Ike and the Aliens: The Origins of Exopolitics

Curtis Peebles
Magonia 93, September 2006

In late February of 1954, President Dwight D. Eisenhower (left) was enjoying a golf vacation in Palm Springs, California. After dinner on Saturday, February 20, 1954, Eisenhower left the resort unexpectedly. The reporters covering his vacation learnt of his absence, and an Associated Press reporter issued a news bulletin saying “Pres. Eisenhower died tonight of a heart attack in Palm Springs.”

Two minutes later, the report was retracted. The following morning, Sunday, February 21, 1954, the president attended a church service, very much alive. His spokesman said that Eisenhower had seen a dentist after chipping a cap on a tooth while eating a chicken wing at dinner. [1]

It was a letter from Gerald Light to Meade Layne, director of the Borderland Sciences Research Associations that turned the incident into a flying saucer story that would still be retold a half century later. The letter was received by Layne on April 16, 1954 and read:
“My dear Friends: I have just returned from Muroc. The report is true – devastatingly true. I made the journey in company with Franklin Allen of the Hearst papers and Edwin Nourse of Brookings Institute (Truman’s erstwhile financial advisor) and Bishop MacIntyre (sic) of L.A. (confidential names, for the present, please
“When we were allowed to enter the restricted section, (after about six hours in which we were checked on every possible item, event, incident and aspect of our personal and public lives) I had the distinct feeling that the world had come to an end with fantastic realism. For I have never seen so many human beings in a state of complete collapse and confusion as they realized that their own world had indeed ended with such finality as to beggar description. The reality of the ‘otherplane’ aeroforms is now and forever removed from the realms of speculation and made a rather painful part of the consciousness of every responsible scientific and political group

“During my two days visit I saw five separate and distinct types of aircraft being studied and handled by our air-force officials – with the assistance and permission of The Etherians! I have no words to express my reactions

“President Eisenhower, as you may already know, was spirited over to Muroc one night during his visit to Palm Springs recently. And it is my conviction that he will ignore the terrific conflict between the various ‘authorities’ and go directly to the people via radio and television – if the impasse continues much longer. From what I could gather, an official statement to the country is being prepared for delivery about the middle of May. I will leave it to your own excellent powers of deduction to construct a fitting picture of the mental and emotional pandemonium that is now shattering the consciousness of hundreds of our scientific ‘authorities’ and all the pundits of the various specialised knowledges that make up our current physics. In some instances I could not stifle a wave of pity that arose in my own being as I watched the pathetic bewilderment of rather brilliant brains struggling to make some sort of rational explanation which would enable them to retain their familiar theories and concepts. And I thanked my own destiny for having long ago pushed me into the metaphysical woods and compelled me to find my way out. To watch strong minds cringe before totally irreconcilable aspects of ‘science’ is not a pleasant thing. I had forgotten how commonplace such things as dematerialisation of ‘solid’ objects had become to my own mind. The coming and going of an etheric, or spirit, body has been so familiar to me these many years I had just forgotten that such a manifestation could snap the mental balance of a man not so conditioned. I shall never forget those forty-eight hours at Muroc!”
"It has finally happened, it is a matter of history" [2]
Word of Light’s letter soon spread among UFO believers. Desmond Leslie mentioned the story several months later. He had visited Los Angeles during the summer of 1954. Reportedly, this included investigations in the Edwards AFB area. Leslie was interviewed by George Hunt Williamson on October 9, 1954 for Valor magazine. Leslie said that “an Air Force man” told him that the “rumored saucer at Muroc was actually there,” and that it was under guard “in Hangar 27.” He continued that “President Eisenhower had a ‘look-see’ at the craft during his Palm Springs vacation.” Leslie’s source had “seen the craft,” and also said that “on a certain day…suddenly men coming back from leave were not allowed to go back on the base and were given orders to ‘get lost.’” Leslie added that the personnel on the base that day were not allowed to leave under any circumstances.

The Roswell Incident

The rebirth of the Ike and the aliens story began with Charles Berlitz and William L. Moore’s book The Roswell Incident. Published in 1980, this did not simply revive the nearly forgotten story of a saucer crash, but eventually would give rise to the Darkside mythology and exopolitics. For all its later impact, The Roswell Incident itself was rather ‘thin.’ The book recounted the story of Maj. Jesse A. Marcel, the intelligence officer of the 509th Bomb Wing at Roswell AAF in July 1947. Marcel described the recovery of strange debris, which he described as being pieces of parchment-like material and balsa-like sticks with pink and purple “hieroglyphics.” These fragments could not be broken or burned. There were also large metal parts which could not be dented or creased. Marcel did not claim to have seen a crashed saucer or alien bodies, only the strange debris. [4]

The bulk of The Roswell Incident consisted of recollections and stories that had little or no direct connection to Marcel’s alleged experiences. Canadian radio engineer Wilbert B. Smith was one such source. He had written a Top Secret memo in November 1950 on U.S. government involvement with flying saucers. Smith said in the memo that flying saucers were the mostly highly classified subject in the U.S., even more so than the hydrogen bomb.

