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Vietnam Ufos

Ufos In The DMZ



MARCH 16, 1978 ........... MEKONG RIVER, VIETNAM

The main witness who was on vessel security watch on this night and another crewman had both previously seen fireballs crossing over the river. So, on this night he decided to wave his flashlight at it. It crossed to the center of the river, always to the same spot, where they anchored their gravel barges. It sat there for about 10 minutes, just a ball of fire, soon the fire dissipated and the witness saw a disc-shaped object about 30 meters in diameter with a dome on top and a smaller dome on the bottom. The color of the object was silver metallic and it had rotating amber and white lights with a small greenish light on the bottom. It hovered for about 2 minutes and then started moving towards their vessel (a US Army 65ft harbor tug). The disc then turned off its lights and stopped at approximately 10 feet from where the main witness was standing. For some reason he felt no fear. There was absolutely no noise as the upper dome started to shift revealing a window-like opening which covered 1/4 of the dome, an eerie green light illuminates the inside of the craft. Suddenly an occupant peers from the side of the window, then 2 more appear just looking at the witness. He waves at them and they wave back. This went on for about 5 minutes or so.

The occupants were pointing at his uniform and rifle, so he put the rifle down. He described the humanoids as about 3.5ft in height, with bluish green skin, large eyes, not almond shaped, but round with bright green pupils, slender bodies with 4 digits on each hand. They resembled small children, with small ears, nose and mouth which never opened. They appeared to be using hand language and were pointing at different items. The witness was trying to communicate but didn’t know how. So he gestured to them that he was going to get another crew member from below, so he went below and woke the skipper. The skipper didn’t know what the witness was trying to tell him so he came topside and the disk had moved around the rear of the vessel, and the skipper was about to "chew him out" when the disc moved forward. At this point the skipper began screaming and began grabbing for the rifle. The witness fought with skipper, preventing him from shooting at the disc and kept yelling at the occupants of the disc to get "out of range". Just as soon as the disc moved away from the vessel, the skipper started calming down. The disc then moved up the river and suddenly disappeared at high speed.


Occurred : 1/1/1967 01:00 (Entered as : 01/67 1:00)

Reported: 4/24/2007 10:16:00 PM 22:16

Posted: 4/27/2007

Location: Cam Rahn Bay (Viet Nam),

Shape: Cigar


Saw UFO when in Viet doubt about it.

Low ceiling that night, maybe 2-300 ft. I was driving coffee to K-9 post. Saw orangish object slowly decend and move forward at same time. Very bright. Directly in center of base. Just hovered after a bit and then disappeared. I got on the radio to other k-9 handlers and most said they saw it. Checked with tower and they saw nothng..ya right!

This object did have a glow but you could tell there was something solid there as well.

I was raised in the Air force, I knew planes and helicopters. This was not any such thing. No noise either.

Since then I have not forgotten it and never will. 32 years as a police offier, now retired and quite sane and intelligent.

Have been watching the UFO things on Natl Geographic and always wanted to tell someone about what i saw and wish I had back then but know it would have done no good.

I know it's old information..but as God as my witness, it happened. I know what I saw


((NUFORC Note: Witness indicates that the date of the sighting is approximate. PD))


Ufos in Vietnam - enemy helicopters -


Military Sightings of UFO's

The question is often asked, why don't more military UFO witnesses come forward publicly, and provide names, dates and places? Surely they aren't REALLY intimidated by such empty threats as JANAP 146-E, which provides for hefty fines and jail sentences for breaking silence on a military UFO sighting. Surely they realize the scientific import of
their sighting transcends any nationalist or military considerations. If more military witnesses don't come forth publicly, isn't it possible that there aren't really as many
as hardcore ufologists would have us believe? Its a question I've often asked myself.




In 1968, I briefed General Brown the USAF Chief of Staff most mornings on the intelligence situation in Vietnam. Later, at a press conference on October 16, 1973, he stated: "I don't know whether this story has ever been told or not. They weren't called UFOs They were called enemy helicopters. And they were only seen at night and they were only seen in certain places. They were seen up around the DMZ (demilitarized zone) in the early summer of 68. And this resulted in quite a little battle. And in the course of this, an Australian destroyer took a hit and we never found any enemy, we only found ourselves when this had all been sorted out. And this caused some shooting there, and was no enemy at all involved but we always reacted. Always after dark. The same thing happened up at Pleiku at the Highlands in 69. Department of Defense Transcript of press conference in Illinois.


June 16, 1909 - Dong Hoi, Vietnam - Van Thi Binh, 7, and her sisters were awakened by a whooshing sound at around 3 a.m. As they looked out the window, they saw a glowing "bolide" flying slowly in an eastward direction over the city. The bright white glow lit up the rooftops, and the "bolide" was seen by Vietnamese fishermen offshore. They watched it for 8 to 10 minutes before it abruptly dropped into the South China Sea. Although it couldn't possibly have been a bolide or detonating meteor (Not at that slow speed!), it was written up as such in the French magazine L'Astronomie.

(See the book ANATOMY OF A PHENOMENON by Jacques Vallee, page 28)


05/28/52 (Bluebook)

10:30 a.m. Witnesses: many in crowd watching a ceremony. One

white-silver disc-shaped object flew straight and fast for 2

minutes In Chicago, U.S. Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. George S.

Brown told a news conference Tuesday UFOs were reported in

Vietnam during the war and even triggered an air-sea battle near

the Demilitarized Zone in 1968 in which an Australian destroyer

was hit. "I don't know if this story has ever been told," Brown

told a news conference, but they (UFOs) "plagued us in Vietnam

during the war." "I think it's nothing," Brown said, "I think

it is atmospherics."

Que Son Valley 1969

Hello; I served in Vietnam from 1968-72 with a few breaks to wash my socks, etc.. During the summer of 1969, early Fall; I was on LZ West (Que Son Valley, I Corps) with the 196th Light Infantry Brigade. One night at say 2300-0100 I saw a glowing light move from above another Fire Base (LZ Siberia) over the five or so miles across a valley below our base and then pass over at a speed of say 300-500 mph........then rise off still going East towards the sea (Chu Lai). I reported it to the Battalion XO and he got the CO; as I was Senior Bn medic: I was not suspect as to my observations. Others on the bunker line also saw the event. Our theory was that since I heard nothing it was not a plane or chopper and the CO said a 122mm rocket could not make such a course change? but who knows? We had just finished the heavy combat of August 12-30th, 1969 known in the book Death Valley (Keith Nolan). What did I see? Who knows. Perhaps a "dud" 122 rocket but perhaps something else? xxx xx xxxxxxx

B-52 Crew Mutilation

Several years ago, Bill English, son of an Arizona state
legislator and former Captain in the Green Berets had been
assigned to an RAF `listening Post' north of London as an
information analyst. English was, in the course of his duties,
asked to prepare an analysis of the elusive GRUDGE 13 report. On
his discharge from his work at the `listening Post' he returned
to the United States and began to do a little UFO research on his
own. English had been no stranger to the UFO phenomenon. In Viet
Nam he was member of a Special Forces investigative team that
went in to retrieve a B-52 that was forced down by a UFO and all
the occupants killed. Communications had been received from the
B-52 before it went down to the effect that it was "....under
attack by a UFO....", a "....large light....". The plane was
found intact, sitting in the jungle There was no swath
indicative of a crash landing. Only the bottom of the fuselage
showed any damage, there was no damage to the underside of the
engine pods. Although the plane was completely intact the entire
crew had been mutilated.

