27 June 2012


Richard M. Dolan and Bryce Zabel. A.D. After Disclosure. New Page Books, 2012.

The authors make it plain that the nature of this book is speculative, but they assert that their speculations are informed by "solid research". They also state: "It is not hard to see why the world's top power brokers would want to conceal the reality of something as monumental as UFOs."
They thus constantly emphasise the claim often made and stoutly defended by Stanton Friedman that it is perfectly possible for there to be a world-wide conspiracy of powerful people, which they refer to as "The Breakaway Group", who can keep the proof of UFO reality secret indefinitely. They even repeat the old argument that the development of the atomic bomb (the Manhattan Project) was successfully kept secret for as long as was necessary, but they of course fail to mention that those in charge had control of the project, whereas UFOs can appear anywhere, at any time, unpredictably.

Their research seems to have consisted mainly of reading about some well-publicised UFO reports and ignoring the findings of investigators who have provided the true or possible explanations for them. For example, they mention the Phoenix Lights of 1997 and say that they "defied easy explanation". Anyone who has bothered to read the literature on this case knows that the first formation of lights was identified as aircraft by amateur astronomer Mitch Stanley, who observed them through his telescope. There was a later sighting of flares dropped from aircraft. Of course, the believers ignore Mitch Stanley. Dolan and Zabel even consider Ed Walters and the Gulf Breeze nonsense worth mentioning.

They interviewed Frankie Rowe, who told them the tale of playing with a piece of metal from the crashed Roswell saucer which "could not be burned, broken or torn". This interview took place in 2010 about an alleged incident in 1947. The authors assure us, however, that Frankie is a woman "of impeccable credibility and decency". Like almost all Roswell investigators they somehow failed to wonder how this alien craft could break up into thousands of unbreakable pieces when it crashed.

Although there is some speculation as to whether our supposed alien visitors, referred to as "the Others", are time travellers, or even from a parallel reality, the usual notion of space travellers from other star systems is clearly the one the authors prefer, which is indicated by their preference for apparently solid objects in the sky rather than little grey aliens gliding through bedroom walls.

The authors emphasise that disclosure is inevitable, although it may be long delayed. One problem is to consider who will do the disclosing. As this is an American book the authors take the usual line of treating the world as America, with other nations merely forming its back yard and who ought to be subject to its every whim. The fact that some other nations are becoming more powerful is grudgingly acknowledged in the discussion of the possibility that one of these inferior nations may choose to make the disclosure, China being an obvious possibility. However, an American on official business in China spoke to Chinese officials involved in UFO investigation and asked them if they would publicise their findings. They allegedly assured him: "We are waiting for the United States to take the lead." So that's OK then; even the Chinese will kowtow to Uncle Sam when it comes to the question of disclosure of UFO reality.

The speculations that disclosure of UFO reality would result in mass panic and disorder are not very convincing, especially as so many people apparently already believe in the space aliens. It is difficult to see how others would be particularly upset merely by the release of previously classified information. Surely if we are really being visited by ETs, it would be they who decided whether or not to place their reality beyond any doubt, not our politicians and security organisations.

This book is fairly typical of other recent ones on UFOs, as it relies too much on cases which have been satisfactorily explained and uses obviously unreliable sources. If you are interested in this kind of speculation and would like to study the authors' thesis you will not find the index much help. It seems to have been compiled by simply picking out words or phrases almost at random and putting them in alphabetical order. -- John Harney


  1. Tyler Kokjohn27.6.12

    This book is decribed/marketed as 'speculative non-fiction.'

    Judging it to be typical of recent ones on UFOs and based on obviously unreliable sources is an utterly damning critique not only the book itself, but of the pale imitation of science known as 'ufology.'

  2. Anonymous28.6.12

    I think you are streching credibility a bit yourself by suggesing that exremely tough or strong materials could not break or even explode under the right circumstances. However, I also was not impressed with the book and took little away from it during my read of it.

  3. Why review it now after it as been out almost 2 years?

    1. The original 2010 publication was privately published by Dolan's Keyhole Press and not widely distributed. The edition discussed here was sent to us for review by New Page Press. According to Dolan's website this edition "includes updates from the world of UFOlogy in 2011, corrections, additions and new thinking. Additonally, it will feature an extensive photographic element". Accordingly we feel it worth reviewing.

  4. UFO fandom wants stories, not facts. Dolan and Bryce are just giving the people what they want. Sure, they should be ashamed, but they're not.