July 6, 2007

Iraqi cryptozoology

Iraq: Recent weeks have seen reports of strange animals around Basrah.

For over a month now, people in Basrah have been circulating rumors about a strange, bear-like deadly creature that attacks people at night with its strong claws. Locals in rural areas around Basrah claim it has killed three people and injured six others, and that it usually pounces on its victims as they are sleeping outdoors during hot summer nights, when electric power outages are common. Farmers at Garmat Ali, Abu Skheer, Jisr and Shikhatta were so alarmed, they assigned guarding duties at night to prevent its attacks, the Nahrain website and Radio Sawa reported last week...

The animal is known locally as the Garta or 'the muncher,' and mothers in Basrah used to tell scary stories about the Garta to their children so they would not wander out alone at night. Old families in Basrah believe the animal brings bad luck because it is mostly found in cemeteries at night. The unusual phenomenon, however, is their sudden appearance in large numbers near the city and their increasingly aggressive behavior.

Rumours are circulating that British troops have deliberately brought the creatures, or their eggs, into the city as a means of spreading chaos. Some of the animals have been killed, and are believed to be the indigenous Hog Badger.

Rumors of Strange Creatures Abound in BasrahIraqSlogger, 6th July 2007.

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June 2, 2007

Happy people will believe anything

United States: Psychological research conducted at the University of Missouri-Columbia has shown a correlation between mood and credulity. In particular, being in a good mood correlates with believing any old bollocks.

Laura King, professor of psychological sciences in the College of Arts and Science, along with a faculty member from Johns-Hopkins University, tested the notion during a series of interesting studies that examined how mood and intuition can affect a person's beliefs - even under the most unique circumstances and scenarios.

When you're in a good mood and more intuitive, you're open minded, creative and engaged in what appears to be reality, King said. You make non-rational associations.

The research investigated phenomena such as UFO and ghost sightings, sympathetic magic and cooties. So, next time a fundie tells you how great their imaginary friend makes them feel, you know what it is.

Good Moods Spark Overly Credulous Beliefs, Study FindsResearch at MU, 1st June 2007.

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April 24, 2007

Something in the air

UFOs are in the news again. First up is a lump of black rock found near Seattle, which some claim fell from an alien spaceship, and others claim came from a B-25 which crashed while carrying an alien spaceship. Possible alien stone found near SeattleEarth Times, 24th April 2007; Is strange rock from UFO or just a piece of poppycock?Seattle Post-Intelligencer, 22nd April 2007

Then there's a magic mountain in Argentina, where UFOs are said to gather, and which is claimed to have healing powers. But its special effects can only be felt if you know how to kid yourself: Books about the Uritorco are available in several languages because the hill's positive forces cannot be felt without some basic knowledge of its "spirituality reactor," a vendor explains behind a thick cloud of perfumed smoke rising from huge joss sticks. The languages available are clearly all dialects of Bollocks. Argentine magic mountain attracts UFO- and esoteric freaksJurnalo, 24th April 2007.

Finally we learn that Mick Jagger claims to have had a UFO encounter in the 1960s: In 1968 he went camping in Glastonbury with his then girlfriend, singer Marianne Faithful, and encountered a rare, luminous cigar-shaped mothership. Around the same time Mick had a UFO detector installed at his British estate. The alarm kept on going off whenever he left home, indicating the presence of strong electromagnetic activity in the immediate area. Of course, this all took place in the late 60s—a time when rock musicians never, ever took drugs. Sir Mick Jagger had close encounter with aliens in the 60sLondonNet, 23rd April 2007.

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March 9, 2007

Another miscelleny

February 4, 2007

Sunday miscelleny

A handful of stories from the last few days which I was too lazy to write about at the time:

  • Teachers get advice on how to spot signs of ritual abuseThe Guardian, 2nd February 2007. Note the word being repurposed to mean the abuse of children by Christians who believe the child to be possessed or a witch. Many of the signs are a bit crap, and others would apply to more mundane forms of child abuse too.

  • Brought to book: the poo lady's PhDThe Guardian, 3rd February 2007. Ben Goldacre find Gillian McKeith's PhD thesis:
    There are lots of grand statements about research, with nice superscript numbers relating to references in the back. But when you chase to the back of the book to see what these academic documents are, they include such august periodicals as Delicious, Creative Living, Healthy Eating, and my favourite: Spiritual Nutrition and the Rainbow Diet.

    Some of it is plainly absurd. As we get older, she explains, the levels of RNA/DNA decrease. Okay. If you do not have enough RNA/DNA, she goes on, you may ultimately age prematurely. Stress can deplete your DNA, but algae will increase it. And that's not all. Chlorophyll within the algae is a powerful oxygen generator for human beings. Back to GCSE Biology: it'll only make oxygen if there's light inside me, Gillian ...
    I found You are What you Eat frustrating and full of errors—it cited the safe drinking levels which were revised upwards in the early 1990s, for example. There are some good recipes in there, but often they are made needlessly complicated, and use exotic ingredients which would put it out of the price range of mere mortals.

  • New Conspiracy: Israeli Genocide Against Lebanese — With Poison BalloonsThe MEMRI Blog, 1st February 2007. This sort of panic is well recorded, and has a long history. There are examples of similar panics during the First World War, but this one seems to have the added legs of organisations willing to exploit it for political reasons.

  • An indictment that the liberal left is oblivious toThe Guardian, 3rd February 2007, isn't on the web site, presumably due to intense embarrassment about the ungrammatical title. Oliver Kamm alleges that a mysteriously monolithic liberal left puts the rights of religious organisations over that of the individuals they oppress:
    In the past century, material betterment and the steady diminuation of discrimination advanced progressive goals. Much of the left have [grr...—F.] yet to come to terms with this achievement. At the extreme, some who were once on the left have adopted the language and outlook of the right. They argue for what by any objective standards are reactionary positions. These include promotion of religious obscurantism in place of secularism; segregation of the sexes at public events; abridgement of free speech in deference to the sensibilities of those who claim themselves victims of Islamophobia; and, most pernicious, the resurrection in political debate of some highly traditional motifs of anti-semitic conspiracy theory.
    If you can get yourself to the library, it's on page 31.

  • Tolerating intolerance is still this country's besetting sinThe Guardian (Comment Is Free), 4th February 2007. More comment on a related matter to the above.

  • Muslims are now getting the same treatment Jews had a century agoThe Guardian (Comment Is Free), 2nd February 2007. One major difference, which is mentioned, but not dwelled upon, is that 19th century radicals-who-happened-to-be-Jewish were not fighting to impose Judaism on the populace as a whole, nor were they the ones wearing traditional Jewish dress as they had pretty much rejected religion. The tiny minority of violent Islamist fundamentalists claim to be fighting for their faith.

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January 13, 2007

Cattle mutilating space aliens go veggie

United States: Ah, the Weekly World News, such a wonderful publication bringing us exciting tales from all over the universe. Recently we were told of an interesting development of the cattle mutilation theme.

It was as if someone had taken a scalpel to the takeout box, Weald said of his mutilated order of steamed tofu. Neighboring containers of soy sauce and low-calorie dressing were unharassed.

High levels of radiation were found in the freezer, so the Weekly World News asked a suitably anonymous expert for their opinion.

However, NASA researchers believe that the tofu mutilators' origin may be otherworldly.

There have been increased reports of crop circles in soybean fields, and of UFO sightings near the star Vega, a NASA source revealed.

So there you have it - it was space vegans. Another story from a couple of weeks earlier, Health Food Stores Particularly Vulnerable to Alien Attack, supports this hypothesis.

Tofu Mutilations Blamed on Aliens from VegaWeekly World News, 4th December 2006 (via drieux).

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December 1, 2006

Little blue men

Scotland: Pictish symbol stones have been the subject of much debate over the years, with many hypotheses put forward to explain their unique iconography. Stan Hall has come up with possibly the most surprising one, suggesting that the Newton Stone in Aberdeenshire depicts a planetary catastrophe, and that something was around to witness it.