Berlitz and Moore also discussed an account written by Meade Layne around 1949, which was alleged to be based on information from two scientists and “a business man of high standing.” “Dr. Weidberg,” described as a physics professor from an unnamed California university, was said to have taken part in the examination of the saucer. According to Layne, the professor said it was “shaped like a turtle’s back” and had a cabin about 15 feet in diameter. Layne’s account continued:
“The bodies of six occupants were seared…and the interior of the disc had been badly damaged by intense heat. One porthole had been shattered….
“An autopsy on one body showed that it resembled a normal human body except in size. One body was seated at what appeared to be a control desk, there were a few ‘gadgets’ in front of him, and on the walls or panels characters in writing, in a language unknown to any of the investigators. They said it was unlike anything known to them, and definitely not Russian…”
He added that Dr. Weidberg had indicated that the saucer was taken by truck from the crash site to Magdalena, New Mexico. The UFO was then loaded on a special car of the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe railroad. The train’s route passed through Belen, Grants, and Gallup, New Mexico, then to Flagstaff, Arizona and continued on to Needles and Cadiz in California, before finally arriving at Muroc, where “Camp Edwards” was located. [5]

The Roswell Incident included a chapter on ‘The President and the Captured Saucer’. Berlitz and Moore claim that information about the saucer crash at Roswell was initially withheld from Eisenhower even after he became president. Berlitz and Moore further claimed that Eisenhower “was let in on the secret as one of the first of a small but carefully selected group of scientific, military, and civilian personnel from all walks of life…” The goal, Berlitz and Moore wrote, was “…possibly for the purpose of gauging from their observed reactions what the effect on the general public would likely be if such a story was released.”

Berlitz and Moore continued that “the mental confusion and near pandemonium,” described in Light’s account, resulted “…in a total victory for the forces of secrecy.” They also claimed that the individuals who were shown the saucer were silenced and plans for a public announcement were dropped. Light’s description of his experiences at “Muroc” was not judged to be a security threat, as the story would not stick if it were published. [6]

MJ-12, the Darkside, and Exopolitics

The publication of The Roswell Incident came at a time when the flying saucer myth was undergoing fundamental changes. During the early and mid-1980s, stories spread of crashed saucers, ‘Grays’, cattle and human mutilations, abductions, implants, creation of alien/human hybrids, alien underground bases, secret treaties between the U.S. and the aliens, technology exchanges, and of a shadowy organisation called MJ-12 which was overseeing it all. [7]

This became known as the Darkside, and was defined by Milton William Cooper in his manifesto, ‘The Secret Government The Origin, Identity and Purpose of MJ-12.’ Cooper claimed his account was based on documents he had seen between 1970 and 1973 while a Navy enlisted man. This included the story of the meeting between Ike and the aliens, and the claim of a secret treaty.

According to Cooper, radio communications was established with a group of ‘large-nosed Gray aliens’. This resulted in a landing at Holloman AFB by these aliens in early 1954. During this first face-to-face meeting, a basic agreement was worked out, and arrangements made for a formal treaty. A second landing by the aliens at Edwards AFB followed in February 1954. Cooper wrote that Eisenhower arranged to be in Palm Springs on vacation. On the planned day, the president was secretly taken to Edwards, with the dental visit as a cover story. Cooper continued, “President Eisenhower met with the aliens and a formal treaty between the Alien Nation and the United States of America was signed.”

Bill Cooper promoted a conspiracy theory which, ostensibly about flying saucers, was actually a right-wing theory of world control by such organisations as Bilderburg and the Council on Foreign Relations
Cooper claimed that the treaty allowed the aliens to abduct a limited number of humans for the purpose of medical examination. The abductees would not be harmed, would be returned to the place they were taken from, and would have no memory of what had happened. The aliens would provide to MJ-12 a list of all the humans who were abducted. In exchange, the U.S. government would be supplied with advanced alien technology. The aliens’ existence would also be kept secret by the U.S. government, and underground bases would be built for the aliens. Cooper further claimed that the U.S. government realised by 1955 that the aliens had violated the treaty. Both humans and animals were mutilated, a full list of abducted humans was not being provided to MJ-12 by the aliens, and not all the abductees were being returned.

