Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Lucifer's Technologies: The Invisible Man

So much of the technology we take for granted today - the technology that has revolutionized every field of human endeavor - emerged from Bell Laboratories (later known as Lucent Technologies) in the quarter-century following World War II. Bell Labs was a division of AT&T, on whose Board of Directors the estimable Vannevar Bush sat, starting in 1947. 

The breakthroughs would come fast and furious as soon as Bush joined the telecommunications giant; the transistor, the laser, digital encoding and so much more. Under Bush, AT&T would also take charge of America's nuclear arsenal through its Sandia National Laboratory subsidiary.

Given that Bush had often found himself at odds with President Truman (and indeed the Washington bureaucracy itself), what might have he done to achieve such enormous leverage and influence?

Documents found in the early 80s claimed he was part of a secret UFO study group called Majestic 12, but those documents were attacked by many within and without the UFOlogy community.
 But as it happens, there was another memo, declassified a few years before the MJ12 documents were discovered that also linked Bush to the study of UFO technology. 

That memo - and the man who wrote it - would blow this story wide open once again.

"The Majestic 12 Memos" might be highly controversial but one memo linking the legendary Vannevar Bush to the research of "alien technology" is known to be authentic, the so-called Smith Memo, a top secret document written by Wilbert Smith, an senior engineer in the Department of Transport (later the Department of Communications) to the Canadian Government. It was declassified in 1979.

Smith later received clearance to initiate his own study project, Project Magnet, which would act as Canada's official study of UFO technology.

“At the time when the flying saucers first captured public attention the writer was engaged in a part-time investigation of the behavior of electro-magnetic fields, and it seemed just possible that, if the saucers actually were space ships, they might be using the very magnetic principles being studied. Authority was requested and obtained to set up a classified project with the Department of Transport to pursue this matter further.” 

Smith would dive deep into the rabbit hole from there,  eventually falling in with a group that claimed to be in contact with an alien race called 'Affa', primarily through a medium named Frances Swan, who lived on the southwestern coast of Maine.

And yet again, we encounter those mysterious alien satellites: 

Mrs. Swan began receiving messages in April 1954 from a group of aliens who claimed they were orbiting the earth in two large satellites. 
There were a series of other people who were receiving messages from AFFA in this 1950s time period. Included in the list was Smith himself, who received messages from AFFA through a couple different methods such as radio.  
This wasn't just any old channeling cult, however. Its origin story lines right up with our overall narrative, of nuclear testing and technology. And AFFA, and Swan herself, made some very powerful connections in Washington:
These aliens told Mrs. Swan that they had a base on the moon, and that they were here to warn against many earthly pursuits such as the development of atomic weapons. These messages continued for decades, and drew the interest of the FBI, Navy Intelligence, and the CIA.
Smith took the information he received from Swan - or Affa, if you prefer - very seriously. Nuclear testing was of particular concern because of "binding force," which was said to hold matter together. Today we refer to this force as the "Higgs Boson." 

Apparently Smith was able to apply the principles Swan was dictating into what he called a "binding meter." But when things didn't go so well when he explained to his superiors in the Canadian government where he got the idea:

He recommended to the government that further investigation be conducted, but because he had obtained his information from alleged extraterrestrial beings that channeled it through Francis Swan, he was unable to obtain official recognition for his work. 
How exactly did Smith meet Swan and how exactly did an apparent kook like her come to the attention of intelligence agencies in Washington? 

Well, as it happens there's a common denominator there:
Q:  I have been told by a mutual friend that in 1952 you showed Admiral Knowles a piece of a flying saucer. Is that statement correct, sir? 
A:  Yes.  It is correct. I visited with Admiral Knowles and I had with me a piece which had been shot from a small flying saucer near Washington in July of that year -- 1952.  I showed it to the Admiral. It was a piece of metal about twice the size of your thumb which had been loaned to me for a very short time by your Air Force.