Pacific Stars and Stripes

information for NVA helicopters

For date 68 06 19

Quang Tri Province, I Corps, South Vietnam
Location, Dong Hoa
Description: 19Jun68(Wed)-North Viets May Be Using Copters SAIGON (UPI & S&S) - Unidentified aircraft, believed to be enemy helicopter, have been spotted and fired on by U.S. Navy vessels near the eastern end of the Demilitarized Zone, the U.S. military command in Vietnam said Monday night. If they are enemy copters, it marks the first time they have been used in the war. The report comes on the heels of rumors that a Communist copter gunship was responsible for the sinking of a Navy Swift boat, the PCF 19, at 1:30 a.m. Sunday a few miles below the DMZ. It was the first U.S. gunboat lost in the war. Early reports on the sinking indicated it was the work of Communist shore batteries above the DMZ. The boat went down about a mile offshore, four miles below the DMZ. Five of the seven crewmen were listed as missing. The other two were picked up. A South Vietnamese general said Monday U.S. warplanes shot down seven North Vietnamese copters from the skies around the DMZ. Lt. Gen Hoang Xuan Lam, commander of South Vietnam's (northern) I Corps, said two of the copters were shot down over South Vietnam and five more over the north in two separate night-time battles Sunday. Lam also said there had been reports, still unconfirmed, that a Communist jet airplane, possibly a Russian made MIG interceptor, buzzed the frontier area Sunday. Lam said two of the copters went down on the south side of the buffer zone between North and South Vietnam. A U.S. radar installation at Dong Ha, about seven miles south of the border, picked up the Communist copters early Sunday, he said American jets swept in and blasted three of them from the skies, Lam said. Sunday night the copters returned and this time Allied troops at a string of military bases along the DMZ saw them, the general said, American warplanes, believed to be flown by Air Force pilots based at Da Nang shot four of them down, according to Lam. Two of these, he said were pair that fell into South Vietnam. The helicopters, believed to be of the ML4 model built in the Soviet Union and exported by the Russians to numerous other nations since its development in 1952, "are probably hidden in the various jungle sites around the Dong Hoa area," Lam said. In Monday night's announcement a U.S. military spokesman said positive identification of the aircraft had been impossible because the spotting was at night. He said the "UFOs" had been spotted flying low "in the vicinity of the eastern end of the DMZ, above the Ben Hai River." This would put them on the Communist side of the demarcation line. There was the mention of time in the announcement only that it had been dark. The Navy vessels fired on the unidentified aircraft with unknown effect, the spokesman said. He said a daylight aerial reconnaissance operation had been started to seek wreckage or other evidence that could determine if the aircraft were copters The source for this information was 6806PSS.AVN supplied by Les Hines 3/97

Vietnam War Conspiracies

The Vietnam war has become a stain on American foreign policy for the external conflicts and complications that came out of it. Recently, as more and more government documents become unclassified, and retired high ranking officials release their knowledge, more covert operations are uncovered. If you can imagine it, it probably went on in Vietnam.

The whole time William Cooper was in Vietnam, he had noticed that there was a lot of UFO activity. He had individual 24-hour crypto code sheets that he used to encode messages, but because of the danger that one of them could be captured at any time,sed special code words for sensitive information. UFOs, he was told, were definitely sensitive information. Cooper learned exactly how sensitive when all the people of an entire village disappeared after UFOs were seen hovering above their huts. He learned that both sides had fired upon the UFOs, and they had blasted back with a mysterious blue light. Rumors floated around that UFOs had kidnapped and mutilated two army soldiers, then dropped them in the bush. No one knew how much of this was true, but the fact that the rumors persisted made him tend to think there was at least some truth in them. Cooper found out later that most of those rumors were true. Cooper also claims that during the Vietnam War a UFO shot down a B-52, that U.S. troops were attacked by "something" which they first thought were helicopters and that he himself witnessed an incident involving the recovery of "a craft" which was listed as a Soviet submarine. Aliens weren't the only perpetrators of atrocities in Vietnam.

The U.S. Government transacted operations during the war that could be considered atrocious. Officially launched in 1963, The CIA's Operation Phoenix, planned to assassinate and torture over 40,000 in Vietnam. The government also made a certain type of marijuana that would make the troops extra violent...and they did several test runs of the drug on a couple of platoons. The story went that several of the troops they tried it on ended up turning on themselves, and attacking each others platoons, killing most every body.

There are stories created to explain everything and Vietnam has more than its share. True or not, they add interesting if not frightening twists to an already horrific war which affected so many.

George Filer

(609) 654-0020



-- Joseph Foster writes, "In mid April of 1970, we were anchored four miles off shore on the US Coast Guard Cutter Mellon. The Captain authorized swim call in the late afternoon and I had the watch with a M-16 rifle on the flying bridge to guard for sharks. The swimming party was diving off the main deck into the water and swimming to a raft.

Eight of us and the Captain were watching the 20 swimmers when our attention was drawn to a large underwater object, that slowly moved directly under the ship. The object was an elliptical shaped dark shadow, that was by our estimate was 90 feet in length and 30 feet wide. It was about 50 feet deep and moving perpendicular to the axis of our ship. The entire sighting lasted no more than 20 or 30 seconds. The men in the water had no idea that a large object cruised directly under them. We ruled out whale shark or whale because there was no gyration of a tail or any other appendages visible.

Our crew also had other UFO sightings. During our July, we were on Ocean Station Victor patrol, when we had radar contact with three targets traveling at speeds in excess of 3000 mph halfway between Midway Island and Japan. Eight crewman saw three white lights traveling southwest in a 'v' formation. A sitrep report was filed.

Our second sighting took place in May of 1970 while we were 600 miles east of Guam. One of my duties as Quartermaster was celestial navigation. On the 4 - 8 shift, I had to shoot morning and evening stars. I was with the Captain 'shooting' the stars, when we noticed a bright shiny perfect sphere that seemed to have the consistency of liquid mercury. The object was traveling west southwest at 100 knots at an altitude of 2500 feet.

In Honolulu, I made friends with a Fleet Intelligence Yeoman, who stated, "We receive thousands of UFO reports from US Navy ships." UFOs come in and out of the water and fly directly in front of our ships.



Soldier Relates 1966 sighting

Light in the sky, electromagnetic effects, multiple witnesses US forces base, Nha Trang, South Vietnam June 1966 UFO blacks out a U.S. military base at Nha Trang, Vietnam and is seen by hundreds of American soldiers.