While on the surface Cooper was writing about flying saucers and aliens, the bulk of the text was actually Rightist conspiracy theories. This involved the Bilderburgers, which, Cooper said, controlled the Council on Foreign Relations and the Trilateral Commission. Between them, he continued, these groups “…control the major foundations, all of the major media and publishing interests, the largest banks, all the major corporations, the upper echelons of the government, and many other vital interests.”

This conspiracy, according to Cooper, amounted to a secret world government. It was responsible for the deaths of both Secretary of Defense James Forrestal and President John F. Kennedy. It controlled the world’s drug trade, was responsible for crime in American cities, and used disinformation against UFO researchers. It created AIDS and other diseases in order to reduce the world’s population. The conspiracy had plans to round up all ‘dissenters’ and ship them off to vast concentration camps which had already been built. The enslavement of humanity would then be complete. Cooper concluded by writing, “We must force disclosure of all the facts, discover the truth and act upon the truth.” [8]

By the mid-1990s, Cooper abandoned ufology and became a leading figure in the Militia movement. He was killed on November 6, 2001 in a shootout with Arizona police officers. [9] Cooper’s lasting contribution was the Darkside mythology, which was enshrined in popular culture by such television shows as The X-Files and Dark Skies. While the Right had been the first to embrace the Darkside, the mythology was also soon being accepted by the Left.

Ufology in the context of a Leftist political movement began in the early 1990s, against the backdrop of the collapse of communism, the fall of the Soviet Union, and the end of the Cold War. By the start of the 21st century, this movement became known as ‘exopolitics’, This was “…the study of the key political actors, institutions and processes associated with the UFO phenomenon and the extraterrestrial hypothesis.” [10]

Several individuals emerged as the major figures in this movement. They included Steven Greer and Alfred Webre. Like Cooper, they claimed the world was actually run by a secret cabal. Greer said that this was “a committee of 200 to 300 people” involving senior U.S. government, military, and intelligence officials, ‘the Liechtenstein banking family’, the ‘Mormon corporate empire’. and ‘cells within the Vatican’. They had murdered Marilyn Monroe and former CIA director William Colby to keep them from talking, and used an ‘electromagnetic weapon’ to cause Greer and others to be stricken with cancer. [11] Greer also claimed UFO groups were controlled by the conspiracy. He said in an interview that “deep-cover black project operatives are working closely with alleged civilian researchers, journalists, and the UFO glitterati.” [12]

While Cooper had focused exclusively on an overarching conspiracy, the major figures in exopolitics also offered a messianic vision of the future once disclosure had come about. Greer said that the alien technology “would empower a new human civilisation without want, poverty or environmental damage.” He continued that “there is no limit to what humanity can achieve.” [13] Webre implied that disclosure would result in a fundamental transformation of human beings. He said, “We are a nucleus of politically sensitive terrestrials who are aware that the playing field is vast…. Fundamentally the transformation starts within all of us – for we are the transformation. We are the exo-government. We are the new Universal human.” [14]

Research Study #8

In 2003, a new figure in exopolitics emerged. This was Dr. Michael E. Salla, a researcher in residence at American University’s Center for Global Peace. He was also the director of the Peace Ambassadors Program, which the university’s web site described as a “summer program that combines study, meditative practices, and prayer ceremonies at selected Washington, D.C. sites aimed at promoting individual self-empowerment and Divine Governance in Washington, D.C.” Salla received his PhD in Government from the University of Queensland, Australia, and an MA degree in Philosophy from the University of Melbourne, Australia. He had written extensively on conflict resolution, conducted fieldwork in East Timor, Kosovo, Macedonia, and Sri Lanka, and organised international workshops on these conflicts. [15]

Salla began writing a series of papers on exopolitics in January of 2003. These seem to have attracted little interest from either the American University staff or among UFO believers. This changed with Research Study #8, dated January 28, 2004. It was titled ‘Eisenhower’s 1954 Meeting With Extraterrestrials: The Fiftieth Anniversary of America’s First Treaty With Extraterrestrials?’

