Flying Triangle Investigation

Original Post Date: FRIDAY, AUGUST 2, 2002

Updated: Wednesday, January 18, 2012




A Partial List of U.S. Government Agencies that have accessed this UFO Report






















 The U.S. ARMY....NAVY.....AIR FORCE....and MARINES,



A lot of interest in something that "does not exist".



illinois UFO, january 5, 2000

The Burden of Proof is on the U.S. Government.* If they have such a craft, let them produce it before the American public and show us all how it can maneuver like a bat out of hell without making a sound.

Complete Program YouTube Channel DBARKERTV2010






 By Darryl Barker









(A Response to NIDS' July 23, 2002 Hypothesis that the Illinois UFO is a Department of Defense Black Program)

      A- Many Theories

      B - Dancing Partners - Two of a Kind

      C - Proximity Determines Origin?

      D - Human Deception


          Selected Sources

Author's Note: Although updated monthly, this article was originally written in August of 2002, shortly after a report was produced by the National Institute of Discovery Science (NIDS) of Las Vegas, Nevada, USA, that hypothesized that the mysterious black triangles are originating from the United States Department of Defense. A recent report from NIDS, published in August of 2004 has now reassessed this hypothesis and brought once again into question, the source of the large, flying triangles, with the following observation: "The behavior of these Triangular aircraft does not conform to previous patterns of covert deployment of unacknowledged aircraft"

See report at URL: http://www.nidsci.org/articles/8_25trireport.php . As you read the following analysis, bear in mind the context in which it was written in 2002, on the heels of wide publicity for the NIDS DOD hypothesis.

D. Barker - 9/7/04



The 10 year window for project disclosure often associated with government-funded R & D "Black Projects", has come and gone; yet, the U.S. government remains silent, not only in a blanket refusal to address this sighting, but moreso, in a failure to produce a physical aircraft that can match the flight characteristics of the January 5, 2000 Illinois UFO. That said, each day that now passes only adds to the case that the January 5, 2000 UFO over Illinois was not a military aircraft. And we all know where that leads.


A Chinese fortune cookie once read, "Time is precious, but truth is more precious than time"; and so it appropriately goes in the case of the famous Illinois flying triangle sighting, sometimes called the "Illinois police sighting" or the Highland, Illinois UFO.*** Ultimately, it will likely be the passing of time that will one day illuminate the inevitable conclusion, whatever that may be.

It’s now been more than twelve years since the sighting of a huge, unidentified triangular-shaped UFO by police officers and civilians in the early morning hours of January 5, 2000, over the state of Illinois. Since that time, the incident has been viewed by many as one of the most substantial UFO sightings in the history of the phenomenon, due almost entirely to the testimonials given by the law enforcement officers involved. Because of this, the sighting has also been targeted for critical and not-so-critical analysis by UFO investigative organizations, as well as the media and has sparked the curiosity of members of the United States government and the military. As a result of my involvement in the production of a documentary that details this UFO sighting, I have had the opportunity to correspond with some of the witnesses over a period of time and stay in touch with developments regarding the sighting. It has given me the opportunity to see how such an event impacts people’s lives, witnesses and non, and gives me cause to stand back and view the entire picture from what I hope to be a humanitarian perspective.

April 8, 2004 Addendum: Key case eyewitness, Officer Ed Barton of the Lebanon, Illinois police department died in January, 2004.  A memorial can be found at: http://dbarkertv.com/bartonmemorial.htm


(For those unfamiliar with this incident, the highlights are recounted here.)

If clicked, most images in this report will enlarge in a new window.


The sighting of an unidentified and unrecognizable aircraft of tremendous size, noted by several witnesses to be approximately the size of a football field, began on January 4, 2000, around 10:30pm over Lake Forest, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. The witness was outside his home when he saw a triangular-shaped UFO, “much bigger than a Boeing 747”, heading over him from the northeast. He was stunned by its size, the strange slowness of its movement, the total lack of sound from the object and the light display on the underside, which he approximated to be maybe 500 individual lights spaced evenly across the entire undersurface. In a report given to a UFO investigator from the National Institute of Discovery Science, the witness said, “it was just a very surreal experience”. The UFO moved almost directly over the witness’s home and was headed in a southwesterly direction.


RECONSTRUCTION: Shortly after 4:00am. Mr. Noll observes the object over Highland, Illinois.  (Artist's reconstruction/Video Frame from "The Edge of Reality: Illinois UFO, January 5, 2000")

An unrecognizable aerial object was next reported seen at approximately 4:00am the next morning, January 5, by a small business owner, Melvern Noll of Highland, Illinois. Mr. Noll told the Highland police department that the object was as big as a two or three story house, with many red lights underneath it (which actually consisted of a circular arrangement), one very bright light at the front like a headlight, and what appeared to be windows, lit up from inside on the sides and the back”. Due to the darkness of the sky at 4:00am, Mr. Noll was unable to see a triangular shape. In his rendition of the object, he drew a rectangular box, which is how the UFO is represented in two accurate television documentaries: “UFO Over Illinois” produced by the Discovery Channel and “The Edge of Reality: Illinois UFO, January 5, 2000”, produced by the author of this article.


RECONSTRUCTION: The UFO approaches an Illinois police officer at approximately 4:23am. (Video Frame from "The Edge of Reality: Illinois UFO, January 5, 2000")

Officer Ed Barton, with the Lebanon, Illinois Police Department was contacted by the St.Clair County dispatcher, CENCOM, at 4:12am that morning and was told to look for a UFO. Officer Barton thought the dispatcher was joking until it was made clear that the call was serious. Officer Barton then proceeded to look for the UFO and spotted it in the direction of Summerfield, Illinois. He turned on his emergency overhead lights and proceeded south on Rt. 4 and then east on Rt. 50, toward the small town of Summerfield.

 CLICK DOCUMENTS FOR LARGER IMAGE: The original CENCOM dispatch tape timecode reference of police transmissions from the morning of January 5, 2000, as given to Darryl Barker after his submitting a Freedom of Information Act request in February, 2000. Barker's groundwork cleared the way for the Discovery Channel to gain access to the radio tape recordings.

  While Officer Barton traveled eastbound on Illinois Rt. 50, another witness, a resident of Summerfield, observed the object for about 2 minutes at an approximate altitude of 900 feet and 800 feet distance. He reported the object to be at least twice the size of a C-5 cargo plane (222 foot wingspan). The witness said there were bright lights around the perimeter and the shape (triangular) could be likened to a boomerang, very wide. He saw no light at the rear. It moved very slowly (about the speed of a C-5 landing) and he could hear a slight sound; likened to a well-tuned V-8 engine at about 40 feet distance. The object moved westerly (toward Lebanon).

 Officer Barton drove his squad car toward the UFO and pulled off the road to shut down his engine and overhead emergency lights in an effort to hear a sound from the UFO, which was  still approaching him. Officer Barton filed a police report with sketches that described a very large triangular-shaped aircraft. 



POLICE REPORT SKETCHES, Officer Barton; Lebanon, Illinois Police Department

The lighting on board the UFO was remarkable, as it was blinding white, (brighter than typical aircraft landing lights) with a white light at each corner of the craft. On bottom center just past the half way mark, was a red blinking light. The forward white light shot a shaft of light toward the ground, without actually lighting the ground as you expect from a spotlight. The UFO hovered at approximately 1000 feet and no sound could be heard from the object as it approached, hovered, and departed. Before its departure, the object made a stunning flat pivoting turn and then began to move slowly away. 

View of rear and underside of craft as described by Officer Barton.

ARE THESE FLYING TRIANGLES? Recent Mexican Air Force Infrared camera frame from March 5, 2004 sighting. Copyright 2004 Jamie Maussan. Story coverage at RENSE.COM.

Officer Barton could see the rear of the object which displayed a full array of white light across the aft side of the craft, with a thin strip of blended, multicolored lights that ran horizontally and centered across the surface. Officer Barton reached into his squad car to radio CENCOM and tell them what he was seeing, and when he emerged from the car, a duration described as 3 to 4 seconds, he saw that the brightly lit UFO had somehow relocated to an area some 6 miles away, near the town of Shiloh, Illinois, without making a sound. Officer Barton’s communications could be monitored on the CENCOM radio channel by any others tuned to that frequency and thus a police officer in Shiloh picked up the chatter.


  Exactly 51 seconds after Officer Barton informed CENCOM that the object was heading westbound and might be near Shiloh (per CENCOM dispatch computer timecode 4:23:57, attached to the radio transmission recordings), Shiloh police officer David Martin reported that he “saw something” but that he didn’t know what it was. Officer Martin was driving eastbound on Lebanon Avenue in Shiloh when he spotted a triangular-shaped object, with three downward pointing lights. 

