Monday, 24 October 2016

"OPREP-3" - A Classified US Military Reporting 

Channel For UFO Incidents?

Part 6

  

Previously, in Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3 of this series, I highlighted a number of occasions, during the 1970’s, where the US military’s OPREP–3 reporting system has been used to alert top–level military commands and components of provocative UFO activity near military bases. In Part 4, I highlighted a category of OPREP–3 reporting which was specifically designed for the North American Aerospace Defence Command (NORAD) and Aerospace Defence Command (ADCOM), to report general unknown radar tracks, and, “Unidentified Flying Objects – UFOs”. In Part 5, I moved on from the actual OPREP–3 reporting of UFOs, and into the fallout that some of these post–Project Blue Book UFO events caused within the US military and intelligence community. In summary, what started out as a brief appraisal of the OPREP–3 reporting system, specifically in relation to apparent UFO incidents, has morphed into a wider study of declassified documents which deal with UFO case investigation, evaluation and high level concern long after the US government relieved itself, publicly, of the UFO headache.

In this Part 6, I will continue my study, this time focusing on records released by the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) and the National Military Command Center (NMCC) in relation to a series of possible UFO events over Malmstrom Air Force Base, Montana. These events, which occurred in November, 1975, followed similar aerial intrusions over Wurthsmith AFB, Michigan, Loring AFB, Maine, and Falconbridge AFS in Ontario, Canada. Minot AFB in North Dakota, and other bases were likewise affected by unidentified activity during the same period. Most of these bases were assigned to the United States Air Force’s (USAF) Strategic Air Command (SAC), and, had nuclear weapons. This unusual chapter in UFO history only came to light after researchers Barry Greenwood, Robert Todd, Lawrence Fawcett and Todd Zechel used the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to obtain pertinent records from military agencies and commands.

On the 24th of December, 1979, researcher Robert Todd submitted a Freedom of Information (FOI) request to the Office of the Organisation of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (OJCS) asking to be provided with any records which contained references to “unidentified flying objects”, “unknown objects” and “UFOs”. Todd also asked for possible weather analysis records which related to reported UFO events. It may be important to note that Todd didn’t ask that the entire OJCS and all its components be searched. Rather, he restricted his request to records held only by the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS), and, the National Military Command Center (NMCC), which was, and still is, part of the JCS Operations Directorate. Also, Todd stated that he was already in possession of some JCS and NMCC records, obtained previously by researcher Barry Greenwood, and that he wanted the same material released, plus a new search conducted for anything missed.

On the 18th of January, 1980, Charles W. Hinkle, the Director, Freedom of Information and Security Review, Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defence, replied to Todd, stating:

“The Office of the Organisation of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (OJCS) is prepared to provide the 123 NMCC memorandums for the record upon receipt of payment for search and reproduction. Three of the memorandums will be sanitized to delete currently classified information that reveals military tactical capabilities.”

While still extraordinary, the figure of “123 Memorandums for the Record” was somewhat inaccurate. Firstly, Todd did eventually receive 123 documents, but many were near–identical duplicate copies of one another. Secondly, some of the documents were not technically “Memorandums for the Record”, but were actually NMCC “Deputy Director of Operations Talker” messages, or, “DDO Talkers”. Whatever the specifics, Todd had acquired about forty unique NMCC records involving “UFO incidents”, “UFO analysis”, “UFO sightings” and “unusual phenomena”. Also contained in Charles W. Hinkle’s reply letter to Todd was the statement:

“With reference to your request for copies of requests for temperature inversion analysis, and message responses to such inquiries, the OJCS advises that no documents have been found that would be responsive.”

This final statement was wholly incorrect. The NMCC, in fact, did have “temperature inversion analysis” records, and, they specifically related to “sightings of unusual phenomena” and “UFOs”, as we shall see in due course. Charles W. Hinkle’s reply letter to Todd is imaged below.



Dated the 8th of November, 1975, and signed by the NMCC’s DDO, Brig. Gen. Wilman D. Barnes, is a two page “Memorandum For The Record” which concerns persistent radar and visual sightings around Malmstrom AFB. The events were still occurring at the time the NMCC memorandum was authored. It is important to note that Malmstrom was the home of the 341st Missile Wing which controlled silo–based Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles (ICBM) equipped with nuclear warheads. The memorandum reads:

“Subject: Unidentified Sightings

1. 0308 EST FONECON from NORAD Command Director: at 0253 EST Malmstrom AFB Montana received seven radar cuts on the height–finder radar at altitudes between 9,500’ and 15,500’. Simultaneously, ground witnesses observed lights in the sky and the sounds of jet engines similar to jet fighters. Cross–tell with FAA revealed no jet aircraft within 100NM of the sightings. Radar tracked the objects over Lewistown, Montana at a speed of seven (7) knots. Two F–106 interceptors from the 24th NORAD Region were scrambled at 0254 EST and became airborne at 0257 EST. At the time of the initial voice report personnel at Malmstrom AFB and SAC sites K1, K3, L3 and L6 were reporting lights in the sky accompanied by jet engine noise.

2. 0344 EST FONECON, same source:

Objects could not be intercepted. Fighters had to maintain a minimum 12,000’ because of mountainous terrain. Sightings had turned west, increased speed to 150 knots. Two tracks were apparent on height–finder radars 10–12 NM apart. SAC Site K3 reported sightings between 300’ and 1,000’ while site L–4 reported sightings 5NM NW of their position. Sightings disappeared from radar at position 4650N/10920W at a tracked speed of three (3) knots.

3. At 0440 EST, NMCC initiated contact with the NORAD Command director who reported the following:

0405 EST: Malmstrom receiving intermittent tracks on both search and height–finder radars. SAC site C–1, 10NM SE of Stanford, Montana, reported visual sightings of unknown objects.

0430 EST: Personnel at 4 SAC sites reported observing inter–cepting F–106’s arrive in area; sighted objects turn off their lights upon arrival of interceptors, and back on upon their departure.

0440 EST: SAC site C–1 still had a visual sighting on objects.

4. NORAD stated that Northern Lights will sometimes cause phenomena such as this on height–finder radars, but their check with weather services revealed no possibility of Northern Lights.

5. NMCC notified Washington FAA at 0445 EST of the incidents described above. They had not received any information prior to this time.

6. 0522 EST FONECON with NORAD Command Director: At 0405 EST SAC Site L–5 observed one object accelerate and climb rapidly to a point in altitude where it became indistinguishable from the stars. NORAD will carry this incident as a FADE remaining UNKNOWN at 0320 EST. since after that time only visual sightings occurred.”

