January 29, 2011

UFOs Over Mexico

We could not discuss the solar system, in this blog, without touching upon the subject of UFOs. Mexico, as with every other country, has its sightings. Some are easily dismissed, as natural phenomena, aircraft or weather balloons. The first picture ever taken of a UFO, over Mexico, was in 1885. Upon analysis, it turned out to be high flying geese. However, some sightings have been harder to explain away or have received a lot of coverage over the years.

On July 11th, 1991, the world witnessed a solar eclipse. The view of this was particularly spectacular in Mexico. Thousands of people were filming the sky, waiting for a shadow to pass over the sun. Millions more were simply looking upwards. They were ready to see something awesome, but what many also saw took their breath away.

UFO in Mexico

Did so many people, from Mexico City to Puebla, really see a spacecraft that day? The UFO was described as metallic and undulating. It had a haze behind it, like an energy haze, as it moved in the sky. A bright reflection came from it, as if shining in the sun, while a darker strip underneath seemed suggestive of a shadow. Moreover, it didn't just turn up once. It was seen annually, from 1991-1993, at the Mexico City Airshow, every September 16th.

Sceptics have supplied an explanation. The object certainly did originate from outer space, but it wasn't from an alien world. It was an alien world. The most prevalent explanation is that this particular UFO was the planet Venus.

Venus, as viewed from the Earth

Venus or UFO. You decide.

Our next story is one that was acknowledged by the Mexican Department of Defense. On March 5th, 2004, an air force Air Force Merlín C26A Bimotor 'plane, belonging to the 501 Aerial Squadron, was flying over Ciudad del Carmen, Campeche. They were searching for the unauthorized aircraft of smugglers. As a result, the crew were recording in both normal and infrared mode, while operating powerful sensors. It was a routine manoeuvre, but what happened next was anything but routine.

Mexican Airforce
Crew of the Merlín C26A

The 'plane was under the command of navigation officer, Mayor Magdaleno Jasso Núñez. When, at 3.400 meters (10,500 feet), an unknown aircraft was picked up on their sensors, Núñez gave the order to investigate it. As they took off in pursuit, their information was being reported to ground control. It was also being recorded, in real time, by FLIR operator, Lt. Mario Adrián Vázquez, and RADAR operator, Lt. German Ramirez.

As they approached the position, their sensors showed that their target had conducted a 'surprising' feat of aerodynamics and then sped off extraordinarily fast. They had reached an altitude of 3,500 meters (11,480 feet). They should also have had visual contact by now, but the skies remained clear to the naked eye. The FLIR and RADAR screens were telling a different story. The readings all confirmed that there was now not just one, but 11 ojects in the sky. Yet outside the window, there was nothing but clouds.

Núñez radioed back to base, requesting instructions, as this was something far beyond the experience of anyone on board. As he did so, the sensors showed that the unseen, unknown objects had encircled their 'plane. The trained military crew on board kept calm, recording every detail and remaining in radio contact with the ground. Meanwhile, fighter jets were scrambled to intercept the objects and, possibly, rescue their colleagues in the Merlin C26A.

However, before they could arrive, the objects simply disappeared off RADAR and FLIR. The crew returned to base, where they shakily admitted to having been a little perturbed up there. Regardless of personal feelings, their meticulous professional had provided a wealth of data about the incident. General Clemente Vega Garcia, the Secretary of Defense, ordered a thorough investigation.

In an unprecedented move, the footage was also made public. Capt. Alejandro Franz pointed out that the Cantarell Oil Refinery was in the vicinity. The lights could well have been flares reflecting off the clouds. Another explanation was that they were car headlights, driving along the Yucatan headland.

Oil flares, headlights or UFO. You decide.

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