“Do not give any of your children to be sacrificed to Molek, for you must not profane the name of your God. I am the LORD.” -Leviticus 18:21
In the Old Testament, Gehenna was a valley by Jerusalem, where apostate Israelites and followers of pagan gods sacrificed their children by fire (2 Chr. 28:3, 33:6; Jer. 7:31, 19:2–6).
One of those gods was Moloch (aka Molech, Molekh, Molok, Molek, Molock, Moloc, Melech, Milcom or Molcom), an ancient Ammonite god who demanded a particular kind of propitiatory child sacrifice by parents.
Judaic rabbinical tradition depicted Moloch as a bronze statue heated with fire into which the child victims were thrown. According to medieval French rabbi Rashi (acronym for RAbbi SHlomo Itzhaki):
Moloch … was made of brass; and they heated him from his lower parts; and his hands being stretched out, and made hot, they put the child between his hands, and it was burnt; when it vehemently cried out; but the priests beat a drum, that the father might not hear the voice of his son, and his heart might not be moved.
Indeed, there are reports by Greco-Roman authors on child sacrifices in Carthage (in today’s Tunisia) to Baal Hammon, the chief god of Carthage. Those reports are bolstered by archaeological excavations since the 1920s of evidence of child sacrifice in Carthage as well as inscriptions of the term MLK, which is either a theonym (the name of a god or deity) or a technical term associated with sacrificial rites.
In 1966, Australian archeologist John Basil Hennessy found in excavations of a 1400-1250 BC temple at Amman evidence of human and animal sacrifice by fire. Hennesy reported his findings in the Palestine Exploration Quarterly (1966). In a private communication with G.J. Wenham, Hennessy wrote that “At least 75% of them (the bones found) belong to children between the ages of 3 and 14“.
Given who Moloch is, one has to wonder why Verizon Media named its third annual conference in 2019 “Moloch,” akin to calling its conference “Satan”.
Note: Verizon Media is a division of Verizon Communications which focusses on media and the Internet. Verizon Media was formed from the merger of AOL and Yahoo!, which Verizon Communications had acquired in 2015 and 2017, respectively.
Breathlessly reporting for Verizon.com, Elyse Rinne, a software engineer at Verizon Media, wrote on August 5, 2019:
We’re excited to share the 3rd Annual MolochON will be held on October 1st, 2019 in Sunnyvale, California, at the Verizon Media (formerly Yahoo!) Campus.
MolochON is an annual conference hosted by the creators of Moloch.
Moloch is a large scale, open source, indexed packet capture and search system. It’s used within Verizon Media and other companies to help store and index network traffic for analysis. If your company has a network security team as part of your “Blue Team” you’ll want to attend this event. Best of all, attendance is free….
After the conference, enjoy our complimentary happy hour where we’ll party like network security professionals and we’ll swap stories about how we catch the bad actors.
Hope to see you there!
The CEO of Verizon Media is a man whose first name is Guru, I kid you not. In Hinduism, “guru” means a spiritual guide.
Drudge Reporthas gone to the dark side. Check out Whatfinger News, the Internet’s conservative frontpage founded by a military veteran!
Melinda Gates, 55, is the wife of Microsoft co-founder and its former chairman, CEO, and president Bill Gates, 64. A former general manager herself at Microsoft, Melinda and Bill in 2000 co-founded the powerful Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the world’s largest private charitable organization as of 2015. Melinda has consistently been ranked as one of the world’s most powerful women by Forbes.
The Gates are Democrats. Both were suggested as possible vice-presidential picks in the 2016 presidential election, according to an email from Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman, John Podesta, which was obtained and published by WikiLeaks. (Time)
Melinda Gates is also a Roman Catholic. In 2014, Bill toldRolling Stone magazine that he and Melinda raised their three children as Catholics, the family goes to a Catholic church, and that religious morality inspires a lot of his charity work.
Melinda Gates’ Catholicism goes against the Gates Foundation’s funding, until 2013, of abortion by donating $71 million to Planned Parenthood and affiliated organizations. In 2014, she said that the foundation “has decided not to fund abortion”, focusing instead on family planning and contraception in order to avoid conflation of abortion and family planning. (Wikipedia)
Then there is the matter of Melinda’s jewelry.
Longtime FOTM reader/commenter Lola sent me this pic of Melinda Gates wearing a necklace with a pendant that’s an upside-down cross.