I recognised that on the Newton Stone it shows two planets breaking away from each other…The double disc and z-rod pictographs…record for posterity the actual birth of Jupiter from Saturn.

Hall believes that this break-up of Saturn — which must have been an extraordinary cosmic moment — has been recorded in the myths of all ancient people.

The Greeks talk of the night of the falling stars — all major civilisations have records of major interplanetary catastrophes. They're found in old nursery rhymes, which have found to be Sumerian, like 'Hey diddle diddle, the cat and the fiddle' which shows the planets rushing together.

But whilst Hall believes that our mytho-history records these turbulent disruptions, he is unsure whether humans would have been around to witness the events depicted. Which leads to Hall to question who first set down the information? Just who might have been around to see the birth of Jupiter?

If you are even slightly familiar with the contents of Chariots of the Gods, you can guess who.

Out of this world solution to a Scottish standing stoneThe Scotsman, 28th November 2006 (via Warren Ellis).

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September 4, 2006

Fortean Headline of the Day

Either there's a sub-editor with a sense of humour, or an incompetent one at work here: ICE arrests 15 aliens in Roswell working for U.S. military contractor.
Posted by Feòrag in Forteana at 17:56 | View blog reactions

March 2, 2006

Bargain of the Day: Christian simulacra

Today's must-have bargains are more examples of over-active imaginations at work. First up is JESUS FACE ON A LOG christian bible catholic religious. We are urged PLEASE HELP HIT THE PULSE " CLICK WATCH IT NOW".

[Jesus log, and half a picture of Jesus]PLEASE CLICK ON YOUR WATCH IT NOW TO GET IT ON THE PULSE

This is the way i found it in the desert. This log is not touched painted or anthing like that i cant believe it. Its a weird story me and my kid were in the desert and i was talking to him about a problem we as a family were having, around a camp fire. And my kid said ask God. 10 second lateri was picking up a log with JESUS on it

Im not a very religious person, But my kid is. The prayer was answered and the log needs a new home. If your prayer is answered pass it on after.


Bid a penny at a time. I promise this is real and not like some piece of toast with the big man grilled into it

It's the bit on the right of the picture, rather than the side that looks like the conventional representation of Jesus. Bidding is at $1.01 (US) right now, but there's another 9 days to go. A little more expensive are these Images Of Mother Mary & Christ. They are presumably not of interest to fundies, as this pair of masterpieces was apparently created 210,000,000 years ago.


location found in Cerro Cuadrado, Patagonia, Argentina

Age: Jurassic (Approx. 210 Million Years Ago)


I've turned the photograph through 90 degrees so you can easily see what miraculous object is worth the US $1,000,000.00 (US) Buy It Now price.

February 5, 2006

Where's ET?

You know, you might be wandering down the street, and you can't be sure, but you think there might be aliens in the area. Well, you can now clarify the matter with help from India Daily's simple experiment to find out if an extraterrestrial UFO is in your vicinity .

If you really want to know if an extraterrestrial UFO is really near you, look at the animals and yourself. It is now scientifically proven that super high intensity of electromagnetic flux makes all living beings depressed. Our living soul is electromagnetic energy and it cannot tolerate an influence of an external very high intensity of electromagnetic flux that is uncontrolled by our soul. So all living beings become depressed and the thinking process gets difficult in the presence of extraterrestrial UFOs. When you find all animals are lethargic and you also feel the same, the possibilities are very high that one or more UFOs are near by.

A simple experiment to find out if an extraterrestrial UFO is in your vicinity India Daily, 5th February 2006.

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August 23, 2005

Bargain of the Day: Photos of spilled coffee

Today's bargain is a set of pictures of an accidental spill made by a child under the influence of a strong, but legal, drug. Or rather, it's a JESUS COFFEE SPILL ANGEL HOLY SPIRIT - set of 4 photos. Unlike other vendors of similar simulacra, the seller here does not make any particularly ludicrous claims and seems to regard it all as a happy accident, rather than an actual work of their imaginary friend.

[An interestingly shaped coffee stain]These are photos of a coffee spill that appears to be in the image of JESUS, an angel, or perhaps an apostle, with arms lifted toward heaven. Tongues of fire or maybe the Holy Spirit are drifting upward.

Every morning my 6 year old daughter just has to have her cup of coffee. So my wife mixes her about a half cup of milk, some Carnation french vanilla creamer, and a splash of coffee. Needless to say, my daughter is not always neat and is quite often spinning her chair around to see Spongebob. Today, about a half hour after she finished, my 10 year old son hurried us into the kitchen to show us JESUS. We were surprised he even noticed it, since the image actually formed upside down - my daughter was sitting at the breakfast bar, facing it. I took the photos from both in front of, and behind the counter. The second picture shows the view from the direction she was facing.

I am being 100 percent honest when I say that this is not a hoax, and that these photos have not been staged or doctored in any way. This is an actual coffee (albeit with lots of milk and creamer!) spill that occurred by happenstance, while my daughter was having her morning cup of java - we even had to wipe some off of her chair (you can see where it dripped over the edge of the counter). I am also being 100 percent honest when I say, that while we are devout Christians, we don't necessarily believe that such things occur by divine intervention or have any specific spiritual meaning, I know that some folks do. That's why I'm offering this set of 4 photos for sale. They will be printed on 4 inch by 6 inch, premium glossy photo paper. There will be one set of these and one set only. That's my solemn promise to the winning bidder.


July 23, 2005

UFOs, Coming Soon to a State Near You

United States: Seeing as his recent attempt to call down UFOs on Las Vegas went so swimmingly, Prophet Yahweh, Seer of Yahweh has issued a new proclamation:

Beginning August 7, 2005, Prophet Yahweh, Seer of Yahweh, will start his 50 State UFO Summoning Tour 2005. During this time, UFOs will appear on Prophet's signal for radio or television news and talk shows to film and photograph.

The Prophet got a bit miffed at the local Las Vegas media outlets taking the Michael and is doing the national tour with UFOs on command for all. Yay!

Continue reading "UFOs, Coming Soon to a State Near You"

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July 15, 2005

Prediction corner

[An interesting landscape]Peru: I fully expect that we will be seeing more of this satellite simulacrum, presented as a miraculous image of Jesus and therefore evidence of a Christian God who put it there.

Even if it does look more like Charles Darwin when you shrink it. Or maybe Confucious.

(via Simon)

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Posted by Feòrag in Forteana at 15:51 | Comments (1) | View blog reactions

June 24, 2005

Bargain of the Day: Mould

Today's bargain is, well, mingin'. It's apparently an INVITATION TO ABUNDANT LIFE, a TABLET GROWN FROM RECIPE IN BIBLE,Fountain of youth. The information on the eBay auction is rather sketchy:

[Penicillin perhaps?]MORE INFO: www.whothirst.com until now this is something money can"t BUY

PAYMENT ORGANISED THROUGH email Bank Direct whothirst@bigpond.com or PAY/PALS


But fortunately, the linked website is much more informative. For bizarre religious values of informative.


Made from Seven Years Working On Understanding


ABUNDANCE: Is made with all natural ingredients:
USING: Flowers, Shrubs and Trees

CRYSTALGENICS: Is the art of turning liquid into crystals.
Sought after by Alchemists since the beginning of time.

ABUNDANCE: Grows from liquid, which I call The Waters Of Life
NOTE: When Abundance is dissolved in water, it regrows and multiplies in approximately 4 to 5 days based on 1 to 2ml of water

INTERESTING FACTS: Things found written about recipe while working on recipe.

available for sale from July 1st, 2005

So, about as clear as one of QuePirate's comments then.

Bampot tags: , .

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Posted by Feòrag in Forteana and Religious Tat at 20:03 | Comments (1) | View blog reactions

May 23, 2005


United States: Prophet Yahweh, Seer of Yahweh has issued an announcement that will interest all fans of bad science fiction:

For only 45 days, starting June 1st until July 15, 2005, Prophet Yahweh, Seer of Yahweh, will be calling down UFOs and spaceships for the news media to film and photograph. During this time, a spaceship will descend, on Prophet's signal, and sit in the skies over Las Vegas, Nevada for almost two days.