Caught up in the war around them, American GIs stationed in South Vietnam in June 1966 rarely had reason to speculate about UFOs -- at least until the little-known Nha Trang UFO incident took place. The Nha Trang incident if thorough documentation can be obtained, could become a UFO "classic" according to one NICAP investigator familiar with the case. The sighting allegedly occurred during one of the most active periods of the Vietnam conflict, and understandably received little publicity at the time. Now, however, with American participation in the war concluded, numerous war-related incidents are beginning to emerge. One of these involves a startling UFO sighting witnessed by possibly thousands of soldiers stationed in Vietnam at the time. NICAP investigator Raymond Fowler conducted an initial investigation into the sighting and was able to contact an eyewitness to the event. Nha Trang , at the time of the reported incident, was a heavily defended base in South Vietnam located along the coastline. It served as the home base for more than 40,000 troops, including 2,000 American GIs. The base was situated in a valley, with warehouses and an airstrip to the east, a fuel storage area and hills to the west, and docks and storage facilities located to the south along the China Sea (see map, page 2 ... J.C. not reproduced herein.)

According to the witness, eight bulldozers were operating that night cutting roads around "Hawk Hill," located less than one-half mile to the west of the American compound. On another part of the base, two "sky-Raider" prop-driven aircraft were warming up on the airstrip located less than a mile to the east. At the same time, a Shell Oil tanker lay anchored in the bay about a mile to the southwest. The witness, an enlisted soldier holding the rank of Specialist 5, had gathered with an undetermined number of fellow soldiers around 8 p.m. in an open area of the base to watch an outdoor movie. Outdoor films had become possible only recently, according to the witness, thanks to the arrival and installation of six, new, independently-operated, 100 KW diesel-powered generators. One of these generators had been installed near the compound where the soldiers were seated and was being used to supply power for the movie projector. The film had been underway for some time, according to the witness's account, when suddenly, at approximately 9:45 p.m., the sky to the north lit up! The GIs glanced up and saw what at first appeared to be a flare exploding above a ridge to the north.

"At first we thought it was a flare which are going off all the time and then we found that it wasn't." recounts a letter from the witness mailed home a few days later. "It came from the north and was moving from real slow to real fast...Some of the jet fighter pilots which were here...said it looked to be about 25,000 feet (in altitude) ... then the panic broke loose. It dropped right towards us and stopped dead still about 300 to 500 feet up. It made this little valley and the mountains around look like it was the middle of the day; it lit up everything. "Then it went up and I mean up. It went straight up and completely out of sight in about 2-3 seconds. Everybody is still talking about it." Had the soldier's letter or his recent account of the incident stopped there, the case would probably not have come to the attention of either NICAP or the officials from Washington that reportedly visited the base the next day. But the letter and the witness's account of the incident continues: "That really shook everyone is that it stopped, or maybe it didn't, but anyway our generator stopped and everything was black...

At the Air Force Base about one half mile from here all generators stopped ... The engines on two planes that were the runway ready to take off stopped, and there wasn't a car, truck, plane or anything that ran for about four minutes." In addition, the eight bulldozers working on nearby hills also ceased operating according to the witness. "A whole plane load of big shots from Washington got here this afternoon to investigate. It's on the radio over here. Is it at home? I swear if somebody says they saw a little green man I won't argue with them." "Little green man" or not, the case could prove to be highly significant, despite the current lack of additional information.

Compounding this problem is the witness's inability to recall anything more than the nicknames of those he was serving with at Nha Trang. Of extreme interest to NICAP, and apparently of equal interest to the "big shots" from Washington," was the associated EM effects reportedly caused by the strange UFO. The fact that diesel and gasoline engines scattered throughout the base all ceased to operate at the same time and remained inoperative for more than four minutes provides added mystery to the event. Included in the list of engines that ceased running at the time of the sighting, according to the witness, were those of the two "Sky Raiders" warming up on the nearby runway. One can only speculate what might have happened had they suffered a power loss while airborne. NICAP is currently attempting to contact appropriate Army officials in an effort to obtain the names of other enlisted or officer personnel who might have witnessed the event. NICAP is also seeking to determine whether officials from Washington did in fact visit Nha Trang the next day to investigate the sighting.


There was also an incident in Vietnam where a UFO set down in a field. It terrorized some of the villagers, and there was a soldier who was out visiting his girlfriend, who would later become his wife. Anyhow, he got tied up there and the UFO was trying to convince some of the people they should go. It wanted to take some of the people. The soldier stood his ground and wouldn't let the entities do it. The M16 that the soldier had was impervious to the aliens, but the cross that he always wore, and he always carried a Bible, they had regard for that. Finally, they gave up and decided not to try to take any of the people...

Lone-Jon Island, Vietnam 1970

This case came to BUFORA via a letter from South Australia at the end of 1996. JB wrote to BUFORA after reading John Spencer's UFO Encyclopedia. His letter reveals some information about a very unusual incident during a patrol of a five-man team in Lone-Jon Island, Vietnam in 1970. According to his letter JB claims they were stalked and chased by circles of four inch by four inch bright lights with 'black eyes', which zigzagged, diving and hovering as close as five feet away. When the team returned fire at these lights/objects, they turned glowing red and the 'black eye' part glowed bright green. These incidents occurred during daylight and at night over a five day operation and JB went on to say that he had two very good slides of these lights, five lights captured on one slide and two lights, at seven feet away, on the other slide.

This was a very frightening experience for all five men in the team and when they reported the events to their Company Headquarters they were told to forget the incident. However, they were then questioned by CIA personnel from Saigon at a debriefing four weeks later and their equipment from that day was searched by American Military Police and two men, who stated they were from Alaska Barge Company stationed in Vung Yau, Vietnam. JB commented in his letter to BUFORA that he believed these two men were with the CIA.

Several months later, JB's parents were questioned by two Americans asking for any film that he may have sent to them, which was deemed to be classified material. His father refused and told them to go away or he would call the police.

JB then went on to say that he would document six other events from his notes and forward them on to BUFORA and could we put him in touch with David Summers a man who he described as knowing abut this subject, who apparently resides in Australia.

His letter also gave details of a mobile phone number.

The follow-up to this letter was very unsatisfactory and so unfortunately, we shall never know how much substance there was to this report. I responded with a letter to JB enclosing a BUFORA Questionnaire and asking if he would consider sending us some prints of these lights he had captured. As I did not know of David Summers I gave him details for Keith Basterfield an Australian researcher and also emailed Keith to let him know of this report with the mobile phone number etc. However, I never heard from him again and Keith Basterfield was unable to get in touch with him via his contact address or mobile. So this fascinating story unfortunately remains just that because without any response, corroboration or checks with the witness or his colleagues during that time, it is impossible to make any kind of assessment on this report. He did however quote his military number in his letter to BUFORA

From: Stig Agermose

Date: Tue Oct 5, 1999 3:34 pm
Subject: UFO Engaged During Vietnam War?
Source: 'alt.ufo.reports'.
From: smurf345@w...

Newsgroups: alt.ufo.reports
Subject: Anybody else heard this
Date: Sun, 3 Oct 1999 22:38:16 -0500 (CDT)
Organization: WebTV Subscriber

I first heard this while attending a Navy school back in 76. A Vietnam War movie on earlier in the week triggered some memories, this is one.
Supposedly two F-4's had a dogfight with an UFO over South Vietnam.