The pic is a screenshot taken from a video of Melinda’s appearance on an NBC “Today” show on May 8, 2020:
The upside-down or inverted cross is a symbol that stems from the martyrdom of St. Peter the Apsotle. Catholic tradition is that when the Romans sentenced Peter to death by crucifixion, he requested that his cross be upside down, as he felt unworthy of being crucified in the same manner as his Lord and savior Jesus Christ. That is why there are images of the Pope wearing the inverted or Petrine Cross because the Pope is the successor of St. Peter as Bishop of Rome.
However, in our times, the upside-down cross has been co-opted by satanists to mock Christ’s crucifixion, just as the Black Massis an inverted mockery of the Catholic Mass.
So the question is: Given the upside-down cross having become a satanic symbol, why would Melinda Gates, a self-professed Catholic, wear that as jewelry? Why not a regular, rightside-up cross instead?
There’s also something else that’s disturbing about Melinda’s appearance.
Twitterer @Inevitable_ET posted comparison pics of Bill and Melinda, past and present, which show Melinda looking very different from what she was before. She now has a bigger and fatter nose, which can’t be from weight gain. She also looks like a man in drag.
The Left, especially satanists, have learned to use the U.S. Constitution against decent Americans and orthodox Christians.
A case in point: In the name of the First Amendment’s guarantee of freedom of religion, satanists claim their “religious right” to erect devil statues in public squares and to proselytize in schools and colleges. See:
There’s a Tennessee statute that excuses students to attend an hour-long released time course in religious moral instruction if authorized by the local school district.
WVLT CBS 8 reports, November 4, 2019, that Knox County Schools Superintendent Bob Thomas gave the okay for a test program that would allow school children to miss class for church-sponsored Bible study.
Thomas agreed to test the program at Sterchi Elementary School after the Elgin Foundation and The Church at Sterchi Hills approached the school about the opportunity.
Elgin Foundation Executive Director Tim Rogers said the foundation sponsors several established bible release time programs across East Tennessee, including Anderson, Roane, Scott and Union Counties: “We just educate churches and schools in the legality of it. We ask schools to just simply accommodate parents who would participate in that.”
After the Knox County Schools announced the pilot release program, a group calling themselves the Satanic Children’s Ministry of Knoxville (SCMK) demanded equal opportunity for children who do not wish to participate in studying the Bible to attend SCMK’s satanic study program.
A representative from SCMK said: “We believe church and state should be separate and that includes the schools. Unfortunately, organizations such as Elgin Children’s Foundation and Emerald Youth have been attempting to dismantle this separation in Knoxville for quite some time now. We have done our best to counteract the indoctrination that they are working on bringing into schools but the only way we can successfully do that at this point is to exercise our own religious freedom by implementing a program of our own.”
Like satanic groups elsewhere in the U.S., SCMK claims to stand against bigotry and hate, and that they do not to believe in a literal Satan, but merely use him as a symbol of free thought: “Our goal is to teach children the empathy, compassion, and kindness that [our] tenets…promote. We initially thought we would just be signing out our own children with this program but amid the outrage, we have learned the interest in our program extends beyond our families.”
In a Facebook post, SCMK said they hope the school board will vote to allow their satanic release program at a December meeting:
“Satanic Children’s Ministry of Knoxville will be coming to your local elementary with our Satanic Release Program! For one hour once a month, your children can be released from their school to come learn about Baphomet!”
A spokesperson for Satanic Children’s Ministry of Knoxville gave theDaily Mail this written statement:
The Elgin Foundation and The Church at Sterchi Hills will broadcast that their program is “opt-in” and children do not have to attend. They do not announce that their goals are to promote proselytization in our public classrooms by teaching children to do this for them. ‘They will send the kids back with toys, candy, and propaganda to help them achieve these goals.
This creates problems in the classroom not just for us as Satanists but also any Muslim, Jewish, Hindu or atheist child in the classroom as the children involved in the Bible Release Time are taught to challenge the beliefs of their classmates and promote that their god is the one true god. We do not send our children to schools to be converted by outside religious organizations. We send them to get a state-approved education.