While it is not my aim to study the events themselves, it is worth discussing a few key points regarding the above listed incidents, in addition to studying the document itself. From the outset, we see involvement from NORAD’s Command Director, who provided the NMCC with a chronological timeline of events as reported by Malmstrom AFB between 3:08am EST until 5:22am. As for the unusual occurrences themselves, we see, on one hand, that “…ground witnesses observed lights in the sky and the sounds of jet engines similar to jet fighters…” while height finding radar was “simultaneously” receiving returns. Logic would suggest that a stray combat jet was in the vicinity of Malmstrom AFB. However, the text immediately goes on to state that “…Cross–tell with FAA revealed no jet aircraft within 100NM of the sightings. Radar tracked the objects over Lewistown, Montana at a speed of seven (7) knots.”. High performance aircraft do not loll about at seven knots, and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) could provide no insight into the sightings.

As strange lights in the sky persisted, a pair of F–106 interceptors, assigned to the 24th NORAD Region, were scrambled at 2:54am EST with the purpose of making contact with whatever, if anything, was flying around. The highly capable F–106 interceptors failed to locate anything. Mountainous terrain apparently made for difficult search–and–intercept conditions, and, one could argue that there may have been, in fact, nothing there to find in the first place. When two independent radar systems, however, are involved, things get a bit more alarming. At 4:05am EST, Malmstrom AFB was “…receiving intermittent tracks on both search and height–finder radars…”, while, seemingly at the same time, “…SAC site C–1… …reported visual sightings of unknown objects.”. At 0430am EST, “…Personnel at 4 SAC sites reported observing inter–cepting F–106’s arrive in area; sighted objects turn off their lights upon arrival of interceptors, and back on upon their departure.”. Other key points include the fact that NORAD ruled out northern lights, and, the NMCC “notified Washington FAA… …of the incidents”. Finally, the NORAD Command Director logged the duel radar hit at 4:05am incident as a faded “unknown”. The two page memorandum is imaged below.



During the 1970’s, the NMCC produced short, internal messages known as “DDO Talkers”. “DDO” refers to the NMCC’s “Deputy Director of Operations”. A “DDO Talker” message can be followed by a “DDO Update”. An 8th of November “DDO Update” message, regarding the unusual events over Malmstrom AFB, reads:

“UFO SIGHTING

(U) From 080253 EST Nov 75 to 080420 EST Nov 75, Malmstrom AFB MT and four SAC sites reported a series of visual and radar contacts with unidentified flying objects. Several reports from the same locations included jet engine sounds associated with the observed bright lights. Two interceptors scrambled from the 24th NORAD Region failed to make contact with the UFO’s.

(U) The UFO sightings occurred on an extremely clear night. Visibility was 45 miles. Although northern lights will cause phenomena similar to the received reports, weather services indicated no possibility of the northern lights during the period in question. (SOURCE: NMCC MFR 080600 EST NOV 75.”

The subject–line phrase “UFO SIGHTING” demonstrates a willingness to use the much shunned term “UFO”, and, a willingness to do so within the highest levels of military command. Moreover, the passage of text reading “…a series of visual and radar contacts with unidentified flying objects…” leaves no doubt that command level authorities believed they were dealing with something tangible and unidentifiable, which, especially when confirmed on radar systems, contextualises and defines a true UFO event. Additionally, even if mundane explanations could account for all this, it is abundantly clear that national security was foremost in the minds of those involved. Clearly, command level staff, assigned to SAC and NORAD, assumed dealing with unknown entities above one of the world’s largest launch–ready nuclear missile fields, and this speaks volumes. Needless to say, none of these events were ever solved. The above mentioned “DDO Update” is imaged here.



Another “DDO Update” message regarding the unusual events above Malmstrom AFB, dated the 9th of November, 1975 reads:

“1. UFO INCIDENT OF 8 NOVEMBER 1975

A follow–up with NORAD at 090430 EST provided no additional information. (LTG Smith had indicated his continuing interest in fonecon with DDO OT#4 on 8 November”

Again, the term “UFO” is readily utilised in the subject–line. Also of interest is the reference to a “LTG Smith” who had indicated his “continuing interest” in the situation. “LTG Smith” probably refers to Gen. William Y. Smith, USAF, who, in 1975, was the Assistant to the Chairman of the Organization of the Joint Chiefs (OJCS) of Staff. Here we see, in black and white, a Lieutenant General, the second highest rank in the USAF, giving attention to a what–is–described as a UFO event. This “DDO Update” is imaged below.



Two days later, on the 11th of November, 1975, another “DDO Update” message was produced by the NMCC DDO. It reads:

“CJCS COMMENTS RE UFO INCIDENT

(U) CJCS, at 10 Nov Morning briefing, indicated that when UFO sightings are reported, the NMCC should ask for temperature gradients in the area (i.e., for possible aloft inversions). The CJCS also questioned the advisability of scrambling aircraft against reported UFOs.”

This could not be clearer. The subject–line reads “CJCS COMMENTS RE UFO INCIDENT”. As we know, “CJCS” refers to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The CJCS is “…is the principal military adviser to the President, the National Security Council, and the Secretary of Defence…” as described by “10 U.S. Code § 151 – Joint Chiefs of Staff: Composition; Functions”. At the time, the CJCS was Gen. George S. Brown, USAF. Not only was he was briefed about alarming UFO activity at the 10th of November, 1975, morning meeting, he was also adding to the decision making process. Firstly, Gen. Brown indicated that the NMCC should embark on weather analysis “when UFO sightings are reported”, and, secondly, he “questioned the advisability” of scrambling combat jets “against reported UFOs”. This provocative NMCC “DDO Update” is imaged below.



Gen. Brown’s recommendations were quickly implemented. Produced on the 13th of October, 1975, is an NMCC “Memorandum For The Record” with the subject–line “Requests for Temperature Inversion Analysis”. Signed by the NMCC’s DDO, Brig. Gen. C. D. Roberts, it reads:

“Subject: Requests for Temperature Inversion Analysis

1. LTC Schmidt, representing Air Force Global Weather Central (AFGWC), visited the NMCC at 131500 EST to discuss arrangements to implement the procurement of weather information desired by CJCS, which is the subject of DDO Environmental Services memo of 13 November 1975. The following agreements with LTC Schmidt were reached:

a. The West Hem Desk Officer will act as the control officer for temperature inversion analysis requests initiated by the NMCC. These requests will be made in conjunction with sightings of unusual phenomenon along the northern US border.

b. Each telephone request will be serialized, i.e., (TIA #1 etc.) and directed to the duty officer at AFGWC, autovon 8661661 or 271–2586. AFGWC will provide the requested analyses by telephone followed up by a priority message.

c. A record of the serialized requests/responses will be maintained by the West Hem Desk Officer.”

