafe Lafayette opened in January 2003."

In Louisiana, "a Lafayette man was killed by a lightning strike in Cameron, La. (population 1,965) on Thursday," July 8, 2004. "Hobert Wesley, 44, of Lafayette was pronounced dead at the scene. Two Lake Charles men, Wesley's co-workers, were the first to find him."

In Mississippi, "a Vicksburg man's bullet-riddled body was found after midnight" on Friday, July 9, 2004, "when a motorist reported it in a grassy area near Fayette and Cherry Streets" in Jackson, Miss., the state capital, police reported.

In Iowa, "an intense rainfall Monday evening," July 5, 2004, "in Fayette County uprooted trees, washed out bridges and sent holiday weekend campers scurrying for high ground." Seven inches of rain, plus hail, pummelled the county that evening, causing widespread flooding.

Finally, in North Carolina, "Raleigh police are investigating a shooting incident involving one of their own."

"It happened just after midnight Sunday morning," July 4, 2004, "at the Crown gas station at the corner of Capitol Boulevard and Brentwood Road."

"Police say Officer J.M. Rios tried to pull over a car believed to be stolen."

"When the car pulled into the gas station, Rios approached it."

"Then, police say, the driver, 23-year-old Robert Coleman, ran over Rios, pinning him beneath the car."

"That's when another officer, V.M. Espinoza, arrived and shot Coleman."

"Doctors at Wake Med treated and released Officer Rios."

"Coleman is in stable condition following surgery at Wake Med." (See the newspapers Indianapolis Star for July 4, 2004, "Girl's abduction triggers Amber Alert;" Jackson, Tenn. Sun for July 4, 2004, "Fire rips through area of Cafe Lafayette;" New Orleans Times-Picayune for July 9, 2004, "A death in Cameron blamed on lightning;" Jackson, Miss. Clarion-Ledger for July 10, 2004, "Six arrested, one sought after Vicksburg man shot to death;" and the Waterloo-Cedar Falls, Iowa Courier for July 6, 2004, "Fayette Co. area pelted by 7-inch rainfall, flood, hail Monday." Many thanks to Fortean researcher Loren Coleman for these newspaper articles.)

(Editor's Comment: How about that? Three Colemans in just this one issue of UFO Roundup. Great, just great-- now we have a Coleman Curse to go along with the Fayette Factor.)


"As the Cassini-Huygens spacecraft zooms away from Saturn on its first, sweeping orbital loop, it has left a wake of questions that has scientists buzzing about the craft's first pass by the moon Titan."

"Scientists expected to see oceans or lakes reflecting like mirrors from Titan's surface. Instead, Cassini sent back murky pictures obscured by moon clouds."

"'All of this is very mystifying,' Cassini's imaging team leader Carolyn Porco said Monday," July 5, 2004. 'We are trying to piece together a picture with really scant evidence.'"

"The (robot) ship snapped pictures and took instrument readings as it passed within 211,000 miles (353,000 kilometers) of Titan, about as close as Earth is to its own moon. The craft is soaring away from Saturn on the first orbit."

"Titan is the focus of the $3.27 billion mission, which will spend at least four years exploring Saturn's rings, moons, atmosphere and magnetic field. The multinational team of NASA, the European Space Agency and the Italian Space Agency launched the mission in 1997 with a focus on planet-like Titan because it is believed to be similar or primordial Earth."

"Cassini will be back near Saturn in about 50 days, and in October will pass within 750 miles (1,200 kilometers) of Titan. Once in a tight orbit, Cassini's regular passes within 600 miles (1,000 kilometers) will produce a steady stream of data."

"Until then, scientists can only debate what they've seen so far."

"The team wonders which of its assumptions were wrong. Are there no lakes or oceans, or is the haze in the atmosphere just much thicker than expected?"

"'It's not obvious to us what we are seeing,' Porco says, 'The paradigms we have are inadequate.'"

