The Day After Roswell
Authors: Col. Philip John Corso with William J Birnes
Reviewer: Martin Gottschall, PhD
This review looks at the book and also the reaction of some UFO researchers to it. Then I consider some of the disquieting political implications in the lack of public response to what should really be shattering disclosures.
The book comprises 275 pages of prose and 66 pages of appendices. It has no index and no table of contents, although each of the seventeen chapters has a title. In the book Corso identifies himself as an officer in the US Army, and makes the following claims:
1. While Post duty officer at Fort Riley, on July 6 of 1947, he saw the body of an alien entity suspended in a gel like substance in a thick glass container boxed up in a crate. The crate also contained documents describing the body as an occupant of a crashed-landed craft that had come down near Roswell earlier that week, and directions for the crate to be shipped to Wright Field, and from there to the Walter Reed Army Hospital morgue’s pathology section. He gives more than a full page of detailed description of the body (page 33).
2. From 1961 to ’63 he took an assignment in the Army R&D Division, Foreign Technology Desk, where in addition to his routine duties, he was also directed to examine the contents of a filing cabinet containing artefacts and reports relating to the Roswell crash, and to implement secret programs for bringing aspects of this technology into military and/or commercial use. On page 115 he lists fourteen R&D projects to which the Roswell artefacts were central or contributory. Chapter 12 details how the integrated circuit chip was “back engineered”, and chapter 13 deals with the laser.
3. Corso also details how laser and particle beam weapons projects were devised with the ostensible object of dealing with human military targets and the additional secret goal of bringing down UFO’s. Needless to say the “Star Wars Initiative” was honeycombed with such ulterior objectives. One way to recognise possible secret projects of this kind is to note the criticism of the informed scientific community. When “Star Wars” was proposed, many credible scientists thought the objectives were impossible or a waste of money. The inference was that military scientists were too dumb to know this. It may also be possible that military scientists knew things which the civilian scientists did not, things to do with UFO artefacts.
On page 78 Corso speaks on the cover-up, and is well worth quoting “In fact, we never hid the truth from anybody, we just camouflaged it. It was always there, people just didn’t know what to look for or recognize it for what it was when they found it. And they found it over and over again.” I personally do not agree. Perhaps it is more accurate to say that governments hid what they could, and camouflaged what they could not hide without drawing attention to it by their very actions. He also makes the valid point that this secrecy is dynamic not static. The rules and strategies change all the time.
To me this book is in effect an official admission that the Roswell crash did happen and that it was an alien vehicle containing an alien species. If that is so, why are certain UFO researchers so critical of it? Is it because the President or Congress did not make the same admission in a blaze of media publicity? Do they feel out-manoeuvred because the truth has been declared in no uncertain terms by an army officer, and probably nothing is going to come of it? The public and the media are not going to create a “Watergate” type response just because the truth has been admitted? Surely, “Roswell” deserves it, and many have been actively working towards such a climax.
This is not the first time that the truth has been offered in a credible way, and been ignored or rejected. It has happened again and again, and all too often it was the ostensible searchers after UFO related truth – UFO researchers – who have been only too willing to ignore or wilfully destroy the credibility of those messengers of the past. Perhaps the answer to this paradoxical situation lies in the very open-endedness of the UFO phenomenon. It opens the doors to a living, throbbing, active universe so complex, detailed and contradictory, that long before any of us have plumbed its depths, we come up against the limits of our own ability to cope, and start shutting down. Corso’s book seems to have touched a raw nerve, and I think that this is it.