The Prophet claims a talent for this kind of thing and, if you are not sure what to look for, the press release helpfully explains more:

There is a difference between UFOs and spaceships. UFOs are usually small flying objects: glowing orbs, metallic spheres, satellite-type flying machines, etc. And, their flight patterns suggest that they are not of this world.

But, spaceships are large futuristic vehicles that are clearly designed to carry passengers in like you see in the movies.

And his promises are very precise.

Prophet is in direct telephatic contact with his space being friends. They have revealed that they will send UFOs as soon as Prophet starts asking for them to appear.

Also, before the 45 day summoning period has ended, a spaceship will descend and sit in the skies over Las Vegas on Prophet's signal.

The spaceship will hover in the sky, not far from Nellis Air Force base, for almost two days. All Las Vegans will be able to see it, day and night, before it goes back up into space.

MEDIA ALERT: Spaceships Will Appear Over Las Vegas On My Signal - Prophet Yahweh press release via PRWeb, 23rd May 2005.

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April 5, 2005

Wedding celebrations mistaken for alien invasion

England: Police and Stansted Airport received a number of worried calls after a couple launched around 70 Thai lanterns to celebrate their wedding.

But the release of some 60 to 70 illuminated Thai lanterns into the night sky over Leez Priory, near Felsted, sparked fears that aliens were on their way...

...A police spokesman said that one caller reported a large amount of red lights in batches of five or six lights over Bannister Green on the evening of Monday, March 21.

Other callers contacted Stansted Airport concerned that extra-terrestrial activity was about to land.

The situation was eventually resolved when the airport's control tower identified the source of the strange lights.

Wedding lanterns spark UFO scare - Epping Forest Guardian, 3rd April 2005.

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March 21, 2005

Teenage mutant ninja turtle

United States: Last October, a fire destroyed Dora's A-Dora-ble Pet Shop in Frankfort, Indiana. Only one animal survived - a turtle. But something is amiss:

Owner Bryan Dora now says he sees Satan's face on the critter's shell. He can spot lips, eyes, a goatee, shoulders and a pair of pointy horns on Lucky's back.

The marking on the shell was like the devil wanted us to know he was down there, Bryan Dora said. To me, it's too coincidental that the only thing to come out unscathed would have this image on it.

Pet store owner: Satan's image on turtle's shell - CNN.com, 21st March 2004 (thanks to Jeff Zurschmeide, who spotted it).

Posted by Feòrag in Forteana at 18:12 | View blog reactions

March 12, 2005

Gruesome goings-on at the holy well

England: Many holy wells have gruesome legends attached to them, but the one associated with Lidwell in Devon isn't your usual tale of saintly self-sacrifice. Instead, the well was used by an early serial killer:

On the slopes of Haldon Hill lie the remains of Lidwell Chapel, the site of one of Devon's more macabre tales. The name, Lidwell, is actually a corruption of Lady's Well and the chapel is dedicated to St. Mary Magdalene. Like so many other churches and chapels, it was built on what was formerly a pagan place of worship, a sacred well, probably dedicated to the goddess of spring. There is, too, evidence of the original well and this can be seen in a corner of the grounds.

This isolated ruin, adjacent to farmland and situated to the northwest of Teignmouth, was, in medieval times, the focal point of a small settlement and leper sanctuary where the monks could provide care for the sufferers, all of whom would be compelled to live outside their community. The legend concerns one monk in particular, a hermit or recluse who lived at Lidwell during the early part of the fourteenth century. This man is said to have lured passing travellers into the chapel where he would rob them, murder them and dispose of their bodies by throwing them down the well.

In support of the legend, the Bishop's register of the year 1329 contains an entry relating to the execution of a Hermit Monk who had been convicted of murder. Intrigued by what we had unearthed and wanting to know more about this curio, we felt that the next logical step would be to visit the scene of crime so a team of five members of TNC arranged to go and look the place over as soon as we could.

And so starts the tale of a group of criminologists who discover that well-hunting can be a wet and frustrating business. But the tale takes a turn for the fortean:

Continue reading "Gruesome goings-on at the holy well"
Posted by Feòrag in Forteana and Heritage at 20:22 | View blog reactions

February 14, 2005

Strange Spam of the Day

[Cheesy Raelian graphics]Normally I get 200-250 spams per day. And they get filtered out and deleted. But before they're deleted, I glance at the From: and Subject: lines, just in case that offer of a million dollars is coming from my agent instead of a fly-by-night low-life.

This isn't worth a million dollars, but it's definitely priceless in Fortean terms Iranian Raelian spam. Complete with pyramids, Greys, flying saucers, and some sort of come-on in Arabic script (presumably Farsi, which -- not unusually -- I can't read).

Anyone willing to volunteer a translation? (Warning: the spam is included in the extended entry below as inline images -- about 160Kb.)

Continue reading "Strange Spam of the Day"
Posted by Charlie in Forteana at 12:42 | View blog reactions

February 3, 2005

A funny thing happened on the way home from the pub

United Kingdom: The new Freedom of Information Act is being used in an entirely predictable manner by the Independent--to obtain files relating to UFO sightings. Last year, the Ministry of Defence's UFO unit was contacted regarding 88 instances of someone seeing something they did not recognise in the sky:

A report from Devizes in Wiltshire on 24 September last year records an object that: Looked liked a big ball of fire coming down from the sky with a tail and sparks coming off the end of it. Another, from Somerset the week before, states: The object looked like a great bright light and was really intense, like a ball of fire coming down from the sky, rapidly moving towards the ground.

Although such reports might be discounted as meteor showers or other astronomical phenomena, other sightings are not so easy to dismiss. A report from Surrey on 20 May last year describes a UFO as having grooves and windows but no room for humans. Even the MoD inspector notes that the witness had seen the object so clearly.

Many of the other sightings refer to UFO's changing colour, speed and shape. The most common colours are yellow, orange or black.

In a moment of creative genius, the newspaper referred to the documents as X-files.

The truth is out there: declassified reports of UFO sightings reveal 88 sightings last year - The Independent, 3rd February 2005.

Posted by Feòrag in Forteana and Science Fiction at 18:09 | View blog reactions

January 28, 2005

Odd coin baffles experts

Numismatists are baffled by an unusual French coin which appears to show a flying saucer. Experts have spent decades looking at the 17th century coin, but still have no idea what it is.

[An unusual coin, apparently showing a UFO]It was made in the 1680s in France and the design on one side certainly looks like it could be a flying saucer in the clouds over the countryside, said Kenneth E. Bressett of Colorado Springs, Colorado, a former President of the 32,000-member American Numismatic Association and owner of the curious coin.

Is it supposed to be a UFO of some sort, or a symbolic representation of the Biblical Ezekiel's wheel? After 50 years of searching, I've heard of only one other example of it, and nothing to explain the unusual design.

Bressett said the mysterious piece is not really a coin, but a "jeton," a coin-like educational tool that was commonly used to help people count money, or sometimes used as a money substitute for playing games. It is about the size of a U.S. quarter-dollar and similar to thousands of other jetons with different religious and educational designs that were produced and used in Europe during the 16th and 17th centuries.

The design on this particular piece could be interpreted as showing either a UFO or Ezekiel's wheel, but little else. Some people think the Old Testament reference to Ezekiel's wheel may actually be a description of a long-ago UFO, he explained.

The legend written in Latin around the rim is also mystifying. 'OPPORTUNUS ADEST' translates as 'It is here at an opportune time.' Is the object in the sky symbolic of needed rainfall, or a Biblical reference or visitors from beyond? We probably will never know for certain, said Bressett.

Centuries' Old UFO Coin Remains Mystery - PR Web, 28th January 2005.

