BeWoeful: The death of the Roswell slides
Against my better judgment, I chose to invest $15 of my hard earned money and three hours out of my life on the “BeWitness” program. I half expected to be surprised with new revelations about the slides because the promoters were so adamant that they were images of an alien being. In a poorly organized presentation, Maussan practically put his audience to sleep as he tried to build suspense for the big reveal. When the program was complete, I was asking myself, ”Why did I waste my time and money?”.
BeBored: May 5th was mostly a snooze fest
There is an old saying that I learned, early on in my naval career, which stated, “prior planning prevents piss-poor performance”. Most of what we did involved a plan. That plan did not always work in the heat of the moment because events might change the situation and one had to adapt as one saw fit. However, when it
came to presentations, they usually went off like clockwork. It was
practiced and everybody had a time and place to be. In the case of BeWitness, there appeared to be not much of a plan. Instead of two or three hours, the program took five hours. Most of it was extremely boring.
The most boring parts of the program involved the videos of wit- nesses recounting their experiences with the Roswell crash. Some of them were just not believable at all. Are we really supposed to believe some guy was able to access the Roswell file from the Blue Book records (a file that does not exist) and examine it with no repercussions even though it was highly classified? The Elea- zar Benavides interview lasted over twenty minutes! He tended to mumble and had to be prompted by interviewers to keep on track.
It wasn’t just these videos that were boring. The speakers seemed equally unprepared. James Hurtak, who was the keynote speak- er, set the tone for the program. His speech was poor, he did not excite the audience, and he droned on about some sort of cosmic brotherhood. Among much of the discredited evidence he pre- sented, was the 2004 Mexican AF FLIR video. Despite this being satisfactorily explained as distant oil well fires, it was being pro- moted, once again, as evidence of alien visitation. Another loser for the program was Paul Hellyer, who repeated his crazy stories about alien races and government conspiracies. Nobody takes this guy seriously but Maussan put him up there, warts and all.
The one group of individuals that were not supposed to disappoint were Don Schmitt and Tom Carey. I don’t know about others but I was disappointed. What started as a biased presentation of the Roswell case history, quickly evolved into a rapid showing of slides
that they did not have time to explain. They had way too many There were a lot of jokes on the internet about the Roswell slides. The best was provided by Jeff Ritzmann. slides and not enough time. As I said, Prior planning...... They did
manage to stop at each and every slide that showed their books. I guess they probably had quite a few on display outside available for purchase. The end of their talk focused on how Frankie Rowe described the heads of aliens looking like crickets.
The most promising speaker was Adam Dew but his presentation was not very good. He revealed that much that had been learned about Hilda Blair Ray was second hand at best. In some cases, it was third hand. Dew continued to promote the idea that Hilda was close to the Eisenhowers. His best evidence appeared to be that the Rays took the photographs of the trailers at Kansas State. Since Milton Eisenhower was at Kansas State, then by default, this meant that the Rays knew Milton. This backward kind of logic was prevalent throughout his presentation. Dew revealed that all he was good at was recording people telling stories. There are enough of those in the Roswell myth already. It would have been impressive if he had actually gone the extra mile and verified these stories. If he wanted to prove Hilda was a pilot, why didn’t he just look at records of pilot licenses. The failure to provide one document that the Rays knew the Eisenhowers or Bushes in a meaningful way indicated that these were anecdotes and not real ev- idence. Like many Roswell investigators, Dew seemed to be more interested in manufacturing history than verifying it. His biggest piece of evidence seemed to be the story about the slides being separate from the others and supposedly hidden from view. This was based on the testimony of one woman, who appears to have a financial stake in all of this. If this was the best that Dew had, he was on some very shaky ground.
After the slides were revealed, the program went to an intermission but many viewers, including me, thought it had ended. It was only later that I learned that the experts were allowed to speak about the body in the slide. I had to watch the rest of the video stream the next day to watch them explain their analysis. I was very disappointed to see them speaking in Spanish with no English subtitles. While the Spanish language was spoken in the theater, many English speaking viewers on line were unable to understand anything that was said. The only person that spoke English was Richard Doble and his analysis was just too bizarre to accept as being valid.
Probably the most ridiculous part of the presentation was having a 3D alien standing and walking on the stage. It was not very impressive and something was apparently lost in the streaming video.
The stream ended at this point but I believe that Richard Dolan spoke last. From what I understand, his talk was not that impressive. After five hours of having to sit in a chair on stage, waiting to speak, I would have been mentally, and physically, exhausted.
The program was a train wreck that tried to cram five pounds of crap into a one pound bag. I am not sure why Maussan did it this way but it certainly did not earn him any respect from some of those I saw commenting about the program. When the show was over, I had felt that I had not really received any satisfactory answers regarding the slides.
BeMissing: There was no edge code
One of the important pieces of evidence mentioned in the run up to the May 5th event was that the slides year of manufacture
was 1947. Last SUNlite, I questioned the claim of Anthony Bragalia that the edge coding dated the film to the year 1947. The
truth of the matter was revealed when Dew presented a statement by Robert Shanebrook, who only limited his year of manufac- ture to 1945-1950.2 He apparently had no edge code evidence. This was verified when a scan of the entire slide 9 was presented at milenio.com on May 6th.3 There were no “edge codes” on the slide in the form of shapes like triangles/circles/+ signs. All one could say was the slide was developed and mounted in the late 1940s. What was considered factual (the film was manufactured in 1947) prior to May 5th, turned out to be a myth.