The paper began with Eisenhower’s disappearance, and repeated the story of Gerald Light’s letter about his visit to Muroc with the group of distinguished public figures to see the saucers. Salla mentioned that Light was an ‘elderly mystic’, but stressed the physiological reactions described in Light’s letter. Salla further argued that Light, Nourse, Cardinal McIntyre and Allen “would certainly have been plausible choices for a community delegation…”

He noted that Dr. Edwin Nourse could “provide his expertise on the possible economic impact of First Contact with extraterrestrials.” Cardinal James McIntyre would have been, according to Salla, “an important gauge for the possible reaction from religious leaders generally, and in particular from the most influential and powerful religious institution on the planet – the Roman Catholic Church.” Franklin Allen, then an 80-year-old former reporter with the Hearst Newspaper Group, was described as “…a good choice for a member of the press who could maintain confidentiality.”

Salla wrote that, “The four represented senior leaders of the religious, spiritual, economic and newspaper communities and were well advanced in age and status.” Salla mentioned the possibility that Light may have used their names “in a fabricated account of an ‘out of body’ experience,” but continued that “…there is nothing in Light’s selection that eliminates the possibility that they were plausible members of such a delegation.” Salla concluded that this provided, “…circumstantial evidence that a meeting with extraterrestrials occurred and that Eisenhower was present.”

Salla then turned to ‘testimonials’ which supported the story of Eisenhower’s meeting with the aliens. Not surprisingly, Cooper had the central role, and Salla quoted extensively from his writings. Cooper was not the only person to claim to know about the incident, however, according to Salla. Another was Dr. Michael Wolf, who claimed to have been involved with several policy-making committees dealing with the alien presence over a period of twenty-five years. He stated that the Eisenhower administration had signed a treaty with an alien race, but that this treaty had not been submitted for congressional ratification, as required by the U.S. Constitution.

A third individual was Phil Schneider, described as “a former geological engineer that was employed by corporations contracted to build underground bases.” Salla stated that his knowledge about the treaty “would have come from his familiarity with a range of compartmentalised black projects and interaction with other personnel working with extraterrestrials.” Schneider wrote:
“Back in 1954, under the Eisenhower administration, the federal government decided to circumvent the Constitution of the United States and form a treaty with alien entities. It was called the 1954 Greada Treaty, which basically made the agreement that the aliens involved could take a few cows and test their implanting techniques on a few human beings, but that they had to give details about the people involved.”
Like Cooper, Schneider also claimed that the aliens had violated the treaty. This involved the number of humans being abducted. Schneider added that “…the aliens altered the bargain until they decided they wouldn’t abide by it at all.”

Col. Phillip Corso is also among the ‘whistleblowers.’ Corso also wrote in his memoirs that the Eisenhower administration signed a treaty with the aliens. He stated: “We had negotiated a kind of surrender with them as long as we couldn’t fight them. They dictated the terms because they knew what we feared most was disclosure.” [16]

The Whole Tooth

When an academic, holding a position at a major university, publicly claims that the President of the United States signed a secret treaty with extraterrestrials, he gets noticed. Peter Carlson, a staff writer with the Washington Post was among those who noticed Salla. His article, ‘Ike and the Alien Ambassadors The Whole Tooth About the President’s Extraterrestrial Encounter’, was published on February 19, 2004, in the ‘Style Section’ of the newspaper.

In his January 28, 2004 paper, Salla had recounted the various accounts of the Eisenhower meeting with the aliens at Edwards, without reaching a conclusion about the chain of events. In a meeting with Carlson, however, he did provide a specific account. Salla told the reporter that Eisenhower’s visit to Edwards had actually been to meet with two ‘Nordics’, rather than to sign a treaty. Salla described these aliens as looking like Scandinavian humans, with white hair, pale blue eyes, and colourless lips. The Nordics communicated with Eisenhower telepathically. Salla explained. “It’s as though you’re hearing a person but they’re not speaking.”

According to Salla, the two blue-eyed aliens offered to share their advanced technology and spiritual wisdom, but only if the U.S. gave up its nuclear weapons. Salla explained, “They were afraid that we might blow up some of our nuclear technology, and apparently that does something to time and space and it impacts on extraterrestrial races on other planets.”

Although several of the earlier accounts claimed the treaty was signed during Eisenhower’s Edwards trip, Salla told Carlson a different version. Eisenhower refused the aliens’ offer, as he did not want to give up nuclear weapons. According to Salla, sometime later in 1954, the U.S. government reached an agreement with the Grays. As with Cooper and the other whistleblower’s accounts, this was an agreement which allowed the Grays to abduct humans, providing they were safely returned. Salla said that since then, the Grays have kidnapped ‘millions’ of humans.