Posted by Feòrag in Forteana at 19:06 | Comments (2) | View blog reactions

January 25, 2005

UFO flap caused by airliner

Japan: A number of residents rang the Fukuoka District Meteorological Observatory to report a UFO in the sky. And what was it? an aircraft vapor trail that had been lit up by the late afternoon sun:

Observatory officials said vapor trails can suddenly be cut off due to the amount of moisture in the air, creating the appearance of a comet tail.

Fukuoka residents mistake vapor trail for UFO - Mainichi Shimbun, 24th January 2005.

January 15, 2005

Confused spirits roam Thailand

Thailand: Survivors of the recent tsunami have started to complain about an invasion of foreign ghosts:

Volunteer body searchers at the resorts of Phi Phi Island and Khao Lak have been reported as claiming they have heard laughing and singing on a devastated beach only to find darkness and empty sand.

Taxi drivers at Patong on Phuket island swear they picked up a foreign man and his Thai girlfriend going to the airport with all their baggage, only to then look in the rear-view mirror and find an empty seat.

Guards at a beachfront plaza in Patong said one of their men had quit after hearing a foreign woman cry help m all night long and similar stories abound of a foreign ghost walking along the shoreline at night calling for her child.

Traditional Thai beliefs have an explanation:

Wallop said the reason almost all ghost sightings appear to involve foreign tourists stems from a belief that spirits can only be put to rest by relatives at the scene, such as was done to many Thai victims.

Thai people believe that when people die, a relative has to cremate them or bless them. If this is not done or the body is not found, people believe the person will appear over and over again to show where they are, he said.

The ghosts themselves are believed to think they are still on holiday.

Tsunami sparks ghost sightings - news.com.au, 14th January 2005.

Posted by Feòrag in Forteana at 05:12 | View blog reactions

December 30, 2004

Little Green Men bored with Iraq, move next door.

Russian and Iran: The Russian and Iranian authorities have agreed to start a joint study of UFOs after weird lights were spotted over Iran.

This comes in the wake of a skywatching mania that struck Iran amid state-media reports of sightings of flying objects near Irans nuclear installations.

The Resalat news agency reported shining objects in the sky near Natanz, where Iran's uranium-enrichment plant is situated. One of those objects is said to have exploded, prompting panic in the region.

Tehran's air force was ordered to shoot down any unknown or suspicious flying objects in its airspace, amid security concerns for its nuclear plants.

Flights of unknown objects in the country's airspace have increased in recent weeks... [they] have been seen over Bushehr and Isfahan provinces, the Resalat daily reported. Nuclear facilities are located in both provinces.

Russia Joins Iran in Fighting UFO's - MosNews, 30th December 2004.

Posted by Feòrag in Forteana and Science Fiction at 21:40 | View blog reactions

December 14, 2004

'UFO' explodes over city.

China: An Unidentified Flying Object has caused a bit of a flap in Lanzhou, when it passed over the city and appeared to explode in the suburbs.

The unusual sighting of two bright trails of light, reported by several witnesses, took place last Saturday shortly before midnight, the China Times reported.

Police, working on the theory that it was a meteorite, went to investigate the matter, but as of today they had found no evidence of what caused the nightly phenomenon, an officer told AFP by telephone.

UFO passes over China, explodes in suburbs - China Daily, 14th December 2004.

Posted by Feòrag in Forteana and Science Fiction at 08:12 | View blog reactions

November 23, 2004

New tool for evangelists?

Russia: Want to send a Christmas card to aliens? Well now you can, thanks to the boffins behind the Glonass-M satellites. The launch of the latest model on 25th December, marks the start of a special extraterrestrial message service.

Glonass-M satellites orbit the Earth at the height of 20 thousand kilometers, and they can stay there forever. Information in the form of texts and drawings for extraterrestrial beings can be placed on aluminium plates, which make so-called cargo models to balance the satellite's center of mass. Official spokeswoman for the association, Elena Matveeva said that the first six informational plates were placed on the Glonass-M 12L satellite, the launching of which was planned to take place on December 25th. The plates contain the information about the enterprise and its founder, academician Mikhail Reshetnev.

We have already started accepting applications for the next Glonass-M spacecraft, which is to be launched in 2005. Anyone can submit their applications free of charge - students, enterprises and so on and so forth, Matveeva specified. First priority will be paid to information about planet Earth, the human civilization, education and modern terrestrial space technologies. The scientific association for applied mechanics does not exclude that extraterrestrial civilizations might be interested in such messages from Earth.

Russia to launch space mail for extraterrestrial civilizations - Pravda, 19th November 2004.

Posted by Feòrag in Forteana and Ho! Ho! Ho! at 12:10 | View blog reactions

October 9, 2004

Another UFO hoax comes to light

England: An artist has revealed that his well-known UFO photo was nothing but a schoolboy prank.

In February 1954 a picture resembling a UFO floating over Coniston, taken by 14-year-old Stephen Darbishire, from Torver, caused a national sensation.

The teenager claimed he had been on the fells with his cousin when he photographed a UFO.

Now Mr Darbishire, a 63-year-old well-known South Lakeland artist, says it was all a hoax.

At the time, confronted by the national media, he was too terrified and went along with the deception.

Hoax UFO sighting to be recreated for art - North West Evening Mail, 9th October 2004.

Posted by Feòrag in Forteana and Science Fiction at 20:31 | View blog reactions

October 2, 2004

Invisible Flying Jellyfish

United States: Not terribly sure where this article of weirdness is heading. It doesn't seem to have a point, it just waffles along jumping from tales of flamey birds to invisible flying jellyfish.

The hypothesis about the existence of little-studied forms of life in the Earth's atmosphere has been an attraction for scientists for quite a long time. Nations around the globe have numerous stories, fairy-tales and legends about such creatures, the most popular of which are sylphs, giant fire birds, fairies, flying snakes and dragons. This weird theory has been gaining more and more details lately to prove its credibility.
Continue reading "Invisible Flying Jellyfish"
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September 1, 2004

Virgin found in Texas

United States: A Texas car dealer claims to have seen an apparition of the Virgin Mary on a balloon.

Everybody was blowing some balloons and we noticed that this image came from the balloon, said Fuentes. And everybody was agreeing that it looked like the Virgin Mary.

Co-workers were moved to tears:

My eyes kind of watered. And I said right away when he showed it to me, (yes). He said, 'do you know what this is?'. And I said, 'Yes. That's La Virgencita.

Fuentes also called his family to come over to see the apparition for themselves. Javier's mother, Maria, made the sign of the cross when she saw the balloon.

Unfortunately, the resemblance must be lost in the photographs—the image shown looks more like a vagina than a virgin.

Virgin Mary Appears on Balloon at Car LotKGBT 4 TV, 31st August 2004.

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August 19, 2004

Spooks, but not the KGB

Russia: Pravda carries a feature about Russian traditions surrounding ghosts. Many of them seem to be associated with tragedy:

Little remained from ancient Moscow, except for the Kremlin. Ghosts love the Kremlin. From time to time, a red spot appears on the walls of Konstantino-Eleninskaya tower where a torture chamber was located in XVII century. A pale uncombed lady holding a gun in her hands, lives in Komendantskaya tower. This is famous Fanny Kaplan who attempted to kill Lenin and who was executed by shooting by Kremlin's superintendent Malkov.

St. Petersburg has a rather interesting spectral resident:

The ghost of the first director of the Academy of Arts, architect Kokorin is wondering around the Academy's corridors. When the weather is bad, at nights somebody knocks at the Academy's gates and shouts, It's me, sculptor Kozlovsky from Smolenskoe cemetery, I got wet and frozen in my grave.open the door!

And there's no way I could resist this tale from Yaroslavl:

A goblin lives in the local bath-house. People often hear somebody walking in the bath house, opening taps and moving wash-basins. The former bath house attendant fell ill after meeting the man, and retired from the job. The local bell-ringer started hearing voices after attending the bath house.

And don't forget - the world ends later today!

Where ghosts live in Russia - Pravda, 18th August 2004.