The UFO made a controlled crash landing in the middle of a firefight
between a squad of American M-60 tanks and an undetermined number of
NVA/Viet Cong.Things sort of stopped for awhile until the NVA/VC fired a RPG [rocket propelled grenade] at the UFO. The first RPG had no affect, so more were fired.

The UFO somehow neutralized the RPG's and started attacking the NVA/VC.
At this point the American tanks opened fire on the UFO.
The UFO could not stop the 90mm tank rounds and was destroyed.
The NVA/VC broke off and left.
The Americans found several alien bodies and at least one survivor in the UFO wreckage.

When the American commander, a Major, called for a medivac, he was told
nothing was available. Everything was being in used in the search for the UFO. He told them he had it and a chopper was immediately sent.
When it arrived, the CIA type in charge refused to take the wounded
American GI's onboard. Instead insisting he would only take the aliens.

At this point the Major, shot the surviving alien and had his tanks grind the wreckage and bodies into the ground.
The chopper pilot overruled the CIA type and medivaced the wounded.
After this was told, two of my classmates claimed to have seen the message traffic about this. One of them had been a crypto tech on the OKLAHOMA CITY which was usually the flagship. This meant that he had access to everything that came in, even the "EYES ONLY" material.

Anybody else ever hear anything about, or related to, this?

Vietnam UFO Encounter

I will tell you a true story about a UFO sighting from a US navel ship in waters off Vietnam. This happened on a mild cloudless night quite a distance from any land.

Fortunately I was on watch on the port side of the bridge next to the front bridge (or superstructure) It was my duty to keep a lookout for "Bogies"-- any aircraft-- within sight, using powerful binoculars of course. It was quite late at night at this time, I believe the water was smooth and all the stars in the sky were shining beautifully and clearly. During a pause from the binoculars I looked to my left, and about 35 degrees in the sky and to the left was a brilliant white light. It was much bigger than the stars I sighted and it was up high in the sky.I grabbed my binoculars and zeroed on to it. It was moving in a straight line at the 35 degrees I spoke of and through the binoculars I could tell it was definately oval shaped. It looked quite solid and well-defined. After it got about midway in front of the ship I figured I had better report it to the bridge--and I did. About then a high-raking officer came out and motioned for me to hand him the binoculars for a closer look. He made a spontanious remark -- He said, "You know Ive often wondered just what those damn things are" By then I had noticed a bunch of the officers and crew hovering over the radar.The Ufo was not a satellite; it was moving in a straight line of travel. The brilliant light seemed to have been generated by the craft itself. When the UFO was almost to the otherside (of the sky) and while I was watching closely it changed to red, then orange and finally from yellow to a dull yellow and completely disappeared like a light going out. I no longer doubted that UFOs existed and that some of them could appear solid. As I mentioned this was on a US naval warship in the sea off Vietnam and was witnessed by a whole group of people.For some strange reason, when I asked the radar obsevers what it was, they waved me off. The whole incident simply was not talked about (However we were never told not to say anything about it or that it was classified as secret.) Yes, UFOs are real and that convinced me.


If you can shed light on Billys sighting please do not hesitate to contact us -

attacked by US Airforce
June 1968 Vietnam

As Hobert tuned away from the threat direction the aircraft was seen to be a swept wing jet fighter. Hobart got away 5 rounds of 5" and no further attack was made.

The TU joined USS Boston. And with USS Blandy DD943 formed an anti aircraft screen around USS Enterprise CVAN 65. A helo from Enterprise provided a medivac and delivered AB Parker, Mech Holmes, and AB Laity to hospital in Da Nang.

Edson relieved Hobart as leader of the TU and Hobart steamed for Subic Bay. On passage the crew cleared the debris and collected pieces of missile for identification. It was only then it was realised that the missiles had been fired from US Aircraft.

Actually Hobart had been one of only several ships attacked by 7th Airforce jets on the nights of the 16th & 17th June. On the 16th USS PCF19 was sunk near the DMZ with 5 killed and on the 17th Hobart, Boston and Edson were attacked. Edson 15 minutes after Hobart as were 'Market Time' vessels USCGC Point Dume WPB82325 and PCF12, a US Navy Patrol Craft. Boston and Hobart both took hits but only Hobart suffered fatalities.Webmasters Note: - The above is the Official US and Australian Navy's version about the attacks on the US Navy Patrol Vessels PCF 12 and PCF 19, however I suggest you go HERE and read an account by James Steffes, a crew member of PCF12 that fateful night. Whilst it is clear that Hobart was indeed fired upon with Sea Sparrow missiles from fixed wing, jet aircraft, what is not clear from James' and others eyewitness accounts is why it all happened.

Hobart arrived at Subic Bay on the 19th June where CINCPAFLT, Admiral J.J. Hyland USN inspected the damage (above) and addressed the Ship's Comapny. On the 20th June all ships in Subic Half Masted their Colours in honour of Chief Hunt and OrdSmn Butterworth.

Hobart completed 3 Gunline deployments to Vietnam and decommissioned in May 2000.

Navy ship HMAS Hobart hit during Vietnam UFO encounter?

Date June 15, 1968

Location DMZ, Viet Nam


Summary: On Friday, 15 June 1968, Allied forward spotters along the eastern part of the Demilitarised Zone, a 9.6km wide strip separating North and South Vietnam, reported seeing about 30 strange slow-moving 'lights' in the night sky.

Type of Case/Report: StandardCase

Hynek Classification: CE2

Special Features/Characteristics: Military, Physical Trace

Source: AUFORN Special Report, Issue 34, April 2003


Story by Jon Wyatt

In June 1968 Australia was dismayed by the news that the guided-missile destroyer HMAS Hobart had been badly damaged by 'friendly fire' in Vietnam: Two crew died and seven were wounded during the USAF attack.

Officially, the Hobart 'Incident' occurred during a night operation against 'enemy helicopters' - but was it in reality a UFO story? The evidence is very intriguing, and to find out why let's go to the beginning.