RECONSTRUCTION: The UFO moves along Lebanon Avenue, in Shiloh, Illinois, within 60 seconds of being observed 6 miles away near Lebanon. (Video Frame from "The Edge of Reality: Illinois UFO, January 5, 2000")

This time the lights were observed to be at the rear of the undersurface. He also noted a red and green blinking light, widely spaced fore of the three white lights. Officer Martin noted that the three white lights projected shafts of light below the craft. He pulled his car off to the side of the road and listened for any sound of engine noise. None could be heard. 

POLICE REPORT SKETCH, Officer Martin; Shiloh, Illinois Police Department

The object was estimated to be the size of a football field in width. Length could not be determined. Officer Martin told me that he was able to see some detail on the bottom of the aircraft, similar to building blocks, or irregular pieces, like “plumbing”. The bottom did not appear to be a flat surface. One section of the underside appeared to be lower than another section. The irregularity of a naval battleship was used as a reference. Then, as Officer Martin was preparing to exit his vehicle to get a better look, the massive, silent triangle suddenly shot away, “in the blink of an eye”, with “no sound whatsoever” and was reported to be seen an undetermined number of miles westerly, possibly over the Belleville area. Officer Martin filed a police report and sketches.


RECONSTRUCTION: The UFO passes Milstadt, Illinois police officer Craig Stevens at approximately 4:28am. (Video Frame from "The Edge of Reality: Illinois UFO, January 5, 2000")


The watch on Officer Craig Stevens’ wrist read 4:28am when he spotted a triangular UFO moving very slowly past him near the Millstadt village park, where he was parked, looking for the object. Officer Stevens was, like other police officers that morning, tuned to CENCOM and at 4:39:27 Stevens reported to the dispatcher that he saw the object. She asked if he was kidding. “It’s huge”, Stevens replied. The UFO passed to his left and he also observed a red blinking light on the underside of the craft. 

POLICE REPORT SKETCH, Officer Stevens; Millstadt, Illinois Police Department

Stevens described the UFO as having an arrowhead shape with a concave rear that sported a horizontally moving, strobing light (to visualize this, liken it to the effect seen on the front of the car in the television series “KnightRider”). The entire aft surface of the object consisted of a bank of white light, similar to the description by both Noll and Barton. 

POLICE REPORT SKETCH, Officer Stevens; Millstadt, Illinois Police Department

Inverted image to clarify area of white light across rear of craft.

Perhaps because Officer Stevens reported that the object was only about 500 feet off the ground, he was able to hear a faint buzzing sound from the object, which he described to be similar to the buzz of a power transformer on a utility pole. Also, Stevens noted that the texture of the craft could be compared to the 3-dimensional blockiness of a naval battleship (reinforcing Officer Martin’s observation). Before the UFO moved away from Stevens at a leisurely pace, he also noted an effect which could possibly be an optical stealth technology. Stevens told me that he saw what appeared to be the stars in the sky above the craft, projected on its underside. 

P-1: Unretouched scan of original Polaroid photo taken by Officer Stevens.

Finally, Stevens attempted to take a Polaroid photograph of the UFO as it departed, making a slow, banking turn toward St. Louis. The temperature was cold that morning, the camera was in the trunk, and the image, whether a result of cold temperature or simple insufficient exposure, revealed only four smears of light, blurred by camera motion while the camera shutter remained open. The triangular object disappeared over the trees.

P-2: Enhanced image of Polaroid. CLICK for larger image.

P-3: Enlarged area from image P-2. CLICK image to enlarge.

P-4: Enlarged, enhanced area of Polaroid photo. CLICK for larger image.



  Officer Matt Jany of the Dupo Police Department was on patrol that morning and he could also hear the radio chatter about the UFO. Jany started to look for the object from Interstate 255 as he was traveling northbound, and pulled over. Soon visited by a fellow officer, they joked about the conversation that had been broadcast over CENCOM. The other officer departed and Jany drove up the road only to shortly see a brightly lit object at a distance, to his east. Officer Jany estimated the UFO to be at an altitude somewhere between where small private aircraft and commercial jetliners fly as they approach St. Louis International Airport, (aka Lambert Field). Officer Jany noted that the lights on board the object were brighter than typical aircraft lights, and that at one point he saw a large, red light glowing on the underside, accompanied by white lights which were “sort of flashing” around the object’s perimeter. Because the object was a good distance from him, thus rather small, he used binoculars to view it. At that distance, the red light he reported on the underside must have been very large, and not the smaller, single blinking red light that was observed by Officers Barton and Stevens. When St. Louis International Airport (Lambert Field) called Jany and asked if he could still see the object, he replied in the affirmative. St. Louis Air Traffic Control then informed Jany that there were no visible aircraft on their radar in Jany’s area. Officer Jany communicated his sighting to Milstadt Officer Stevens at approximately 5:03am.


 Later that morning, at 6:50am, it was dawn and light was just beginning to break. A school teacher, Stephen Winnacott, was on his way to work from Centerville, Illinois and noticed a strange stationary object in the sky. It was huge, triangular, had 2 very bright white lights and many other smaller lights around it. Mr. Winnacott was driving west on Lake Drive overpass (going over Interstate 255) and did not stop his car to view the object, but the image remained with him as he recounted his sighting to the St. Louis Riverfront Times and also to the Discovery Channel for their program “UFO Over Illinois”.

  No other reports of the strange, gigantic, silent UFO emerged from that morning of January 5, 2000…until recently.


PHOTO RECONSTRUCTION of Detective Lopinot's view of UFO as it moves silently to the southwest (to the right in photo). Five lights in sky near Shell gasoline station are estimated to be larger than wingspan of a 747 jetliner. 

  On July 22, 2002, I interviewed Detective Mark Lopinot of the O’Fallon, Illinois police department. I had heard from one of the other officers that a policeman in O’Fallon had also seen the object. Detective Lopinot was in his squad car driving east on Highway 50 going into O’Fallon and as he passed over Interstate 64, he saw an arrangement of bright, occasionally “twinkling”, amber lights (much brighter than street lights) at an approximate altitude of 200-300 feet, and covered an area larger than the wingspan of a C-5 military cargo plane (222 ft.) or a 747 jetliner (211 ft.). The lights consisted of two rows, three evenly spaced lights in the top row and two evenly spaced lights in the bottom row. Detective Lopinot first thought the lights were five helicopters flying in formation, because they covered such a large expanse of night sky; but he soon realized after he rolled down his window, that the lights were totally silent and appeared to be connected, attached to a single object, as all 5 lights moved in perfect unison. Lopinot also noticed that the lights were moving very slowly, so slow as to constitute a stall for a normal prop or jet aircraft. He wondered if the object might be a blimp, but again, no sound could be heard from any kind of engine typically used on lighter than air vehicles. When Lopinot first saw the lights, he observed that they were to the east, beyond the Convenient Food Mart located near the junction of Highway 50 and State Street. As he continued to slowly drive (10-20mph) east on Highway 50, he observed the lights, still in unison, approaching him, moving in a northwesterly direction. As he reached a Shell gasoline station on Highway 50 in O’Fallon, the massive lighting arrangement had now passed over the Convenient Food Mart, approaching Lopinot and maintaining the fixed pattern. The only sense of perspective Detective Lopinot observed on the UFO was when the two lower lights would fade out at times and then fade back in, as if they were being intermittently blocked from view. The two lower lights appeared to be at a greater distance than the top row, both by slightly less intensity, and also by their fading from view, which elicited some sense of depth to the unseen structure behind the lights, which was possibly at an angle.

PHOTO RECONSTRUCTION of Detective Lopinot's view of UFO as it moves silently away from car dealership toward Shiloh. Strange detail of sighting is how 5 lights never change orientation to witness as they move away. 

  As Detective Lopinot’s police car approached the Jack Schmitt Oldsmobile Dealer (still on Highway 50 eastbound), he saw perhaps the strangest detail of the sighting: the 5 lights, now about 500 feet off the ground and just to the right and south of Highway 50 stopped moving toward him and proceeded to make what Lopinot described as a 90 degree turn or change in direction; that is, the 5 lights, still in a perfectly locked formation, moved to Lopinot’s right, which is Southwest on a map of the area. As Lopinot reached the location at which the lights made the 90 degree turn, Lopinot watched the lights moving away from him over a field and then over the tree tops, where they went out of view. One strange detail observed by Lopinot was that as the lights moved south and away from him, they never changed their relationship to him as an observer. Whatever angle Lopinot viewed the lights from, they remained fixed in two rows, three on top and two on bottom. Detective Lopinot’s sighting took place approximately 2 hours before the end of his shift, which places the sighting between 4:00 and 4:30am on January 5, 2000. Lopinot did not note the exact time, nor did he think the object was anything other than “something from Scott” Air Force Base. Hence, he said nothing of the incident until he heard the news the next day about the sighting by other officers in St. Clair County. Detective Lopinot could not discern any shape of an object. The night sky was very dark; however, the area covered by the fixed lights was unmistakably large: estimated to be larger than the wingspan of a Boeing 747 (221 ft.).