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August 13, 2004

Original research

Seth Shostak of the SETI Institute has a very interesting inbox, and needed to share:

Now and again, independent thinkers will send their own research papers -- the distilled essence of years of effort in the attic or den -- which purportedly show in a handful of pages, and with third-grade mathematics, that Einstein was wrong, and that SETI is therefore, somehow, barking up the wrong tree. I store these with tender care, and always offer to send back originals. But then again, I'm probably too soft.

Emails Illustrate Fine Line Between the Brilliant and the Bizarre - Space.com, 12th August 2004.

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August 12, 2004

A device which is exploding

Siberia: Researchers in Siberia claim to have found the cause of the Tunguska explosion back in 1908 - an alien spacecraft!

The press service of the Evenkiya republic administration reported the expedition worked in the western part of the region in the summer of the current year. The mission's itinerary was based on the results of the space footage analysis. Explorers believe they have discovered blocks of an extraterrestrial technical device, which crashed down on Earth on June 30th, 1908. In addition, expedition members found the so-called deer - the stone, which Tunguska eyewitnesses repeatedly mentioned in their stories. Explorers delivered a 50-kilogram piece of the stone to the city of Krasnoyarsk to be studied and analyzed.

Needless to say, the press has paid considerably less attention to this large lump of rock.

Explorers find UFO fragments in Tunguska meteorite area - Pravda, 10th August 2004.

August 8, 2004

Rain Of Stones Follows Woman

South Africa: A woman in the South African province of Limpop was booted out of her village because a hail of stones seems to follow her wherever she goes. Apparently, the problem is caused by an evil spell cast on her by a trader when she didn't pay him back for some clothes she purchased on credit.

We were there for nearly the whole night and saw stones falling from the sky like rain, said Vhembe police spokesperson Ailwei Mushavhanamadi. We went around the area to make sure someone wasn't throwing stones on the roof on purpose, but we didn't find anyone.
Police then advised the family to consult with spirit mediums about the phenomenon.
Continue reading "Rain Of Stones Follows Woman"
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July 23, 2004

Ghosts in the Window Tinting

United States: Normally when window tinting starts to lift on a building, the installation company is called out to fix the problem, not in Texas. Crowds of the gullible and curious are flocking to a hardware store in Rio Grande Valley, Texas, to see an image of Jesus that has appeared on a tinted window at the business.

The image first appeared on a True Value store window on July 19 and caused employees to wonder where it came from.
Continue reading "Ghosts in the Window Tinting"
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July 21, 2004

Hello aliens.

[Hello Kitty crop circle]England: A rather unusual crop formation has appeared in a Wiltshire field. The Hello Kitty crop circle was created by Circlemakers and New York artists surface2air to celebrate her 30th birthday and is approximately 60m in diameter. The photo is by Steve Alexander, whose web site includes a lot of impressive aerial photos of crop formations. (via Simon).

Update: Just noticed this was the 1500th entry in the Prattle. Must be a conspiracy or something...

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June 20, 2004

Seeing Things In Genoa

Italy: Ah, the Italians. If they're not blaming phantom Satanic cults for murders, they're seeing things in religious icons.

Thousands of faithful and curious Italians have visited a statue of Christ after a woman said she saw the face of mystic monk Padre Pio appear on the bronze figure in the north-western city of Genoa.
The Cardinal of Genoa came to see it last night and he agreed that there was a face but said that further investigations were needed, Mauro Boccaccio, spokesman for the regional government of Liguria, said.

Statue with the face of a monk - Reuters, 20th June 2004.

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April 19, 2004

Demons Turn Out To Be Stupid Woman With A Knife

Italy: An update on the demon infestation at Canneto di Caronia from James Randi. As expected, from the loony fundie contingent:

The Catholic Church's local exorcist arrived, and — not to anyone's surprise — immediately announced that Satan was at work. I've seen things like this before. Demons occupy a house and appear in electrical goods, he said, urging the parish priest to take action. But the local priest, wiser than the exorcist, in my opinion, decided to let the scientists have a first try at solving the puzzle.
Continue reading "Demons Turn Out To Be Stupid Woman With A Knife"
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April 10, 2004

Canneto di Caronia's Pesky Demon Infestation

Italy: Rather than looking for the real cause of a series of electrical problems, the media are quick the round up a handful of superstitious locals who will happily blame spontaneous combustion or demonic attack for a nice sound bite. No doubt the rest of the population are cringing in embarrassment that the village idiot has dragged everyone down to his level.

A Sicilian town is struggling to work out why dozens of household items from fridge-freezers to furniture keep mysteriously bursting into flame, terrifying locals and sparking theories of demonic intervention.
Since mid-January dozens of electrical goods and pieces of furniture have spontaneously gone up in flames, causing huge damage in Canneto di Caronia, a small town perched on the Mediterranean island's rocky coast.
Continue reading "Canneto di Caronia's Pesky Demon Infestation"
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April 7, 2004

Mystery 'witch' attacks school

Malawi: Pupils are fleeing Blantyre Secondary School after three girls received mysterious injuries in the night.

The assailant attacked the girls as they were sleeping in their dormitory.
We do not know how he or she entered the room because the door was bolted from inside and the windows are such that no one can squeeze through, one of the girls, Veronica Saiwala, said on Tuesday.
Saiwala said the identity of the assailant could not be established.
We believe it was a woman because she had bare breasts and was only putting on pants. She appeared very brown but her face was too dark to be recognised, she said while others remained unsure about the sex of the assailant.

The attacks are popularly believed to be associated with witchcraft or satanism. A similar panic happened in Zimbabwe a couple of years ago. Students flee school on satanism allegations - The Nation, 7th April 2004.

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March 31, 2004

Rennes le Chateau

France: Undiscovered is a nice looking site that reports on unusual Fortean style events, and takea a particular interest in a 19th century priest in France who built a lavish church, Rennes le Chateau, which is full of still-undeciphered symbols.

Basically there is a lot of lunacy out there (but where isn't there these days?) and there does seem to be quite a lot of persuasive evidence that the subject itself inspires a kind of madness, but once you get beyond the lunacy that has grown up around the subject the facts are quite straightforward.
Continue reading "Rennes le Chateau"
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March 18, 2004

The seat with the clearest view

Mars: The Spirit rover has spotted something rather odd in the skies above Mars - something unidentified streaking across the sky from north to south.

Only occasionally does it raise its sights towards the sky to study the atmosphere of Mars.
But it was on just such an occasion when Spirit was observing the sky with the green filter of its panoramic camera that the roving geologist came across the surprise - a streak across the peach-coloured Martian heavens.

Speculation is rife, but the smart money is on it being one of the earlier Mars orbiters, probably Viking 2, which is both fast enough and in the right oribit. UFO streaks through Martian sky - BBC News, 18th March 2004.

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March 6, 2004

Unusual frog hops off

A three-headed, six-legged frog has been discovered by children in Weston-super-Mare. Environmental problems are suspected. It later escaped from the jar in which it had been kept. Puzzle over three-headed frog - BBC News, 5th March 2004 (with picture!).

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December 27, 2003

Dinosaurs of Eden

United States: I've always wondered how the creationists dealt with scientists constantly digging up critters that aren't mentioned in their book of fairy stories bible. It seems they power up the spin machine a write mountains of dodgy children's books to brainwash their offspring into believing a load of old cobblers.

I should note that some other Creationists are still sticking to the old explanations about how all these extinct and fossilized species were killed off during the Flood. I still haven't figured out how they reconcile this with God's commandment that Noah take all the animals with him on the Ark. Maybe they blame it on the ticket agent.

It's worth having a look at a long, thoughtful, and diverse list of things creationists hate.

Dinosaurs of Eden - Making Light, 21st December 2003.

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November 25, 2003

Interview with the vampire

Pravda has published a interview with a real-life vampire, assuring us that Vampirism is not merely an overused banality from horror movies, but a real disease. Usually genetically inherited, it can develop because of alcohol abuse. 53-year-old Vasily Gembitskiy turned to alcohol, and then blood, when his wife died:

Continue reading "Interview with the vampire"
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November 19, 2003

Not Fortean Times

United States: Peter Ritter has written and interesting and sympathetic history of Fate magazine and it's editor Phyllis Glade.