On Friday, 15 June 1968, Allied forward spotters along the eastern part of the Demilitarised Zone, a 9.6km wide strip separating North and South Vietnam, reported seeing about 30 strange slow-moving 'lights' in the night sky. At the time the belief was these were lumbering North Vietnamese Russian-built M-14 'Hound' helicopters ferrying men and materiel over the border. After the sightings, Allied Command, fearing another Tet Offensive-style build-up, rushed more anti-aircraft guns to the border, and placed Phantom fighter-bombers at Danang Air Base on standby, and it also asked available Allied warships to patrol the DMZ coast. HMAS Hobart II one of those warships that responded. That night, the forward spotters along the eastern DMZ again reported the 'enemy helicopters' had re-appeared, and the Allied forces sprang into action. Details of the subsequent aerial 'melee' remain sketchy, but it is known several US 7th Air Force Phantom fighter-bombers soon arrived on the scene and began firing on the intruders; and were supported by anti-aircraft ground fire. During the Allied attack the 'enemy helicopters' were seen to move down the east coast and then out to the sea - and there things went terribly wrong. A US Navy Board of Inquiry, which investigated the Hobart 'incident' for the Australian government, found shortcomings of the Phantom's radar system were partly to blame: to stop big targets flooding the radarscope the radar had a cut-off mechanism, so the returns from a warship and a slow moving low flying helicopter could appear similar on-screen. After the 'lights' fled seaward, the first 'friendly fire' incident occurred shortly after midnight when the US Navy swift boat PCF-19 was sunk by three air-to-air missiles while patrolling some kilometres south of the DMZ. Five of the seven crew died (more about this later). At about 3.30am, the Hobart was patrolling (blacked-out and maintaining radio silence) near Tiger Island, about 20kms off Cap Lay, when her radar room detected a fast, in-coming aircraft. The IFF (Identication Friend of Foe) system indicated it was 'friendly' and the ship was attempting to establish further identity when a Sparrow air-to-air missile struck her amidships on the starboard (right) side. The missile penetrated the alluminum hull and exploded killing Ordinary Seaman R J Butterworth and wounding two others. While the crew was rushing to Action Stations, two more air-to-air missiles penetrated the starboard side and killed Chief Electrician Hunt and wounded several others - and narrowly missed a magazine. Hobart fired five rounds from a deckgun, but the swept-winged attacker escaped. During the DMZ 'lights' operation, the guided-missile destroyer USS Edson, the guided-missile cruiser USS Boston, the US Coast Guard cutter Point Dume, and the USS PCF-19 also came under 'friendly fire' , but fortunately without causing more casualties. Eventually, the Phantom pilots involved in the operation that night and early morning, were recalled and grounded. After daybreak, US helicopters airlifted the wounded Australian sailors to Danang and the damaged Hobart went to Subic Bay, Philippines, for repairs and was off the scene for five weeks - and that night DMZ 'lights' returned.

Whatever the 'lights' actually were remains a subject of conjecture, but it appears they were sighted for some weeks and went unchallenged. A week after the Hobart 'incident' the Melbourne Sun noted: "sightings were reported by radarmen in Quang Tri Province about five miles [eight kms] below the border zone. It was the sixth time since last Saturday that such sightings have been reported ... US command has ordered its fighter-bombers and artillery to withhold fire not wanting a repeat of the incidents in which the Allied ships were fired upon." Also adding further to the mystery, no wreckage of downed enemy choppers was found. In August 1968 the Royal Australian Navy News confirmed: "No physical evidence of helicopters destroyed has been discovered in the area of activity nor has extensive reconnaissance produced any evidence of enemy helicopter operations in or near the DMZ". In 1996 I interviewed the Hobart's skipper, the late Ken Shands, and he also said, "Neither before nor after the incident ... was there any report by any of the ships of a helicopter being there [around Tiger Island]. Now having said that, the captain of one of the American ships told me later at Subic Bay that he thought there were helicopters there, but the fact is he didn't report, and if he believed there was a helicopter ... it was his duty to report it at the time, but there was no report." So what appeared over the DMZ that sparked the mission that saw Hobart hit? The events of that night have doubtless raised much discussion - it was the RAN's costliest day of the entire war - and Australian navy history books mention 'unusual atmospheric conditions over the DMZ', 'insect swarms' or 'bird flocks' as possible sources of the sightings, but were they unidentified flying objects?

General George S Brown (1918-1978) was commander of the 7th US Air Force and deputy commander for Air Operations, Military Assistance Command Vietnam from 1968 to 1970 - and so was in command of the Phantoms involved in the snafu. In later years he rose to chair the Joint Chiefs of Staff in Washington. In 1973, he fronted a Chicago media conference held to discuss the North American UFO flap of that year, and while airing his views on UFOs at the conference he said: "I don't know whether this story has ever been told or not [but UFOs plagued us in Vietnam]. They weren't called UFOs they were called enemy helicopters, and they were only seen at night and they were only seen in certain places. They were seen up around the DMZ in the early summer of '68, and this resulted in quite a battle. And in the course of this, an Australian destroyer [Hobart] took a hit ... there was no enemy at all involved but we always reacted. Always after dark. The same thing happened up at Pleiku at the Highlands in '69".

George Filer, today Director of the Mutual UFO Network Eastern, USA, served as a USAF intelligence officer under General Brown during the Vietnam conflict, and he has also said, "In 1968, I briefed General Brown the USAF Chief of Staff most mornings on the intelligence situation in Vietnam... a lot of times we'd get UFO reports over the DMZ".

The late Bill Cooper served as a patrol-boat captain in Vietnam from 1967 to 1969, and during a talk at the 1989 Los Angeles UFO conference he said:

"After about five months I was sent up north to the DMZ, to a place called Qua Vieaf [perhaps Qua Viet] on the Tacan [sic] river .... It was while there that I discovered that there was a tremendous amount of UFO and alien activity in Vietnam. It was always reported in official messages as 'enemy helicopters'. Now any of you who know anything about the Vietnam war know that the North Vietnamese did not have any helicopters especially after our first couple of air raids into North Vietnam [during 1965]. Even if they had, they would not have been so foolish as to bring them over the DMZ, because that would have ensured their demise."

Cooper later recanted his belief in an alien presence and instead insisted UFOs are "technology originally developed by the Germans in their secret weapons programs during WW-II, by geniuses like Nikola Tesla and many others". However the mystery of 1968 DMZ 'lights' marched on, and the following is from another American patrol boat crew member.

Jim Steffes, ENC, USN Retired, served on the patrol boat PCF-12 on the night of the Hobart 'incident', and he confirms strange goings-on in the sky. In his article 'The sinking of PCF-19 as seen from PCF-12', he states the PCF-12 met the ill-fated PCF-19 at sea that night to fix the PCF-19's radar. At approximately 0030 hours the PCF-12 received a 'flash traffic' that PCF-19, the first 'friendly fire' target, had disappeared in a flash of light. The PCF-12 reached the scene as Point Dume was pulling the two badly wounded survivors aboard. As PCF-12 searched in vain for more survivors, she found she had company. As he and the crew peered into the darkness, the moon sometimes behind clouds, "we spotted two aircraft 'hovering' on our port and starboard beams. They were about 300 yards away and 100 feet above the water. As the boat swung around to put the aircraft ahead and astern of PCF-12, I could hear Mr. Snyder [the Officer In Charge] requesting air support and identification of these helos. The answer from the beach was 'no friendly aircraft in the area, have contacts near you on radar and starlight scope'. Steffes says he saw one 'helo' in the moonlight and believed "It had a rounded front like an observation helo and it looked like two crewman sitting side by side". Then, "I watched as tracers began to come toward us as this helo opened fire. The guns were from the nose of the helo. Our guns opened up and I ran back to my position as the loader on the after gun. We heard a crash of glass and a splash as one of the helos hit the water, the other helo broke contact and left the area." Steffes says for the next two and one half hours the PCF-12 played cat and mouse with one or more helos, opening fire whenever they moved in. He also observed the Point Dume firing tracers at blinking lights moving around her in the air. All the radios were crackling constantly as friendlies were checked out. "The result was no friendlies, these had to be North Vietnamese."