Satanic Children’s Ministry would prefer not to introduce our own program. We do believe in separation of church and state; however, if another religion is allowed to introduce a program to indoctrinate children, we feel the need to step up and ensure our children have their own program to attend. Our children would already be losing precious instructional time due to the schools accommodating Elgin’s program, so we might as well sign them out and allow them to receive their own religious education focusing on the tenets of Satanism.
Our preferred outcome is that all parents of Knox Co realize the importance of keeping religion out of public schools completely. It is in the best interest for all children to keep these programs out of school all together and in homes and churches where they belong. They create divisiveness among students based on their religion creating conditions that are optimal for bullying.
The statement concluded by calling on Knox County residents to contact their local schools and school board representatives about blocking the implementation of release time programs.
The spokesperson said SCMK is “legitimate” and had filed for 501(c)3 non-profit status, but refused to identify the five people on the board “due to threats of violence.” The spokesperson said that between 5 to 10 children are initially expected to take part in their satanic program, but there “may be more people interested” than initially thought.
The spokesperson also claims that many Knox County teachers have expressed support for the organization and its intentions:
“They may not be for the actual program, but they seem to appreciate the fact that it is shining a light on the problem with allowing one church to have their religious release program in the school. From our conversations, it sounds like many teachers at Sterchi Elementary are against the program as it takes away from their instruction time. The school completely rearranged the class schedule to make room for The Church at Sterchi Hill’s Bible Release Program and that alone seem like a promotion of a religion within the school. The overwhelming majority of people we have talked to are against a policy allowing release programs, but the principal at Sterchi Elementary and certain school board members – against their constituent’s wishes – are pushing for it.”
WVLT reached out to all school board members asking how they would vote on the proposed Bible-study release policy. Only 4 out of 9 responded:
Susan Horn, District 5 – Would approve
Virginia Babb, District 4 – Wouldn’t approve
Evetty Satterfield- District 1 – Undecided
Terry Hill, District 6 – Would approve
Virginia Babb of District 4 told Daily Mail: “I have never supported the Bible release program and it has nothing to do with the Satanic Ministry wanting to offer their own program. Should a policy be passed allowing for Bible Release then I support any organization who meets the criteria of the program to be able to offer it.”
Click here for the website of Knox County School Board members, where you’ll see the phone numbers and email addresses of the board members.
Today is Halloween — a “festival” that years ago became something very different from the Halloween FOTM‘s readers remember from childhood, not that Halloween had ever been innocent.
Halloween has become America’s most popular and “celebrated” holiday, as indicated in the outside decorations of homes. In my neighborhood and city, Halloween decorations far outnumber Christmas decorations — a sad commentary on how much Americans have fallen.
I find Halloween repugnant.
The least of the reasons why I find this day repellent is because Halloween has become yet another occasion for wasteful, pointless “spend, spend, spend” consumerism — on candies (that rot kids’ teeth), costumes, masks, and truly sick Halloween theme parks like this one:
End of the American Dream blogger Michael Snyder writes that he no longer celebrates Halloween because —
“it is a wretched, horrible holiday that celebrates the darkest side of humanity, and it is deeply rooted in ancient pagan traditions that would get people thrown in prison if they attempted to duplicate them today. With each passing year, the sexually suggestive costumes being marketed to our young girls become even skankier, the horror movies become darker and even more demonic, and the number of Americans that participate in occult ceremonies just continues to grow. In fact, it has been estimated that the number of self-identified witches in the United States is doubling every 30 months. Those that are deeply into the occult take this holiday very seriously, and the dark forces that they are dealing with are very real. So no, I don’t want anything to do with this festival of death.”
Below are Snyder’s 18 reasons why he doesn’t celebrate Halloween, followed by reason #19, an account by a former Satanist:
1. Halloween celebrates death, witchcraft and the occult, all of which can open up a door for demonic activity.
2. In 2015, the average American spent $74.34 on Halloween, money that many don’t have to waste.
3. Millions of women use Halloween as an excuse to dress like street walkers, and millions of men use Halloween as an excuse to act like sexual predators.
Note: No wonder the number of self-identified witches has skyrocketed in recent years, from 8,000 in 1990 to 340,000 in 2008, a year that also found roughly 340,000 self-described Pagans. Currently, nearly one million Americans identify themselves as Wiccans or Pagans. (See “Thousands of witches to put a hex on Justice Kavanaugh, Oct. 20”)
7. In ancient Britain, the festival known as Samhain was celebrated on October 31 — a day when dead souls are believed to revisit their old homes. Personally, I don’t want anything to do with contacting the souls of the dead.