BeMini: Smaller than advertised
We are told that the body was 3.5-4 feet in length but not shown how these measurement was made. After the image was shown on the BeWitness presentation, Richard Dolan convinced Adam Dew to release a good resolution scan for Coast to Coast.4 Using that image, I made some preliminary measurements to see
how tall the body might have been
The best way to measure the body is by knowing the dimensions of the frame holding up the glass shelf the body was laid upon. I examined some frames at my work and the hole sizes for them. The hole on the left is the light shelving frame, which is close to what appears to be seen in the photo- graph. The heavy duty frame is on the right. The range of hole size appears to be between 0.4 and 0.6 inches. Assuming that the frames in the photo- graph are similar, we can calculate the approximate size of the body:
Assuming the actual hole size was 0.5 inches and using the 19 pixel measurement in the image, this puts the entire body length at about 3 feet. However, that probably wasn’t the real body length because one has to account for foreshortening in the image and the fact that the hole is further away from the camera than the body. Since the amount of foreshortening appears to be minimal, it is likely that the body is probably smaller than these estimates due to the body being closer to the camera than the frame support. If these values are correct, it brings into question the estimates made throughout the months that the body was 3.5-4 feet in length.
During the BeWitness presentation, Dr. José de Jesús Zalce Benítez demonstrated how he came up with this number.5 It appears that he simply took the alien body, flipped it vertically, and then compared it to the woman in the background. If so, he was using a 1:1 comparison of the body to the woman. He stated it was precisely 1.2 meters tall at his presentation (in his paper he stated it was 1.2-1.3 meters tall).6 This seems rather odd for a scientist to give us such a precise number without using a precise tool to measure by, which the woman in the background is not.
Any person familiar with optics can tell you the problems with his measurement. The woman is farther away from the photogra- pher than the body and can not be used as an accurate measurement of length without knowing how tall she was or how far she was away from the camera (see the example of me and the palm tree). While we can’t tell for sure, I would estimate that she is 1.5 - 2 times further away than the actual body. If that is the case, then the estimates made by Dr. Zalce Benitez are 1.5-2 times too high. His estimate of 1.2 meters height (about 47 inches tall) would actually be 0.6-0.8 meters (24-32 inches). Since he did not demon- strate any methodology in his paper for everyone to examine, one must conclude that Dr. Zalce Benitez was making a “best guess”, which is not very scientific. His value for the length of the body is worthless.
BeWhere: Secret location or museum?
Prior to the program, Maussan and Carey were overly critical of skeptics using the image that was grabbed off the Dew film. That image, while very blurry, was pretty accurate as far as size and dimensions were concerned. In my opinion, had skeptics seen the real slides prior to the May 5 event, they would have destroyed the program before it happened. Of course, this is what was feared most by the promoters. The last thing they wanted was to have too much information in the hands of those “impatient strangers”, who might do what they could not do.
Prior to the May 5th event, Tom Carey described how the body was displayed:
...put together fairly quickly. Perhaps for a limited viewing. It is not in a museum(my emphasis). It’s in a indoor location. Where, we don’t
know but it is obviously, to us, for a limited viewing. It’s a temporary construction......7
When the high resolution images were revealed, many people noticed that there were other objects on display near the body and each of these objects had placards identifying what they were. In the low resolution images that were taken off the Dew film, most of the items behind the body were very difficult to see or were not visible at all. Now, we could see things on display on the other side of the body. They do not appear to be artifacts that one would find from a spaceship crash. What they were was not that important. What was important was that, contrary to what Carey said, this had all the earmarks of a museum setting. Was the alien placed in a museum for viewing or was the body simply a mummy as many people had proposed?
BeWishful: Speculation heaped upon speculation
In the heat of the moment during an interview, one can be forgiven for making mistakes. However, in this presentation, all the speakers were working from prepared statements with notes right in front of them. Making gross errors are not so easily over- looked. Were they just incompetent or were they more interested in telling people their version of events even if it meant getting the facts wrong. At one point in his presentation, Adam Dew showed a slide and proclaimed that it showed “White Sands” in New Mexico.8 Had he read SUNlite, he would have known it was the Great Dunes National Park in Colorado. The proof is easy if one just
does a search on the internet and flip the slide Dew was using. If one looks at the mountain range (see next page) on the left and compare it to the Dew image, after flipping, one can see this is a match. Dew could not even be bothered to see if he had the slide in the correct orientation! He chose to draw the desired conclusion that the Rays must have been in New Mexico instead of actually doing the research that would show otherwise. It is interesting to point out that the Great Dunes National Park is less than 200 miles from a place called Mesa Verde. This photograph, along with others from Colorado in the Ray collection, were clues that might have led investigators to the true source of the body in the slides. Blinded by his belief that this all had to do with Roswell and aliens, Dew ignored the evidence.