Rear Admiral Herbert Bain Knowles (no relation) was a career Naval officer with a long and distinguished service record, particularly as a combat officer in World War II.
1941 - Commander, USS Heywood a Heywood-class attack transport acquired by the U.S. Navy for service as a troop carrier just prior to World War II. She served in the Pacific War, a very dangerous area in the early years of the war, and safely returned home post-war with seven battle stars to her credit. 
1942 - Knowles was promoted to Captain 
1943-1945 -  Commanded Transport Division 18, Transport Squadron 12, and Transport Division 34 
1945-1946 - Assistant Chief of Staff for Operations, First Naval District, Boston, Mass.

Given Knowles' later activities, it's quite possible he was involved with this project:

The Joint Intelligence Objectives Agency (JIOA) was the organization directly responsible for Operation Paperclip, an OSS program for capturing and taking Nazi German scientists to the United States at the end of the Second World War. 
The JIOA was established in 1945, as a subcommittee of the Joint Intelligence Committee (JIC) of the Joint Chiefs of Staff of the United States Armed Forces. The JIOA comprised one representative from each member agency of the JIC, and an operational staff of military intelligence officers from each military service.
Indeed, Knowles was stationed in Boston when Wernher Von Braun and his Peenemunde crew were being smuggled into Boston Harbor and encamped at Fort Strong, which was on (Massachusetts') Long Island, which is off the coast of Wollaston (aka Mount Dagon).

Either way, Knowles would retire from the Navy in 1947. I'm not actually sure if "retired" is the correct word for it though, as we'll soon see.

Knowles lived in an interesting neighborhood, and had an uncanny knack of attracting notable personalities from the UFO circuit. 

Following his meeting with Smith, the Admiral's neighbor, Frances Swan, claimed to have encountered an alleged alien. She then began receiving alien transmissions through automatic writing.
Admiral Knowles would become the person who would take Mrs. Swan’s descriptions of alien contact, that began the following year after Smith had showed him the supposed saucer fragment, very seriously. A neighbor, Mrs. Swan would visit the Knowles home in May 1953, as she revealed how an alien named Affa had advised her to contact the U.S. Navy...
Knowles spent the war in the thick of combat

The Admiral was no starry-eyed naif; he was a career military man who pulled some serious duty in the Big One as commander of an amphibious troop transport vessel, one of the most dangerous posts in the fleet. 

So he reportedly put Swan through her paces. As researcher Grant Cameron wrote:
(A) series of sessions with Knowles and Swan began where long question and answer sessions took place. Meanwhile, Knowles was sending his discoveries to both the White House and Navy Intelligence. 
Indeed, Knowles apparently took Swan seriously enough to contact the head of Naval Intelligence, who himself took the situation seriously enough to open an investigation into the matter. 
 The Director of Naval Intelligence Admiral Espy sent Captain John R. Bromley and Captain Harry W. Baltazzi to Maine to investigate Swan and watch the conversations with AFFA. During their session they asked for AFFA to show himself and the reply came back “This would not be possible at this time.” The two investigators returned to Washington.
It was during these investigations that the Admiral contacted Smith and had him sit in on the interviews with Swan: 
More investigators from Naval Intelligence came to see Mrs. Swan in 1954. One visit was made by John Hutson, from the Bureau of Aeronautics, who was “unofficially involved” in the case. 
He, Knowles, and Wilbert Smith from the Canadian government had a meeting with Swan on July 24, 1954. Hutson was there three days investigating and asking AFFA questions.
What captured the agents' interest was that Swan was able to answer questions she shouldn't have known the answers to, questions dealing with topics like astronomy:
The Navy intelligence men posed questions incompatible with her education of technical understanding- questions like “What is the length of the Uranus ‘ day?” and “What is the distance between Jupiter and the sun at Jupiter’s apogy?”  
“Her” answers were correct, the two incredulous investigators later reported to Friend. 
Swan often mentioned that the information would be preceded by a painful buzzing in her ear, which the agents in the room could actually hear.
It's a this point we should mention that there was a great deal of speculation in the early 70s around the fact that Andrija Puharich, who was Uri Geller's handler, was known for his work on hearing aids.