  After further conversation with Detective Lopinot and a look at the surrounding area, we discovered that the lights seen by Lopinot headed in the direction of Shiloh, and toward the open field bordering Lebanon Avenue, where Officer Martin saw the object at 4:23am. Roughly 3 miles separate Lopinot’s sighting location from Officer Martin’s sighting location. It is not possible to make an absolute statement that the lights seen by Detective Lopinot were also the UFO seen by Officer Martin, but the times of the two sightings are reasonably close enough to draw a possible connection.

  A flight path can be proposed which incorporates Detective Lopinot’s sighting.

Detective Lopinot's map of area and UFO position drawn during July 22, 2002 interview.

 The object has shot away from the Lebanon Officer seconds prior to 4:23:06am; actually arrives over O’Fallon, Highway 50 and is observed by Detective Lopinot for the 45 seconds between Lebanon Officer Barton stating the object is near Scott AFB at 4:23:12am* and Officer Martin actually making visual contact with the UFO in Shiloh at 4:23:57am. This cannot be proven, but this new piece of the puzzle prompts speculation. Of course, there is the possibility that the “object” seen by Detective Lopinot was actually a second aircraft of unknown origin, but this leads to an entirely separate set of questions which will be discussed later. There is also the possibility that the object was seen by Detective Lopinot in a time frame outside this very tight temporal window. (* 6 uninterrupted seconds elapse on the actual taped police transmissions between 4:23:06 and Offficer Barton stating the UFO is near Scott AFB, placing the statement that the UFO is near Scott AFB at 4:23:12am).

  If this was the same triangular UFO as seen by Officer Barton, and it had just arrived in the O’Fallon area, perhaps what Lopinot observed was an angular view of the object. Based on other reports of flying triangle maneuvers (particularly those reported in the United Kingdom), witnesses have seen these flying triangles flip on the side, or move with their broad, flat end forward. How the two rows of lights on this object always remained facing Detective Lopinot as they moved away, is another mystery.

Artist's rendition of UFO lights as described by Detective Lopinot.



Sighting Location: Witness rendition of unknown craft. Using Photoshop, the witness drew the above representation in red line, superimposed onto reconstruction photo near 5200 block of N. Lindbergh Blvd, southbound in Florissant, Missouri near the Schnuck's Supermarket. Object is reported to have floated across highway near Schnuck's grocery store sign to the left. The smaller rectangle within the large rectangle is the "window" and a childlike, humanoid figure, to scale.

A recent report has been added to this update as of 9/5/04. A rectangular object, similar to that described by Mr. Noll in Highland, has been reported by a man who is employed by a highly respected organization in St. Louis. The man witnessed a large, very low flying and silent object pass over him as he drove southward on Highway 67, (aka Lindbergh Blvd.) in Florissant, Missouri on the morning of January 5, 2000 at approximately 2:00am. The witness reports that a Florissant police officer also saw the object. The report can be see here: http://dbarkertv.com/florissantmo.htm


  Aside from actual witnesses, one of the more interesting interviews that NIDS conducted was at Scott Air Force base, which was fortuitously located near the UFO’s flight path once it arrived near Lebanon (the UFO basically “hung around” the Scott Air Force base area as it was seen between 4:18am and 6:50am). Scott AFB personnel informed the NIDS investigator that Scott personnel knew nothing of the sighting and that they saw no UFO on the morning of January 5, 2000. When the NIDS investigator mentioned during the conversation that he could not recall which police officer first went public, one Air Force officer responded (likely due to an unintentional reflex) “the Millstadt officer”, thus revealing that he did indeed know the details of the sighting. Furthermore, Scott Air Force base’s official response to press inquiries was that Scott has no active radar on the base; that they depend on St. Louis Lambert field for air traffic control and that no one was in the Scott Air Traffic Control tower on the morning in question. Expecting the truth from Air Force personnel regarding UFOs is a tall order. However, allowing the Air Force to blatantly lie about clearly contradictory information is at the least, a necessary exercise in leaving no stone unturned and verifying that the U.S. military is continuing its policy of denying all knowledge of UFO activity or government investigation, which dates back to the 1969 closing of Project Blue Book (the last Air Force public relations entity to openly acknowledge investigation of UFOs).

  It was somewhat gratifying when I spoke with officers at police departments near Scott AFB and a consensus surfaced that the statement by Scott personnel regarding their radar being shut down and no longer in use was false. It was observed that the radar at Scott AFB almost never stops rotating and I saw the radar in operation on the day I videotaped it for my program. Also, Scott AFB is the headquarters of the United States Air Force 375th Aeromedical Airlift Wing which hosts the Air Mobility Command (AMC), U.S. Transportation Command and other units. While the base carries quite a responsibility for the United States, I’ve been told by an associate of a serviceman stationed at Scott that the Scott control tower is so dead at 4:00am, that it’s probably true that no one was in the tower to see the UFO (although there was a flight in or out of the base just prior to the sighting). Even if things were “dead”, this does not explain Scott Air Traffic Control’s failure to take note of the UFO, when St. Clair County police dispatch called the tower at the time of the sighting and asked them if they could see the object. Because the UFO was apparently equipped with some sort of anti-radar technology (“stealth”, if man-made), the statement that Scott ATC could not see the UFO on their radar could have been true. Playing dumb about the sighting altogether was intentionally misleading; but this is nothing new. One of the possibly more interesting notes about Scott AFB is that the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) has a facility there.



  What has been credited as the move which shot this UFO sighting into the limelight was the publication of the police report by Officer Craig Stevens of the Millstadt police department on the Millstadt PD’s website. In a matter of days, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the only major newspaper in St. Louis, published a story about the sighting. The article, “Police Officers in St. Clair County report seeing early-morning UFO” penned by Valerie Schremp and printed in the January 9, 2000 edition was a rare and exciting moment in mainstream media. It seemed a miracle to see a mainstream publication actually give the UFO phenomenon an unbiased and fair treatment.

  During this time, the St. Louis television news media also began to cover the sighting. FOX News KTVI channel 2 and Channel 5, the St. Louis NBC affiliate produced news segments on the sighting and FOX spoke with Forest Crawford, who was currently the Assistant State Director of Illinois MUFON. David Marler was then State Director of Illinois MUFON, the acronym for Mutual UFO Network, a worldwide organization consisting of common citizens searching for answers about UFOs. At the time, Mr. Crawford was quoted as saying that the UFO was “possibly a secret government aircraft used to develop anti-gravity devices” although Mr. Crawford later told me he was misquoted. Another St. Louis area UFO group was quoted as saying the Illinois UFO was “a military project; possibly a new design in troopships”. At the outset, the notion was planted that this UFO was a military vehicle.

  A second, unbiased article written by Heather Ratcliffe ran January 12, 2000, in the Post-Dispatch and noted the arrival of a team of investigators headed by John Velier from the Las Vegas based National Institute for Discovery Science (NIDS), founded by Robert T. Bigelow. Again, Forest Crawford of Illinois MUFON was quoted as suspecting the UFO was an “experimental government craft”. The sense of the second Post-Dispatch article was that if professional investigators were coming to the genuinely modest and small town of St. Louis, all the way from Las Vegas, it must have been a pretty serious matter. Maybe there was something to it?

  And so the NIDS investigators did arrive and they did their job. NIDS published the interviews of  8 witnesses on the NIDS website. It was my reading of these interviews that actually convinced me that I had to document as many witness testimonials on videotape as possible and I commend the people at NIDS for their work.

  I do not know which happened first, the St. Louis television media receiving its gag order, or the Post-Dispatch deciding to discredit the witnesses and successfully sweep the story under the rug; but the debunking and censorship soon commenced.