8. According to the History Channel, Samhain was also the day when the Druids “gathered to burn crops and animals as sacrifices to the Celtic deities,” which should be anathema to Christians.
9. Samhain/Halloween is a high day for wiccans. Did you know that Wicca is the fastest growing religion in America? According to the American Religious Identification Survey, the number of self-identified Wiccans in the United States grew from 8,000 in 1990 to 134,000 in 2001 to 342,000 in 2008. According to The New York Post, some experts have estimated that the number of witches in the U.S. is doubling every 30 months, and that there may now be “8 million undeclared practitioners” of “the craft” in this country. At this rate, Wicca will soon become the third largest “religion” in America after Christianity and Islam.
10. Wiccans believe Halloween is the time when the veil between the living and the dead is the thinnest, and that on this day their god “dies” and is reborn every year on the Winter Solstice, which will be December 22 this year.
11. For the ancient Druids, the purpose of Samhain or Halloween was to ensure the return of the sun god, with human and animal sacrifices.According to occult expert Bill Schnoebelen:
Druids worshiped the sun god, called by names like Bel (Ba’al?) or Chrom. On October 31, they believed that he died and went into the kingdom of the dead, Anwynn. The purpose of Samhain was to insure his return. Even witches admit this involved human sacrifice.
Both animal and human blood were believed to be needed to resurrect Bel on Samhain. Human blood was believed to open the gates of Anwynn and released the spirits for a night. Thus, October 31 came to be associated with ghosts. This is not just history. Samhain is still celebrated by Pagans and is the most solemn ceremony on their “religious calendar”.
12. To this day, animal torture and sacrifice are practiced on Halloween by occultists. Many animal shelters will not adopt out black cats during the month of October for this very reason.
13. The pagan holiday of Samhain was co-opted by Pope Gregory the First in 601 A.D. in an effort to “christianize” existing pagan holiday and practices, rather than try to obliterate them. Thus, Samhain became All Hallows’ Eve or Halloween.
14. The tradition of “trick-or-treating” in costumes and masks is also one of those existing pagantraditions that was later “Christianized”. The ancient Druids believed that Halloween was a night when mischievous and evil spirits roamed freely and could play tricks on the living. To allay them, villagers would pacify the ghosts with a banquet-laden table. At the end of the feast, masked and costumed villagers would parade to the outskirts of town leading the ghosts away. The masks and costumes were to scare away the ghosts or to keep from being recognized by them.
15. The tradition of carving out a “Jack-O-Lantern” also comes from paganism. According to wicca.com, turnips were hollowed out and carved to look like protective spirits, for this was a night of magic and chaos when the Wee Folke became very active, pulling pranks on unsuspecting humans. Traveling after dark was not advised. Bill Schnoebelen explains that pumpkins eventually replaced turnips, but the meaning remained the same:
Here it’s a pumpkin, but in Europe it was often a turnip, or a skull with a candle in it. This serves two symbols, 1) the lord of the Dead, a “god” just like a Buddha – in short, an idol. 2) The fearsome face represented the god, Samhain, who would drive off less powerful demons that night. The lights in the Jack-o-Lantern symbolize the “faery fires” or “Will’o the Wisps” which were believed to be the lost souls flitting through the night. They also hearken back to the huge Samhain “balefires” which were lit to help conjure back the god from the darkness.
16. On all Satanic “holy” (a oxymoron!) days, including Halloween, children are ritually abused. This has been documented repeatedly, and yet most people (including most Christians) don’t want to hear about it.
17. For Satanists, Halloween is one of the most important celebrations of the year.On page 96 of the Satanic Bible, Anton LaVey wrote that “After one’s own birthday, the two major Satanic holidays are Walpurgisnacht (May 1st) and Halloween.”
18. The Scriptures command us in no uncertain terms to refrain from paganism and witchcraft.Deuteronomy 18:9-13 says: “When you enter the land the Lord your God is giving you, do not learn to imitate the detestable ways of the nations there. Let no one be found among you who sacrifices his son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults with the dead.Anyone who does these things is detestable to the Lord”. Halloween, however, as explained above, was and is a pagan festival, as well as a major Satanic holiday.