This is just one example of speculation disguised as facts in the presentation by Dew. We would eventually discover that the story created by Dew about how the Rays were influential people, who were friends with the Eisenhowers and the Bush family, was based solely on anecdotes that were not verified. Shepherd Johnson had inquired into that connection with the Eisenhower library and they told him there was no record of either of the Eisenhowers knowing the Rays.9 Dew’s theory about the Rays and their adven- tures was nothing more than a house of cards ready to collapse the instant a “gust of wind” came along.
BeBlurry: The debunkers will be disappointed
In the BeWitness program, Adam Dew listed four experts that were given high resolution images of the placard/slide in order to see if they could read it. After some time, Dew stated that they reported back that it could not be read. Readers may remember that Tom Carey publicly stated that the placard had been read, to some extent, by experts and that debunkers were going to be disap- pointed.10 Anthony Bragalia stated that some suggested they saw the name of a doctor from, or associated with, Wright-Patterson field.11 In an interview on March 15th, Adam Dew stated the following about the placard:
We will release the placard, but trust me, it’s been looked at by the best so far, and it’s unfortunate the picture was taken indoors and the placard in the two slides, the placard is just very difficult to decipher, mostly because it’s handwriting and it’s just that it is once you- it looks like you should be able to read it......When you zoom in, the lines all fall apart and it just becomes a mess of dots basically. People have their chance to decipher the placard themselves, but you know ideally we just don’t want people to just take wild swings and things and then we spend all our time combating false information, which is a waste of time.12
Dew’s concern about people trying to read the placard seems to have influenced him into only showing the images where the plac- ard was either overexposed, cut off, or whited out on the days after the big reveal.
Despite the claim that all these experts could not read the writing on the placard, one of the Roswell Slides Research Group’s (RSRG) members, by the name of Nab Lator (a screen name), seemed interested in trying. Another member was able to acquire a high resolution copy of the placard that was not overexposed or blanked out from a source that will remain unnamed at this point (see the hero of the Roswell slides article on page 25). Nab Lator’s initial attempts, on May 8th, inspired the rest of us to download the program he was using (SmartDeblur) to see if we could duplicate his results. Over the next few hours, several of us were reproduc- ing the same results with the image. The top line appeared to read, “Mummified body of two year old boy”. I forwarded the image to Peter Brookesmith, Robert Sheaffer, and Ted Molczan with a request to kept it confidential. I then asked them to read the placard and send me their readings separately so as to prevent influencing each other. They all read it as we had.
My original suggestion to the group was to release the information jointly. I also privately considered the possibility that it might be a good idea to send the images to some UFO proponents, like Kevin Randle, to see if they read it the same way. About this time, Nab Lator forwarded the image to Adam Dew to see if he could provide us with a better scan that could be used. While we awaited for Dew’s response, one of the images was inadvertently shown elsewhere. This prompted Curt Collins to post on his blog what we knew at this point in order to set the record straight. This started a series of events that would bury the Roswell slides for good.
While the UFO community was evaluating the evidence Curt published, there was some discussion and concern between the group’s members about the provenance of the image we were using. The possibility was considered that the image may have been “plant- ed” to discredit the RSRG. On the other hand, if the image was authentic, we did not want to reveal our source. We had to hope that the same image could be acquired from a known source so we could verify we weren’t being hoaxed and establish provenance.
When the Curt Collins piece appeared, the news spread like wild fire. Anthony Bragalia commented on the UFO Conjecture(s) blog that we were using a photoshopped image. In an effort to get an image with provenance, I challenged Bragalia to provide us with his high resolution scans so we could deblur them and show the results were achieving were not photoshopped. He did and I began to deblur one of them, getting similar results. Adam Dew also became upset by our results, declared it a fake, and put up a very high resolution image of the placard on his website. Unwittingly, both had presented us with the images of known provenance that we desired. The group then chose to deblur Dew’s image since it was of highest resolution and came directly from him.Because Dew’s image was apparently adjusted for sharpness/contrast it was more difficult to deblur and consistent results were hard to obtain. As the next afternoon proceeded, we became more proficient at using the software. Using Nab Lator’s guidance, I began to stumble onto a good model but could only get “ body of two year old boy”. Nab Lator was several steps ahead of the rest of us and produced a deblur model that was on target and produced the image that clearly stated “Mummified body of two year old boy”.
While this was all going on, Anthony Bragalia wrote another one of his pieces where he proclaimed that the RSRG was faking all of this in order to discredit the slides. In that story, he stated, “evidence is now accumulating that rabid slide-skeptics may have even com- mitted photo-fraud to discredit these slides.”13 As is typical in many of his emotional tirades, Mr Bragalia was wrong. The only thing our group was guilty of was not revealing the source of the original scan. Thanks to Bragalia and Dew providing us with images, this was no longer a concern.
Had Adam Dew gotten past his maniacal control of the slides and posted this high resolution image of just the placard for the entire world to see one year ago, somebody probably would have deblurred it. Then again, Adam Dew, and his associates, might not have desired to have the placard deblurred. One wonders if anybody had actually resolved the placard so it could be read prior to May 5th, would Dew, Carey, Schmitt, Maussan and Bragalia have listened?