  The first biased article “UFOs: Seeing is believing – or is it?” ran on January 21, 2000, in the Post-Dispatch and was written by a biology professor employed by a prominent university in St. Louis. The article was fused with satire and mockery. Comparing the January 5, 2000 UFO witnesses’ experience to that of seeing Santa Claus, the professor wrote, “Adults too can see with imagination’s eyes, at least in Illinois. UFOs, like Santa, are real for those able to see them”. Although the professor did point out that the UFO was likely a “real” object, as “Police are high-quality observers” (the professor said he would bet his money on an experimental military aircraft), and the article did try at one point to evaluate the oddities of the sighting such as the fact that a blimp cannot ordinarily float the kind of wattage necessary to power the extraordinarily bright lights seen by several witnesses, the overall tone of the professor’s commentary was to make light of what the witnesses saw. Basically, as when a child “wants” to see and believe in Santa Claus, so it goes for those who witnessed the January 5th flying triangle. Needless to say, some of the police officers that witnessed the UFO were very annoyed at the flippant tone of the man of science. And how calm and cool was the author with his scientific Occam’s razor pen, as he edged toward conclusions without ever having interviewed a single witness. But of course, this has been the modus operandi of the majority of UFO debunkers: conclusion prior to investigation. 

  The point here is that by fusing a mix of 90% smug parody with 10% serious acknowledgement of the event, the tone is one that mocks, derides and deflates the reality of the sighting and in turn, has a negative impact on those whose character was being scrutinized.

  In a second biased Post-Dispatch article by Heather Ratcliffe, published January 25, 2000, with the title “Recent UFO sightings in area lack credibility to scientists”, the police officers’ testimony was implicitly thrown into question. Another scientific voice of authority, this time Barry Beyerstein, a professor of psychology at Simon Fraiser University in Vancouver, British Columbia was quoted as saying “Smart, honest, good people can be seriously wrong about seeing a UFO”. James McGaha, an astronomer and former Air Force pilot said “You can’t put any credibility into their reports – even police - because they are not trained to observe anything in the sky or an astronomic anomaly”. And the so-called “Dean of Ufology”, Philip Klass, who has long been a fervent skeptic and critic of even the best UFO sightings, is quoted as saying “I would suspect this case is bogus”.

  Speaking of bogus, how about the quote itself? In the summer of 2000, I met Philip Klass at the International MUFON conference, held in St. Louis and I asked him about his “quote” in the Post-Dispatch regarding the Illinois sighting. Mr. Klass told me that he never said the case was “bogus”. He did tell me he said he had not interviewed the witnesses and that he could not draw a conclusion. However, Mr. Klass later stated that the Illinois UFO was actually the planet Venus and NIDS rebutted his remarks. When it comes to Mr. Klass, there’s only one thing for sure: he’s been working for decades to annoy serious UFO investigators. While those quoted in the article had interviewed many UFO witnesses themselves, and were correct in stating that “Most UFO reports, especially lights in the night sky, turn out to be honest misidentifications” the article is stacked with negatives which effectively throw weight behind the notion that the witnesses did not see what they thought they saw. The article ends with another quote from Mr. Klass: “For 50 years we’ve gotten reports such as this, but not a single piece of credible evidence to support these claims.” A police officer’s testimony in court can help put a criminal behind bars, but their testimony regarding a UFO sighting is not credible evidence?

  Is it fair to blame the authors of these articles or better yet, the editor of the paper who decides what is published?  Of course it’s fair. Is it going too far to say that the media was and is making an outright attempt to debunk this UFO sighting as well as others? Of course it’s not going too far. It’s obvious what’s happening, but most people who never look past the ink on the page or the sound bites erupting from their television sets swallow the manipulative rhetoric, hook, line and sinker. I know because I’ve been there. I used to believe the media was a free media, telling us the truth because the press was the last vestige of hope for freedom of information and truth gathering. But now I know better; especially after a member of the St. Louis television news community told me that the sighting was an exciting event when it first happened, but that it had suddenly become a “hush-hush” subject, taboo, verboten. They were given the gag order. And that doesn’t surprise me after one of the police officer witnesses told me he was visited by two men who advised him to “stop talking about the sighting”. He inferred they were some sort of federal agents, although they were not wearing solid black suits like Tommy Lee Jones and Will Smith.

  But something the media propagandists could not control was the Internet, which had already linked Officer Stevens’ UFO report from the Millstadt police department website. Ironically, the Internet, which was developed by the U.S. defense department in the late 1960s and early 70s, has become the nemesis of factions within all governments who are trying to control and restrict the release of information. And how poetic, that the free man and woman has unlimited information (and disinformation) at his or her disposal. The trick of course, is having enough of the skeptic within to discern the bad from the good. Thousands of websites populate the Internet and many of those websites have addressed the January 5th, 2000 sighting. The Art Bell website was one of the first as Officers Barton and Stevens both went on the air to describe their experience. Rense.com, a leading news source has featured the sighting and the NIDS website established itself as the cornerstone for seminal 1/5/2000 Illinois UFO data. CUFOS.org, NUFORC.org, MUFON.com and Unknowncountry.com, all provide information not found in the mainstream media as well as some of the best UFO sighting data on record.

The Triangular UFO was consistently described as being as large as, or larger than a Boeing 747 jetliner. A B-2 Stealth bomber and a 747 are scaled over the UFO for comparison on this football field rendition.


  As I was producing “The Edge of Reality: Illinois UFO, January 5, 2000”, I was constantly attempting to be sensitive of the witnesses’ situation and respectful of their time and their personal beliefs. It was an exhilarating experience to come into contact with the witnesses within weeks of the sighting and everyone was polite and generous.

  Without going into details of each witness’s personal take on what they believed the UFO to be, I will say that the event created in all of them, varied degrees of anxiety. This was exacerbated by the fact that members of the law enforcement fraternity may be more inclined to joke and kid each other about such things that obviously stretch the limits of credibility. After all, it is ideally a police officer’s sense of honesty, accuracy in observation and “doing the right thing” that gives him or her the authority to enforce the law. So when a police officer testifies that they saw a UFO, they are really going out on a limb. Hence, the Post-Dispatch articles that inferred that the officers’ observations were unreliable, was a real insult. Jokes and teasing from fellow officers were quite intense for one of the officers in particular; however, as the production of the video drew to a close, and fellow members of the various police departments watched the video reconstruction of the event in question, a new respect fell into place for the witnesses as fellow officers realized that this was no joking matter. It happened. It was real. And something strange and damn huge was flying in the skies over Illinois that morning, which leads us ultimately to a conclusion and a question. There’s no doubt something unknown was in the sky, so there’s no sense in attempting to convince people that it was the work of overactive imaginations who may have a yearning to see Santa Claus in a flying saucer with Rudolph at the joystick. The real issue here is what was this object in the sky over Metro East St. Louis, this object which caused for one of the witnesses, sudden sharp and intense headaches immediately after the sighting and for weeks to come?



Everyone should have the eye opening experience of meeting the unknown so they too can defend their integrity and credibility, which everyone else takes for granted. The witnesses of this UFO have been in this position since that cold January morning, but I did not know that I too would find myself occasionally on a defensive platform. As a result of my working with the January 5th witnesses, I have been invited to speak at various civilian UFO investigative meetings. I found the experience to be very disillusioning; that is, to find people in these groups that were so quick to proclaim their own knowledge of not only the UFO phenomenon, but the “totally secret” workings of the U.S. government in what are called “Black Programs” by the aerospace/aviation industry. And moreso, most of the people I was invited to speak to conveyed to me that they already knew what the January 5th UFO was. Although I am one of the few people in the world who have interviewed the prime witnesses of this unknown object, the “ufologists” were there to tell me what I didn’t know, and that was that the “Flying Triangle” is indeed a U.S. government, man-made aircraft. From the time I interviewed the witnesses, I have long felt that they saw something extraordinary. The degree of excitement and tension I found in all the witnesses told me that this was no ordinary mistaken identification of a known aircraft. It represented something beyond our very threshold of what is physically possible.

  While I must admit, my bias on this particular sighting has leaned toward of a non man-made vehicle, I have found myself many times since making mental notes of just how much I do not know; how much knowledge there is in the brainchild of humanity to which I have no exposure and therefore, no knowledge. As a result, I remain open, until conclusive evidence is presented, (either by disclosure of an actual identical craft of human origin, or by the lack thereof after a reasonable period of time, [say, a generous 20 years from the date of the sighting] or by the actual confirmation of a physical craft of non-human manufacture) to what I consider a stretch of a possibility that the Illinois UFO was indeed, a man-made aircraft. As a result of this non-conclusive position, I will foray into the actual reason for writing this article: Simply, is the technology ours or is it alien?