"Comparing Titan today to the Earth 4 billion years ago could be like opening a scientific time capsule, providing insight into the conditions in which life arose here."

"Or it could raise new questions."

"'It's going to take all of the instruments and all of us working together to work out the story of Titan's surface,' Porco says."

"Though clouds obscured the view, they also provided scientists with clues. A methane cloud near Titan's South Pole is made up of unusually large particles, suggesting something is brewing below."

"And scientists were able to look for the first time at the surface, using an infrared mapping spectrometer that cut through the haze, to map minerals and chemicals."

"'We have indeed seen Titan's surface with unprecedented clarity,' said Dennis Matson, one of the project scientists. When the ship gets closer to Titan in coming months, the scientists will use radar to map the surface in greater detail."

In addition, Cassini's plunge past Saturn last week revealed a startlingly beautiful look at the planet's rings of ice and dust, scientists said Wednesday," July 7, 2004.

"Cassini's Ultraviolet Imaging Spectrograph Team, led by Larry Esposito of the University of Colorado-Boulder, reports that the images show more ice lingers in the outer-edge subrings of the A, B and C main rings. The inner parts of the rings appear dirtier and could contain smaller ice particles, says Josh Cowell, a member of the team."

"'The pictures look almost psychedelic,' he says."

"Through more refined looks at the data, the team hopes to determine whether the dirtier ringlets formed in place around Saturn or as a result of micrometeorites contaminating the rings." (See USA Today for July 6, 2004, "Pictures from Titan have scientists puzzled," page 5D; and for July 8, 2004, "Images of Saturn's rings hint at their origin," page 4D.)



Portuguese ufologist Joaquim Fernandes writes, "I just learned from a former Portuguese Air Force Chief of Staff that the alleged missile launch against the UFO that crossed Portugal and the south of Spain (on June 1, 2004-- J.T.) never occurred."

"In fact, if the Air Force bases were put on alert, the incident would have stopped there--at that level. So there was no fired launch against the intruder. Maybe an inexact reading of the newspapers determined that rumour."

"It is important that these matters should be examined by the scientific authorities and not within the framework of popular beliefs that transform information into an ongoing urban legend."


Another Portuguese ufologist, Gregorio Sao Xavier, took the opposite tack. Asked to comment, he wrote, "What I stated in the last email was true. If it (the missile) was truly launched, I do not know. But I don't expect the military to tell all of its secrets to Sr. Fernandes. It would alarm people on the eve of EURO 2004."

"If they launched and didn't tell, they did good. More I personally don't know."


Terry Duckworth wrote, "About Tsathoggua--that was one of the oldest religions on the lost continent of Atlantis. It went back to the early Stone Age, long before the Atlanteans discovered the giant crystals. Atlantis went through a Bronze Age of its own, almost a hundred millenia ago."

"Betcha didn't know that Myrina, the queen of the Amazons, put together a pan-European army and occupied the lost continent way back when. Look it up, Joe. It's in Chapter 53 of Historical Library by Diodorus Siculus."

"Anyway, not only did Klarkash-ton introduce the worship of Tsathoggua to the Atlanteans, he also founded the Black Circle with his fellow wizard Eichpi-El and a young kinsman, Arii-Eich. This was the beginning of organized wizardry, although I suspect the Lords of Shambhala were around back then, too."

"Ever heard the Hymn to Tsathoggua? Sing along if you know the melody."

             "Retarded, ha-ha!"
             "Let's get retarded in here."
             "Nod your head like Tsathoggua."
             "Sing his magick song."
             "Ribbit! Ribbit!"

(Editor's Comment: Uh, Terry, if you sing that in Bayou St. Charles after sunset, you're liable to get shot by some Cajun.)

From the UFO Files...


There are three cases in the annals of science that could not have possibly happened...yet they did.

(1) "As two gentlemen were sitting conversing on a causeway pillar near Bushmills (UK), they were very much surprised by an unusually heavy shower of frogs, half formed, falling in all directions; some of which are preserved in spirits of wine, and are now exhibited to the curious by the two resident apothecaries (now called pharmacists--J.T.) in Bushmills."