Then, three and a half hours later, at about 3:30am, military jets roared overhead and after they acknowledged the PCF-19's position, he soon heard explosions and gunfire to the north (the Hobart 'incident'?). "As dawn broke, we could only see the shoreline and the Point Dume." Steffes concluded: "We continued to monitor and track these 'lights' for several weeks after this up until September ... I know what the 'official story' is, but this is mine as true and complete as I can remember." Jim Steffes' story of course raise many fascinating questions including:

Did the PCF-12 crew fall victim to 'cultural tracking': aliens using their advanced technology to mimick our technology to interface with humans? If the lights were North Vietnamese observer helicopters? why did they fly around for hours with their lights on, why weren't they shot down, and why was no 'helo' wreckage ever retrieved? Many Ufologists believe alien visitors havelong been studying human wars; and this may have been the case in 1968.

Paranormal Postscript:

Hobart served out three tours of duty in Vietnam, however it seems after 1968 she had an extra crewman. A Signalman, who served on the ship during the 1990s, says that one morning at 4am when the warship was approaching Hobart, Tas., he was climbing a flex ladder to the flag deck when he felt the ladder move below him, then felt "something actually walk past/through me on the ladder". Then, when he reached the flag deck and entered the Signalmans Shelter, he sensed "someone in there with me and could hear them breathing as though they had been running or working hard".

The Signalman later learnt from the Chief Coxswain, a 15-year veteran, that "a Leading Seaman Signalman" had been killed while scaling the ladder to action stations in 1968: "Apparently, the ship took a missile hit and a piece of shrapnel took this poor man's head clean off his shoulders". During the late 1990s when the Signalman was re-posted to the ship, he sent a young sailor up the ladder to 'test the waters', and the bloke also came down shaking. The "Green Ghost", as the ship was also affectionately known, was de-commissioned in May 2000, and scuttled at Yankalilla Bay, south of Adelaide, in late 2002, where she is now a scuba-dive spot.

Main Sources:

1. Sydney Morning Herald 19 June, 1968, p. 1 and Australian 19 June, 1968, p.1

2. Melbourne Sun 24 June, 1968, p.2

3. Royal Australian Navy News, 16 August, 1968

4. Navy in Vietnam: A record of the Royal Australian Navy in the Vietnam War 1965-1973 by Denis Fairfax (Australian Government Publishing Service 1980) pps.59-60

5. Interview with Ken Shands, Anzac Day 1996, Melbourne

6. General George S Brown, USAF Chief of Staff, Department of Defense transcript of press conference in Illinois, 16 October, 1973, found at: 7"

7. 'George Filer Keeps Watching The Skies' by Michael Vitez, Philadelphia Inquirer, 20 August, 2001, found at

8. 'The Milton William Cooper Speech', 17 November, 1989, found at: 9"

9. 'MajestyTwelve' by William Cooper, 1997, found at: 10"

10. 'The Sinking of PCF-19 as seen from PCF-12' by Jim Steffes, ENC, USN Retired, found at

11. Jim Steffes' Vietnam Photo Album website found at 12"

12. Article 'Ghost At Sea' found at

Jon Wyatt is a Melbourne freelance writer and editor.



Ufos In The Dmz



RE: UFO's in the DMZ

From: Michael H

Sent: Mon 2/18/08 7:40 PM


Hello: Cosmo

I have a submission to add to your stories "UFO's in the DMZ." I was in South Vietnam in March of 1968; my Marine Corps artillery battery was deployed at the Quang Tri Combat Base, about twenty miles south of the DMZ.

Late in the day, just before sunset, we noticed three round objects to our southwest, far down the horizon. We were all trying to relax a bit before sunset and night watches started. The objects caught our attention because they moved together; when originally sighted, they appeared to be far down the horizon but moving towards us at a rate of speed that was abnormal.

Suddenly, they stopped on a dime, all three at the same time; by now over a hundred Marines on the west perimeter had seen and were watching the objects. Suddenly they accelerated and appeared to move about one quarter of the horizon distance instantly. In one place to the south, a quick accelerating blur, and they were almost due west of our position. They then moved to our right, all you could see was a blur where they had been and then they would reappear, stopping instantly. They moved back to the left (south) hovering about a minute; now, a few hundred Marines were watching all commenting there was nothing on this earth that could move that fast. Suddenly, they went straight up, only the initial blur and they were gone. Needless to say, there was quite a buzz among all the Marines who had saw the objects. They appeared completely round and were a brightish white in color.

The next morning there was a release from our battery CO stating what we had saw the night before were "weather balloons" and nothing more, No need to write home or anything else, they were not UFO's. We bought that the same as if they had told us we were not at war...

The day passed and night was again fast approaching; suddenly there was a yell "there they are again" Sure enough, the same three round objects were doing their show in the SW/western sky. It lasted about ten minutes and once again, they accelerated straight up into space, only a brief blur where they had been. The next morning the same release, weather balloons again... They never reappeared during the last month of my tour...

I rotated home at the end of the month; I never talked about the objects, who would believe me? Then in 1988 something happened that I always considered "more than chance." I was working with a "Veterans Christian Ministry" just east of Seattle, Washington my home town. I had married and returned home after the war; a local pastor from Gig Harbor, Washington had stopped by the national offices. I think his name was Rob Harper, (that might be wrong) we had gone through normal, "where were you" conversation; he had been in the Army and with myself in the Marine Corps there was little chance we would have been in the same locations. I mentioned I spent 62 days at Marine Corps Firebase Gio Linh, South Vietnam, a very heavy combat location. He stated he had been briefly there; I assumed army artillery but he said no, army intelligence. I asked him what in the world army Intel was doing at Gio Linh; he stated he was a photographer and had been sent there to photograph "Russian helicopters" moving through the DMZ at nighttime with a Marine Corps general and some of General Westmoreland's staff. Suddenly, he said "that's not true" I was there to photograph UFO's; he said the date was March 1968.

I was stunned, I told him not to say another word and I then proceeded to tell him what they looked like, where they approached from and where they went. He was at Gio Linh the second evening we saw them in response to the first night. The Marine Corps general was Lieutenant General Lewis Walt, CG of the 111 MAF. He told me he had an extremely "high powered" zoom lens; his pictures took him close enough to actually see the sides of the vehicles were some form of fabrication. After he had taken the photos, he descended the 65 foot tower he was on. General Walt ordered him to hand over his film and never speak a word of what he had seen; if he did, General Walt told him they would bury him so deep in Leavenworth he would never be heard from again.

Hundreds of Marines saw these objects from many different units. My artillery battery was Golf Battery, 3rd Battalion 12th Marine Regiment. I do not care what people think, I know what I saw those two nights and what were the odds of running into the army Intel photographer twenty years later...