Here we see that the USAF’s Global Weather Central (AFGWC) agency was tasked with supplying the NMCC with localised weather data during “…sightings of unusual phenomenon along the northern US border…”. Specifically, the USAF–controlled “West Hemisphere Desk” (WEST HEM DESK), which functionally supported the NMCC in the 1970’s, was to request temperature inversion analysis (TIA) product from AFGWC, and furnish it to NMCC operations staff immediately. This memorandum is imaged below.



Following on from this memorandum, is a “DDO Update” message, dated the 13th of November, 1975, which reads:

“UFO ANALYSIS

(U) In future UFO sightings, the WEST HEM Desk Officer will initiate telephone requests to the Senior Duty Officer at the Air Force Global Weather Central (AFGWC) for a temperature inversion analysis in the vicinity of unusual sightings. The telephone response by AFGWC will be followed with a priority message. (SOURCE: NMCC MFR 132025 EST NOV 75)”

So now its “UFO ANALYSIS” for the subject line! This “DDO Update” is simply an outgoing message implementing Brig. Gen. C. D. ’Roberts aforementioned memorandum. It makes clear that temperature inversion analysis will be conducted by AFGWC through the West Hem desk for the NMCC when “unusual sightings” occur. There is no doubt now that the unknown aerial activity at Malmstrom AFB, and other bases, was being taken seriously by the NMCC for the Joint Chiefs of Staff. As always, this document is imaged below.




          It is probably important to note that the released records which discuss weather analysis were not originally released to Robert Todd when his FOI request was finalised on the 18th of January. It was actually three months later, on the 20th of April, 1980, that Barry Greenwood managed to have the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defence admit to ownership of the documents. As I have mentioned, Charles W. Hinkle, the Director, Freedom of Information and Security Review, Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defence, had told Todd that “…With reference to your request for copies of requests for temperature inversion analysis… …no documents have been found that would be responsive…”. Either the OJCS was being dishonest with Todd, or, they simply didn’t locate some of the records which obviously did exist. Either way, this brings into question just how many other UFO–related JCS and NMCC documents may have been deliberately withheld, or, legitimately missed. Furthermore, as mentioned, Todd, nor anyone else, asked the entire Organisation of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (OJCS) and all its components be searched for UFO related records. Only the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) and its National Military Command Center (NMCC) were stipulated in FOI requests, so it is entirely possible that other material was being held.

To conclude, this series has morphed into the analysis of wider US military UFO investigation, analysis and obviously high level concern. The USAF’s long running UFO study program, Project Blue Book, was, with the assistance of Dr. Edward U. Condon’s flawed Colorado University “UFO Study”, shut down in 1970. Hence, no agency or desk in the US military would be accepting UFO reports, and there most certainly would not be any investigation. A 1993 version of the USAF’s “Fact Sheet” on UFOs, with the title “Unidentified Flying Objects And Air Force Project Blue Book: Fact Sheet”, states that “Since the termination of Project Blue Book, nothing has occurred that would support a resumption of UFO investigations by the Air Force…” Clearly, this is hogwash. The 1975 over flights, and the fallout they created, is at odds with the official line. Even if all these events had mundane explanations, those involved evidently thought they dealing with something very unusual. The ceaseless use of the term “UFO” and “unidentified flying object”, along with terms such as “analysis”, is very hard to reconcile with mere helicopter flights and a few bright stars. In the end, of course, the full resources of a dozen USAF components and major commands, plus a long list of other agencies, never came to any conclusion. Contained in Part 7 of this series will be yet more documentation, much of which has never been seen. 

Monday, 10 October 2016

"OPREP-3" - A Classified US Military Reporting 

Channel For UFO Incidents?

Part 5

  

Recently, in Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4 of this series, I have highlighted the use of the US military’s OPREP–3 system to report apparent UFO events which have occurred over military installations, and, in air defence environments. OPREP–3 is short for “Operational Reporting – 3”, one of a number of distinct categories of operational report channels. A December, 1993 dated Instruction, titled “Joint Reporting Structure Event and Incident Reports”, and promulgated by the Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff (CJCS), establishes that:

“The OPREP–3 reporting system… …is used by military units at any level of command to report significant events and incidents to the highest levels of command.”.

As I have previously outlined in this series, both Loring AFB and Wurtsmith AFB were, in late 1975, the scene of unusual and unexpected “over flights” or “intrusions” by objects variously described as “unidentified helicopters”, “unknown helicopters”, “unidentified flying objects”, “unknown objects” and “UFOs”. Both these bases were under USAF Stratigic Air Command (SAC) control, and both held nuclear weapons. These events were reported, via the OPREP–3 channel, to the National Military Command Center (NMCC), the Strategic Air Command Headquarters (SAC HQ), the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (CJCS), the USAF’s Major Command Coordination Center (MCCC), the North American Aerospace Defence Command (NORAD), the USAF’s Air Force Intelligence Service, (AFIS), the 8th Air Force’s Headquarters (8AF HQ), and a number of other components within the US military and intelligence community. Also, other SAC bases, including Malmstrom AFB and Minot AFB, plus Canada’s Falconbridge Air Station, were likewise intruded on by unidentified aircraft, or, at minimum, some sort of unusual phenomena. As the months went on into 1976, other USAF installations, including Fort Richie AFB, Cannon AFB and Eglin AFB were the scene of similar aerial disturbances. Judging by tantalising references in officially released records, there may have been similar events at other US military installations too.

I will not overly detail each of the events, at each base, here. Such work has been published previously, and in great detail. The 1984 book “Clear Intent”, later published as “UFO Cover Up: What the Government Won’t Say”, by researchers Barry Greenwood and Lawrence Fawcett, remains the most detailed, and fully referenced, work regarding the 1975 “over flights”. In fact, the chapters of “Clear Intent” which detail these odd events are available online. To read about the events at Loring AFB, see hereFor the events at Malmstrom AFB see here. Finally, the Wurtsmith AFB events, and those at other bases, can be seen here.