"Mr. Loudon also observes, when at Rouen (France), in September last (1829), 'we were assured by an English family resident there, that during a very heavy thunder shower, accompanied by violent wind, and almost midnight darkness, an innumerable multitude of young frogs fell on or around the house."

"The roof, the window-sills, and the gravel walks were covered with them. They were very small, but perfectly formed, all dead, and the next day being excessively hot, they were dried up to so many points or pills, about the size of heads of pins."

"The most obvious way of accounting for this phenomenon is by supposing the water and frogs of some adjoining ponds to have been taken up by the wind in a sort of whirl or tornado." (Arcana of Science, 217, 1830)

(2) "On Thursday week, during a heavy thunder-storm, the rain poured down in torrents mixed with half-melted ice (hail), and, incredible as it may appear, hundreds of small fishes and frogs in great abundance descended with torrents of rain" in Derby, UK, July 17, 1841.

"The frogs were from the size of a horse-bean to that of a garden-bean; numbers of them came down alive, and jumped away as fast as they could, but the bulk were killed by the fall on the hard pavement. We have seen some alive today, which appear to enjoy themselves, in a glass with water and leaves in it." (The Athenaeum, 542, 1841)

(3) W. Winter reported, "I was out insect-catching by the side of the river Waveney" in UK "about a quarter-past nine on a Friday night, when a thunder-storm came on. I ran for shelter to the buildings at Aldeby Hall. The rain came down in torrents."

"Just before I was clear of the fens I observed some small toads on my arms, and several fell in my net, and on the ground and paths there were thousands. I am quite sure there were none in my net before I started, as I took a Leucania pudorina out of it. I believe they fell with the rain out of the clouds. Can you enlighten me on the subject? Two other persons have told me that they met with the same occurrence some distance from the spot in which I was situated." (Zoologist, 18:7146, 1859)

In 1929, H.P. Lovecraft ghost-wrote a short story for Zealia Bishop entitled "The Mound." Ms. Bishop sold this tale to Weird Tales, and it was published over a decade later. In this story, Lovecraft makes his first mention of the weird deity called Tsathoggua (pronounced zuh-THOG- you-ah--J.T.), describing it as a giant frog or toad.

"When the men of K'n-Yan went down into N'kai's black abyss with their great atom-power searchlights they found living things--living things that oozed along stone channels and worshipped onyx and basalt images of Tsathoggua. But they were not toads like Tsathoggua himself," HPL wrote.

It is interesting to note that Lovecraft read Charles Fort's book New Lands in 1928, just before he wrote "The Mound."

In New Lands, Fort wrote, "July 31, 1921--a shower of little frogs that fell upon Anton Wagner's farm near Stirling, Connecticut," citing a newspaper story that appeared in the New York Evening World of August 1, 1921.

Lovecraft could have been influenced by Fort. Then again, HPL might have had first-hand knowledge of the Stirling "frog-fall." Lovecraft routinely rode the trolley to the Greene section of Coventry, Rhode Island during 1921. Stirling, Conn. is only a three-mile hike on Route 114 from Greene village in Rhode Island. He might have heard of the incident from Stirling residents and, encountering it once again in the pages of Fort, used it as the basis for the creation of Tsathoggua.

On the other hand, New Age enthusiasts might claim that Tsathoggua him-her-itself is responsible for these occasional wacky "frog-falls."

Me, I'm still puzzling over Fort's statement: "We shall measure an existence by its frogs." (See the books The Annotated H.P. Lovecraft, edited by S.T. Joshi, Dell Publishing, 1997, page 272; Handbook of Unusual Natural Phenomena by William R. Corliss, The Sourcebook Project, Glen Arm, Maryland, 1977, pages 482 and 483; and The Complete Books of Charles Fort, Dover Publications Inc., New York, N.Y., 1974, pages 524 and 525.)

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

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