19. A former satanist named David Arias said “it’s no coincidence” that his descent into occultism began with attending a rock concert on Halloween when he was 18 years old:
That beginning led to “underground parties” in empty warehouses. There was rock music, drugs and secret rituals in “special places” of the warehouse. The organizers downplayed the rituals, trying to make them seem normal, but they were actually Satanic. Evil was being invited into the bodies and souls of the unsuspecting partiers.
Through these parties I got deeper into the dark world of Satanism. I learned that Satan wants to be like God, so he requires sacrifices to be offered to him. The most basic and common sacrifices were of animals. I participated in these and other evil rituals for almost four years, but I could not bring myself to kill a human being, which is required to make it to the highest . . . level of Satanism.
The easiest way to kill someone is through abortion because the baby has no defense. You can kill babies anytime you want in this country, as long as they’re still inside the womb. We had an abortionist in our group who knew exactly what abortion was about: sacrificing innocent lives to Satan. Abortion is an anti-sacrament.
Arias, who became a Catholic convert, warns about Halloween:
This is a special day for darkness, and it shouldn’t be treated as a game, like I did. It is a demonic celebration used as a tool to gain souls for hell….
People make their homes look like haunted cemeteries.… This invites evil spirits inside. It’s really simple: If you want to attract evil, you put up depictions of evil. If you want to attract good, you put up depictions of good.
Arias urges that Christians, instead of celebrating the satanic pagan high day of Halloween, “read the Bible; teach your children about the Church; donate something to the poor.”
Now we know why the Democratic Party chose this Halloween to vote on the procedures for their impeachment investigation against President Trump.
The Baphomet was first drawn and popularized in 1854 by occultist Eliphas Lévi in his book, Dogme et Rituel de la Haute Magie (Dogmas and Rituals of High Magic) — a winged, horned, androgynous, humanoid goat with breasts and phallus. (See “The Devil is transgender”)
Levi called his image the Baphomet — “The Sabbatic Goat” and “The Goat of Mendes.” Lévi’s Baphomet is the source of the Rider-Waite Tarot image of the Devil. The Baphomet goat, together with the downward-pointed pentagram, was adopted as the official symbol — called the Sigil of Baphomet — of the Church of Satan and continues to be used among Satanists. [Source: Wikipedia]
Ask yourself this:
Why would Avon, a company that sells cosmetics and “beauty products”, feature the Baphomet on the cover of its new “Campaign 22 of 2019” catalog?
Avon Products, Inc. sells beauty, household and personal care products. With annual worldwide sales of $5.5 billion and 6.4 million representatives in 2018, Avon is the fifth-largest beauty company and the second largest direct-selling business in the world (after Amway).
The company’s CEO is Jan Zijderveld. Based in London, UK, Zijderveld was appointed as CEO in February 2018.In May 2019, Natura & Co announced its intent to acquire Avon, with the deal expected to close in 2020.
Rod Dreher is a senior editor at The American Conservative and a published author of four books. (Read more about him here.)
In an October 9 post on The American Conservative, Dreher alerts us to the alarming news that there are organized satanists in the U.S. Naval Academy.
Founded in 1845, the U.S. Naval Academy (USNA) is the second oldest of the United States’ five service academies, and educates officers for commissioning primarily into the U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps.
Dreher reports that an American Conservative “reader affiliated with the US Naval Academy said that people there received this e-mail” on October 8, 2019. Below is a screenshot of the email.
In the interest of legibility, here’s a text of the email that I transcribed from the above image:
Good Afternoon Brigade,
Starting this Thursday, Satanic services will be offered on the yard.
Who: Caters to people who prescribe to the Satanic Temple’s philosophy, however all people of any faith background are welcome to attend! What: Satanic religious services, discussions of Satanic Philosophy, discussions of literary history of Satan. When: Every Thursday at 1900. Where: The Media Room at the back of Stein Hall in the Levy Center Why: To promote critical thinking and discussion on Satanic values as they pertain to our lives. How: Just show up!
Please contact Chief [name redacted] with any questions.
The reader said that e-mail set off a firestorm. A few minutes later, the Chief who authored that e-mail sent this follow-up:
Dreher apologizes for the blurry screenshot of the email: “If you are having trouble reading it, the gist is that the Chief is a confessed Satanist, and is inviting others at the USNA to participate in a Satanic ritual.”
