The RAND Corporation and UFOs

Written by Super User on . Posted in UFOs


Since mastery of the elements is a reliable index of material progress, the nation which first makes significant achievements in space travel will be acknowledged as the world leaders in both military and scientific techniques. To visualize the impact on the world, one can imagine the consternation and admiration that would be felt here if the United States were to discover suddenly that some other nation had already put up a successful satellite.

Unfortunately, I have been unable to locate online the full Lipp report to Project Sign (it may exist in some government FOIA repository somewhere), but those who care to read the complete text can see it in Project Blue Book – The Top Secret UFO Findings Revealed!, an anthology of documents from Projects Sign, Grudge and Blue Book edited by Brad Steiger in 1976 (Ballantine Books), where it was included.

We did find online a copy of a letter from A. M. Mood of the RAND Corporation to Lt. Col. A. J. Hemstreet of the Technical Intelligence Division at AMC in Wright-Patterson, dated 29 March 1949, which sheds some additional light about the cooperation between RAND and the USAF regarding their early UFO projects.

The letter begins by stating that, “we had not planned to issue a formal report on Project Grudge until or unless our study leads to some unusual or unexpected finding which would throw new light on Grudge.”

Mood then goes on to say that “we are now working through the data in search of significant consistencies or other indirect bits of evidence,” but that “to date we have found nothing which would seriously controvert simple rational explanations of the various phenomena…” (he includes a long list with balloons, aircraft, planets, hoaxes, etc.).

Memo between USAF and RAND on UFOs.

Mood finally raises a few questions about specific incident that seem to be misfiled and wants to know more about the Maury Island case of June 1947: “We have heard from a reliable source of an incident in which fishermen observed flying objects which dropped hot material which they collected and subsequently gave to official investigators.

The investigators’ plane crashed but there was a survivor. We do not seem to have a file on this incident – certainly not a complete file. May we have one?”

Finally, my original article mentioned a RAND computer war game of a flying saucer invasion cited by French science writer Jacques Bergier. This came from the book Analysis for Military Decisions, edited by E. S. Quade in November 1964 under the USAF Project RAND contract. The full book is now available online at the RAND Corporation’s Reports and Bookstore page here, where it’s described as: “

Presentation of the lectures prepared for the RAND course ‘An appreciation of analysis for military decisions.’ The lectures are designed primarily for decisionmakers and not for analysts; they are not intended to teach systems analysis, but to point out the weaknesses and possible abuses, as well the effectiveness, of an analytic approach to long-range military planning.” Pages 73-75 discuss the flying saucer invasion scenario.



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