Salla also gave an insight as to how he became interested in exopolitics. Carlson wrote, “For much of the ‘90s, Salla studied conflict resolution and tried unsuccessfully to apply that knowledge to prevent war in East Timor and the Balkans, he says. Frustrated, he began looking for an extraterrestrial connection to human misery and, he says, he found evidence of ET visitations – including the Ike encounter – on the Internet. ‘There’s a lot of stuff on the Internet,’ he says, ‘and I just went and pieced it together.’”

Carlson looked into the claims made by Salla. The lack of any records of Eisenhower having dental work in February 1954 was offered as evidence of a cover story for the trip to Edwards. Carlson contacted the Eisenhower Library, and was referred to an article by James M. Mixson published in the November 1995 issue of The Bulletin of the History of Dentistry. Mixson, who was both a dental historian and a professor at the Missouri-Kansas City School of Dentistry, drew on the U.S. surgeon general’s records of Eisenhower’s health which were opened in 1991.

The article, titled ‘A History of Dwight D. Eisenhower’s Oral Health’, noted that the president had considerable trouble with the porcelain cap on his upper left centre incisor. It was first installed in July 1952, during the presidential campaign, but was chipped and repaired in December 1952. The cap was again chipped by the chicken wing on February 20, 1954. Dr. Francis A. Purcell, a local dentist, did the repair work. Mixson noted in the article that “The lack of a dental record from Purcell’s office has helped fuel belief in this UFO encounter.” The cap was chipped yet again in July 1954, when it was finally replaced with a “thin cast gold/platinum thimble crown.”
We’ve had so many requests on that subject that we have a person who specialises in this: he specialises in transportation, and we decided to add UFOs to that. He does trains, planes, automobiles – and flying saucers

Carlson also learnt that his inquiry was not the first to the Eisenhower Library about the alleged incident. Jim Leyerzapf, an archivist at the library, told him “We’ve had so many requests on that subject that we have a person who specializes in this.” Herb Pankratz was the archivist given the assignment. Leyerzapf explained, “He specialises in transportation, and we decided to add UFOs to that. He does trains, planes, automobiles – and flying saucers.”

Pankratz told Carlson that the library had fielded dozens of enquiries about the Ike and the aliens story in the late 1980s and early 1990s. He also made a sage observation: “It’s interesting how these stories have changed. Initially, the accounts claimed the President made a secret trip to Edwards Air Force Base to view the remains of aliens who crashed at Roswell, N.M., in 1947. Later stories claimed he had actually visited with live aliens.” [17]

Salla has maintained his belief in the reality of the Ike and the aliens story, and has referred to the alleged meeting in several subsequent papers. In one such paper, he speculated that the addition of the words ‘under God’ in the U.S. Pledge of Allegiance were a result of the Edwards meeting. Salla ‘hypothesized’ that President Eisenhower and his national security advisers were told “the truth of the human origins” at the meeting. He suggests that this:
“…so unnerved Eisenhower and his team, that they reacted in an entirely predicable way. They initiated a Congressional process to revise the Pledge of Allegiance to buttress their world view which was based in a traditional religious belief that humanity’s origins were clearly associated with the divine intervention of a ‘transcendental being’ or ‘God.’ Introducing the revision of ‘under God’ into the Pledge would be a way of maintaining a human perspective which had now become a matter of U.S. national security given the knowledge the extraterrestrials claimed to possess about humanity’s true origins". [18]
Exopolitics as a Medieval Belief System

The story of Ike and the aliens began with a minor misunderstanding that resulted in an erroneous press report that President Eisenhower was dead. Gerald Light’s letter then tied the incident into claims about a crashed saucer and a government cover up. This initial story was soon expanded. Desmond Leslie added an independent eyewitness report of the saucer being under guard at Edwards. The account written by Meade Layne provided a description of the saucer and its crew, as well as the back story of how the saucer came to Edwards. Wilbert B. Smith’s memo completed the process, by supplying official confirmation.