A 57-year-old grandmother with a pronounced Midwestern drawl and an endearing habit of using heck as an invective, Galde looks less like a committed student of supernatural phenomena than she does a school teacher or church organist--both of which she once was. Nor does her home, at the terminus of a suburban cul-de-sac, show any outward signs of housing America's oldest and most esteemed journal of the paranormal, which it does.

Cosmic Truths of the Ages, REVEALED - Twin Cities Reader, 19th November 2003.

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November 13, 2003

Folklore of homeless children

United States: Redwolf points me at this interesting old article about the tales told by children in Miami's homeless shelters.

On Christmas night a year ago, God fled Heaven to escape an audacious demon attack -- a celestial Tet Offensive. The demons smashed to dust his palace of beautiful blue-moon marble. TV news kept it secret, but homeless children in shelters across the country report being awakened from troubled sleep and alerted by dead relatives. No one knows why God has never reappeared, leaving his stunned angels to defend his earthly estate against assaults from Hell. Demons found doors to our world, adds eight-year-old Miguel, who sits before Andre with the other children at the Salvation Army shelter. The demons' gateways from Hell include abandoned refrigerators, mirrors, Ghost Town (the nickname shelter children have for a cemetery somewhere in Dade County), and Jeep Cherokees with black windows. The demons are nourished by dark human emotions: jealousy, hate, fear.

Myths Over Miami - Miami New Times, 5th June 1997.

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October 24, 2003

Nature's Bounty

United States: Stuck for raw materials for your Jesus O'Lantern? Residents of Tahuya, WA, have no such problem as early floods brought an unexpected gift - pumkins floating down the Skokomish river. Pumpkins Found Floating Along Rivers - Yahoo! News, 24th October 2003.

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October 23, 2003

Virgin on the ridiculous

United States: Optimists in a run-down area of New Jersey are flocking to a tree stump in which a simulacrum of the Virgin Mary has appeared. They take it a sign of something generically positive for the future.

The piece of wood, whose shape believers say resembles a veiled Virgin Mary with a bowed head, was noticed by passers-by over the weekend on state-owned land alongside a street that residents say is a hangout for illegal drug users.
Since then, a steady stream of visitors have left candles, flowers and handwritten notes and prayers at the site. It has her form, definitely, said Jackie Cohrs. It looks like her.

Virgin Mary appears in New Jersey tree - Yahoo! News, 22nd October 2003.

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Space aliens ate my brain

United States: Dozens of people called the police to report a UFO after they saw flashing lights in the sky over North Carolina. Local astronomers have had to reassure people that what they saw was the Orionoid meteor shower, an annual event which will continue for the next few days. Durham Sighting Meteor Shower, Not UFO - NBC17, 22nd October 2003.

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August 21, 2003

Something to read

The issue of the Journal of Consciousness Studies mentioned in the article Astrology is bunk is a special double issue on PSI WARS: Getting to Grips with the Paranormal. As well as the full text (PDF) of Geoffrey Dean and Ivan W. Kelly's article Is Astrology Relevant to Consciousness and Psi?, the abstracts make interesting reading with articles about false memories, the problems of investigating 'magic' phenomena scientifically and We Ask, Does Psi Exist? But Is This the Right Question and Do We Really Want an Answer Anyway?. (via The Ten Thousand Year Blog).

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August 17, 2003

Astrology is bunk

After forty years of study, researchers have concluded that astrology is a load of rubbish.

Researchers looked at more than 100 different characteristics, including occupation, anxiety levels, marital status, aggressiveness, sociability, IQ levels and ability in art, sport, mathematics and reading - all of which astrologers claim can be gauged from birth charts.

The research was conducted on over 2000 people born within minutes of each other in 1958, in test conditions which could hardly have been more conducive to success... but the results are uniformly negative:

(Geoffrey Dean, a scientist and former astrologer ) said that the consistency of the findings weighed heavily against astrology.
It has no acceptable mechanism, its principles are invalid and it has failed hundreds of tests. But no hint of these problems will be found in astrology books which, in effect, are exercises in deception, he said.

Astrology is rubbish, says new research - The Times of India, 17th August 2003.

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August 12, 2003

No mention of aliens...

Iraq: A man claiming to be Saddam Hussein's personal sorcerer has come out of the woodwork and announced that the former leader is still alive, but will be found dead in Dhuluaiyah, a village 55 miles north of Baghdad. He also has some other interesting revelations:

According to the magician and several others interviewed in Baghdad, Saddam was a firm believer in magic, and even applied himself, with modest success, to studying the sands and summoning genies.
He consulted frequently with two magicians from Iraq, one from Turkey, one from India, a French Arab and a beautiful Jewish witch from Morocco, the wizard says.
Saddam is still protected, he says, by a pair of golden statues imbued with magic. The deposed president speaks daily with the king and queen of genies - the same ones who provided the information on his whereabouts.

Saddam will be found dead, says 'personal wizard' - Ireland Online, 12th August 2003.

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It's the end of the world as we know it

India: On 27th August, Mars will be the closest it has been to Earth in human history, and people with an interest in astronomy are naturally excited. But some Indian astrologers are worried that it might cause big natural or manmade disasters, even the death of top leaders.

However, scientific curiosity has not got the better of Indian astrologers and priests who are preparing for catastrophe.
We are performing the Mahamrityunjaya Jap - prayers prescribed to ward against sudden death - and the Mangal Jap against the fear of fire, Shastri of the Lakshmi Narayan temple said.
But he fatalistically added that spreading panic would not help. What is the use of panicking? What will happen will happen, and no power on Earth can stop it. Death is the final truth.
Astrologer Lachchman Das Madan too has sounded the death knell.
Planetary configurations are likely to become quite hostile to the world from July 29. Earthquakes and other phenomena are likely to cause heavy loss of life, he says, warning that a large number of countries would be affected.

Astronomers excited, seers turn to god as Mars comes closer to earth - newindpress.com, 12th August 2003.

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August 11, 2003

Watching too much anime.

Japan: Reports of alien abduction are increasing in Japan, with the same levels of faultless logic we've seen in the United States:

My bedroom was pitch black. Then, all of a sudden, I felt something pushing up through my nostrils. It was hard. And cold, like some sort of metal. It squirmed all the way through to the end of my nose. It didn't hurt at all. I told myself that I was only dreaming, but it didn't stop. It still fills like some foreign object is trapped up my nose. That's why I get these headaches that won't stop. My head hurts so much, it feels like it's going to split in two. That metallic object was bound to be some sort of magnetic signal device. Only aliens could do that sort of thing, he says.
That's not all.
When I open my eyes, my body is floating in a room so bright it almost stings when I look. Next thing I know, I've fallen back onto the bed in my apartment. I betcha that bright room is the inside of a UFO, the white-collar worker says.

The report also notes recent UFO sightings around Mount Fuji and Hokkaido. Can't sleep? Blame it on the UFO Abduction Syndrome - Mainichi Daily News WaiWai, 11th August 2003.

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May 9, 2003

Note the similarity with Lord Lucan

Iraq: There has been much excitement over a video which purports to show Saddam Hussein, his son and a couple of others in a green Mercedes.

The Saddam video is the talk of everyone in Baghdad, reported Ayesha al-Khatabi, a UFO Roundup Middle East correspondent. But what is most puzzling is the mysterious golden necklace Saddam was wearing when the Azamiyah video was made. Qusay was wearing one, as well. Since Saddam is not known for wearing jewelry with his uniforms, my sources in Iraq cannot understand why he chose to wear it that day.
Fellow correspondent Mohammed Daud al-Hayyat has a theory that the golden necklaces worn by Saddam and his son Qusay are protective devices given to them by the reputed Zarzi aliens.
(Editor's Note: According to an urban legend, a UFO crashed in Iraq either during 1991 or 1998. Saddam granted the surviving aliens sanctuary, allowing them to live in either an underground base at Zarzi or at the centuries-old citadel at Qalaat-e-Julundi in the As-Zab as-Saghir (Little Zab) river valley in northern Iraq.)
People say that when they wear these necklaces, Saddam and Qusay have only to clasp hands, and the circle of light will appear, Mohammed explained, The alien vortex will instantly transport them to safety. In this manner, they can create the circle without the Zarzi aliens being present.