   A - Many Theories

  Theories and statements regarding the source of the Illinois UFO have run the gamut. Most of these, not surprisingly, have looked for a human source of origin, a mundane explanation. From the FAA declaring the UFO to be an advertising blimp, to a military official brushing it off as a B-2 Stealth Bomber, to a St. Louis television news reporter quoting a MUFON officer that the object was an experimental military vehicle used in the development of anti-gravity, to a new kind of “troop ship”, to the absurdity of falling back on the planet Venus as the culprit; most attempts at explanation have been insulting to the intelligence of the witnesses. More serious and intelligent theories emerged from the leading investigators in the case, NIDS. As presented in my program on the sighting, the NIDS theories examined various plausible, if not provable hypotheses. One was that the Illinois UFO was the so-called “Stealth Blimp”, an unacknowledged and speculative lighter than air vehicle that appeared in the September, 1999 issue of “Popular Mechanics” magazine. 

The purported "Stealth Blimp" which appeared in the September, 1999 issue of Popular Mechanics magazine. (Rendering by Darryl Barker)

The “Stealth Blimp” is theorized to have the dimensions of the UFO seen over Illinois, but one must still contend with the issue of the UFO’s unexplainable fast accelerations, silently moving miles in seconds, as seen by two police officers. These “unbelievable” accelerations cannot be attributed to a mere blimp, no matter how large or small it might be. I contacted the Editor-In-Chief of “Popular Mechanics” magazine and asked for permission to reprint their artwork of the “Stealth Blimp” for my program and he flat out refused my request. I had to produce my own rendition of the “stealth blimp” to make the point in the video.

NIDS also presented the theory that the object may have been a highly developed version of the Aereon, a rigid framed, lighter than air, hybrid lifting body airship, designed and  successfully flown by the Aereon Corporation of Princeton, New Jersey. It’s pioneer inventor, William Miller informed NIDS that although the government had once looked at his Aereon, they did not present him with a contract to build it and he has not been able to pursue the project due to an apparent lack of interest. I spoke with Mr. Miller, who was kind enough to allow me to use the image of one design of his Aereon; and he was quite annoyed with the situation. His Aereon design has apparently been pursued and built by U.S. government contractor Lockheed Martin without his involvement. U.S. government contractors allegedly "borrowed" Miller’s concept after meeting with him in the 1970s. But again, one troubling aspect of applying the Aereon hypothesis to the Illinois UFO is accounting for the high accelerations witnessed and the conclusion that the airframe would be damaged (if not crushed) under such high G-forces; not to mention the presence of a human pilot, who would face life threatening forces. Of course, the possibility of remote control alleviates the pilot problem, but it does not resolve the G-force on the airframe. Thus, this theory, at the time, also seemed implausible.

  A third and fourth theory from NIDS presented by theoretical physicist H.E. Puthoff, looked into the use of zero-point energy, which is derived from the residual energy found in the vacuum of empty space, which if properly transduced, could possibly provide propulsion forces. Alcubierre’s Time/Space contraction and expansion hypothesis, where space and time themselves are manipulated by an as yet unknown technology, allowing the craft to move forward in time and space at a rate yet unseen, creating a “warp drive” type acceleration was the fourth, yet highly speculative theory. But according to physicists in the “White World” of science, these manipulations of quantum energy cannot be expected to happen without some major scientific breakthrough. Of course, as Colm Kelleher, Director of NIDS pointed out to me, those of us who do not work in the dark, have no idea of what is really going on in the “Black World” of secret government programs.

  Other theories from anonymous origins have populated the Internet in an attempt to explain the remarkable features and maneuvers of the Flying Triangle as seen over Illinois. They have included speculative Black Project development and application of Electric Propulsion thrusters (Ion and Plasma engines), as well as Pulsed Detonation Propulsion as developed by Liek Myrabo at Rensselaer Polytechnic University in Troy, New York. But electronic propulsion methods fall short of providing the kind of thrust required to move a heavy object in normal atmospheric conditions. Electric propulsion performs best in a vacuum, such as outer space, while pulsed detonation propulsion creates clearly audible pops as it heats atmospheric air to the point of explosion, pushing its vehicle forward. The only reports of audible sound from the UFO on the morning of January 5, 2000 were reported by two witnesses, in Summerfield and in Millstadt. A very low pitched buzz, similar to the sound of an electrical transformer was discerned at the Millstadt location and what sounded like a well-tuned V-8 engine was reported by the Summerfield witness. Could electronic propulsion explain the non-combustive aural characteristics of the 1/5/2000 flying triangle?  Perhaps. But is the technology necessarily produced by human hands? Even if the Illinois UFO was a lighter-than-air vehicle (foregoing the mass found in a typical 747-sized aircraft), it’s still not possible (at least not in the “white world” of science) for electric propulsion thrusters to create an immediate and powerful thrust which could move a football field-sized dirigible 6 miles in 3 to 4 seconds. Several types of electronic propulsion are examined in "The Edge of Reality: Illinois UFO, January 5, 2000": ion engines, plasma thrusters, Pulsed Detonation Propulsion, and Magneto Hydro Dynamic technology. Investigative work during the production of the documentary program consisted of contacting leading engineers in the field of electronic propulsion, in both physics and in direct technology development. Although these sources were promised anonymity and they do not make on-camera statements in "The Edge of Reality" Illinois UFO, January 5, 2000", it was the opinion of these U.S. government-funded researchers and engineers, that technologies in the foregoing areas of electronic propulsion were not yet, in the year 2000, at a level of development that would explain the flight characteristics observed by the 1/5/2000 UFO witnesses.

While some sort of electronic propulsion appears to be a plausible explanation for the propulsion systems in some reported triangle craft; the question must again be asked: Must it necessarily be of human manufacture? An interesting case was reported by Jacques Vallee in "Anatomy of a Phenomenon" 1965, second edition, page 239. A Brazilian army installation, Fort Itaipu, was visited on November 4, 1957, by an orange glowing object that first appeared to Brazilian army sentries as a "new star" in the sky. When the UFO suddenly moved over the fort, Brazilian army personnel were impacted by what was described as an "intolerable wave" of intense heat. Two sentries in fact suffered first and second degree burns over more than ten percent of their bodies, in places that were covered by clothing. One soldier went into a state of shock while others wept. All electrical power was neutralized for the duration of the UFO's short visit, whereby power returned upon the UFO's departure as it was observed shooting vertically into the sky above the installation. Fort Itaipu was visited by both the Brazilian Air Force as well as a liason from the United States Army. The two Brazilian sentries who were badly burned were taken away on a security flight to Rio de Janeiro where they were "completely isolated behind a tight security curtain in the Army's Central Hospital". The case remained undisclosed for years. The technology that is described in the forgoing Brazilian incident can be compared to the recently disclosed "Active Denial System", a  "non-lethal" weapon, proudly lauded by the U.S. Pentagon, which has been criticized by civil rights proponents and others. The United States' "Active Denial System" performs in much the same manner as the technology reported in the 1957 Brazilian UFO report: Intense heat, creating a feeling that your  skin is burning off. A variation in the electromagnetic millimeter wave produced by the ADS determines the amount of "burn effect". Sound familiar? Did it take the U.S. military almost 50 years to produce or implement this technology which was either an intended or unintended side effect of an advanced technology  in 1957, origin unknown? The point here is that UFOs have been exhibiting technologies that are ahead of what human engineering is capable of, on the dates in time where the UFO technologies were first reported.

  In the wake of historic, but superior technology demonstrations, that point the finger to non-human intelligence, other attempted explanations for the flying triangles are perhaps less genuine. The “TR3” and "TR3b" "theories", which contend that the Flying Triangles are military aircraft, a result of advanced black project development, are such examples. Allegedly using an MFD (Magnetic Field Disruptor), which negates the effects of G-forces on mass within the vehicle, including the pilots, is said to decrease total mass and G-force by 89%.  The TR3 is said to be nuclear powered and by some accounts, additional thrust is provided by conventional General Electric jet turbines. In another version of this story, the TR3 is said to implement “rocket” engines at each corner of the triangle. The TR3 scenario has contradictions, depending on whose version you read. One must wonder if these accounts are disinformation. One must also consider the possibility that there can be shreds of truth in even the wildest accounts; that is, perhaps what is being discussed here has a basis in an actual military aircraft. But it does not mean that this is the explanation for the massive flying triangle seen over Illinois, or other parts of the globe since the 1980s.

  Other theories of anonymous origin and questionable legitimacy have proposed that the Flying Triangle is a hybrid effort of man-made, but alien-based technology. That is, that the purported Majestic-12 (MJ-12) team allegedly established by President Truman in the 1940s to handle the UFO issue in America is still extant and is behind the manufacture of the craft. Propulsion is purported to be some kind of plasma technology. Of course, this theory alleges that the aliens are here and we’re working with them and their technology. These “Top Secret” programs are so “secret” that the “government” will do anything to protect their “secrets”. So why, I ask, are the people relaying this information alive to talk about it? This theory, like the others cannot be proven or disproven, except by those supposedly “leaking” the information.