But the flaw in the tale of Ike and the aliens is that the story rests on the unsupported accounts of questionable individuals. Light and Layne were both occultists. Leslie was the co-author of ‘Professor’ George Adamski’s 1953 book, Flying Saucers Have Landed. Williamson was one of Adamski’s followers, a witness to his November 20, 1952 contact with a man from Venus, and a contactee himself. Smith was not only a supporter of contactees such as Adamski, but also claimed in the mid-1950s to be in psychic contact with several space brothers. [19]

This flaw also exists in the story’s revival as part of the exopolitics myth. Cooper, Wolf, Schneider, and Corso have all made claims about their backgrounds and experiences which are not supported by documentary evidence. Salla acknowledged this, but just as he rationalised Light being part of the group going to see the saucers, Salla also rationalised away the lack of evidence. He claimed that government policy dealing with the leaking information about UFOs “…is to intimidate, silence, eliminate or discredit these individuals.” One such technique, Salla claimed, is “…removing all public records of former service men or corporate employees….” [20]

In medieval Europe, hearsay, myths, folklore, and legends were considered legal evidence. In witch trials, for example, a suspected witch would be thrown in a pond. If they floated, this was sufficient proof for them to be convicted by the court and executed as a witch. Such admissibility of hearsay evidence was eventually undone by the Enlightenment and the scientific revolution.

The exopolitics myth represents a return to this medieval belief system. The story of Ike and the aliens is based on the hearsay of the whistle-blowers, unsupported by any evidence. Instead, like hearsay evidence and folklore in medieval times, they are to be accepted as true without question, even in the face of obvious contradictions and flaws. Exopolitics lacks any standards of evidence to judge which claims are valid and which are not. No screening of the whistleblowers is done. Rather, exopolitics writers pick and choose which of their claims are used and which are not, without any apparent logic or reason.

Just as Cooper was a major source for Salla’s account of the Ike and the alien story, so too does he provide an example of this selectivity. There are no references to some of Cooper’s other remarkable claims. He stated, for example, that there are “areas on the Moon where plant life grows and even changes color with the seasons,” and that humans “can walk upon its surface without a space suit breathing from an oxygen bottle after undergoing decompression….” The most stunning of Cooper’s claims is that the Cold War was a hoax, and that the U.S. and USSR were actually “the closest allies.” [21]

Just as in medieval times flaws were dealt with by either saying they were deceptions by Satan or ignoring them, exopolitics writers deal with flaws in the whistleblowers’ accounts in the same ways. This is shown by the differing versions of the Ike and the aliens stories told by each of the whistle-blowers, how details such as location and dates changed in their accounts over time, and how Salla dealt with these flaws.

One example of this is John Lear’s original version of the treaty story, as described in a December 29, 1987 paper. Lear said that the first contact came on April 30, 1964, when three saucers landed at Holloman AFB in New Mexico. A meeting was then held between the aliens and U.S. intelligence officers. Lear added that between 1969 and 1971, a treaty was reached between MJ-12 and the aliens. As in the other whistleblowers’ accounts, Lear claimed the treaty was later violated by the aliens. [22]

Lear then gave a completely different version of the treaty story during a November 2, 2003 appearance on the radio show, “Coast to Coast.” He now said that the meeting was in 1954 at “Muroc Test Center, which is now Edwards Airforce (sic) Base.” He said that the aliens had “suggested that they could help us get rid of the Grays but Eisenhower turned down their offer because they offered no technology.” Lear also said that the aliens had told Eisenhower that they had created humans. This caused the president to have the words “under God” added to the Pledge of Allegiance. [23]

Cooper’s 1989 manifesto had claimed, “The aliens explained that they had created us through hybridization….” However, Cooper said this occurred after Eisenhower met with the aliens at Edwards and the treaty was signed. [24] Further complicating matters, Cooper had also subsequently changed his story of where the landing occurred, saying it was at Homestead AFB in Florida.

In his original January 28, 2004 paper on the Ike and the aliens story, Salla noted the differences between Cooper and Lear regarding when and where the meeting took place. Salla also claimed that Lear had worked as a CIA contract pilot, and had “a close relationship with CIA Director (DCI) William Colby…” Then Salla wrote:
“The question over which account is more reliable needs to focus on the possibility Lear had deliberately introduced some inaccuracies into his account. Lear’s CIA association suggests he could have been a means of simultaneously confirming Cooper’s information on the meetings while undermining Cooper’s credibility by throwing in minor inconsistencies.” [25]

During the time that Carlson was researching his story for the Washington Post, Salla was revising his paper; posting the new text a week before the Carlson article came out. In this new version of Research Study #8, Salla notes only that “There is some discrepancy in the testimonials as to which Air force base (sic) the spurned extraterrestrials met with President Eisenhower.” He deleted the text about Lear and the CIA using false information to both support and discredit Cooper’s accounts.