BeMummy: The body in the slide
There is little doubt, at this point, that the body is what the placard states. The image was taken at the Mesa Verde museum. Research by various individuals has shown similarities with the museum floor, the frames and even the types of placards used in their displays!14 The mummy appears to have been returned to Montezuma castle in June of 1947, 15 which gives us a time line of when the photograph was probably taken. It seems likely that all the Colorado photographs were taken on the same trip. The motorcycle and fishing trip images show snow on the mountains, which may be an indication of spring or fall months. The Great Dunes national park images did not have that much snow but there were spots that could have been snow in the distant mountains. Another factor that has to be considered was wartime gas rationing probably limited travel in the United States until at least the fall of 1945. All of these factors indicate the slide images were probably taken between the fall of 1945 and June of 1947, when the mummy was returned to Montezuma castle.
So why didn’t Dr. José de Jesús Zalce Benitez say it was a mummy at the “BeWitness” presentation? One reason appeared to be that he was working with images that were blur-
ry. For the same reasons the placard could not
be read, some parts of the body could not be
examined properly. One of Dr. Zalce Benitez’s arguments was that the body had only three fin- gers.16 This is because the fingers were blurred together. When Nab Lator deblurred the entire image, we see that there seems to be four fingers visible and, what appears to be, the thumb peak- ing from behind the edge of the hand. It seems that at least some of Dr. Zalce Benitez’s analysis on the blurry photograph may have been a case of “garbage in = garbage out”.
BeAbandoned: Seven days in May
After the initial deblurred images were released, the Roswell slides enforcer (Tony Bragalia), hurled a line of accusations at the
RSRG stating we were guilty of a hoax. Within twelve hours of this appearing, Bragalia then posted another piece stating he
wanted to apologize to the native American community for using a mummified two year old boy as evidence of an alien spaceship crash at Roswell.18 Apparently, in the short time of writing his derogatory article about the RSRG and this article, he followed clues from the deblurred placard and...surprise...located the source of the mummy in the photograph. It was so easy, even a devout cra- shologist could do it.
Bragalia’s apology appeared sincere to some but it rang hollow for some members of the RSRG. Those of us, who had been blasted with threatening e-mails and false accusations, felt he needed to publicly apologize for his fanatical actions during the past few months. How Mr. Bragalia could apologize to the native Americans but not apologize to various members of our group is beyond me.
Bragalia also threw Adam Dew under the bus in his article. He claims that Dew did not give good enough images to those analyzing the slides. I disagree. In one of the images (file_text) that Bragalia posted on the UFO Conjecture(s) web blog19 (which I downloaded before Rich Reynolds apparently decided to remove the evidence of his participation in all of this), I was able to read “Of two year old boy” after just a few tries with Smart deblur. Therefore, Dew did provide them images that could be deblurred. The issue seems to be that the analysts did not have the proper skill set or the patience to actually do the job properly.
The remaining four individuals did not want to let go. They essentially kept repeating that the RSRG was composed of a bunch of debunkers/internet trolls, who had hoaxed the image even though we have demonstrated to everyone how to deblur the placard.20
As things unfolded over the next week, Don Schmitt, Tom Carey, and Adam Dew grew increasingly silent. They did not appear on any podcasts or radio programs. They had gone underground waiting for some magical event that might save them as many in UFOlogy apparently weren’t buying the story that the RSRG had hoaxed the placard image.
On May 14th, Jaime Maussan stated in a press release that Don Schmitt and Tom Carey were both still accepting the evidence that the being in the slides was non-human.21 Later that day, Don Schmitt would changes his tune and issue an apology that indicated he was ashamed for allowing his beliefs to affect his evaluation of the evidence properly:
I now realize that the image in the slides is a mummy as specified by the display placard. At this time I consider the matter concluded and intend on moving forward. 22
He also mentioned being “overly trusting when he should have known better”. He would later clarify that he was too trusting of the scientists and the other individuals who conducted the analysis on the slides.
Meanwhile, Tom Carey would not concede defeat. Perhaps he felt he could not because of some statements he made in interviews with Jaime Maussan. On March 22, they both declared that the debunkers/skeptics were incapable of admitting they were wrong:
JM:...I hope these people start to rethinking because they are going to be remembered too because what they have done is bad TC: You can count on one thing though Jaime when they are shown to be in error they will never apologize
JM: They want to get away with it.
TC: It is not in their makeup.23
On May 3rd, Carey went further:
TC:....this thing is not human....they will cling to something, I guarantee you. It is hard to admit that you are wrong.... JM: You have to if you are honest with yourself.
TC: It is very difficult for some people and I think these critics are those people. It would be very hard to. Just think about it, their whole world, if this is true, their whole world is crumbling.....Oh my goodness, what am I going to do now....
JM: This is going to destroy them.
TC: Normally, it will do that. For someone who is obsessed.....and these people are obsessed. From what I have read, they are obsessed with this. They are not seeking truth. They are seeking to destroy us because to have it real will disrupt their whole universe of belief.24
One wonders how silly both of these men must have felt after the placard had been deblurred. All of these statements now applied to them! They were faced with choice of being hypocrites or admitting they had failed to perform the due diligence on the slides over the past three years. Of course, they chose the greater of two evils and began to compound their mistake.