In this Part 5, I will be highlighting never–before–seen US military documents which demonstrate, unmistakably, a considerable level of investigation done into the 1975 “over flights”. I will not attempt to assemble the entire investigative history that was performed by interested commands and agencies, as such an undertaking would probably require a book–length treatment, and, many of the documents involved remain classified, or, will have been presumably destroyed. Rather, I will present, and briefly discuss, a mixture of records which simply provide a snapshot of government UFO investigation, evaluation, and very high level concern.

A few years beforehand, as 1969 rolled over into 1970, the USAF’s long running UFO study program, Project Blue Book, was, with the assistance of Dr. Edward U. Condon’s flawed Colorado University “UFO Study”, shut down. It is commonly accepted that, from 1970 onwards, the US military ceased accepting UFO reports, and, furthermore, would certainly not investigate or evaluate them. A 1993 version of the USAF’s shameful UFO “Fact Sheet”, titled “Unidentified Flying Objects And Air Force Project Blue Book: Fact Sheet”, states:

“Since the termination of Project Blue Book, nothing has occurred that would support a resumption of UFO investigations by the Air Force…”

This statement, as we shall see, is absolute nonsense, and no amount of trickery by debunkers can change that fact.

Between 1977 and 1983, the details of the 1975 wave of unknown entities flying over military bases became alarmingly clear. During that time, researchers Barry Greenwood, Lawrence Fawcett and Robert Todd, were submitting literally hundreds of FOI requests to dozens of US military commands and centers, and even non–military entities like the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), for UFO or “over flight” records. Almost every single FOI request resulted in an admission that classified records were being held, and, thousands of pages were actually released. As stated above, I aim to concentrate on material which highlights investigation, evaluation and high level concern by the US military, while moving away from initial reports and base alerts.

In a five part telex, released to researcher Robert Todd on the 25th of April, 1980, by Col. James Rodeen, Director of Administration, Aerospace Defence Command (ADCOM), the situation over five US and Canadian bases is made very clear. The 11th of November, 1975, telex was sent from the NORAD Commander–in–Chief (CINCNORAD) at Ent AFB in Colorado, to the Chief of Staff, USAF, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (CJCS), the Canadian Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), and the Commander–in–Chief, Strategic Air Command (CINCSAC). The contents act as a reasonable summary, though rather brief, of the situation over Loring AFB, Wurtsmith AFB, Malmstrom AFB, Minot AFB, and Canadian Forces Station Falconbridge. With slight changes in formatting, for ease–of–reading purposes, the message states in full:

“SUBJ: SUSPICIOUS UNKNOWN AIR ACTIVITY
THIS MESSAGE IN FIVE PARTS.

PART I. SINCE 28 OCT 75 NUMEROUS REPORTS OF SUSPICIOUS OBJECTS HAVE BEEN RECEIVED AT THE NORAD COC. RELIABLE MILITARY PERSONNEL AT LORING AFB, MAINE, WURTSMITH AFB, MICHIGAN, MALMSTROM AFB, MT, MINOT AFB, ND, AND CANADIAN FORCES STATION, FALCONBRIDGE, ONTARIO, CANADA, HAVE VISUALLY SIGHTED SUSPICIOUS OBJECTS.

PART II. OBJECTS AT LORING AND WURTSMITH WERE CHARACTERIZED TO BE HELICOPTERS. MISSILE SITE PERSONNEL, SECURITY ALERT TEAMS, AND AIR DEFENSE PERSONNEL AT MALMSTROM MONTANA REPORT AN OBJECT WHICH SOUNDED LIKE A JET AIRCRAFT. FAA ADVISED THERE WERE NO JET AIRCRAFT IN THE VICINITY. MALMSTROM SEARCH AND HEIGHT FINDER RADARS CARRIED THE OBJECT BETWEEN 9,500 FT. AND 15,600 FT. AT A SPEED OF SEVEN KNOTS. THERE WAS INTERMITTENT RADAR CONTACT WITH THE OBJECT FROM 080753Z THRU 09002 NOV. 75. F–106S SCRAMBLED FROM MALMSTROM COULD NOT MAKE CONTACT DUE TO DARKNESS AND LOW ALTITUDE. SITE PERSONNEL REPORTED THE OBJECT AS LOW AS 200 FT AND SAID THAT AS THE INTERCEPTORS APPROACHED THE LIGHTS WENT OUT. AFTER THE INTERCEPTORS HAD PASSED THE LIGHTS CAME ON AGAIN, ONE HOUR AFTER THEY RETURNED TO BASE. MISSILE SITE PERSONNEL REPORTED THE OBJECT INCREASED TO A HIGH SPEED, RAISED IN ALTITUDE AND COULD NOT BE DISCERNED FROM THE STARS.

PART III. MINOT AFB ON 10 NOV REPORTED THAT THE BASE WAS BUZZED BY A BRIGHT OBJECT THE SIZE OF A CAR AT AN ALTITUDE OF 1000 TO 2000 FT. THERE WAS NO NOISE EMITTED BY THE VEHICLE.

PART IV. THIS MORNING, 11 NOV 75, CFS FALCONBRIDGE REPORTED SEARCH AND HEIGHT FINDER RADAR PAINTS ON AN OBJECT 25 TO 30 NAUTICAL MILES SOUTH OF THE SITE RANGING IN ALTITUDE FROM 26,000 FT. TO 72,000 FT. THE SITE COMMANDER AND OTHER PERSONNEL SAY THE OBJECT APPEARED AS A BRIGHT STAR BUT MUCH CLOSER. WITH BINOCULARS THE OBJECT APPEARED AS A 100 FT. DIAMETER SPHERE AND APPEARED TO HAVE CRATERS AROUND THE OUTSIDE.

PART V. BE ASSURED THAT THIS COMMAND IS DOING EVERYTHING POSSIBLE TO IDENTIFY AND PROVIDE SOLID FACTUAL INFORMATION ON THESE SIGHTINGS. I HAVE ALSO EXPRESSED MY CONCERN TO SAFOI THAT WE COME UP SOONEST WITH A PROPOSED ANSWER TO QUERIES FROM THE PRESS TO PREVENT OVERREACTION BY THE PUBLIC TO REPORTS BY THE MEDIA THAT MAY BE BLOWN OUT OF PROPORTION. TO DATE EFFORTS BY AIR GUARD HELICOPTERS, SAC HELICOPTERS AND NORAD F–106S HAVE FAILED TO PRODUCE POSITIVE ID.”