Salla added a new (second-hand) account of the Eisenhower meeting at Edwards to his paper. Charles L. Suggs, a retired Marine Sergeant, claimed that his late father, Navy Commander Charles L. Suggs, had accompanied President Eisenhower and others in his party to Edwards on February 20, 1954 to meet with two Nordic aliens. According to the younger Suggs, “The spokesman” stood a number of feet from Eisenhower and refused to let him come any closer. The second alien stood on the extended ramp of a “bi-convex saucer that stood on tripod landing gear.” The aliens said that they came from another solar system, and, according to the younger Suggs’ account, asked detailed questions regarding nuclear testing. Salla concluded that Lear’s 2003 story and Suggs’ account were more accurate versions. [26]

Exopolitics seems to be a new point of departure for the flying saucer myth. The original beliefs about UFOs developed at the beginning of the Cold War. Exopolitics, in contrast, is influenced by the much later anti-war movement, environmentalism, the anti-nuclear movement, opposition to ballistic missile defences, the wide-spread acceptance of conspiracy theories, and the post-Cold War meeting of political extremes. Lear, Cooper, and Corso are Rightists, but their claims are incorporated into a Leftist political framework.

Another influence on exopolitics is that of post-modernism. Broadly speaking, this holds that every ‘narrative’ or ‘text’ is equally valid, and there is no one ‘real’ version of history. The concept rejects any appeal to ‘truth’ or ‘reality’. An attempt to provide a complete account of events is considered ‘oppressive’. All ideas are equally valid, and all accounts are equally true. This reflects the lack of any attempt to determine which of the different versions of the Ike and the aliens story is ‘real’. The same also applies to post modernism itself, as despite being widely accepted, there is no specific meaning of the concept. This alone says much about post modernism.

A case can also be made that exopolitics is the inheritor of the contactee/occult tradition. Salla included Eduard ‘Billy’ Meier and other contactees among the sources used in a long paper titled, ‘A Report on the Motivations and Activities of Extraterrestrial Races – A Typology of the Most Significant Extraterrestrial Races Interacting with Humanity’. [27] Alfred Webre also makes references to claims by Billy Meier, specifically his ‘Talmud of Jmmanuel’ and the ‘Henoch Prophecies.’ [28]

Use of occult methods is openly accepted in exopolitics. Salla considered remote viewing to be a moderate evidentiary support for exopolitical research. Alfred Webre was more explicit, stating that “Remote Viewing IS the scientific breakthrough that has made replicable Exopolitical research into the Universe possible.” [29] Steven Greer said about remote viewing: “It’s not a belief system. It is science; it is physics, pure and simple. Humans have abilities to access levels of consciousness generally only spoken about by mystics and shamans.” [30]

What is as yet unknown is the influence that exopolitics will ultimately have on the flying saucer myth. Exopolitics may come to dominate UFO beliefs and shape the conspiratorial political ideas in the larger society. Alternately, exopolitics may prove to be nothing more than a short-lived fad. An earlier example was the idea that flying saucers were “psychic projections,” rather than alien spaceships. This concept was popular in the 1970s, but vanished with the return of the crashed saucer stories and emergence of the Darkside. What does seem likely is that believers and sceptics alike have not yet heard the last of the Ike and the aliens story.

