Robert Salas. Unidentified. The UFO Phenomenon: How World Governments Have Conspired to Conceal Humanity's Biggest Secret. New Page Books, 2014.
Robert Salas can hardly be said to be open to argument on the subject of UFOs, as in his preface to this book he states that there are two things that he knows for certain about the UFO phenomenon. These are that we are being visited by "real objects of unearthly origin", and that alien abductions are also real. A theme which runs through the book is the usual tired old one that world governments are aware of the facts about UFOs but somehow manage to keep them secret.
His experience allegedly involving UFOs occurred when he was a crew commander at the Malmstrom nucear missile site. He recalls an incident where he was on duty when he received reports of strange lights in the sky, followed by all of the missiles becoming disabled. But just turn the page and you read: ". . . when I initially tried to recall the incident of that night, I struggled remembering some of the details. It had been nearly 30 years and there were a lot of other memories in between". As well as this one, there are a number of similar stories to be found on the Internet, and they are the subject of ferocious arguments and slanging matches between believers and sceptics.

Salas gives us his opinions on alien abductions, which he regards as being real. He does not even mention the views of those who believe that abduction stories are best investigated by psychologists and sociologists, rather than by enthusiastic amateurs who believe them to be actual physical events. So, like many others, he apparently sees no problem about aliens gliding through walls and never being captured.

He claims to have been abducted himself in 1985, the experience occurring when he and his wife were asleep in their home and he was awakened by a mysterious blue light coming from the living room. He says that he tried to get out of bed but found himself paralysed. Mysterious figures appeared and floated him through the window, and he received similar treatment from the aliens as that described by other abductees. Of course, there is no good reason to believe that this was anything other than a dream.

A chapter is devoted to giving a brief history of nuclear weapons and nuclear power stations, which hardly seems relevant to ufology. This chapter also contains a list of alleged UFO incidents at installations with nuclear weapons, though of course there is no mention of the fact that at least some of them have been satisfactorily explained.

Salas thus follows the usual procedure of dealing with mundane explanations for UFO reports by simply ignoring them. He does not refer to sceptical or scholarly writings on the subject, but prefers the work of authors such as Carey and Schmitt, Frank Feschino, Stanton Friedman (who wrote this book's foreword), Timothy Good, Robert Hastings, and Budd Hopkins. It is only fair to note, though, that there are perhaps limits to his credulity, as the sheer absurdity and implausibility of alleged details of the notorious Bentwaters case are too much even for him, as he concludes that it is "an enigma of partial truths and conflicted facts". -- John Harney


  1. An excellent counterpoint to all Salas' claims about Malmstrom can be found here: http://timhebert2.blogspot.com/

    These are the investigations of a former US airman who was stationed at Malmstrom, whose starting point is when he was at the base he heard all of its legends and unofficial history, and UFO encounters were absent from all of them.

  2. Dr. David Clarke, for many years an accepted expert regarding the British military force’s investigations of the UFO phenomenon, has also discussed this case in the context of the "UFO and Nukes" connection asserted by Robert Hastings and Robert Salas. You can read his article on the subject at http://drdavidclarke.blogspot.com/2010/11/flat-earth-nukes.html. The folk tales currently being spread by Hastings and Salas have not merely been dismissed as one possible interpretation of their claims; they have been repeatedly dismantled and shredded -- proven as lies by witness testimony and documented evidence. There is no doubt whatsoever that they created this case outright. There were no UFOs involved -- it is a lie, and nothing more.

    Witnesses that Salas and Hastings have presented to the public have actually come forward to dispute the claims these men have made. They insist that their statements were taken out of context and distorted purposely in order to suggest the presence of UFOs where no such presence could otherwise be established. Salas and Hastings have perpetrated a UFO hoax of the worst sort, and have attempted to destroy the reputations and career service of better men than themselves.

    The commander of Echo Flight on March 16, 1967, CAPT (Ret.) Eric D. Carlson, has released the following definitive statement:

    "Let me start by stating that, as best as I can recall, my only contact with Salas and Hastings has been on the phone. I did tell Salas that he could release my name to whomever he wished, don't know why he needed my permission. I have talked to a newspaper writer in Great Falls, several years age, and a TV producer from one of those UFO shows. With both these individuals I denied any knowledge of any UFO's at Malmstrom. In addition, I stated that there was no, repeat no, incident at Oscar flight as Salas maintains. The man is either lying or delusional.