Semper Fi,

Michael (aka Mike, Red, Mikie, it's your choice:>)

Former Sergeant of the Marines Michael H.
I am honored to be your Webmaster
Charlie Battery 1st Battalion 12th Marines
Golf Battery 3rd Battalion 12th Marines
RVN 1967-68

From : "Ron Hayes

Reply-To : Cosmic Connection 

Sent : Wednesday, October 27, 2004 12:56 PM

To :

Subject : viet nam ufo

2300 hours" I Corps" was the location. Sound of rushing wind in a distance. It took about 5 min. to reach or area. It rattled the cans tied in the barbwire. It was at this time that me and another Marine looked up. It was black no lights 200ft. off the ground and disk shape. It was Hugh and moving no more than 10 MPH. It took about a min. for it to completely cross over. We were in a free fire zone but no one fired a round. It was also reported a the other end of our perimeter by two other Marines.

Ron Hayes

My name is DeLano.

I was the artillery spotter on Strongpoint ALFA-ONE during the
month of June 1968 when the UFO incident transpired.

We were shelling the sampans in the mouth of the Ben Hai River
when we noticed the hovering lights through our Night Observation
Device (Large, classified "Starlight" scope). We radioed 9th Marines
to clear all aircraft from the area. We were informed that there
were no friendly aircraft in the area. Calls to radar at Gio Linh (ALFA-TWO)
verified the existence of aircraft in the area.

ALFA-ONE was three kilometers south of the DMZ and three kilometers
west of the South China Sea. The hill was just over 90 feet high and
was the prominent terrain feature in the area.

Anyway, the lights (not aircraft, per se) were spotted over many
sensitive areas. They appeared to be doing reconnaissance as at
least once we noticed what appeared to be high-speed strobe
lights of the type used for photo-reconnaissance being used. In another
incident an M42 "duster" opened up at point-blank range from C-1 and
was unable to engage the aircraft. The duster is two WWII pom-pom 40mm
guns mounted on a track and armed with proximity fuzes. At 240 rounds
per minute, no helicopter could possibly survive that onslaught.

My personal opinion is that they were Red Chinese recon craft. We had
just handed the NVA their rear ends during the first five months of
the year. After action reports from the 1/40 Field artillery indicate
some 6000 enemy kills during this period in this area. This was the
AO of the 2nd ARVN Infantry Regiment of the 1st INF, under the
command of LTC VU VAN GIAI.

The aircraft which holed the HMAS HOBART was USAF. Same thing with
the PCF19 incident. We had the pilot on Fox/Mike and we heard him say
he was about to engage immediately before the explosion of the swiftboat.

There was a lot of stupid crap going on with wild claims made by ARVN
generals. NO aircraft or UFO's were ever shot down.

If you want a TV show, here's a good one for you. A US soldier, David
Lemcke, was killed on A-1 a few weeks before these incidents. Because
of the furor that erupted over the UFO's, his remains were never
recovered. The remains are STILL THERE, waiting to be recovered.
      ---                      ---                       ---                          ---                          ---                      ---
Incidentally, to this UFO thing, there is the story of David Lemcke, who was killed there and whose remains have never  been recovered. Today, while doing some genealogical research, I discovered a distant cousin was married to a Lemcke from the
same home town (Hilton, NY). I call that a real coincidence,  practically amazing.

I probably have a better grasp of the DMZ situation of that time, as I was in that area for about four years between 1967-1972 when the NVA launched their Easter offensive and I managed the Counterbattery Intel Center at 108th Group until they departed the area (70-71)  I'd say my credibility is still intact, as I am considered to be conservative and (relatively) normal. I'm married 31 years, six grown kids and a bunch of grandkids. No criminal or mental record. I did return to Vietnam once, in 1990.   It is my intention to attempt the recovery of Lemcke's remains, whenever I get a realistic chance. I was unable to visit the site in 1990, but the political situation has changed dramatically since then.

My name is Larry

Date: March 1967

I was a Marine during the Viet Nam war period attached to 1ST Marine Division Force Logistics Command. My duty station station was a place called Red Beach. It was a huge supply base for the I-Corp area, just a few klicks from Da Nang. There was a Motor-T battalion and a 155 Howitzer firebase both north and south of Red Beach. There was a chain link fence perimeter with heavily sand bagged bunkers with concertina wire in front with beau-cau antipersonnel defenses. The mouth of the A-Sha valley was just outside the south end of the base..It was heavily guarded 24/7. We would load all kinds of supplies on choppers and trucks during the day and at night go hunting "Charlie". Hunting "Charlie" was done at night usually by leaving the relative safety of the base, marching to some pre-determined longitude and latitude on a field map and setting up an ambush. We all took our turn hunting "Charlie".

ON one night during the Tet offensive a small group of Marines went through the base gate and marched into the jungle approximately 3 clicks to a point where two of the uncounted trails known as the Ho Chi Minh Trail crossed and set up our ambush waiting through the long hot jungle night for "Charlie" to come walking down the trail. It was hot enough you could hear yourself sweat.

The night passed uneventful. WE knew there was enemy activity in the area but "Charlie" probably went in another direction that night. We broke ambush early am and had marched back down the trail and had just entered a clearing when suddenly up in the sky just above the jungle canopy and slightly behind us there it was the U.F.O. visible for a short time. Apparently "Charlie" saw it to and opened fire with r.p.g.s. rocket propelled grenades and small arms fire with no effect on the U.F.O. We did not fire but only watched as it hovered over us for maybe 5 minutes then seemed to drift sideways and as suddenly as it had appeared it was gone. We started marching again toward Red Beach. Nobody said anything but the Captain told us to forget about it. We got back to base without incident but to this day can still see it and so can the rest of us.

A Veteran Larry

From : "Ron Hayes

Reply-To : Cosmic Connection 

Sent : Wednesday, October 27, 2004 12:56 PM

To :

Subject : viet nam ufo

2300 hours" I Corps" was the location. Sound of rushing wind in a distance. It took about 5 min. to reach or area. It rattled the cans tied in the barbwire. It was at this time that me and another Marine looked up. It was black no lights 200ft. off the ground and disk shape. It was Hugh and moving no more than 10 MPH. It took about a min. for it to completely cross over. We were in a free fire zone but no one fired a round. It was also reported a the other end of our perimeter by two other Marines.

Ron Hayes

HANOI (Reuters) - Unidentified Flying Object explodes in mid-air over a southern Vietnamese island.

Going back to Vietnam Nov 70 Dec 71 V. Banting

Reference Maps of Vietnam

The Sounds Of Vietnam


Mekong a 'treasure trove' of 1,000 newly discovered speciesBy Ashley FantzCNN

(CNN) -- A rat believed to be extinct for 11 million years, a spider with a foot-long legspan, and a hot pink cyanide-producing "dragon millipede" are among the thousand newly discovered species in the largely unexplored Mekong Delta region.

The region, including parts of Vietnam and five other countries, is home to 1,068 species found between 1997 and 2007, according to a World Wildlife Fund report released this week. Some of the creatures were not lurking in fertile floodplains or tropical foliage.