Some skeptics believed that he was using micro-miniaturized radio devices with his psychics (like Geller) to feed information and answers to questions such as those Swan seemed able to answer. However, there's no evidence that such technology actually existed in the early 50s. 

Or did it? 


Another Knowles enters the picture here, Hugh Knowles, (no relation) pioneer of the modern hearing aid.  

Knowles got his start designing loudspeakers for, you guessed it, the US Navy, during World War II. His company also introduced the first transistor based miniature microphone (the website claims in 1947, before the transistor was announced) and later did the same for hearing aids- in 1954. Yes, the same year that Frances Swan was hearing from 'Affa'.

This Knowles outfit seemed to specialize not only in hearing aids but in miniature sound equipment in general. Their equipment was used to amplify Neil Armstrong's voice from "Apollo 11," yet this is a company few have heard of. Knowles mics would even arise during the Watergate tapes scandal.

The fascinating thing is that even as late as 1994, this kind of implant that might have been used on Swan would still not be on the market. Chris Carter used a similar device as in the X-Files episode "Duane Barry," but admitted in 2005 that:
We really never tried to stretch the truth in terms of technology on The X-Files. We tried to keep it as believable as possible with its science and technology but the truth is this ear implant did not exist at the time, I think something like it exists now, but people were talking about it, but you could actually not hide or conceal something that would transmit like this at the time, but no one seemed to question it. 
Seeing that Carter had extensive contacts with the FBI and CIA, you can believe that if this technology was available then it was very highly classified.

Given that Frances Swan would eventually be filed in the crank folder, one can't help but wonder at the coincidence. 

Was the Admiral using Swan as a test case for secret technology -  two-way micro-miniaturized communication devices - equipment so advanced it wouldn't see the light of day for decades after?

Technology that is obviously of the same mysterious provenance as the silicon transistor itself (all the more so if Knowles Corp was indeed using transistors in 1947, before they were even brought to market, or before they ostensibly had much power to speak of, either)?

If so, why go to all the bother? 

Very little seemed to come of all this, even at the time. Swan is recorded today as one of UFOlogy's more "obscure" contactees. It very much reminds me of how The Nine stayed ostensibly dormant for 20-odd years, published a book or two and then receded back in the shadows. Which may indeed be significant in this case.

The Knowles/Knowles name game is amusing, but the Knowles Corporation was/is well-connected to the Cryptocracy, and both gentlemen were engineers with Navy connections, connections that would land them right at the feet of Vannevar Bush.

The evidence here is admittedly circumstantial.  However, it seems, given the testimony from the intelligence agents, that she had indeed been implanted with some kind of receiver/transmitter, since she not only reported hearing sounds but recorded "Affa's" messages through what she said was "automatic writing."

This sounds as if this device may have been sending some kind of subsonic or subliminal signal or even actually manipulating her neurology. Disturbing. 

What's more, she was able to respond to questions as well, so this was not a simple hearing aid (even a state of the art model in 1954 would have been easily detected by the agents anyway). Note again that Knowles Corp would become a leader in miniaturized microphones.
Swan's experience sounds very much like responses you read about to implants in abduction lore (or in Philip K. Dick's journals). The question becomes then who was sending these signals into Frances Swan's head? Was she just another Adamski-type "contactee," set up to lure the curious (Wilbert Smith, in this case) away from serious inquiry into the UFO issue?

Or was she indeed being used to field test some very, very advanced technology, and do so in a way that could be easily dismissed as mere crankery, if not ignored outright?

If so, then, for whom

Again, if this were some kind of implant, it's technology that wouldn't see the light of day for another five decades. That's the span of two careers for an intelligence agent, a species not noted for their saintly patience or forbearance.  

But apparently Affa was willing to work with other "channels" than Swan. 

This is a game of telephone here; Stanton Friedman quoting Jacques Vallee quoting Allen Hynek quoting an Air Force report, written by Major Robert Friend, but it seems to be an accurate telling of the event in question:
Three days prior to the July 9 meeting, Naval Intelligence officer Commander Larsen had discussed the Frances Swan/Naval Intelligence contact experiment of August 1954 with Lundahl and CIA officer Neosham, at the CIA. They encouraged Commander Larsen to repeat the experiment, and this time he was successful.

