Roswell Incident

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Roswell Incident

On a stormy night 75 years ago, something crashed in the desert near Roswell, New Mexico. The military says it was a balloon carrying top-secret instruments for sniffing out atomic-bomb tests in the Soviet Union. But others say it was a flying saucer carrying visitors from another world — the most famous and persistent UFO story to date.

Saucer mania gripped the country that summer. Thousands of sightings were reported. And Roswell was a perfect place for a close encounter. Robert Goddard had tested his rockets just outside town during the 1930s. The first atomic bomb was detonated not a hundred miles away, the army was testing V-2 missiles at White Sands, and the local air base housed the world’s only atomic-bomb group.

The story of the Roswell Incident broke on July 8th, 1947. Roswell Army Air Field issued a press release saying it had recovered a “flying disk” from a ranch near town. The army soon backtracked, saying the disk was nothing more than a weather balloon.

The story died, but it didn’t rest in peace. Decades later, the base intelligence officer said he really had discovered a flying saucer. He said it was fashioned of a thin, tough metal covered with odd markings. Later versions of the story said investigators had recovered alien bodies, too.

It’s a great story, but scientists will tell you it’s only that — a story — and we’ll tell you why tomorrow — on Star Date.

Script by Damond Benningfield

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