A scientist visiting an outdoor restaurant was startled to see a Laotian rock rat among the nearby wildlife. The hairy, nocturnal, thick-tailed rat, which resembles a squirrel, had been thought for centuries to be extinct.

"There is a certain amount of shock because our scientists will sometimes see something that doesn't fit anything they know," said Dekila Chungyalpa, Director of the Fund's Mekong Program. "They run through a catalogue of wildlife in their brain, asking themselves, 'Have I seen this?'"

Perhaps a more startling discovery than the rat was a bright green pit viper scientists spotted slithering through the rafters of a restaurant in Khao Yai National Park in Thailand.

The Fund dubbed the Mekong a "biological treasure trove." The organization's report "First Contact in the Greater Mekong" says 519 plants, 279 fish, 88 frogs, 88 spiders, 46 lizards, 22 snakes, 15 mammals, four birds, four turtles, two salamanders and a toad were found.  Scientists are still trying to determine if they have uncovered thousands of new invertebrate species.  Scientists are discovering new species at a rate of two per week, said Chungyalpa, who said the reason for publishing the report now was twofold.

"We realized that we should highlight these discoveries in part because of the legacy of war and conflict in the region," she said. "There's an urgency with the threat of development in the Mekong countries."  A horned bovine found in 1991 living in the evergreen forests of the Annamite Mountains of Laos and Vietnam has not been found in recent years, she said.

Timber development and mining industries are encroaching. There are 150 large hydropower dams that have been constructed along the Mekong river, and another 150 are slated to be built, according to the Fund. Dams that can trap and kill fish are at different stages of planning in the Greater Mekong.

High variation in geography and climate zones that enabled species to flourish are now jeopardized by climate change, said Chungyalpa.

War is always a threat in countries touched by the Mekong River, particularly Burma. Also known as Myanmar, the largest country by geographical area in mainland Southeast Asia has been ravaged over the years by conflict, political instability and natural disaster.

This summer, for example, the United Nations reported that as many as 100,000 people were killed by a cyclone that hit Myanmar. The country's ruling military junta blocked the outside world for weeks before allowing aid to flow into the region.

There are cultural obstacles to protecting rare species, too. Many restaurants serve them as food. Restaurants often have rickety bamboo floors that one can look through to see cages filled with exotic animals, Chungyalpa says. The more exotic the animal, the more status it often bestows on the person who consumes it.

"Reports [like the WWF's] are important because these regions can be educated," said Maureen Aung-Thwin, the director of The Burma Project, which is funded by the George Soros Foundation and supports local Indonesian organizations working toward an open society.

"People are taking climate change more seriously and even the ruling junta have a forestry NGO. There are glimpses of hope," said Aung-Thwin. "But it's also a situation where someone could step forward and say 'We don't need this' and cut it all down."

WWF said it is working with governments and industry to plan the conservation of more than 231,000 square miles of forest and freshwater habitats that cross borders with all countries in the Greater Mekong.

The Great Helicopter Mystery

Friday, Jun. 28, 1968

The news that South Vietnamese officials flashed from I Corps last week was nothing less than astonishing: swarms of North Vietnamese helicopters had been sighted in the Demilitarized Zone, they claimed, and more than a dozen had been brought down by allied fire. Thus began the Great Helicopter Mystery.

Beginning two weeks ago and lasting for several nights, allied counter-mortar radar along the eastern edge of the DMZ, where the zone is bordered by the South China Sea, had indeed showed blips that looked like slow-moving, low-flying aircraft—like helicopters. American artillerymen had also reported sighting a series of strange moving lights near the Ben Hai River, the dividing line between North and South Viet Nam. Artillery and aircraft promptly opened fire on the targets and the blips disappeared.

No visual sightings of helicopters were made, and reconnaissance planes found no wreckage. But at about the same time as the U.S. response, several strange things happened. A U.S. Navy patrol boat was sunk off the DMZ by unidentified fire, the nearby Australian destroyer H.M.S. Hobart was holed in at least 200 places by what turned out to be three U.S. air-to-air Sparrow missiles, and three other vessels, including the cruiser U.S.S. Boston, reported that they had been fired on.

Opinion as to what had happened seesawed. Some officers thought it "highly probable" that a misreading of radar signals—images that looked like slow-moving helicopters but were really friendly vessels patrolling offshore—caused the allies to fire on their own ships. At week's end, while a special board of inquiry tried to fathom the mystery, U.S. officials in Saigon allowed that North Vietnamese helicopters might indeed have been in action in the DMZ. Whether or not they have come that far south, big Russian-built helicopters are now a standard part of North Viet Nam's much-improved weaponry.

The ABOVE from Time Life story has a broken link.  It has been posted here for informational purposes only.

South Vietnam Unidentified

PLIEKU -- In the spring of 1969, I was 20 years old and in the U.S. Army stationed in Plieku, South Vietnam. I was in the 62nd Maintenance Battalion working in the security platoon. Guard duty was my main job.

On this day, I started the second shift at 3 PM and was scheduled to work until midnight. The temperature was around 75 degrees. I was on a SSE guard tower overlooking a 100 yards perimeter. Rows of razor wire extended 300 feet and the perimeter was surrounded by miles of rice paddies. At 6 PM, I had been on tower guard for about three hours, when an unidentified glowing object caught my eye over rice paddies a couple miles out. I observed the yellowish glowing object for about five minutes, and I felt like this object was communicating with me by putting calming thoughts into my head. At this time, I had no fear of the object. It was hovering two to three feet off of the ridgeline near the rice paddies.

It made no sound, and I had a thought that this strange object was going to move directly in front of me. No sooner than I had this thought, the strange object flew from the rice paddies to directly in front of my location, some 300 feet from my guard tower. Now it was hovering just above two light poles. Whatever the object was, it moved with incredible speed. In just a split second, it had traveled three miles to my location. I was stunned by the speed, but I still had no fear of it.

Now I could see this cloaked cloud had what seemed to have a dirty mist surrounding it as this cloaking got thicker surrounding the object. The glowing was coming from inside of the cloud. After a minute or so, the mist surrounding the object was growing really thick and suddenly there were three or four silver colored orbs out in the perimeter. They were the size of a medicine ball and were just floating in the air at different heights from the ground and different locations from the razor wire. Still I heard no noise and as suddenly as the orbs appeared, they simply disappeared.
I observed this strange object for a few more minutes and suddenly it was gone. It just disappeared from sight. This sighting took place over an eight to ten minute period of time. I did manage to take a photograph of the object while it hovered above the light pole.

NOTE: The witness took the photo from a "30 foot gun tower" while on guard duty. He always carried a camera with him. He did not report the incident nor did he discuss it with anyone in his Battalion.

The witness showed this picture to a "UFO expert" that he had heard on a radio show around 1985. He signed a release statement and the UFO investigator sent the photo to the Jet Propulsion Lab (JPL) in Pasadena, CA. Two months later the witness received the photo back and a typewritten report. The report said that the object was "unidentified and was a genuine UFO." The witness moved to Florida and his house was burglarized and the JPL report was taken among other belongings. Thanks to William Puckett, Director