On one hand, statements like “Objects at Loring and Wurtsmith were characterized to be helicopters…” and “There was intermittent radar contact with the object…” imply that the unknowns were indeed, at Wurtsmith and Loring at least, just helicopters, and, at Malmstrom, nothing may have been in the skies at all. However, a sizeable number of details presented here are anything but mundane. What do we make of the fact that, at Falconbridge:

“…search and height finder radar paints on an object 25 to 30 nautical miles south of the site ranging in altitude from 26,000 ft. to 72,000 ft. The site commander and other personnel say the object appeared as a bright star but much closer. With binoculars the object appeared as a 100 ft. diameter sphere and appeared to have craters around the outside.”

And at Minot AFB:

“Minot AFB on 10 Nov reported that the base was buzzed by a bright object the size of a car at an altitude of 1000 to 2000 ft. There was no noise emitted by the vehicle.”

No one fail to see that these reported particulars characterize something very unusual. Finally, it is important to note that the CINCNORAD exhibits quite a degree of concern over the situation:

“Be assured that this command is doing everything possible to identify and provide solid factual information on these sightings. I have also expressed my concern to SAFOI that we come up soonest with a proposed answer to queries from the press to prevent overreaction by the public to reports by the media that may be blown out of proportion. To date efforts by air guard helicopters, SAC helicopters and NORAD F–106s have failed to produce positive ID.”

So the CINCNORAD has “expressed” his “concern” to the Secretary of the Air Force, Office of Information (SAFOI) that the public and press may show unwanted interest in these events? Seeing as NORAD, and other commands, still hadn’t, after two weeks, provided any explanations whatsoever for the unusual events, it isn’t surprising that they had become anxious. NORAD was doing “everything possible to identify and provide solid factual information on these sightings…”. This statement also demonstrates, as it should, a high level concern. Also, considering that many of initial reports were more “UFO–like” than descriptions of simple helicopters or airplanes, it is quite evident that NORAD had essentially shifted into UFO investigation. The two page telex is imaged below.





NORAD was but one of many commands that failed to come up with answers. On the 11th of November, 1977, Robert Todd sent a letter to the Secretary of the USAF (SEC–AF) which asked two straightforward questions regarding any final conclusions made by USAF authorities. On the 17th of November, 1977, Col. Charles H. Senn, Chief, Community Relations Division, of the SEC–AF’s Office of Information, came back with equally straight–forward answers. Col. Senn listed Todd’s questions in the one page reply, with answers beneath each:

“This is in response to your November 11, 1977 letter requesting answers to the following questions:

Q. Is it not true that the Air Force considers the UFO sightings (over Strategic Air Command bases in 1975) something other than isolated incidents?

A. There is no identification that these sightings are anything but isolated incidents.

Q. Has the Air Force’s Intelligence Service investigated these sightings, and if so, what conclusions were reached?

A. Yes, the Air Force Office of Special Investigations (OSI), at the request of the Strategic Air Command, investigated the sightings at Loring AFB, Maine.

Their investigation did not reveal a cause for the sightings. No military or civilian aircraft were determined to be in the area at the time.”

Firstly, the notion that the USAF, and others, considered unknown aircraft or UFO events at five different US and Canadian bases, in the same two week period, as “isolated incidents” is highly debatable. Some released documents, especially those for public consumption, state that the incidents were thought to “isolated”. Some documents, however, state otherwise. For instance, the two page CINCNORAD telex which I discussed above clearly laid out all of the mysterious events in a single message. There is nothing “isolated” about that. Secondly, in relation to the USAF’s Office of Special Investigation (AFOSI) analysing the strange events, Col. Senn only mentions the incidents at Loring AFB as being “investigated”, but fails to mention the attention AFOSI gave to the events at Wurtsmith AFB and others. Most importantly, however, is the fact that there was sizeable investigation at all. It is one thing for military authorities to investigate straightforward helicopter intrusions, but when the terms “unidentified flying objects” and “UFOs” are repeatedly used, as seen in hundreds of pages of original message traffic and memoranda, the situation becomes more complex. Col. Senn’s reply letter is imaged below.



While AFOSI went about their ultimately fruitless enquiries, the Air Force Intelligence Service (AFIS) and the Assistant Chief of Staff, Intelligence at USAF Headquarters were also involved. Within raw intelligence records, as well a few examples of more refined memoranda, a number of internal USAF distribution addresses repeatedly appear. These terms are “INZ”, “INZA” and “INYSA”. Assuming they referred to specific intelligence and security areas within the USAF, Robert Todd sent a letter, dated the 13th of December, 1977, to Headquarters, Air Force Intelligence Service (AFIS), asking for more information. On the 27th of December, 1977, the Chief of AFIS Administration, Capt. Barbara J. Barnett, came back with detailed reply:

“The designations INZ, INZA, INYSA are functional address symbols. These symbols, when used within a command or organisational entity, assure direct transmission and delivery of communication and allow for a maximum degree of standardization throughout the Air Force.

The designations referred to in the AFIS/INZ extract released to you are identified below.

a. INZ (AFIS/INZ) refers to the Aerospace Intelligence Division of the Air Force Intelligence Service.

b. INZA (AFIS/INZA) refers to the Editing, Briefing and Continuity Branch of the Aerospace Intelligence Division, Air Force Intelligence Service.

c. INYSA (AF/INYSA) refers to the Scientific and Technical Branch of the Directorate of Resource Management, Assistant Chief of Staff, Intelligence, Headquarters, United States Air Force.”

With this, Todd had unmasked the Scientific and Technical Branch, Directorate of Resource Management, Air Force’s Assistant Chief of Staff, Intelligence, as a UFO report addressee. More importantly, however, was the involvement of the Air Force Intelligence Service’s (AFIS) Aerospace Intelligence Division (INZ), and, one of its components, the Editing, Briefing and Continuity Branch (INZA). At minimum, both were on UFO report distribution lists. An AFIS publication, titled “History Of The Air Force Intelligence Service, 1st July 1973 – 30 June 1974” describes the Aerospace Intelligence Division as:

“The Aerospace Intelligence Division provides significant current intelligence support to the Secretary of the Air Force, the Chief of Staff (CSAF), the Deputy Chief of Staff for Plans and Operations, the Assistant Chief of Staff Intelligence, and various other Air Staff elements.”

The same publication says of the Aerospace Intelligence Division’s Editing, Briefing and Continuity Branch:

“The primary function of the Editing, Briefing, and Continuity Branch is to prepare and present daily current intelligence briefing to the Chief of Staff, USAF, and senior Air Staff offices within Headquarters. The branch performed preliminary intelligence analysis of fast-breaking situations.