  None of these theories can be proven or disproven by anyone in the visible “White World” of science. If it weren’t for the fact that for centuries the world has been faced with the possibility of an alien presence, the latter of these theories could be written off as pure lunacy. But in order to maintain an open mind, nothing can be entirely ruled out.

  Finally, the folks who initiated the first major investigation of this case, NIDS, recently presented on July 23, 2002 a hypothesis that the Illinois UFO is indeed, man-made. Presented to NIDS by an anonymous aircraft designer, the hypothesis cites a combination of elements including lighter-than-air construction with “electrokinetic” propulsion, and a fuselage that creates almost zero drag. 

Theories behind a proposed man-made explanation for the awesome aerodynamic performance of the Flying Triangle seen over Illinois are similar to those discussed in "The Edge of Reality: Illinois UFO, January 5, 2000", yet they fall short of a convincing argument.

The "Hypothesis: The Illinois Flying Triangle is a Department of Defense, not an ET Craft", can be seen on the "What’s New" page at NIDS website (URL at end of this article). The hypothesis puts forth the idea that if the technology is possible, (and some of it has been demonstrated, i.e. large dirigibles, electrokinetic propulsion), it must have been done by black program development, because….why would it not have been done? The hypothesis points out that men were flying long before the Wright Brothers made their historic flight, yet textbook history has not emphasized this fact.

  The lighter-than-air (LTA) vehicle, by way of its tremendous size, is theorized to utilize its size to its benefit, in carrying a heavy payload and using fuselage surface as an active ingredient in the vehicle’s ability to reduce air friction. The hypothesis is totally logical; the only question is, have the black program gurus actually achieved it, or should I say, to what extent have they achieved it? Perhaps the technology seen aboard the Illinois UFO has been accomplished on some level; but even if it has, can this be the answer to all the flying triangle sightings around the world?

  NIDS completed an analysis of flying triangle reports around the United States beginning in 1990 and found that many of the sightings are located along straight line vectors between air bases of the Air Mobility Command and Air Force Materiel Command. Based on this coincidence, the hypothesis was put forth that if these triangular objects are seen near and between military bases, isn’t it reasonable to assume that the objects are originating from these bases? Think Brazil, 1957.


    B - Dancing Partners - Two of a Kind

  After reading the NIDS hypothesis that the Illinois UFO is a man-made craft and not of an alien origin, I had to sit back and really force myself to remain unbiased. And so I did. I thought about their proposal for days before writing this piece. I thought about how I have, since January of 2000, realized that there really is so much that I do not know and how much I will never know. I had to make sure that I did not want to cling to the “alien” theory because I’ve been interested in the UFO subject ever since I was a child. I had to make sure that I gave this hypothesis its just due, for after all, it was NIDS who I can thank for making the Illinois case interviews available and as a result, assisting me in my own investigation of the case. Possibly more than anything else, it is the utmost respect I have for one of NIDS’ scientific advisors, Jacques Vallee. Mr. Vallee is a pioneer in the ufology field, a true maverick. His books are among the most intelligent and informative on the UFO subject and his insight into the discreet agenda of unknown members of the world governments as they attempt to control the public psyche regarding the UFO phenomenon is to the point, sober, humane and refreshingly humorous. I have the greatest respect for this man who worked with J. Allen Hynek and who to this day, maintains his integrity while being attacked by partisanship within the “ufology” community. So, with that said, I had to decide if I really wanted to challenge this purported “rational” explanation.

  While I will acknowledge, it could be possible that the Illinois Flying Triangle was a man-made aircraft (likely, if so, by way of hi-tech smoke and mirrors, rather than true anti-gravity or time/space contraction) there are many factors which must be considered before drawing any final conclusions. The first factor to consider is that it is likely, if not probable, that the military powers of the world have produced a triangular, delta-winged aircraft that bears a resemblance to the mysterious flying triangles seen in so many places around the world. One can go further to say that it’s likely, if not certain, that a very large, triangular vehicle has been manufactured by an aerospace government contractor. In the wake of this assumption, it is proper to assume that all theories thus far, likely have some element of truth; that is, the military is flying their version of a flying triangle (FT, for short) over the United States. There are, however, (based upon historical sightings of triangular and deltoid shaped UFOs dating back to the 1930s and possibly earlier) unknown and unidentified triangular airships that have not, and do not, originate from the black program world of human-engineered aerospace technology.

  Since the 1940s, the debate has raged on about the similarity of experimental military aircraft and UFOs. For example, Kenneth Arnold’s 1947 sighting of 9 silvery crescents weaving at high speed (clocked at 1,700 mph) through the Cascade Mountain range in Washington State has been attributed by some to a version of the German Horton Parabola jet-powered plane. However, the speed and flight characteristics of those 9 UFOs were such that it’s very unlikely that they were man-made aircraft. And so the possibility exists that this pairing of the Illinois flying triangle with a “military experimental craft” is more of the same kind of rationalizing.

  There are two additional points of argument that I have to offer for the case of “alien” life being behind some of the flying triangle sightings.

1)      The unexplainable effects seen by witnesses that extend beyond the simple observation of an aircraft in flight, and….

2)      The emotional reaction of the witnesses.

  As noted in Michael Hesemann’s book “UFOs – The Secret History” a very strange phenomenon was witnessed by police officers in Lichtenbusch, on the E40 near Aix-la-Chappelle, at the border control point between Belgium and Germany on November 29,  1989. On page 7 of Hesseman’s book, two gendarmes had the shock of their lives, as they were in pursuit of a similar FT. They had previously seen to their amazement, the triangular UFO make a flat 180 degree turn and shoot off into the sky at an angle and when it returned, they stopped and exited their police car. It was then that they witnessed a bizarre sight. “Two thin, reddish beams of light that shot out simultaneously” from the craft “in opposite directions and left behind at each end, a very bright red ball. But soon after that the ‘fireballs’ returned to the ‘mother ship’ and revolved around it for a number of minutes, before the whole process repeated itself”. The FT was between 2 and 3 miles distant from the officers. The rays were reported by a gendarme as being “about three quarters of a mile long. They are like harpoons on a line, which drivers pull back”. Unknown to these two officers, six of their colleagues had witnessed another FT and “saw a red ball shooting down vertically from the center of the three floodlights on the object and then abruptly, the objects raced off horizontally”. Lasers and plasma manufactured on good old planet earth, you ask?  Maybe……Maybe not.

  The month of December,1989 saw reports of FTs over Belgium almost daily and on December 5, the Belgian Air Force scrambled two F-16s to intercept an FT seen on radar. The report was provided to the White House in Washington DC (as well as several other U.S. and Belgian government agencies) and the United States confirmed that stealth aircraft were in the Ardennes area; however, as anyone can surmise, the witnesses knew the difference between an F-117, a B-2 and the FT in question. Furthermore, one of the Belgian F-16s captured the FT’s movement on the F-16’s instrument panel/radar console film which showed the FT accelerate from a dead stop to 900 miles per hour in a few seconds, as well as drop from 9,000 feet altitude to 500 feet in 6 seconds. Although the latest NIDS hypothesis is proposing that the Illinois UFO is a highly advanced, man-made, lighter than air vehicle with near zero drag, the questions remain: how could the FT over Belgium and the FT over Illinois move so quickly without damaging the airframe; and furthermore, why was there an unauthorized aircraft in Belgian airspace, outrunning Belgian Air Force F-16s? The Belgian Air Force did not find the situation amusing.

  No more humorous than the NORAD official who informed the American Press that although the Air Force did not know exactly what the bright blue “shooting star”- like object was that F-16 fighter jets from Andrews Air Force Base chased to no avail over Maryland at 1:00am on the morning of July 26, 2002, it was a perfectly normal thing to do. And by the way, July 26, 2002 is precisely 50 years after the same date of July 26, 1952, where UFOs were chased by F-94 fighter jets from Langley AFB over Washington DC. That event drew the headlines: FIERY OBJECTS OUTRUN JETS OVER CAPITAL – INVESTIGATION VEILED IN SECRECY FOLLOWING VAIN CHASE. The UFO siege became known as the second flap of the Washington National Sightings, all documented in Air Force Captain Edward J. Ruppelt’s classic work “The Report on Unidentified Flying Objects”.