Adam Dew did not avoid additional criticism either. His story was partially told when Bryce Zabel revealed his association with the slides over the past year.25 Apparently, Dew contacted him and they met in August 2014, where he was shown the slides. Zabel wanted Dew to show the slides to various news outlets and studios so a proper analysis could be done and the slides could be pre- sented in a professional setting. Dew would have none of it. If he did that, he would lose control of the slides and any revenue they could generate. Zabel was later contacted to be part of the BeWitness production but chose not to participate because of what he knew about the slides. Bryce concluded by implying that the BeWitness and Adam Dew productions were an amateurish effort that was doomed to failure.
Jaime Maussan was being hounded by many people demanding answers. He became the promoter’s fireman trying to come up with weak excuses to fend off the criticisms come from all points of the UFOlogical compass. He kept repeating that the experts had spoken and it did not matter what the placard stated. Maussan had convinced himself this was not a human body or a mummy. After Bragalia had recanted, Maussan turned on him implying that he was a nobody. He even suggested that he had something to hide because nobody had ever seen him and there are no photographs of him on the internet.26 When Schmitt bowed out, Mauss- an ignored it and offered a bounty for a photograph of the mummy ($5000).27 Maussan had drawn a line in the sand in an effort to save the slides and his tattered reputation.
The effort to save the slides from becoming the Alien Autopsy would require people to ignore what the placard said and focus on what the experts had to say about the body. Maussan started this process by having Richard Doble restate his case that the body was non-human and proclaim it was not a mummy! Desperate for somebody else to give a favorable assessment of the body
in the slides, Maussan then had an anesthesiologist, by the name of Richard O’Connor, tell everybody that the body is non-human. O’Connor is also the “executive director” of the “Crop circles research foundation” with a strong interest in UFOs. One can hardly call this an objective observer. While slide skeptics were producing respected anthropologists to proclaim it was probably a mummy, Maussan was desperately seeking anybody with a degree to state that the body was non-human. He then proposed the idea that the placard was put there on purpose to hide the fact that it was a real alien on display!28
Adam Dew would eventually stick his head out of a hole in the ground and responded to Alejandro Rojas of Open Minds. He gave Rojas the same rationale that Maussan was employing. His argument was that these experts and Eleazar Benivedes trumped any deciphering of the placard.29 Dew then promptly disappeared again. On the same day, that Rojas mentioned Dew’s position, an- other one of the promoters appeared repeating the same message.
One must recall that on May 14th, Don Schmitt had conceded the fact that the body in the photograph was a mummy. On May 29th, he had changed his mind and jumped back on the slides bandwagon. In an interview with Jimmy Church, Don Schmitt used the failed argument that the RSRG used some sort of skulduggery to deblur the placard:
DS: But that is the curious thing. What were they reading? It was a screen grab.It was from the event in Mexico city. The slides have yet to be released and yet, off of nothing more than the internet, they’re able to read what nobody else has been able to read!
JC: How do you explain that?
DS: I can’t. I can’t and the point is, they can’t! They can’t!30
Don Schmitt has his facts all screwed up in this interview. The RSRG never used a screen grab to deblur the placard. Nab Lator first deblurred the placard using an image provided by an inside source. We, and others, then deblurred the image provided by Adam Dew and we CAN demonstrate/explain how it was done. Schmitt is either uninformed, incapable of understanding what transpired, or lying.
This kind of nonsense was repeated on June 2, when Carey finally found the courage to discuss the slides publicly on Jimmy Church’s radio program. Backed by his partner, Don Schmitt, Carey tried to portray the RSRG’s work as fake. Like Schmitt, Carey seemed completely uninformed about what was done:
So something has happened to this deblur program, I don’t know what. I am not a computer guy...now apparently they can read it and we could not before.... What I am telling you is the original slide appears to be cursive. The translated placard is in block letters. I don’t understand that.31
The “cursive writing” that he believes existed, had everything to do with the motion of the camera when the photograph was taken. In SUNlite 7-3, I specifically described how shutter shake is common when using slow speed Kodachrome film and slow shutter speeds. Not understanding this motion blur is what made it difficult to read and the writing to appear handwritten. David Rudiak, who Carey and Schmitt keep bringing up as being unable to deblur the image, admitted in mid-May that this was the reason he could not deblur the placard prior to May 8:
In fact, once I knew people were having success with Smart DeBlur, I got a copy and was very lucky to choose a setting second try that successfully deblurred the all-caps top line on the placard scan I was sent that exactly matched what Dew put up on his website. Thus nothing was being hidden by some imaginary manipulation of the placard image. It was there all the time to be deblurred if done right... Depends on the software used and time devoted to it. I also found that I was lucky to get a good setting second try. Even a slight variation from that setting resulted in garbage results. Now imagine getting the setting wrong from the beginning and trying 20 different varia- tions with bad results. After a while you can get discouraged and conclude that the software isn’t going to be successful...Again 20-20 hindsight that the image CAN be successfully deblurred using the proper software is ever so easy. Knowing that, you keep trying until you succeed in replicating the result....32
Note that he agrees the image CAN BE DEBLURRED using the software! One would think that Schmitt and Carey might have talked to their own expert before discussing this on Church’s program. Instead, they chose to ignore what Rudiak was publicly stating and use only his statements made BEFORE the placard was deblurred by the RSRG. All one can conclude from these statements is either Schmitt and Carey are clueless about how the software works and are ignoring input from others or they are just being blatantly dishonest. It would not shock me that they would say anything to preserve their credibility, which is so damaged at this point it is hard to believe anything they say.
