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Monday, May 08, 2006

UFOs don't exist, says secret UK report

Bad news today for UK UFO-spotters: that interdimensional alien mothership you spotted one night in Basingstoke while out walking the dog was probably ball lightning, or something equally terrestrial.
 
That's the conclusion of a secret 2000 MOD report which has been dragged from the X-Files by a freedom of information request from Sheffield Hallam Uni's Dr David Clarke, the BBC reveals.

The 400-page dossier, entitled "Unidentified Aerial Phenomena in the UK" and marked "Secret: UK Eyes Only", disappointingly concludes: "No evidence exists to suggest that the phenomena seen are hostile or under any type of control, other than that of natural physical forces." It adds: "There is no evidence that 'solid' objects exist which could cause a collision hazard."
 
For a flavour of the sort of phenomena which anxious citizens report to the powers that be, try the Ministry's UFO round-up section, which shows that on 20 February 2005, some terrified soul in Yeldersley, Derbyshire, spotted a "missile-shaped" object which was "turquoise in colour, metallic and looked reflective, and was the length of an estate car".
 
What, no alloy wheels and tints? We're not convinced, but what about a "triangular shaped, huge craft, with red lights on the stern" which "hovered over the southern suburbs of Shrewsbury" on 11 April?
 
That at least sounds like the precursor of a Martian invasion fleet, unlike this entry for 21 February: "Teddington, Middlesex: Something was seen in the sky."
 
Mercifully, the MOD is able to offer some down-to-earth reasons for these sightings. Its report explains:
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