He received a message from Affa, who instructed the three to look out the CIA window. All three men observed a circular object with a darker center and lighter outer rim.
Neosham phoned theWashington airport radar and was informed that “electromagnetic signals were unaccountably ‘blocked’ in the direction in question. 
The story of the contact experiments was told by Friend himself in 1979. He recounted how one of the agents who had met with Swan had himself gone into a genuine trance state:
 “I saw it,” Friend told SECOND LOOK.  “There was no doubt about that in my mind. I could see his pulse quicken. I could see his Adam’s apple moving up and down rapidly. His handwriting was entirely different from his normal handwriting. The muscles in his torso did not appeared to be strained, but the muscles in his arms were obviously stressed – as were the muscles around his neck – especially in his neck.” 
Which is interesting in and of itself. But what is really interesting is where Friend went after he left the Air Force.
Friend is a credible source. He is now assistant director of engineering for Fairchild Stratos, a division of the Fairchild Industries, primary manufacturers of cryogenic releases for the space shuttle. 
Fairchild. Well, here we are back once again in Vannevar Bush's sandbox.

Fairchild was, as we saw, the ultimate result of the "Traitorous Eight," the hand-picked engineers that would leave William Shockley's own start-up and strike out on their own.  We saw how Shockley seemed to leapfrog over more talented engineers to get credit for the transistor. Was it because he got on Vannevar Bush's good side during WWII?
During World War II, on leave of absence from Bell, (Shockley) developed operations research techniques for the Navy's Anti-Submarine Warfare Operations Research Group (ASWORG) and worked as an expert consultant for the Office of the Secretary of War. 
Submarines were a bit of a passion project for Vannevar Bush. They were how he made his bones:
Bush had an idea for a device that would use magnetic fields to detect submarines. In May 1917, he traveled to Washington to meet with the director of the NRC. The director liked Bush's idea and thought it was worth pursuing. His device proved to be successful in testing, but Navy officials, who generally viewed Bush as somewhat of a maverick, did not deploy the device correctly and it proved virtually useless in combat.  

Submarines would become a priority for Bush again in World War II:
The NDRC and then the OSRD were originally set up to support and augment Army and Navy research, but by the end of the war the OSRD was leading military research. Many useful innovations resulted from OSRD research and development including improvements in radar, the proximity fuse, anti-submarine tactics, and various secret devices for the OSS (the precursor of the CIA).
We saw that Claude Shannon, codebreaker and the father of the Digital Age, was Vannevar Bush's golden boy, his lab assistant and protege and later his star employee at Bell Labs. 

I'm not sure why all the stories on him make such a big deal of this, but Shannon would famously trade ideas with his British counterpart Alan Turing, best known for breaking the German Enigma code, which was in fact their submarine code. 

Submarines again.

So we have this tidy circle with Vannevar Bush (often credited as the ultimate creator of the World Wide Web, among countless other achievements), William Shockley (credited with the creation of the transistor) and Claude Shannon (creator of Information Theory and binary code), all firmly ensconced at Bell Labs, and all having some kind of connection to submarines. 

But we also have all this strangeness with UFOs and Roswell and the occult ritualism all the rest of it.

What could be the possible connector here? 

What would link these all of these opposing worlds in a tangible way, so this wouldn't be just another conspiracy runaround?

Let me remind you again how Vannevar Bush - who is widely claimed to have been the man in charge of the scientific study of UFOs - began his career.
 Bush studied under Arthur E. Kennelly and conducted submarine-detection research for the US Navy during World War I.
From Stanton Friedman's book Captured: The Betty and Barney Hill UFO Experience, which devotes an entire chapter to Rear Admiral Herbert Knowles... 
...Knowles had retired from an outstanding career in the military. Born in Maine in 1894, he graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1917, as an ensign. He served in the submarine service during World War I, aboard the early R-boats in the Orient. 
After the war, he taught at the Naval Academy in the engineering department. 
During World War II, he commanded several submarines before taking command of The USS Neches and the USS Heywood, troop transport ships.