The above highlighted letter is imaged below.



Robert Todd, logically, submitted FOI requests to AFIS and the Air Force Assistant Chief of Staff, Intelligence. The latter claimed that all their 1975 “over flight” records had been already destroyed. But the AFIS Chief of Administration, Capt. Barbara J. Barnett, came back, on the 9th of January, 1978, with a series of four “INZA Alert Officer Log” extracts. These logs were typed out by the on–duty Alert Officers at the the AFIS Aerospace Intelligence Division’s Editing, Briefing and Continuity Branch.

The first log entry, dated the 31st of October, 1975, reads:

“PER LTC. REDICAN’S DIRECTION. CONTACTED CIA OPS CENTER AND INFORMED THEM OF UNIDENTIFIED FLIGHT ACTIVITY OVER TWO SAC BASES NEAR CANADIAN BORDER. CIA INDICATED APPRECIATION AND REQUESTED THEY BE INFORMED OF ANY FOLLOW UP ACTIVITY.”

So the Central Intelligence Agency’s (CIA) Operations Center was being briefed by Air Force Intelligence? And, they “…indicated appreciation” and “requested they be informed of any follow up activity”. This wasn’t the only example of CIA involvement, as we shall see in due course.

The second INZA Alert Officer entry, dated November 3, 1975, discuss a little known fact regarding unusual events far from the US-Canadian border. It reads:

“RECEIVED CALL FROM AAC/IN.. THEY HAD SENT MESSAGE 012224, SUBJ: UNIDENT FOREIGN OBJECT TO INYSA AND WANTED TO KNOW IF INYSA HAD RECEIVED IT.. THEY WANTED GUIDANCE FROM INYSA.. DAY PEOPLE 4 NOV: HAV MR FOLEY (INYSA) CALL ELMENDORF AUTOVON 7549104 OR KY–3 4396.”

Alaska? This was the first reference to any unusual aerial activity not near US–Canadian border. Robert Todd asked the Headquarters, Alaskan Air Command (ACC), under the FOI Act, for any pertinent records related to “unidentified foreign objects” during the period in question, but, in a February 8th, 1978 reply letter, the AAC’s Deputy Director of Administration, Major Barry S. Oswell, stated that the material had already been destroyed. Beyond the above two INZA log entries, a further two extracts were provided to Robert Todd, but contained already discussed details regarding the sightings and radar hits at Malmstrom. One curious line, in the third extract, however, states, “The radars which picked up the objects were checked and no malfunctions or unusual propagation were detected.”. I have imaged the whole set of “INZA Alert Officer” log extracts below.



As mentioned above, the CIA Operations Center had been alerted by Air Force Intelligence, of the confusing aerial intrusions. The National Military Command Center (NMCC) also briefed the CIA, repeatedly, on the situation, as we shall see. Suspiciously, a significant number of FOI requests, submitted by Robert Todd, Barry Greenwood and Todd Zechel to the CIA’s Information and Privacy Coordinator, met with ongoing denials. Researchers had already obtained copies of four separate NMCC Deputy Director of Operations (DDO) “Talker” messages, as well as two NMCC DDO “Memorandum For The Record” documents. All listed the CIA on the distribution lists. Two of the DDO “Talker” messages were distributed with IMMEDIATE precedence, and one DDO Memorandum, with the subject line “AFB Penetration”, listed a specific CIA staffer, Mr. G. Cunningham, as the CIA representative who should deal with incoming information.

I will not present and discuss all six NMCC records that list the CIA as an addressee, but it is worth, for the sake of transparency, highlighting one of them. Dated the 29th of October, 1975, and signed by the NMCC’s DDO, Brig. Gen. C. D. Roberts, is a “Memorandum For The Record”. It reads:

“Subject:  AFB Penetration

1. At 290200 EST AFOC informed NMCC that an unidentified helicopter, possibly two, had been sighted flying low over Loring AFB Maine, in proximity to a weapons storage area.
2. An Army National Guard helo was called in to assist in locating the unidentified helo(s).

3. NORAD was informed of the incident by SAC, requested and received authority from Canadian officials to proceed into Canadian airspace if necessary to locate the intruder.

4. At 0404 SAC Command Center informed NMCC that the army helo assisting on the scene had not sighted the unidentified helo(s).

5. A similar incident was reported at Loring the evening of 28 October 1975.”

The distribution list at the bottom of this memorandum, as I have pressed, included the CIA. The exact term listed is “CIA REP”, meaning “CIA Representative”. Interestingly, the CIA are but one of many addressees listed on this NMCC memorandum. Some of the others include the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (CJCS), the Director of the Joint Staff (DJS), twelve areas within the NMCC, the Chief of Staff, USAF (CSAF), the Operations and Evaluations Division of the Worldwide Military Command and Control System (WWMCCS), the Joint Chiefs of Staff’s (JCS) Western Hemisphere Military Desk (WEST HEM), representatives at the Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA) and the National Security Agency (NSA). I have imaged this document below.



The above mentioned NMCC memorandum indicates that helicopters were responsible for the sightings at Loring AFB. Unknown helicopters or not, a number of records from Loring, as well as witness testimony from those on the base, lean more towards an intruder, or intruders, that behaved unlike helicopters. The terms “UFO” and “unidentified object” come up in Loring AFB message traffic, including two OPREP–3 reports, as frequently as the term “helicopter”. This was certainly a fluid and confusing situation. Also, we see that a US Army National Guard helicopter was placed on alert for the purposes of identifying the intruders if, and when, they returned. Whatever, or whoever, was behind these sightings, has never been solved. No amount of Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Air Force Office of Special Investigation (AFOSI), Air Force Intelligence Service (AFIS) or Strategic Air Command (SAC) investigation and analysis has explained the events at Loring, or, any of the other bases.

To conclude, this series started out with the purpose of highlighting the fact that the US military has used, in the 1970’s at least, their OPREP–3 system to report UFO events over military installations, and, as it turns out, to report UFO’s in an air defence environment as well. Now, however, this work has morphed into the analysis of wider US military UFO investigation, evaluation and high level concern. In other words, the OPREP–3 reports themselves were an immediate paper trail, but the fallout that they caused was far greater. In my Part 6 of this series, I will continue to present investigative and analytical military documents which were created during, and after, the 1975 “over flights”.  