On the same day, a cylindrical UFO was apparently seen dodging US fire over Baghdad. SURPRISE APPEARANCE BY SADDAM STARTLES IRAQIS - UFO Roundup, 7th May 2003. (Turn off JavaScript first).

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April 10, 2003

Synchronised suicides

Russia: Pravda notes some eerie coincidences in a number of recent suicides in the city of Severodvinsk and speculates that mystical forces are at play.

There is something mystical about an incident that happened in the Russian city of Severodvinsk in the Arkhangelsk region. Two men committed suicide on Monday, April 7, at around midday, almost at the same time. Another man tried to hang himself at around the same period of time, although his wife managed to take him down and save him.
Two women cut their wrists almost at the identical moment on April 8 (the two women did not know of each other's existence; they lived in opposite parts of the city). In addition, a young man and a young girl (who also did not know each other) tried to take poison yesterday.
Doctors have also made statements about the deaths of two men who hung themselves on Monday. The two men lived on different streets, although their apartment buildings had the same number - 12. This appears to be rather mystical as well.

In Arkhangelsk Region, Mystical Suicides Take Place - Pravda, 10th April 2003.

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April 8, 2003

Chicken it out

Chile: Vets are investigating the sudden and mysterious deaths of a number of chickens, but the farmers do not share the vets' confidence that there is a normal explanation.

Cristina Saldia and Carmen Cortes, owners of two of the farms, told La Cuarta online: It is spooky, there wasn't a drop of blood left inside the chickens. Some say it was a vampire and others that it was an alien.

Farmers blame vampire for chicken deaths - Ananova, 4th April 2003.

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April 2, 2003

Through the crystal ball

Pravda has taken a look at the astrological and other mystical coincidences surrounding the war in Iraq, and declares Four omens predict grand political, financial, economic changes in the world . One of these omens is the loss of the Columbia:

The tragedy with the Shuttle of Columbia (February 1) took place about fifty days before the launch of the army operation in Iraq. The catastrophe happened around the new moon period, like the first eclipse (December 6th of the past year). A lot of people noticed something mystical about the shuttle crash. For example, the shuttle blew up above George W. Bush's home state - Texas. The shuttle with the first Israeli astronaut on board went to pieces not far from a small Texan town of Palestine. To crown it all, the Israeli astronaut took a direct part in the operation that was conducted by the Israeli Air Force in 1981 -- to destroy a nuclear reactor in Iraq. He also participated in other actions of the Israeli aviation in the Middle East. The Russian space giant Rosaviacosmos paid attention to the fact that the shuttle did not fly to the International Space Station. Columbia was meant to conduct technical and technological experiments in space. The Russian space company did not rule out that some of those experiments were conducted according to the Pentagon's program that was connected with the operation against Iraq. Furthermore, specialists compared the shuttle's crash with the explosion of a chemical bomb on the territory of the United States, and which is desperately sought for in Iraq. Certain calculations of lunar groups of the February new moon tragedy allow to predict shocking events that might occur in the United State and in Israel during September-October of the current year, as well as between June-July of 2004, and March-April of 2005.

B. Romanov of Petersburg Forecasts states that the US Dollar will begin a catastrophic crash in July this year and that all omens show the period from August to December of 2002, from May to August of 2004 and from April to May of 2005 -- grand military, political, economic and financial changes in the world. The Mystical Side of the Iraqi War - Pravda, 2nd April 2003.

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March 26, 2003

Alien with nine lives

A UFO sighting in Norway is likely to have been the spectacular demise of an unfortunate cat which climbed an electrical pole and was electrocuted. UFO could have been electrocuted cat - Ananova, 25th March 2003.

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February 21, 2003

Spooky snipper

A clairvoyant has confirmed that an invisible genie was responsible for circumcising a 10-month old baby in Indonesia while his mother was cooking breakfast.

When I heard Riyan crying, I went straight to his bedroom and couldn't believe what my eyes saw, Riyan's mother, identified only as Ineng, told Antara. He had been circumcised.

'Genie' blamed for mysterious circumcision - IOL, 20th February 2003.

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February 18, 2003

Aura diagnosis device invented.

A Russian doctor has invented a new device based on the Kirilian effect which he claims shows the aura and allows him to diagnose various illnesses with 90% accuracy. The method, called gas-discharge visualization, uses an electromagnetic field to make biological radiation of human body surface visible.

Then, a schematic picture of a human being appears on the screen, while around it, a blue-yellow-red line corresponding with the body shape could be seen. If the line has no breaches, if it is even, the patient is absolutely healthy. Though, if there are some breaches and splashes, this signifies some pathological process in an organ.
Malakhov, a famous Russian extrasensory individual, calls changes like that karma dissemination. Some of them are latent, while others, by penetrating to the physical body, cause one or another function breach.
For example, a splash over the head witnesses energy standstill which can cause headaches. The same splash near the liver means the person has gall-stones.
According to Malakhov, people should get rid of different field pollution forms, otherwise the latter could for sure cause an illness and reduce life and creative abilities.

Device Allowing to See an Individual's Energy Field Invented - Pravda, 18th February 2003.

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February 7, 2003

Japanese Balls

Observatories in western Japan have been swamped with calls from people who saw a glowing ball in the sky on Thursday night.

Moving from west to east across the sky, the initial fireball split into three before disappearing.
It was white at first and then turned yellow. It was like watching the headlights of a truck from a long distance. I thought it must have been a meteor, but I was shocked as I'd never experienced anything like this before, said Yoshitaka Hazenoki, a member of the board of education in the Wakayama Prefecture city of Arita.

Astronomers think it was probably a meteor which fell into the Pacific Ocean. The Mainichi Shimbun also received reports from Kitakyushu of a bright red light with a tail traveling across the sky in an easterly direction. Great balls of fire, is that a UFO? - Mainichi Daily News, 7th February 2003.

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February 6, 2003

Virgin sits on the fence

A spontaneous image on a Sydney fencepost is causing quite a stir among local Catholics who think it resembles the Virgin Mary. But there is dissent - psychic Bronwyn Wilson thinks it's Mother Teresa and a British visitor called Ric said I personally think it's a lot of rubbish - it's just a fence. Virgin Mary seen on Aussie beach fence post - IOL, 6th February 2003.

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January 31, 2003

Space Nazis Must Die!

Is Saddam Hussein in cahoots with extraterrestrials? Pravda doubts it—This story seems to be absolutely unlikely. As we see, the source of the information is just a Russian colonel, some Petrokov, but still draws our attention to an article in Joseph Trainor's UFO Roundup from mid December.

According to Jack Sarfatti, on Friday night, December 6, 2002, a caller into the Art Bell (radio) show, who claims to have a connection to the military, said a UFO crashed in Iraq in recent years. The U.S. is searching for any public pretext to invade Iraq, but its greatest fear is that Saddam will reverse-engineer the crashed alien spacecraft.

The craft allegedly crashed during the Gulf War (1990-1991) or more recently (possibly December 1998). This will be Iraq's Roswell. The U.S. is currently reverse-engineering the Roswell craft and fears Saddam's scientists will catch up with or even go beyond the U.S. in one or more areas. These areas of research include zero point, over-ratio or gravimetric tenchology, which would allow for a tremendous advance, allowing Iraq to become a leading power.