  2) Regarding the emotional reaction of witnesses, it’s understandable if an inexperienced civilian sees something they’ve never seen before, a la “The Gods Must Be Crazy”. When I was a child, the first time I saw the scintillation effect on a fairly bright star, I wondered if I was seeing a light-changing object in the night sky, a UFO. But later experience revealed to me that dust particles in the atmosphere created the effect of a white star turning red, then blue, and back to white. But what about the experience garnered by people who are in the streets or skies every day? People who have lived in and around aircraft, or better yet, in the military? These observers do not so easily jump to conclusions because they have experience which tells them, this is one of “Ours”…or,  this is strange, this is not ordinary. While anyone can be spooked by something they’ve never seen before, some value must be placed in human instinct and experience. The reactions of the Illinois UFO witnesses I interviewed ranged from uncontrolled excitement to professional, tempered anxiety. The required cool of the police officers was put to the acid test for this casual observation; thus lending credence to the very high level of strangeness that transpired during the sighting.

  Of course, there’s no solid evidence that says some super secret program has not made revolutionary breakthroughs in quantum physics, and thus created ships that can do what ordinary folks “outside the loop” would consider otherworldly technology. As it was with the Manhattan Project and the development of the atomic bomb, that effort was a breakthrough and it was successfully carried out in secret, (well almost, it was leaked to the Russians). Yet, could we have created this technology and had it fully operational more than 28 years ago, in 1980, as the FTs were seen over Missouri and Kansas and strange, round, satellite-like objects with a blue glow emerged from the hovering triangle before it turned on its side to fly away? Could the technology be kept secret this long? Could the monumental logistics of employing hundreds of people to design and build these craft, deploy them, fly them, store them, and keep them hidden, possibly be kept secret for twenty eight years? ** If the United States government is really behind some of the FT sightings, why hasn’t the U.S. oil industry made use of the technology and relieved itself of the pressures that face us today? Surely, the wars that the two Bush administrations have engaged in have been because they know oil is still a valuable resource, as if there were no other working energy scheme that can replace fossil fuels.

  To put to rest the historical perspective, there are even reports as far back as 1871 in France, where astronomer Trouvelet reported seeing formations of triangular objects in the sky and again in 1886 as he saw the same triangular objects crossing in front of the sun.


  C - Proximity Determines Origin?

  While NIDS' latest hypothesis has pointed out that the FTs are often seen near Air Force bases and bodies of water, this by no means indicates that all of these vehicles originate from Air Force bases. Throughout history, UFOs have been reported in the vicinity of military bases in the United States as well as other sensitive areas of secret project development, such as Los Alamos, White Sands Missile Range, Oak Ridge and strange as it may sound, the General Mills company. In Ruppelt’s “The Report on Unidentified Flying Objects” published in 1956, he cited UFO activity around all of these establishments and those employed there had no idea what the UFOs were. The General Mills company, aside from putting breakfast cereal on your table each morning, also operated an Aeronautical Division in the early 1950s. Their engineers launched and tracked every Skyhook balloon that was launched prior to mid-1952. They knew what their balloons looked like and so on January 16, 1951 when they witnessed two round, disk-shaped UFOs circling their balloon at their facility in Artesia, New Mexico, they knew the objects were of such high strangeness that only one conclusion could be drawn: UFOs are real and they cannot be explained away as Skyhook balloons. Hence, although UFOs were seen near an area where a new technology was being deployed, the UFOs did not originate from that facility.

  The idea proposed by NIDS that the FTs use water as some sort of refueling/landing medium does not preclude an alien vessel from doing the same thing. Furthermore, there are many cases recorded by the Phenomenon Research Association in Derbyshire, England, compiled by its founder, Omar Fowler *, that track heavy FT activity in the areas of nuclear power plants, bodies of water, military bases, power lines, and road intersections. (*Omar Fowler has researched the UFO phenomenon for over 30 years and worked on aero-engines both in the 'Fleet Air Arm' and also on experimental aircraft at the Empire Test Pilots School, R.A.E. Farnborough)

  While the idea that the military has indeed manufactured their own version of the Flying Triangle, this could be intentionally muddying the waters for witnesses and investigators alike. Perhaps some of the FTs seen around military bases are military aircraft, but this does not draw the noose around all the FTs seen worldwide.


  D - Human Deception

  I have borrowed this section’s title from one of Jacques Vallee’s books, “Revelations – Alien Contact and Human Deception”, for the channel of human purpose and intent is where all the data seems to bottleneck. Before any kind of conclusion can be drawn regarding the true origins of any one UFO, the faulty human element that attempts to control access to the phenomenon must be addressed.

  The notion that the intelligence and military establishments of the world’s governments place a very high priority on UFO data puts them in a position where preventing any potential “enemy” to garner UFO data is surely a matter of national security. Because the military establishment must maintain the edge in ”defense” against our worst enemies, that is, us, any help a government could garner from a superior technology would of course be invaluable. Therefore, keeping the public in the dark about the true nature of UFO activity must be seen as an absolute. Why else would the entire military/intelligence establishment insist so rabidly, that they know nothing about UFOs and that they care nothing about them. Since the Condon Committee announced its findings from the University of Colorado in 1969 that UFOs were not worth tax-payers’ dollars to fund UFO investigation, the United States military/intelligence establishment has fallen back on this verdict by heavily biased and predisposed anti-UFO committee head Edward Condon, to nail the coffin shut on UFO data. But because human curiosity cannot be completely quelled, as the thousands of UFO groups worldwide attest, there has been an apparent effort to “muddy the waters” by someone wishing to control the data. This has been accomplished primarily in three ways.

  The first was to deny all legitimate UFO sightings and ridicule witnesses, even if they were your own pilots, military or commercial. This made people wonder if they really were going nuts, and put an end to pilots and others making UFO reports. This started immediately in 1947, if not before. According to his book, "The Coming of the Saucers", Ken Arnold had already become a pawn in an apparent military/intelligence mind-game as Arnold was attempting to independently investigate the Maury Island UFO case, located in Puget Sound in Washington State. According to Arnold's book, it appeared that he was misled by U.S. Government officials and even survived a suspected attempt on his life.

  Secondly, it is strongly suspected that there have been “faked” UFO events, which are designed to confuse the observer. If someone sees a fake UFO, but believes it to be the real thing, that sighting goes into the case files, constituting a false positive and contaminating the integrity of the UFO data available to civilian investigators. It is very likely that these faked UFO events are also conducted for psychosocial analysis. Basically, we are all rats in a laboratory, just waiting for our chance to see a UFO; but is it ET, or is it Uncle Sam at the controls?

  Thirdly, there is surely a disinformation campaign being carried out and aimed specifically at the civilian UFO investigative community. If you want to keep a detective off your tail, you lay false tracks. Therefore, with all the documents about MJ-12, government possession of alien bodies, alien technology and now the so-called TR3 Flying Triangle, no one outside the vault of secrecy can really know what is true and what is planted disinformation. Therefore, everything must be taken at face value and then unconditionally refuted until, as Occam’s razor suggests, the accumulated evidence is overwhelmingly in favor of a positive find.

  After speaking with the witnesses of the Illinois UFO, I came to the conclusion that I had enough evidence, based on testimony, that what they observed was no less amazing than the UFOs witnessed on radar at Washington DC National airport on July 19 and 26, 1952, as detailed in Captain Edward Ruppelt's "The Report on Unidentified Flying Objects". During the so-called Washington National Sightings, one UFO radar target went from roughly 100 miles per hour to 7,000 miles per hour in a sudden burst of speed. Many Air Force people were convinced that this event would be the one that would announce the arrival of the people from outer space. But of course, we all know that someone in power decided otherwise and so here we are today, still guessing about what is and what is not a visitation from alien beings. Thanks to Captain Ruppelt who had the courage to write his book even though his employer, Northrup Aircraft Company, forced him to recant his findings that UFOs were to be taken seriously, Ruppelt’s “The Report on Unidentified Flying Objects” is a document that cannot be refuted. And no one can tell me that in 1952, the United States or any other country on earth had the technology to create an aircraft that could crawl at 100mph and then speed away from an F-94 at 7,000mph. This was happening in 1952, so is it necessary to assume that 48 years later, in 2000, the same remarkable UFO maneuvers must be attributed to man’s own egotistical sense of genius? 

There remains today, evidence that suggests the possibility that many UFO events are occurring entirely outside the jurisdiction of any national government power, and that military/intelligence circles as well as other undisclosed parties who feel they have an exclusive right to UFO data, are actually, at least in part, powerless in relation to the UFO phenomenon itself. Those who "know the truth" about the UFO-earth-man relationship may (or may not) have taken into custody alien bodies at Roswell, New Mexico in 1947, may (or may not) have taken possession of alien spacecraft and subsequently, may (or may not) have reverse engineered various technologies; but this does not mean our governments (or shadow governments) have control over the phenomenon, especially if there are a myriad of non-human intelligences involved.