    "My only contact with Hastings was a call I received from him regarding his book. I stated that his book sounded interesting and he later sent me a copy which I read and gave away .... At no time did I mention anyone's mental status; yours, mine, his, or Salas', although in retrospect I could comment on Salas'.

    "My memory is quite good regarding the events at Malmstrom and there is no doubt in my mind that there were no reports of UFO's and no incident at Oscar flight. I will be willing to discuss this with anyone who is truly interested in the facts."

    His deputy commander at Echo Flight, COL (Ret.) Walter Figel, Jr., has insisted as well that UFOs were not involved, and adds that his version of this event has been distorted by both Robert Salas and Robert Hastings in order to give the impression that an actual UFO was involved. He asserts very strongly that no UFOs were involved, nor were UFOs ever reported.

    As for Walt Figel, he has released numerous comments regarding the incidents of March 1967, including the following definitive statement:


    "First – your dad has not lied about anything nor do believe that he is even capable of lying about anything at all. He was, is, and always will be an honorable man. You should remember that always – I will.

    "Second – Bob Salas was never associated with any shutdown of any missiles at any time in any flight and you can take that to the bank. Just think about this for a split second. He is a person wrapped up in UFOs to the Nth degree. Yet he could not remember he was not at Echo. Then he thought he was at November – wrong again. Then he thought he was at Oscar – wrong again.

  3. "Third – There is no record about anything happening at November or Oscar except in people’s minds that are flawed beyond imagination. Salas has created events out of the thin air and can’t get the facts straight even then. My best friend to this day was the flight commander of the 10th SMS at the time. He and I have discussed this silly assertion in the past couple of years – he thinks it is all madeup nonsense for sure. I put both Salas and Hastings in touch with him and he has told them both that an incident at November or Oscar never happened. In addition he was subsequently stationed at Norton AFB where the engineers tested the possible problems. No little green men were responsible.

    "Fourth – I have always maintained that I do not nor have I ever believed that UFOs exist in any form at any place at any time. I have never seen one or reported that I have seen one. I have always maintained that they had nothing to do with the shutdown of Echo flight in Montana.

    "Fifth – The event at Malmstrom has a hand written log from me that was turned in just like all the other logs that I wrote over several years. I would think that if I wrote something like that in the log, there would be copies, it would have been classified at the beginning and then released along with the classified SAC messages and base reports. Nothing in that urgent SAC message even hints of UFOs at all and I think that it would if the official logs or telephone calls had referenced that fact.

    "Sixth – When it happened, neither your dad nor I were “visibly shaken” by the events. It was just another day with a unexpected event in our lives. It was rather underwhelming at the time. No one rushed out to see us, no one made us sign any papers, no one interrogated us for hours on end.

    "There is no Air Force “cover-up” [of the events of March 1967]; it just did not happen the way Salas and has portrayed the course of events. I am sorry that you are all caught up in a pissing contest with these people, I really am. They are just not going to let go no matter what you say or do. He has made a 15 year career pandering about the country talking about things he has no knowledge about. I am not at all interested in taking them on – it’s not worth my effort – I have more important things to do with my life. I much rather just stay out of it.

    "Hopefully, we can move on. I did read about a briefing on the 27th here in DC. I am here in VA about 10 miles away. Interesting. Hopefully this helps you and confirms to you at least that your dad is a straight shooter and does not lie to anyone.”

    Robert Salas' commander at Oscar Flight, Frederick Meiwald, insists that he doesn't even believe in UFOs -- a strange comment to make in light of Salas' insistence that a UFO took out the missiles at Oscar Flight during an incident that resulted in an injury to one non-commissioned officer, requiring that man to be evacuated from the site by helicopter. When interviewed by Robert Hastings, he stated unequivocably that he doesn't remember anything at all about a UFO. In fact, Robert Hastings himself has written:

    “Meiwald then elaborated and said that he couldn’t support everything Salas has said about the incident because he had been resting/sleeping when the first missile or two dropped offline -— which occurred moments after Salas received a report from the Oscar Flight Security Controller about a UFO hovering over the Launch Control Facility’s front gate.