I'm going to go out on a limb here: Knowles looks EXACTLY like the kind of an officer that Vannevar Bush would have some kind of working relationship with. Perhaps even a longtime working relationship with.

Not only did he teach engineering at Annapolis, Knowles assumed his first command at the age of 28, so this wasn't some lifer who just kept getting kicked upstairs. This was a highly-accomplished military officer.
Not only did Knowles find himself with a neighbor who 'channeled aliens', he lived just a short drive from history's most famous 'alien abductees', Betty and Barney Hill. They too would be pulled into Knowles' orbit. A strange attractor, indeed.

As you see from that map, the Admiral is at the epicenter of all kinds of high strangeness, particularly - and rather curiously - events in the 1960s. Note that Hillary Clinton made her notorious announcement on UFOs in Conway, NH, which lies within this strange radius.

Does she know something the rest of us don't?

The Admiral wanted to introduce the Hills to Frances Swan but the psychic refused, claiming the Hills had been in contact with "evil" aliens, meaning the Greys.  

Undaunted, Knowles and his wife would introduce the Hills to other contactees and occultists, which the younger couple found disorienting.
This was also Betty’s first introduction to the contactee movement, but over time she met numerous individuals who described beautiful people dressed in long, flowing robes with blond hair and blue eyes who delivered Biblical messages of being chosen and blessed.

She wrote: "In going into their personal backgrounds, I found that all of them have been involved in psychic phenomena! They are involved in ESP experiments, dream interpretations, astral projection, meditation, mind control, and the spirit world."  
Indeed, as with Wilbert Smith, the Admiral seemed to steer the Hills away from a relatively conventional view of the UFO phenomenon and towards the far fringes of Space Brothers and Spiritualism.
So how do we account for a serious military man keeping such strange company? 

Think about it: This is a retired Rear Admiral, a man who'd been in command since the 1920s. This isn't Richard Doty we're talking about. 

A man with such a history didn't need to be running scams for Naval Intelligence or Vannevar Bush, not at his age or with his military record. God knows what he was up to, but it was serious business. And he was by no means alone.

And here we get to the crux of the issue.  

The war had a powerful effect on a lot people and a career military man like Knowles, who took part in some of the worst fighting in the Pacific Theater. But so did the "foo fighter" phenomenon, which was a lot more serious and widespread than many histories might lead you to believe. It also involved more than small orbs of light, it also involved giant objects that often dwarfed the largest bomber planes...........

The Admiral may well have also fallen under the influence another legendary warrior. Indeed, Knowles would seem to have met his counterpart- a career military man and engineer who was also given command at an early age.

From a must-read story at EsoterX:
Air Marshal Sir Robert Victor Goddard (1897-1987) began his military career as a midshipman in the United Kingdom’s Royal Navy during the first years of World War I, but by 1915 he joined the Royal Naval Air Service, where he was hunting submarines from dirigibles and flying reconnaissance over the Somme. Given the dubious airworthiness of most flying things at the turn of the 20th Century, it’s safe to say Sir Victor was a brave dude.

Smart as a whip, too, so much so that the military sent him to Cambridge to get a degree in engineering. By 1929 he was leading a bomber squadron in Iraq, returned to England to teach aeronautical engineering, and was then appointed deputy director of intelligence at the Air Ministry until the outbreak of the Second World War.
His resume just gets more impressive from there including Air Commodore Chief of the Air Staff, Royal New Zealand Air Force (1941), Air Commander of the RAF South East Asia Command (1943), and RAF Representative in Washington (1946).
But that's just the beginning of this man's service:
In September 1941, shortly before the Attack on Pearl Harbor, he was appointed as Air Commodore Chief of the Air Staff, Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF). 
As commander of the RNZAF in the South Pacific, and the only British commander in the region he was prominent in the operations against the Japanese initial advance. Under Admiral Halsey, US Navy, he commanded the RNZAF in the Battle of Guadalcanal and the Solomon Islands campaigns, for which he was awarded the American Navy Distinguished Service Medal.
Which means he was in the same theater at the same time as Herbert Knowles. 