Wednesday, 5 October 2016

"OPREP-3" - A Classified US Military Reporting 

Channel For UFO Incidents?

Part 4

  

Recently, in Part 1, Part 2 and Part 3 of this series, I have highlighted the use of the US military’s OPREP3 system to report apparent UFO events near military installations during the 1970’s. As stated in a Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff (CJCS) Instruction, titled “Joint Reporting Structure Event and Incident Reports”, it is establishes that:

“The OPREP–3 reporting system… …is used by military units at any level of command to report significant events and incidents to the highest levels of command.”.

To summarise, during late 1975, a series of OPREP3 reports were urgently submitted from both Loring and Wurtsmith Air Force Base’s to the National Military Command Center (NMCC), the Strategic Air Command Headquarters (SAC HQ), the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (CJS), and as host of other top echelon agencies and commands. Contained in those reports were alarming airspace incursions by objects variously described as “unidentified helicopters”, “unknown helicopters”, “unidentified flying objects”, “unknown objects” and “UFOs”. Other bases, USAF bases, including Malmstrom AFB, Minot AFB, and Canada’s Falconbridge Air Station, were also intruded on by unidentified aircraft, or, at least, some sort of unusual phenomena. Three years later, in May, 1978, the United States Navy’s (USN) Jacksonville Naval Air Station (NAS Jacksonville) submitted an OPREP3 report to the USN’s Commander–in–Chief, Atlantic Fleet (CINCLANFLT), which detailed an UFO visually radar near ) the USN’s Pinecastle Electronic Warfare Range.

Hence, it is established that the OPREP3 system is not only suitable to report UFO events, but also been actually utilised for such. Having stated that, it is important to note that OPREP3 reports can, and do, cover a wide range of “significant incidents” and “significant events”. There have been no categories, or specific formats, of OPREP3’s that are explicitly designed for the reporting of unknown aerial objects, unidentified aircraft, or “UFOs”.

Or, so we thought...

In the 1970’s, researcher Robert Todd submitted hundreds of Freedom of Information (FOI) requests for UFO–related documents to the North American Aerospace Defence Command. (NORAD). Todd dealt directly with NORAD’s Headquarters at Ent Air Force Base, Colorado, as well as, the seven NORAD Regional ’Headquarters dotted around North America. One such FOI request, sent on the 9th of December, 1977, to the 20th NORAD Region (20th NR), asked for any operational instructions, manuals, regulations or forms that contained procedures for dealing specifically with “Unidentified Flying Objects”. Possibly unsure of what could be released, the 20th NR apparently referred Todd’s letter to NORAD’s Director of Administration, Headquarters, Ent AFB. On December the 21st, 1977, NORAD’s Deputy Director of Administration, Lt. Col. Robert N. Meredith, replied to Todd, and stated that the 20th NR held classified doctrinal publications which were within the scope of Todd’s request. Those publications were listed as, “20th NORAD Region Regulation, Operations, 55–7 Unknown Track / Unknown Object Reporting”, “20th NORAD Region Operating Instuction, Operations, 55–8 Possible Unknowns, Unknowns, Special Tracks and Unknown Objects Actions”, “NORAD/ADCOM Manual 55–19, Vol. VII, Aerospace Reporting System”, “NORAD Form 61 Unknown Track Report” and “NORAD/DO Form 17 Unknown Track Report”. 

Todd had already obtained copies, during much earlier FOI work, of three of the listed publications, but the other two were unknown to him. On January the 14th 1978, Todd submitted asked for copies of the two publications he hadn’t   seen, which were “NORAD/ADCOM Manual 55–19, Vol. VII, Aerospace Reporting System” and “NORAD/DO Form 17 Unknown Track Report”. On the 8th of February, 1978, Lt. Col. Robert N. Meredith, supplied Todd with copies of the two requested records, and, in his covering letter, Lt. Col. Meredith stated:

“1. In response to your letter of 14 January, 1978, a copy of NORAD/DO Form 17, ‘NORAD Unknown Track Report’ (For Official Use Only when completed), and the portion of ‘NORAD Manual 5519, Vol. VII’ Aerospace Reporting System’, pertaining to unknown tracks, are releasable.”

With the release of these two records, Todd was in possession of no less than five different NORAD, or joint NORAD/ADCOM, doctrinal records related, in some way, to UFO’s. Some of these publications dealt mutually with general unidentified aircraft too, but all contained sections or chapters specifically relating to UFO’s, and often very overtly. It is important to note here that NORAD has, for decades, been responsible, in conjunction with other organisations, for realtime air sovereignty, air defence, airspace early warning, and space surveilance across, and beyond, the United States and Canada. Alternatively, Aerospace Defence Command (ADCOM), was responsible, until its deactivation in 1980, for the internal air defence and military air coordination within the continental United States. Often, the doctrine and functionality of both NORAD and ADCOM was combined, as in the case of the above highlighted release to Robert Todd.

Contained in “NORAD/ADCOM Manual 5519, Vol. VII, Aerospace Reporting System”, is a section which specifically instructed NORAD Regional Control Centers to use the OPREP–3 system when dealing with unknown radar track reports, including “Unidentified Flying Objects – UFOs”. Published on the 25th of November, 1977, and shortened to “N/AM 5519 Volume VII”, the manual is divided into specific sections that related to different aspects of aerospace warning, air sovereignty, airspace management and the command–and–control of NORAD vectored US Air Force (USAF) combat jets. Section 15 lays out instructions for the “Identification Of Air Traffic”, and a special subsection is also annoted as “Figure 154. OPREP3 Unknown Track Report”. Point 1 states:

“1 (U) Subject and Purpose. This report provides the NCOC with additional data concerning each track classified as unknown (to include unidentified flying objects – UFOs)”

Thus, it is established that NORAD Regional Commanders are to provide the NCOC with information concerning “unidentified flying objects – UFOs”. The term “NCOC” refers to the NORAD Combat Operations Center in Colorado, which was tasked with centralised aerospace management, command and control for North America. In regards to the above passage of text, the reference to “unidentified flying objects – UFOs” comes second to general unknown radar tracks. In other words, the instructions are not laying out special procedures solely for “UFO” reporting. It is still rather extraordinary, however, that the phrase “unidentified flying objects – UFOs” is mentioned distinctly. The rest of the page details the urgency of reporting, method of transmission, and under what conditions reports must be made. Most importantly, these instructions appear to act as a template for OPREP3 reporting. At the bottom of the page, in bold font, is a line of text reading “Figure 154. OPREP3 Unknown Track Report”.