As if implying that the RSRG were a bunch of hoaxers was not enough, the Schmitt/Carey team then chose to imply that Adam Dew was in on the hoax. They demanded that the slides be released to the public and a new drum scan be made of the slide.33 Once the slide is scanned, Schmitt and Carey then expected an immediate “reading” of the placard. Who was to read the placard? Will it be Schmitt and Carey, who do not understand how SmartDeblur works? I doubt they would desire David Rudiak, who is now aware of how the software works and can replicate the results. A new scan would not produce anything meaningful unless the original scan had been contaminated in some way and there appeared to be no evidence of this. This is just more of the same conspiracy minded madness prevalent in their thinking, where anything is possible but the truth.
Don Schmitt also repeated the party line that it is the experts that matter and not the placard:
....I am saying now that this isn’t finished that we are relying...we are going to leave this to the scientists, who are still standing their ground and saying “We stand by our original analysis, our original reports, we are still saying this is not a human body. We don’t care what the placard says!” And on top of it, additional scientists have now stepped forward... this is not the body of a two year old boy this placard claims this is a body of a two year old boy and it is not. It is three-and-a-half to four feet tall and in every other condition of the body is inconsistent with a two year old and even a thirty year old. So the plan now is that there will be a public science forum at a nation- al university where these scientists collectively will present their findings and if anybody is able to come and refute their positions, then so be it.....34
Schmitt ignores the fact that this is a mummified body that had many bits and pieces of it missing and the parts that were present might not be laid out precisely. For instance, just because no sternum is present, does not mean there never was one and the body is not human. This kind of logic would mean that a great deal of recovered skeletons are “non-human” because they are missing body parts or some body parts are disjointed. It is pseudo-scientific and these individuals, who are being used to promote this kind of logic, are doing so because they are motivated by biases that make them non-objective.
What we see happening at this point in the slides fiasco is the primary promoters are trying to avoid responsibility for the mistakes that were made. The “scientists” being presented have questionable backgrounds and have links to the promoters that do not make them independent. They also now have a stake in the slides outcome because it makes them appear incompetent. They either have to stick with their initial analysis or admit they were wrong. Like Tom Carey said, and demonstrated, it is hard to admit when you are wrong.
It is clear that Schmitt had already been talking to Maussan, when he described the public scientific panel. Just a few days later, Maussan announced that he would hold a press conference on June 23rd, at the National Institute of Forensic Sciences, where the scientists could present their evidence in a way so the skeptics could challenge their findings. This was just another publicity stunt where these “experts” risked very little. They were not presenting their data to scientists but news reporters meaning it was nothing more than another “dog and pony show” like “BeWitness”. I would like to see an actual attempt for these gentlemen to present their findings in a manner that will determine how accurate their analyses are.
I am issuing a challenge to these experts to submit their papers to a scientific peer-reviewed journal, not associated with UFOs, where qualified scientists from their field can weigh in and agree/disagree with their conclusions. They are the ones proclaiming that this is a body of something not human, with the implication that it did not come from this earth. If their observations are cor- rect, such a discovery should be readily published with little argument. If these scientists do not have the courage to submit such a paper (or the paper is not accepted by the journal), it indicates that anything they have submitted to the promoters is essentially worthless and the body is actually human.
On June 10th, an image was presented by Jorge Peredo showing the body as a claim for the $5000 bounty Maussan had offered. It showed a different view of the body in a different setting with a different
placard. I commented in the RSRG that this was probably taken at the Montezu-
ma Castle museum after the body had been moved there in June of 1947. The
rearranged body and the different placard tended to indicate it was not a hoax but an actual image.
Instead of looking into the matter further, Maussan immediately proclaimed it a hoax and stated it was a painting and not a photograph:
I offered a reward for a photograph, not a painting, the enemies of the case were raised proclaiming victory. A fraud.35
The next day, Anthony Bragalia, and an associate, discovered the source of the image as being from a Picasa album uploaded in 2008 by a woman named Frances Hadl.36 The album showed photographs of the a woman’s trips through Arizona in 1957 and 1967. On image 51 of this collection, was the body image presented by Mr. Peredo. The title of the image in the photograph stated, “Montezuma castle mummy”. 37
Isaac Koi attempted to contact Frances and managed to get a response from her husband, Frank. He told Isaac that the photograph had been taken in December of 1956, when he was stationed in Arizona with the Air Force. Frank also provided a photograph of, what appeared to be, the slide in the mount.38 Even though the slide can not fully be seen, the placard is visible leaving little doubt that this was the same mummy photographed by the Rays no matter what Jaime Maussan was saying.
Maussan’s response seemed so hasty that it gave the impression that he was as dishonest as he was foolish. It indicated that he never intended to pay anybody the $5000 and the bounty was just an- other publicity stunt. Like Schmitt and Carey, Jaime Maussan could not “be honest with himself ” and admit he was wrong or apologize.