  Some final questions still remain regarding the Illinois Flying Triangle and the suppositions placed upon it. It has been mentioned by some that perhaps Officers Barton and Martin did not really see the UFO move at the fantastic speed they claimed. The question of "duplication" has been raised, where perhaps there was more than one “UFO” flying around Illinois that morning. If this was the case, perhaps one object was near Officer Barton and suddenly became “invisible”, whereupon, a few seconds later, a second “UFO” of identical design turns on its lights near the town of Shiloh, thereby creating the impression that a great distance had been traversed in a very short time. There’s no way to disprove this. The notion that duplication was implemented on January 5 cannot be ruled out, just as the hypothesis that the Illinois UFO was an alien ship cannot be ruled out based on a lack of evidence to prove either case.

  IF such deception and manipulation are being carried out by the military/intelligence establishment (or someone else), then these people are very sad examples of the human spirit, outshining even those American CEOs who steal their employees' retirement funds ("Enron: The Smartest? Guys in the Room") and the transparent criminals who stole the White House from the American voting public in 2000 ("Stupid White Men", Chapter 1, Michael Moore). The whole issue boils down to honesty and integrity and doing the right thing by your fellow man. If military and intelligence personnel (or others) are manipulating the minds of innocent people, as seen in the MK-Ultra and CointelPro scandals, then someone should call them on the carpet and whack their knuckles with a wooden ruler.

  But who could do this? Perhaps this is one reason the United States Government refuses to ratify the International Criminal Courts Treaty and continues to snub the United Nations. Perhaps an independent group of individuals has infiltrated and is actually directing the activities of the world’s most affluent governments, including their military and intelligence branches, in order to control UFO data; and this is one reason why they do not want to be held accountable to any “United World Court”. Indeed, those in government who have requested the release of UFO data, have encountered obstacles from intelligence agencies. There is definitely a powerful force beyond the visible branches of government that controls the flow of UFO information. Perhaps this is why I have found it so difficult to find a media buyer for "The Edge of Reality: Illinois UFO, January 5, 2000". I can find no reason why a well-researched, television documentary covering a landmark UFO sighting such as the Illinois Triangle, continues to be ignored. The influence of unknown individuals who desire to control UFO data, seemingly reaches into the editorial and programming offices of the world's most prominent media organizations. Fortunately, the UFO phenomenon doesn't always cooperate with those who would like to keep it hidden from public view.

  The evidence, based on flying triangle sightings around the world, continues to create more questions than it does answers. One puzzling aspect of the flying triangle sightings, (numerous sightings have taken place around the globe; over England, Russia, Japan, the United States and Peru) is that the objects are almost always making themselves quite visible to observers, thanks to the very bright and numerous lights seen on these craft. So why would a “black program” aircraft be advertising itself with blazing illumination over populated areas only to later be denied by the government that it exists. The only explanation that makes any sense is that FTs ARE actually alien craft, and that governments ARE intentionally flying their own versions of the FT over populated areas in order to confuse the public, observe reactions, collect the data, and manage the mainstream media to best suit their goals. 

  Jacques Vallee has said that it is highly likely that staged UFO incidents are being conducted by unknown parties, and I put a lot of faith in Mr.Vallee’s inside working knowledge of the U.S. Defense establishment (he was a principle investigator for Department of Defense computer networking projects). His commitment to unraveling the mysteries behind the UFO question probably began when he saw a UFO when he was a child in France. He also witnessed the destruction of a French observatory's tracking tapes which had captured UFO data. Vallee's books are must reads for anyone who wants a realistic perspective on the UFO problem.

  So, what about the January 5, 2000, sighting? It’s anyone’s guess and I cannot declare without any reservation that the UFO over Illinois was an alien craft any more than NIDS or anyone else can claim beyond all shadow of doubt that the UFO was a military vehicle. I do know this. Something extraordinary happened. Perhaps I simply do not have enough faith in the scientific minds of today to believe that they have achieved a technology to match the performance of what was, in the 1940s and 50s, obviously a superior, alien technology. I have difficulty reconciling mankind’s technical progress with its absolute atrophy in the spiritual area of human development. Our enthusiastic and shortsighted manipulation of plastics has become a force that is transforming our very being. Because industrialized society puts so much emphasis on the plastic nature of existence, we are becoming what we produce: plastic. We are losing our soul. The alchemist’s goal was to create something of higher value with precious metals, yet the majority of what we produce today has no meaning beyond gratifying a thirst for entertainment and power. It grieves me to think that we could achieve such miraculous technical progress, yet use it to deceive innocent people and in some cases, cause them pain and anxiety for much of their lives. Fortunately, to the best of my knowledge, this has not occurred with the witnesses of the January 5th UFO; but it has happened to others. When we, as a people cannot find a way to peace and continue to build weapons for war, manipulating the masses into a fearful frenzy so that they support a political agenda ready to kill human beings for financial profit and control, I cannot come to terms with the idea that men or women of science who possess such creative genius, have achieved the powers once attributed to God, or to Aliens, yet allow their creative energy to be used for destructive, national and personal gains.

  To end on a positive note, perhaps someday we’ll witness the undeniable UFO event, and let's hope the best of human qualities will prevail to welcome the elusive and mysterious presence behind these intriguing and sometimes frightening, manifestations. Let us also hope that whoever they are, they do not tire of human kind's lack of moral and spiritual development and decide that the planet earth would be better off without us.


Selected Sources:

  Edward J.Ruppelt, Former Head of United States Air Force Project Blue Book, “The Report on Unidentified Flying Objects”, Doubleday & Company, 1956, Out of Print

  Michael Hesemann, “UFOs – The Secret History”, Marlowe & Company, 1998

  Jacques Vallee, “Revelations – Alien Contact and Human Deception”, Ballantine Books, 1991

Jacques Vallee, "Anatomy of a Phenomenon", Ace Books, 1965; Ballantine Books,  Re-Issue, 1987

  Omar Fowler, “The Flying Triangle Mystery”, Phenomenon Research Association, 1996,   E-Mail: Bontor@aol.com

  Kenneth Arnold and Ray Palmer, "The Coming of the Saucers", Independently Published, 1952, Out of Print

“Illinois UFO Sighting Report”, http://www.nidsci.org/news/illinois_contents.php

  The January 5, 2000 UFO case also examined at http://illinoismufon.com/mufon_015.htm

  NIDS  "Hypothesis: The Illinois Flying Triangle is a Department of Defense, not an ET Craft" was posted at http://nidsci.org


* Why is the burden of proof on the U.S. government in regard to establishing the source of the Illinois flying triangle of January 5, 2000? Because each and every United States government office is a public service branch, including the executive office. The founding fathers of the United States of America intended that the government serve the public, not itself. When United States citizens are endangered, traumatized, or in any way suffer damages or are negatively impacted by airborne vehicles in U.S. airspace, it is the U.S. government's technical and moral responsibility to address such damages, be they physical or psychological. In other words, the U.S. government has sidestepped its responsibility regarding the issue and impact of unidentified flying objects in U.S. airspace since the closing of Project Blue Book in 1969. Such inaction by federal and state government officials to  openly address the 1/5/2000 flying triangle sighting over Illinois constitutes negligence and unaccountability. The burden of proof lies upon those who know the true source of the aircraft observed during the 1/5/2000 sighting sequence. If the 1/5/2000 flying triangle is not of human manufacture, U.S. federal government intelligence agencies know this and are by default, responsible for disclosure.

** Thanks to an aerospace industry employee for making the point regarding "logistics" which has been incorporated into the above article, section VII-B.

*** As referenced by Sufjan Stevens in his 2005 hit song "Concerning the UFO sighting near Highland, Illinois".



The Video Documentary "Edge of Reality: Illinois UFO, January 5, 2000" has been endorsed by the National UFO Reporting Center, the J. Allen Hynek Center for UFO Studies, MUFON Illinois, the National Institute for Discovery Science and was ranked IN THE TOP TEN AT IFILM.COM.  

Buy Your DVD Copy Here

Viewed 27,000 times at IFILM.com between August 5 and December 5, 2001




Triangular UFOs David Marler
Mansfield UK 1994 Sighting
SAUNDERS UK 1999 Sighting
050907 Anomaly
Highland 2006 Sighting
Allen Park Sighting
Florissant Sighting
Waterloo Sighting
Canada Sighting
Barton Memorial
V-22 vs Black Triangles
ABC UFO Report Feb 23,2005
Peter Jennings UFO Report Feb. 22, 2005 Release
Mexican DOD UFO
PBS Letter
Barker Interview
Election Fraud
Feature Film Production

Copyright © 2001 - 2013  Darryl Barker Productions


Hit Counter