  1. Peter Carlson, “Ike and the Alien Ambassadors The Whole Tooth About the President’s Extraterrestrial Encounter” The Washington Post (February 19, 2004), p. C1.
  2. Charles Berlitz, William L. Moore, The Roswell Incident (New York: Berkley Books, 1988), p. 131-133. James McIntyre was a Roman Catholic Cardinal in 1954.
  3. ibid, p. 135, 136. Hangars at Edwards AFB have either a three digit or a four digit designation. There was never a “Hangar 27” at the base, at any time. There was a “Building 27” at Edwards, but it was the old mess hall. All that remains of it today is the concrete slab.
  4. ibid, p. 69-75.
  5. ibid, p. 59-68, 100, 101, 103, 104, 120, 127, 128. Although Meade Layne’s account was described in The Roswell Incident as “probably” written in 1949, several of its story elements were similar to those in Frank Scully’s Behind the Flying Saucers, published in late 1950. These include the involvement of a business man, the alien bodies being burned, strange writing, and a broken porthole. This suggests a possibility that Layne’s account was derived directly or indirectly from Scully. Additionally, Muroc AFB was renamed Edwards AFB on January 5, 1950.
  6. ibid, p. 125, 126, 135.
  7. Paul Devereux, Peter Brooksmith, UFOs and Ufology; The First 50 Years (London: Blandford Books, 1997), p. 110, 111, and “MJ12: Myth Or Reality?” Just Cause (December 1985), p. 1-3.
  8. Milton William Cooper, “The Secret Government: The Origin, Identity, and Purpose of MJ-12,” dated May 23, 1989.
  9. Don Ecker, “Cooper Meets Violent End,” UFO Magazine (February/March 2002, p. 69.
  10. Dr. Michael E. Salla, “The History of Exopolitics: Evolving Political Approaches to UFOs & the Extraterrestrial Hypothesis,” Exopolitics Journal 1:1 (October 2005), p. 2.
  11. Dr. Steven Greer, “UFOs: What the Government Really Knows,” The Disclosure Project web site, www.disclosureproject.org/bassiorinterview.htm. This is the text of an interview of Greer in Hustler magazine’s November 2005 issue.
  12. Greer, “When Disclosure Serves Secrecy,” www.disclosureproject.org/disclosureserves.htm 1999.
  13. Greer, “Implications for the Environment, World Peace, World Poverty, and the Human Future,” www.disclosureproject.org/execsummery/implications.htm, March 2001.
  14. Alfred Webre, “The end of terrestrial politics?” November 1, 2000, http://exopolitics.blogs.com/exopolitics/2005/10/the_end_of_terr.html
  15. Carlson, “Ike and the Alien Ambassadors,” p. C1.
  16. Salla, ““Eisenhower’s 1954 Meeting With Extraterrestrials: The Fiftieth Anniversary of America’s First Treaty With Extraterrestrials?” January 28, 2004. The author’s copy of this paper was printed out on February 8, 2004 at 4:01 p.m. Salla revised this paper and posted a new version, dated ‘Febuary (sic) 12, 2004,’ on his web site. Unless otherwise specified, the original January version is used.
  17. Carlson, “Ike and the Alien Ambassadors,” p. C1.
  18. Salla, “What Did President Eisenhower Secretly Know that led to him supporting a Revision of the Pledge of Allegiance,” www.exopolitics.org/Exo-Comment-17.htm, June 15, 2004.
  19. Paul Kimball, “Canada and Flying Saucers, Vol. VI [Wilbert Smith - Competent? Credible? - Part 2]” www.redstarfilms.blogspot.com/2005_10_01_redstarfilms_archive.html.
  20. Salla, ““Eisenhower’s 1954 Meeting With Extraterrestrials.”
  21. Cooper, “The Secret Government: The Origin, Identity, and Purpose of MJ-12.”
  22. John Lear, “Statement Released By: John Lear, December 29, 1987,” p. 2, 3.
  23. “John Lear Disclosure Briefing,” Coast to Cost Radio (November 2003) www.coast to coastam.com/shows/2003/11/02.html. Salla was apparently not aware of Lear’s 1987 claims regarding a 1964 meeting at Holloman AFB, or that Cooper had written in 1989 that the meeting was at Edwards.
  24. Cooper, “The Secret Government: The Origin, Identity, and Purpose of MJ-12.”
  25. Salla, ““Eisenhower’s 1954 Meeting With Extraterrestrials.”
  26. Salla, ““Eisenhower’s 1954 Meeting With Extraterrestrials.” February 12, 2004 version, www.exopolitics.org/Study-Paper-8-PF.htm. Lear’s 2003 account was apparently also the source for Salla’s later paper which claimed that “under God” was added to the Pledge of Allegiance as a result of the meeting. The younger Suggs’ description of the white-haired, blue eyed aliens with colourless lips was used by Salla in his conversation with Carlson.
  27. Salla, “A Report on the Motivations and Activities of Extraterrestrial Races – A Typology of the Most Significant Extraterrestrial Races Interacting with Humanity,” www.exopolitics.org/Report-ET-Motivations-PF.htm, January 1, 2005.
  28. Weber, “The Talmud of Jmmanuel and Jesus Christ as Possible UFO Contactee,” http://exopolitics.blogs.com/exopolitics/2005/11/coopradioorg_pr.html, and “Socio-political implications of the Talmud of Jmmanuel and the Henoch Prophecies, in the context of the life work of ‘Billy’ Eduard Albert Meier,” http://exopolitics.blogs.om/exopolitics/2005/11/sociopolitical_.html.
  29. Webre, “A Vital Debate: ‘Remote Viewing as a research tool in Exopolitics,’” http://exopolitics.blogs.com/exopolitics/2005/10/remote_viewing_.html (Capitalizations in original text.)
  30. Harold E. Burt, “UFO Hopefuls Get CSETI’s Spin on Remote Viewing,” UFO Magazine (December 1998), p. 7.