The final straw that broke the Roswell slides back came from Shepherd Johnson, who had filed a FOIA request for any information about the mummy. The resultant file was 186 pages long and documented the travels of the mummy between Mesa Verde and Montezuma castle. The most important item was this photograph of the mummy.39
Maussan responded by producing another photographic analysis by a Biologist named José de la Cruz Ríos López. In his analysis, Lopez states that the body in the photograph is actually 1.195 m long and not the 0.7366 m (29 inches) length stated in the FOIA documents.40 One must recognize the fact that Lopez is a biologist and not an optical expert. Like Zalce Benitez, he seemed to think in only two dimensions when examining the images. He failed to consider the problem associated with the fact that his “ruler”, the woman’s hand, was much farther away than the body itself. Notice how he puts the hand close to the glass shelf when the actual photograph shows the woman being more distant and out of focus compared to the items on the opposite shelf. Measuring the body with her more distant hand is going to result in the body appearing much longer than it really was. As I stated previously, a correction factor of 1.5-2 times ends up with the body being around the 29-inch measurement. This was just another failed attempt by Maussan to get an “expert”, of his own choosing, to produce the desired results.
With the release of the FOIA materials, Maussan felt there was a need to cancel his June 23rd press conference so his experts could evaluate the new evidence. We do not know exactly when this presentation will occur but there has been rumors of it being in Sep- tember. While, he was waiting for the new analysis, Maussan chose to present his interpretation of this information. According to Maussan, the Palmer mummy is NOT the body in the “Roswell Slides”. That body is different and these documents, and apparently
the placard, are nothing but disinformation.41 Maussan had gone down the conspiracy rabbit hole where anything is possible and the obvious is often ignored.
While the slide promoters did not recognize it, or refused to admit it, this was the final nail being driven into the Roswell slides coffin. Their actions beyond this point made them look like a petulant child throwing a temper tantrum because they did not get what they wanted.
The UFO field is full of charlatans and mistaken identities. When one puts this into a pot with people wanting to believe at all cost, it is a recipe for emotional discourse that does not allow for an objective evaluation of the evidence. All the members of the slide promotion group had their own personal motivations that affected how they looked at the image in the slides. These biases resulted them ignoring the warnings from both UFOlogists and skeptics. As a result, they were embarrassed to the point that they refused to believe they could have been so wrong about something that was obviously not an alien.
I originally had mixed emotions about the promoters when the RSRG deblurred the placard. I felt pity for them because they were so foolhardy that they allowed themselves to be duped. However, after seeing the way they reacted, that pity quickly disappeared. Prior to May 5th, members of the RSRG were threatened, belittled, and denigrated for trying to seek out the truth about the slides. After the placard was deblurred, not one of the promoters even bothered to express apologies either privately or publicly to the group. Instead, they renewed their name calling and insulations that we were deceitful individuals determined to undermine Ros- well and the slides. For a group of individuals interested in “truth and history”, they seemed unable to graciously admit that the RSRG had been the champions of truth and history and they were not.
These lessons will probably not be learned by the UFO community. I suspect that within the next two years, somebody will profess to have another smoking gun again and Jaime Maussan will probably promote it. It will be a case of lather, rinse, repeat and it will, more than likely, turn out to be a dud again. It is time for UFOlogy to put away their childish beliefs about UFOs that involve cosmic brotherhoods and government cover-ups. Once they drop this approach, they will begin to make progress in understanding the UFO phenomena.
For any person interested in the UFO subject, I recommend they learn to be skeptical of outlandish claims even if it appears to con- firm their beliefs. If they are proven wrong, they will be pleasantly surprised. If they are right, then they would have not lost anything. It is a win-win situation. Had the promoters of the slides took this approach, a lot of people would not have wasted their hard earned money and the promoters would have never looked like a bunch of fools.
The proper perspective
Jaime Maussan’s experts have been attempting to demonstrate that the body in the photographs is too big to be the same mum- my as described in the Palmer documents acquired via FOIA. Their attempts at computing the size of the body has relied upon using the woman behind the body as a ruler but they have used a 1:1 ratio, which is not an accurate measurement, since the woman is a different distance from the camera than the body. Despite the problems with such estimates these computations have become widely accepted by Maussan, Carey, and Schmitt. This article will attempt to demonstrate why these experts are wrong and, in the process, compute approximate distances to the body and woman.
Angular size measurements
In the 1940s, two of the more popular cameras in use was the Kodak 35 and the Argus C. Both used a 50 or 51mm lens. Assuming a 50mm lens was used, the field of view was 39.6 (W) X 27 degrees (H). With those values we can compute what the approximate angular size of certain objects are in the photographs of the body.
The image used by Maussan’s experts was slide 11, which means I have to use that one as well. There is no drum scan of this slide so we have to use the cropped image presented on Coast-to-Coast AM. Its dimensions were 1707X1111 pixels. This is a ratio slightly higher than the field of view for a 50mm lens. If 1111 pixels was the full height, then the horizontal dimension would have been less than 1707 pixels indicating the vertical dimension was probably cropped. It is possible that both dimensions are cropped but for the purpose of this exercise, I will assume that the 1707 pixels is the full width of the slide. Using the 39.6 degree value, we can now create an angular correction factor.
With these angular size estimates and known sizes for the objects, we can now estimate the distances to them from the camera.
