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17484Nick Pope's Column

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  • Frits Westra
    Oct 1, 2004
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      October 2004

      Weird World


      Welcome to the October 2004 round up of news and views on UFOs, alien
      abductions, crop circles, ghosts, the paranormal, the unexplained, the
      weird and the wonderful.

      Crop Circle Advertisement

      Yet another commercial company has used crop circle imagery in a high
      profile advertising campaign, showing once again how firmly embedded the
      phenomenon is in the public consciousness. Mobile telephone operator O2 is
      the latest in a long line of companies who have used crop circles in an
      advertisement. They are unlikely to be the last.

      Peter Robbins and Larry Warren

      Peter Robbins and Larry Warren have been giving a series of talks on the
      so called Rendlesham Forest incident, arguably the most famous UFO case in
      the world aside from Roswell. Larry was based at Bentwaters/Woodbridge at
      the time of the incident, and Peter (who works closely with abduction
      researcher Budd Hopkins) is one of the leading experts on this case. They
      are the authors of the book Left At East Gate. Larry currently lives in
      Liverpool, but Peter, a native New Yorker, is making a rare but welcome
      trip to the UK. I shall be spending some time with him, discussing the
      case and visiting the site of the incident.

      Graham Birdsall

      It is hard to believe it is now just over a year since Graham Birdsall
      died. His tragic and untimely death was a devastating blow for his family
      and friends, but also for ufology more generally. The subsequent closure
      of UFO Magazine was also a sad loss for ufology. Several people have
      worked tirelessly to produce internet magazines that attempt to fill the
      gap left by UFO Magazine. While these efforts are to be commended, UFO
      Magazine will be a hard act to follow.

      Lord Hill-Norton

      It is also hard to believe that Lord Hill-Norton, another hero of ufology,
      is no longer with us. He died in May and a memorial service was held on 23
      September. Sadly, I was unable to attend, because of an overseas work

      Ultimate Sci-Fi Top 10

      Granada TV made three programmes for Sky One, looking at popular science
      fiction. I took part in these programmes (looking specifically at aliens,
      robots and science fiction moments) which were screened on 13, 20 and 27
      September, but which have already been repeated extensively. There is a
      long running debate over the influence of sci-fi on ufology, with sceptics
      claiming that sci-fi has influenced and perhaps in some cases inspired
      some UFO reports. Ufologists point out that the situation is equally true
      in reverse, with series like The X-Files, Taken and Dark Skies
      incorporating ufological motifs. Indeed, it should not be forgotten that
      Steven Spielberg used Dr J Allen Hynek, the Project Blue Book scientific
      consultant, as a consultant on Close Encounters of the Third Kind. An
      interesting counterargument to the assertion that UFO witnesses are
      consciously or subconsciously basing their accounts on things they have
      picked up from science fiction can be found by looking at the UFO and
      abduction literature. The carrying of laser weaponry (a common sci-fi
      motif) is almost completely absent from witness reports.

      Questing Conference 2004

      As reported last month, Andrew Collins is putting the finishing touches to
      the arrangements for Questcon04, the latest in a long line of successful
      conferences focusing on alternative history, forbidden archaeology and
      hidden teachings. Speakers include Lynn Picknett and Clive Prince talking
      about the Priory of Sion, Alan Alford discussing secret chambers in the
      Great Pyramid, Robert Feather speaking about the Spear of Destiny and
      Andrew Collins giving a presentation on the True Grail. Graham Phillips
      will attend if his other commitments permit. The conference is being held
      on Saturday 6 November at Cecil Sharp House, 2 Regents Park Road, Camden,
      London. The conference is being sponsored by Nexus Magazine. Check out
      www.questingconference.com for more details.

      The Da Vinci Code

      I have finally got around to reading The Da Vinci Code, by Dan Brown. The
      book is hugely enjoyable and will be appreciated by anybody with an
      interest in alternative religious history. The Templars, the Priory of
      Sion and Mary Magdalene all feature, and indeed The Templar Revelation by
      Lynn Picknett and Clive Prince is one of the books that clearly inspired
      Dan Brown, who mentions it specifically in the text, along with Holy
      Blood, Holy Grail, another key source. Highly recommended.


      The X-Conference, organised this Spring by Stephen Bassett, was
      undoubtedly the most important UFO conference of the year. Plans for a
      second such event, in 2005, are currently on hold, pending underwriting

      Ed's Note:

      Nick Pope has written four books. Open Skies, Closed Minds is an overview
      of the UFO phenomenon with the emphasis on his official Ministry of
      Defence research and investigation. The Uninvited is an overview of the
      alien abduction mystery. Operation Thunder Child and Operation Lightning
      Strike are science fiction novels about alien invasion, incorporating UFO
      and abduction data. All four titles are available from most good bookshops
      and all the usual Internet book sites.

      Nick Pope has a website, which can be accessed at www.nickpope.net

      © Knight International
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