The next page indeed confirms that an OPREP3 report is utilized to report unknowns. Point 8 reads:

“8. (U) Report Content. The following format will be used:

The Regional, Date and Track Number are common requirements for all reports.

a. Part I – Immediate OPREP3 Report.

(1) Time declared unknown

(2) Course.

(3) Speed.

(4) Altitude.

(5) Number of objects.

(6) Reason unknown…”

A number of further data entry requirements are listed. Further on, we again see confirmation that these specific fields make up the contents of an OPREP3 report:

“c. Part III – Final Action OPREP3.

(20) Interceptor airborne time.

(21) Course.

(22) Speed…”

These are the only two pages of Section 15, “Identification Of Air Traffic”, that mention unknown tracks, unidentified flying objects, UFOs, or OPREP3 reporting. In fact, Robert Todd was only offered a three pages from the entire “NORAD/ADCOM Manual 5519, Vol. VII, Aerospace Reporting System” publication. The two pages I have detailed are imaged below.





The fact that NORAD and ADCOM specified OPREP3 reporting of “unidentified flying objects – UFOs”, along with, and distinct from, routine unknown radar plots, departs radically from what the public have been told by the US Department of Defence. On occasion, researchers have questioned NORAD directly, nothing whatsoever about UFO reporting, via the OPREP3 channel or otherwise, has been admitted. For example, in a reply letter dated 10th November, 1975, Colonel Terrence C. James, NORAD Headquarters, Ent Air Force Base, to researcher Robert Todd, it was stated:

“…this command has no present activity in investigating UFOs, nor does any area of the United States government that I’m aware of.”

Ten years later, in an April 25th, 1988 reply letter to researcher Dr. Armen Victorian, NORAD’s Chief of Operations Branch, Directorate of Public Affairs, Lt. Col. Roger I. Pinnell, stated:

“Thank you for your recent letter requesting information on Unidentified Flying Objects. Unfortunately, we have not recently released any information concerning UFO’s, nor do we keep any such information on file…”

Clearly, these statements are absolute nonsense.

On the first page of the document I have highlighted above, it is also interesting to note a passage of text contained within Point 7:

“7. (U) Specific Reporting Instructions. The regions GIUK submit this report by voice to the NCOC Surveillance Section as a RED report (see paragraph 13). NORAD Form 61, Unknown Track Report, will be used to record report. This report will be submitted sequentially with reference to the appropriate part and item number of the format in paragraph 8, below…”

When an OPREP3 reportable event is, or at least was in the late 1970’s, submitted to the NCOC, the NORAD Regional Control Center who submitted the OPREP3 also keeps the details of the event on a “Form 61, Unknown Track Report”. So, effectively, this form acts as a repository for, at minimum, unknown or unidentifiable aircraft that have been tracked by NORAD systems, as well as “UFO’s”, which, again, is a term that no one in the US military was supposed to be using. A “Form 61, Unknown Track Report” contains blocks of questions that must be filled in by NORAD Region air defence personnel. Specific blocks include “Time Unknown”, “Course”, “Speed”, “Altitude”, “No. Of Objects”, “Reason Unknown”, “Possible Identification” and other pertinent details regarding aerial interception, identification of the offending unknown, and administrative action. A copy of “Form 61, Unknown Track Report” is imaged below.



The concept of USAF combat jets being scrambled by NORAD to identify general unknown tracks, which we have been repeatedly told represent stray, unidentifiable civilian aircraft, or, foreign military aircraft that are tasked with testing US and Canadian aerospace boundaries, is perfectly acceptable. The sovereignty of the both America and Canada would be in a sorry state indeed if this task wasn’t being performed. But to specifically have “unidentified flying objects – UFOs” explicitly listed for OPREP3 reporting, as well as the potential need for airborne interception, completely flies in the face of what the US military would have the public believe. Project Blue Book, the longrunning and ultimately flawed USAF study of the UFO phenomenon, ended with the release of a “Fact Sheet” titled “Unidentified Flying Objects And Air Force Project Blue Book: Fact Sheet”. Though there are different versions of the publication, one notable section in a 1993 version of this short publication stated:

“Since the termination of Project Blue Book, nothing has occurred that would support a resumption of UFO investigations by the Air Force…”

We have already established that a number of provocative UFO cases have occurred, and created significant and classified documentation, long after the conclusion of Project Blue Book, so the above statement is hogwash. Furthermore, we now see specific doctrine that recognises the UFO matter, and, treats it as an air defence issue. As I stated at the opening of this entry, researcher Robert Todd, by 1978, was in possession of no less than five NORAD and/or ADCOM publications that referred, at least in part, to “unidentified flying objects”, “unknown objects” and “UFOs”. I will be highlighting more of these items in future entries of my ongoing series “NORAD And The UFO Smokescreen”. Furthermore, these don’t even include the well–known “Joint Army Navy Air Force Publication 146” (JANAP 146) publication. JANAP 146 laid out a series of “Communications Instructions for Reporting Vital Intelligence Sightings” (CIRVIS) instructions, as well as a series of “Merchant Ship Intelligence” (MERINT) reporting procedures. Both systems were for use by US and Canadian forces to report, amongst other things, “Unidentified Flying Objects”. One of the addressees on completed CIRVIS and MERINT reports was none other than NORADs Commander–in–Chief, as well as NORAD’s Air Defence Operations Center (ADOC). So, really, by 1978 or so, Todd, and a handful of other dedicated researchers, knew of seven doctrinal publications relating to UFO’s.

Currently, I am using the FOI Act to have the NORAD History Office locate and potentially release any records that were created as a result of the above mentioned doctrine. Of obvious interest are any OPREP3 reports of UFOs, plus, any discussion papers, commanders briefs and intelligence estimates which were authored as a result of such events. NORAD, however, are technically exempt from FOI Act, which is very convenient for them. In regards to the OPREP3 reported UFO events at Loring and Wurtsmith Air Force Bases, plus similar events at ten other USAF bases throughout 1975 and 1976, the obvious question one must raise is that of the subsequent investigation, evaluation and analysis which was indeed performed by US military commands. In my Part 5 in this series, I will highlight the investigations that were performed by Strategic Air Command Headquarters (SAC HQ), 8th Air Force Headquarters (8AF HQ), Air Force Global Weather Central (AFGWC), the Air Force Office of Special Investigations (AFOSI), the National Military Command Center (NMCC), and a host of other others.