Mapping the room
Computing the distances requires us to make some assumptions. The first was that we have used the proper focal length of the lens to compute the proper angular size. The second is to assume certain sizes for these objects. Despite the problems associ- ated with such assumptions, I still think it is possible to get approximate locations for various objects in the photograph.
We are told by Maussan’s expert, José de la Cruz Ríos López, that the woman’s wrist/fist is assumed to be 4 inches in width. I mea- sured my wifes wrist/fist and arrived at a value of 3.5 inches. Assuming a size of 3.5-4 inches, we can compute the distance to her hand using the formula:
Distance = Size/[2Tan(a/2)] where a = angular size.
One can also use the on-line calculator at http://planetcalc.com/1897/
This calculation results in the woman being at a distance of 69-79 inches (about 6 to 6.5 feet away).
The body is more difficult because it is positioned at angle to the camera. We have to make more assumptions. Since we know one angle of the triangle head-camera-feet (angle C), we can make some estimates of distance using the length of the body equal to 29 inches and using a range of angles that would keep angle C at 37 degrees.
Assuming these calculations are correct, then the head of the body is about 4 feet away and the feet is 2-3 feet away. One can now understand why Ríos noticed that the woman’s fist/wrist was too small by a factor of 1.5! It was not because the body size was wrong. It was because the woman was much farther away than the body.
Other objects locations and sizes can be determined with some assumptions. For instance, if the hole size were 0.4 inches, the distance would be 53 inches. For 0.5 inches, it would be 66 inches. Based on the previous computations, the 0.4 inch hole size is probably correct because the 53 inch distance is not far from the location of the head.
Computing the size of the placard is problematic since we don’t know what the distance is but we do know that it is closer than the feet. So we can compute a range of sizes based on possible distances:
The placard is closer to the camera than the position of the feet, which is why the ratio of the body to placard, in physical size, is going to be smaller than ratio of the angular sizes. This is the same reason the woman’s wrist/fist appears smaller in relation to the body.
The four foot theory
Jaime Maussan and his experts insist that the body is about 48 inches (1.2m) long. Since we know that they are using the woman’s wrist/fist as a ruler, we can see how far the body would be if it were 48 inches in length. Using the same table, we used for 29 inches, we get the following values.
When comparing both slides, it is interesting to note that slide #9 has a good depth of field and #11 has a poor depth of field. In slide #9, one can see the floor tiles and the distant bench in reasonable focus. In slide #11, the floor tiles are barely identifiable and the bench is nothing but a blur in the background. This was because the photographer(s) was using various F-stops to get the best photograph. They were performing a photography technique called aperture bracketing. Slide #11 probably had a very low f-stop setting of about 3.5 to 8 while slide #9 had a higher f-stop of 11 or 16. The depth of field for the probable settings in slide #11 can be computed at http://www.dofmaster.com/dofjs.html. They are summarized in this table:
The interesting thing here is that the 48-inch body would have been photographed at about a five foot distance as noted by the distance table. At a distance of 6-6.5 feet, the woman would have been only about one foot outside the depth of field and should have been nearly in focus. This is confirmed by the distance to the head being around the same distance. It it is not out of focus the way the woman is. This indicates that she is farther away than the head. This is not possible in the 48 inch body scenario.
In the case of the 29-inch body, where the focus would have been closer to three to four feet and the woman would be about 1.5 times further than the head. She would have been well outside the depth of field and out of focus as we see in slide #11. The evi- dence in the photograph indicates the four foot body theory is not tenable.
As a final check of these computations, I attempted an experiment with my digital SLR camera (A Pentax K-x) and took some photographs of a 29-inch rod. This is a photograph taken with a 35mm setting (52 mm equivalent for 35mm film) on my zoom and the focus set at 4 feet. I set the aperture at F 4.5 (the lens would not go any lower).
The following distances were measured for this photograph. The “hand” (a printout of a photograph with a physical width of 4 inch- es) was 75 inches away. The right end of the stick was 41 inches away and the left end was 49 inches (the angle to the right side was about 90 degrees). The cup (my museum artifact) was 6 inches behind the rod in the horizontal plane. The placard writings are 5, 6, and 7 inches wide in ascending order.
This is a close approximation of slide #11’s layout. The rod is about 34 degrees angular size and the hand is about 2.8 degrees. While the rod is a bit too far, the hand appears to be just the right distance. Notice how the hand is not sharply focused the same way the woman’s hand in slide #11 is not focused. If one uses the hand for a ruler, to measure the rod, one will get the length of about 48 inches for the rod even though its physical length is only 29 inches long. As previously explained, this is a flawed methodology and it is why Ríos’ measurements are inaccurate.
While these computations may not be precise, their results demonstrate why the body can be appear to be large and the wom- an’s fist/wrist can appear to be so small. It also gives us some working values to get a possible feel for where the photographer was in relation to the body and woman.
While Maussan’s experts appear to be intelligent individuals, none of them have mentioned any consideration of the woman pos- sibly being more distant than the body in their computations. Either they just did not understand this principle of perspective or chose to ignore it. In my opinion, that makes them incompetent or dishonest.
Quelle: SUNlite 4/2015 - Forsetzung: Teil 37