The reader who sent Dreher the information wrote that “the Chief” admits he’s a member of the Satanic Temple and gave links to a website that “talks about Black Masses and ‘unbaptisms’.” The reader said that the command chaplain, a Catholic priest, had no idea any of this was going on, and is furious.
On October 11, 2019, Task & Purpose, a military and veteran-focused digital media company, reports that USNA spokeswoman Cmdr. Alana Garas said the Satanic service would not take place because “that email was sent prematurely…without the review and approval of the Naval Academy’s Command Chaplain, as required by command policy.”
Garas said that a group of midshipmen “with beliefs aligned with those practiced by The Satanic Temple” had requested a space for a “study group” to discuss their satanic beliefs — and not, as the email in question indicated, for holding satanic religious services.
As of 2017, the U.S. military recognized 221 distinct “faith groups” from major religions like the Roman Catholic Church and Islam to more arcane and esoteric affiliations like Druid, Troth, Heathen, and Pagan. In January 2019, a group of sailors aboard the aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis conducted religious services based in Norse Heathenry with the approval of their commanding officer. In May 2019, the U.S. government officially recognized the Satanic Temple as a tax-exempt religion.
Rod Dreher raises these fundamental and very troubling questions about our polity and society:
The matter of Satanists meeting at the USNA raises the broader question of the limits of tolerance in a liberal society. Is Satanism a religion like every other? Theologically, I would say no. But as a matter of public accommodation in a pluralist polity, a liberal one in which there is a formal separation of Church and State, it is hard to see how lines can be drawn to defend society against this evil. The phenomenon reveals the instability at the heart of classical liberalism…. At what point does liberalism cross the line from being a tool that can be used to defend the Good when it has become unpopular, and becomes instead a clear and present danger to the Good?
H/t John Molloy
Drudge Reporthas gone to the dark side. Check out Whatfinger News, the Internet’s conservative frontpage founded by a military veteran!
Typically — in a satanic Black Mass — the true Catholic Mass is twisted and the Sacred Person of Our Lord Jesus Christ is attacked in the most vile, unspeakable manner. And Christian symbols such as a Crucifix are desecrated.
According to Global News, Canadian members of the Satanic Temple promoting the black mass said “blasphemy” is an expression of “personal freedom.”
You see — the more God and His holy Law are pushed aside and ridiculed, the more satan gains ground to deceive and ensnare souls in his dark web of sacrilege and blasphemy.
This is the 205th world-famous FOTM Caption Contest!
Here’s the pic:
About the pic: On July 9, 2019, calling killing unborn babies “sacred work,” a group of ten Christian (Presbyterian, Episcopalian, Unitarian Universalist, United Church of Christ, Disciples of Christ) and Jewish (Reform and Reconstructionist) clergy gathered to “bless” an Austin, Texas abortion clinic, the Whole Woman’s Health. (See my post on this, here.)
You know the drill:
Enter the contest by submitting your caption as a comment on this thread (scroll down until you see the “LEAVE A REPLY” box).
The winner of the Caption Contest will get a gorgeous Award Certificate of Excellence and a year’s free subscription to FOTM!
FOTM writers will vote for the winner.
Any captions proffered by FOTM writers, no matter how brilliant (ha ha), will not be considered.
This contest will be closed in a week, at the end of next Tuesday, August 6, 2019.
To get the contest going, here’s my caption:
Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn, and caldron bubble.
For the winner of our last Caption Contest, click here.
Better than Drudge Report. Check out Whatfinger News, the Internet’s conservative frontpage founded by ex-military!
The New York Timesreports, May 26, 2019, that U. S. Navy pilots reported that they had seen unidentified flying objects (UFOs) almost daily from the summer of 2014 to March 2015, high in the skies over the East Coast. In late 2014, a Super Hornet pilot had a near collision with one of the objects, and an official mishap report was filed.
The pilots began noticing the objects after their 1980s-era radar was upgraded to a more advanced system, which suggests that the UFOs had been present before, but were undetected.
The UFOs had no visible engine or infrared exhaust plumes, but could reach 30,000 feet and hypersonic speeds. Some of the incidents were videotaped, including one taken by a plane’s camera in early 2015 showing an object zooming over the ocean waves and pilots asking what they were seeing. One pilot exclaimed: “Wow, what is that, man? Look at it fly!”