    “Although Salas had quickly told Meiwald about that telephone conversation, Meiwald says that
    he can’t remember it.”

  4. In another interview conducted by Hastings, Meiwald is equally clear:

    "RH: Okay. Now, when Bob, I think moments [after] he woke you up, or you got up and sat down at the commander’s consol—he of course had received a call from the Flight Security Controller, saying that there was a bright red, oval-shaped object hovering over the security fence gate—my understanding is that is what he told you as soon as you were at your console, that he had received this call and, uh, that of course coincided with the missiles beginning to malfunction. Do you recall him telling you that?

    "FM: I really don’t remember that portion of it, relative to the bright object. I remember an unusual condition [but] as far as the details, uh, I can’t elaborate on that."

    The following exchange is also revealing:

    "RH: Okay. He of course has also said that you two were, uh, when you were back at Malmstrom, you were debriefed by OSI and required to sign non-disclosure statements. Do you remember that?

    "FM: I remember being directed to do that. But that was no problem. I’ve been one of these people, when told to forget something, I forget it—eventually [inaudible].

    "RH: Right, well, is that a polite way of saying that you really don’t want to discuss this, even though you know more than you’re saying?

    "FM: No, I’m saying I don’t remember."

    Meiwald categorically denied any of the OSI debriefing and silence demands that Salas and Hastings insist occurred in a 1996 letter to Salas. He states directly that his memories of the incident are "very different" from those attested to by Salas, and insists that there was no OSI debriefing. Salas tends to ignore all of this, while Hastings asserts that Meiwald confirms "100%" of the fairly tale invented by Salas. Anybody who understands English can prove their dishonesty by a little simple research many UFO proponents seem to think is a waste of their time.

    For nearly ten years Salas was using Meiwald as confirmation of the events at both November Flight and Oscar Flight, stating that either my father or someone else called Meiwald on March 16 and told him all about Echo Flight. When interviewed by Hastings, Meiwald stated, "Whatever happened over at Echo, I have no idea." He has rebuffed completely the attempts by Hastings and Salas to establish confirmation for the UFOs they've invented. Meiwald has also clearly stated in other interviews with Salas that only 3-4 missiles failed during the one missile failures event he has recalled; he's NEVER stated outright that the UFO story he told Salas in 1996 had anything at all to do with missile failures; it's never even been mentioned in context.

    My father, the commander of Echo Flight in March 1967, was present when all ten missiles were taken off of strategic alert by an electronic noise pulse generated internally at the launch control facility. This pulse interfered with the normal operation of the logic coupler on the guidance and control module for that facility, causing thereby the failure of the missiles, which were, in effect, simply turned off. The incident was very well documented and was thoroughly investigated, and every word that Robert Salas and Robert Hastings have ever said on the subject has been repeatedly discounted or proven outright to be little more than lies and embellishments created for the purpose of making money from the sales of their books, the sales of associated videos, and the speaking fees they charge as a matter of course when retelling their ridiculous little folk tales.

    You should give some further thought to the claims discussed above. There is another, fully documented point of view in regard to this matter -- one that has been repeatedly confirmed by those men who were actually involved with this singular event in USAF history, has been very well-documented through the years, and was very thoroughly investigated by the USAF for some months after the incident itself.

  5. There were only two witnesses at Echo Flight in March 1967: my father, the commander of the flight, CAPT Eric D. Carlson, and the deputy commander, COL Walter Figel, Jr. Both men have publicly affirmed that there was no UFO. Robert Hastings is merely an agitator -- a liar and a fraud who has repeatedly misrepresented the claims of the men involved in these incidents, and has since neglected to answer any of the dozens of questions that these issues raise. He started utilizing this methodology years ago, found out it was convincing to a few people who are generally unaware of the facts, and continues his path of slander and disruption as a result of this minor success. The plain truth is that he's just a petty con-man and a fraudulent huckster -- nothing more. Robert Salas stinks with the same air of dishonesty and fraudulence, and his books are full of proven lies and assertions that his own witnesses have affirmed. These two men – Hastings and Salas – are lying to you, plain and simple. By doing so, they're doing more harm to American Ufology than a thousand skeptical critics could ever do.

    Most sincerely,
    James Carlson
    Albuquerque, NM