Now read this, from another must-read post, this time from Rune Soup:
"[W]hile it may be that some operators of UFO are normally paraphysical denizens of a planet other than Earth, there is no logical need for this to be so. For, if the materiality of UFO is paraphysical (and consequently normally invisible), UFO could more plausibly be creations of an invisible world coincident with the space of our physical Earth planet than creations in the paraphysical realms of any other physical planet in the solar system… 
"Given that real UFO are paraphysical, capable of reflecting light like ghosts; and given also that (according to many observers) they remain visible as they change position at ultrahigh speeds from one point to the another, it follows that those that remain visible in transition do not dematerialise for that swift transition, and therefore their mass must be of a diaphanous nature, and their substance relatively etheric… The observed validity of this supports the paraphysical assertion and makes the likelihood of UFO being Earth-created greater than the likelihood of their creation on another planet… "
Is this from a John Keel or Jacques Vallee lecture? No, it's from a speech given in 1969 by Air Marshall Victor Goddard. Read on, since we go from Keel and Vallee to Saint Augustine himself...
"The astral world of illusion, which (on physical evidence) is greatly inhabited by illusion-prone spirits, is well known for its multifarious imaginative activities and exhortations. Seemingly some of its denizens are eager to exemplify principalities and powers. Others pronounce upon morality, spirituality, Deity, etc." 
And here, our money quote:
"All of these astral exponents who invoke human consciousness may be sincere, but many of their theses may be framed to propagate some special phantasm, perhaps of an earlier incarnation, or to indulge an inveterate and continuing technological urge toward materialistic progress, or simply to astonish and disturb the gullible for the devil of it."
"Indulge an inveterate and continuing technological urge toward materialistic progress."

Astonishing. Should I just end this all here?

Given that Goddard and Knowles both served in combat for the US Navy in the Solomon Islands and Guadalcanal campaigns, and both would come to hold unorthodox views on UFOs, it seems certain these two warriors may indeed have come to a meeting of the minds. 

And what's more, Knowles may well have been involved with some other old friends of ours.

If Maine, UFOs, psychic phenomena, the spirit world and high society are ringing all kinds of bells in your head, you're not alone. I can't imagine that wealthy neo-Theosophist UFO cultists were all that big a group in Southern Maine in the early 50s. I'm sure the Admiral and his wife bumped into the folks at the Round Table Foundation at a luncheon or two.

You might be familiar with this story, written by Andrija Puharich in his book Uri:

On December 31, 1952, Dr. Vinod and I took a plane from New York to Maine. We landed in Augusta at 7:30 P.M., and Hank Jackson, the administrator of the laboratory, the Round Table Foundation, was there to meet us. 
Dr. Vinod found his way to the library and sat down on a sofa. Hank and I followed him. We realized that he had gone into a trance. We sat opposite him, waiting expectantly...There was the hushed silence of expectancy as Hank and I watched our entranced sage.

Then, at exactly 9 P.M., a deep sonorous voice came out of Dr. Vinod’s mouth, totally unlike his own high-pitched, soft voice, saying in perfect English without an accent: 
"We are Nine Principles and Forces, personalities if working in complete mutual implication. We are forces, and the nature of our work is to accentuate the positive, the evolutional, and the teleological aspects of existence. 
"We propose to work with you in some essential respects with the relation of contradiction and contrariety. We shall negate and revise part of your work, by which I mean the work as presented by you. The point is that we want to begin altogether at a different dimension, though it is true that your work has itself led up to this." 
You may know about the people who were at this seance and the connections they have to Bell Helicopter, entheogens, the Kennedy Assassination and all the rest of it. But did you ever wonder why they met in Glen Cove, the absolute middle of nowhere, in the dead of winter, no less?

Given the fact that Glen Cove is just an hour away from Admiral Herbert Knowles' hometown, and given his known associations with Frances Swan and Affa, Wilbert Smith, and now the Hill Abduction,  I'd bet the farm that the "Round Table Association" met at the Knowles' summer house.