The pilots’ reports prompted the Navy, earlier this year, to issue an update of its classified guidance for how to report suspected intrusions into our airspace by “unexplained aerial phenomena”.
No one in the Defense Department is saying that the objects were extraterrestrial, and experts emphasize that earthly explanations can generally be found for such incidents. Navy spokesman Joseph Gradisher said, “There were a number of different reports.” Some cases could have been commercial drones, but in other cases “we don’t know who’s doing this, we don’t have enough data to track this. So the intent of the message to the fleet is to provide updated guidance on reporting procedures for suspected intrusions into our airspace.”
The pilots reported their sightings to a little-known shadowy Pentagon agency called the Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program (AATIP). Founded in 2007, the secretive program investigates reports of UFOs, consuming $22 million of the Pentagon’s $600 billion annual budget. Until October 2017 when he resigned, the AATIP was run by military intelligence official Luis Elizondo from the fifth floor of the Pentagon’s C Ring. Elizondo is quoted by the NYT as calling the sightings “a striking series of incidents.”
In interviews with the New York Times, five Navy pilots said they saw the UFOs in 2014 and 2015 in training maneuvers from Virginia to Florida off the aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt. The pilots are Lieutenants Ryan Graves and Danny Accoin, F/A-18 Super Hornet pilots in the VFA-11 “Red Rippers” squadron, and three other pilots of the squadron who declined to be named. In the summer of 2014, the squadron was training out of Naval Air Station Oceana, Va., for a deployment to the Persian Gulf.
Lt. Danny Accoin said he interacted twice with the objects:
The first time, after picking up the object on his radar, he set his plane to merge with it, flying 1,000 feet below it. He said he should have been able to see it with his helmet camera, but could not, even though his radar told him it was there.
A few days later, a training missile on Lt. Accoin’s jet locked on the object and his infrared camera picked it up as well. He said: “I knew I had it, I knew it was not a false hit, but I could not pick it up visually.”
Lt. Ryan Graves, who has been with the Navy for 10 years, still cannot explain what he saw. He said the UFOs showed up at 30,000 feet, 20,000 feet, even sea level. The objects could accelerate, slow down, and then hit hypersonic speed:
“These things would be out there all day. Keeping an aircraft in the air requires a significant amount of energy. With the speeds we observed, 12 hours in the air is 11 hours longer than we’d expect. People have seen strange stuff in military aircraft for decades. We’re doing this very complex mission, to go from 30,000 feet, diving down. It would be a pretty big deal to have something up there.”
Lt. Graves said that in late 2014, he was back at base in Virginia Beach when he encountered a squadron mate just back from a mission “with a look of shock on his face” who told Graves “I almost hit one of those things.” The pilot and his wingman were flying in tandem about 100 feet apart over the Atlantic east of Virginia Beach when something flew between them, right past the cockpit. The UFO looked like a sphere encasing a cube.
The near-miss so spooked Graves’ squadron that an aviation flight safety report was filed.
What was strange was that the video showed objects accelerating to hypersonic speed, making sudden stops and instantaneous turns — something beyond the physical limits of a human crew. Lt. Graves explains: “Speed doesn’t kill you. Stopping does. Or acceleration.”
Until then, Lt. Graves and the other pilos had thought the UFOs were part of some classified and extremely advanced U.S. drone program. But the near miss angered the squadron, and convinced them that the objects were not part of a classified drone programbecause government officials would know fighter pilots were training in the area and would not have sent drones to get in the way.
Asked what they thought the objects were, Lts. Graves and Accoin refused to speculate:
Lt. Graves said: “We have helicopters that can hover. We have aircraft that can fly at 30,000 feet and right at the surface. But combine all that in one vehicle of some type with no jet engine, no exhaust plume.”
Lt. Accoin said only that “we’re here to do a job, with excellence, not make up myths.”
Lts. Graves and Accoin, along with former American intelligence officials, appear in a six-part History Channel series, “Unidentified: Inside America’s U.F.O. Investigation,” to air beginning tomorrow, May 31. Below is a snippet.
The pilots said the UFO sightings tapered off after they left the United States when, in March 2015, the aircraft carrier Roosevelt left the coast of Florida and headed to the Persian Gulf as part of the U.S.-led mission fighting the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.