Another caller explained that it was the work of Nazi engineers who had escaped to Iraq, connected with the Occult SS, Thule and the Templars. Trainor's contacts in the region came up with some interesting tales:

Mohammed Hajj al-Amdar wrote, There are some very strange stories coming out of that valley. They say Saddam has given the aliens sanctuary, so they won't be captured by the Americans. Nobody will go near the citadel of Qalaat-e-Julundi at night. They say the aliens have created 'watchdogs' for Saddam. The aliens take simple desert scorpions and use their bio-engineering to grow them to giant size. Scorpions as large as cows! They have implants to control them.

The scorpions are the perfect guards. They blend in with the desert, move swiftly and silently and zero right in on their warm-blooded prey. The luckless intruder hears a strange skittering noise on the stones. Then a pincer crushes his neck, and another (pincer) his legs, and he is slammed to the ground, and the barbed tail strikes six or seven times. Death comes quickly...

I hear that Saddam says the mission of these creatures is 'to discourage guests who have not been invited.' He has a strange sense of humor, that fellow.

Is Hussein Owner of Crashed UFO?Pravda, 31st January 2003; "Saddam's Area 51"UFO Roundup, volume 7, number 51, 17th December 2002 (Beware - broken JavaScript. Turn if off first).

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January 15, 2003

Flying falsie spotted

A mystery smudge has appeared on a photograph taken of the the Cardrona Bra Fence in New Zealand. A number of people have since reported seeing a flying saucer at around the same time the picture was taken. Bras were first attached to the fence by persons unknown a couple of years ago, and women from all over the world have sent bras to be added to it. Many share theories over bra fence 'UFO' - Stuff, 15th January 2003.

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January 6, 2003

Crying Mary painting.

Two men claim to have seen a painting of the Virgin Mary cry in a small Romanian church. The Romanian Orthodox church has sent a delegation to investigate. Thousands flock to church after Virgin Mary painting starts to cry - Ananova, 6th January 2003.
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Cilla consulted dead husband

Cilla Black has revealed that she used a medium to contact her husband Bobby to discuss her decision to quit TV show Blind Date. She had not told the clairvoyant why she wanted to see her and was told You are frightened and excited. Bobby says that is OK - you are doing the right thing. Cilla says psychic's message from Bobby said it's OK to quit - Ananova, 6th January 2003.
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January 1, 2003

Aliens in France

A French driver has been taken into custody after crashing through a roadblock. He told police I resorted to force because I saw Martians on the motorway. He was tested for alcohol, but had not been drinking. Police plan drug tests and a psychiatric evaluation. 'Motorway Martians' drive man round the bend - IOL, 31st December 2002.

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December 23, 2002

Scottish ABC

Police in Ardrossan are warning locals to be on the look out for a large cat-like animal with yellow eyes. There have been a number of sightings of unusual animals in Scotland recently. Police sight mystery creature - BBC News, 23rd December 2002.
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December 9, 2002

The Twilight Corner

Last year, I overheard an exchange between a British Midland captain and the Approach controller at Edinburgh Airport. The captain was approaching over the Firth of Forth and could see a light that he thought was another aircraft close to his. Air Traffic Control could neither see the other aircraft, nor did it show up on the radar. The captain declared an Airprox and I awaited the incident's appearance in the CAA Airproximity Reports.

It never showed up.

Now the Anglo Scottish UFO Research Agency (ASUFORA), a group which investigates the UFO and Abduction Phenomena in Scotland, reports a huge response to its request for information about UFO sightings in Fife. Locations of the newly-reported sightings include Burntisland and Kirkcaldy. Fife UFO Witnesses Respond to Appeal - Evening Telegraph (Dundee), 9th December 2002.

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November 26, 2002

I said 'topless', not 'headless'

The ghost of a long-dead dancer, or maybe a prohibition-era gangster, is haunting a New Jersey strip club.

Club workers also say the ghosts have filled the club with more boo than boobs - by moving around beer bottles, tossing the bar's soda gun in the air and brushing up against people (although none of the dancers, yet).

The club has brought in a 'ghostbuster' who says she's noticed the ghost peeping on private lap dances. Live Nude Ghouls! - New York Post, November 25th 2002.

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November 25, 2002

Buttered guru

Devotees of Kalki Bhagavan have flocked to a house to see ghee and honey miraculously seeping out of a portrait of the Bhagavan.

Chandrashekar and his wife Sheela, residents of Vijayapura, claimed that ghee began trickling out of the photograph on Saturday morning. News spread like wild fire and hundreds of people rushed to the house to see the miracle. When their number grew uncontrollable, the police intervened to regulate the mob. When The Times of India paid a visit, and asked the inmates wipe out the ghee to see how fresh ghee begins to ooze out, the devotees refused. Instead, they claimed that ghee and honey oozing out of the photograph, and kumkum falling from it were common happenings.

Ghee 'oozes' out of Kalki photo - Times of India, November 25th 2002.

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November 14, 2002

This is my body...

Allah and Om regularly appear in aubergines, but in Bangalore, Jesus prefers chapattis.

Sheela Anthony, a staunch follower of Jesus, came home after offering Friday prayers at a church and prepared chapatis for her kids. The children refused to eat one of them as it was burnt. After looking at it carefully, she found an emblem of Jesus on the burnt part.

The holy object has been placed on display at the Renewal Retreat Center. Jesus, it's a chapati! - Times of India, November 14th 2002.

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November 8, 2002

People take drugs at Stonehenge

Pravda is getting back to normal after the theatre seige. For example, did you know that Stonehenge is haunted by UFOs?

There is another even more fantastic phenomenon. Once, a group of people heard some strange sounds from the direction of the stones. These people immediately left, but the strange sound went up into the sky with a buzzing. Then, these people saw something resembling a huge wheel of fire, turning as it flew up into the sky. Later, after they returned home, they saw a female figure dressed in yellow clothes. The woman's hair was long, and her coiffure resembled an ancient Egyptian one. This even gave them the impression that they witnessed a struggle between good and the evil.

Stonehenge: Alternative View - Pravda, November 7th 2002.

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November 7, 2002

TV company questions phenomenon. Believers unhappy.

Three Thai MPs - Pongpan Sunthornchai, Thewarit Nikornthes and Prasit Chanthathong - have issued a challenge to TV station iTV - prove its claim the Naga fireballs are a fraud, not a natural phenomenon, or face a billion-baht lawsuit.

Local residents have long believed the fireballs -- known as Bang Fai Phaya Nark -- are emitted by Naga, a mythical serpant, in a gesture of homage to the Lord Buddha. They are seen regularly each year around the end of Buddhist Lent and attract hordes of tourists.
iTV reported the fireballs were orchestrated by Lao soldiers on the opposite side of the river bank shooting tracer rounds into the air from AK47 rifles.

Pongpan Sunthornchai complained that the documentary portrayed the people of Hong Khai as fools and frauds.

Hundreds of protesters gathered at a ceremony in Nong Khai on Tuesday to curse iTV over the programme. They also laid funeral wreaths and demanded provincial authorities take legal action against the television station.

iTV to prove claims or face huge lawsuit - , November 7th 2002.

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October 27, 2002

We welcome careful drivers

Villagers in Herefordshire blame the ghost of someone who died in an accident 60 years ago for a local black spot. A psychic has reassured them that no-one will die at the spot, scene of 26 accidents in the last 18 months. 'Ghost mystery' of accident black spot - BBC News, October 26th 2002.

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October 25, 2002

Ghoulies and Ghosties

Night watchmen at a Botswanan primary school are threatening to resign over things that go bump in the night:

Maposa told the audience that his men, who were now refusing to be posted at the school, said the invisible creatures, which they suspect to be 'tokolosi', manifested themselves in the form of little human beings, adding that some times they looked like a snake.
He said he had been receiving reports of persistent tokoloshi activity at the school from his charges since 1999, adding that such objects often whistled, cried like a baby, threw stones on the roof of classrooms and cut and restored power.

Masunga guard resigns over 'mystery of night creatures' - Daily News, October 25th 2002.

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Evidence of work in Liverpool

An enigmatic network of tunnels recently opened to the public in Liverpool might have been built as a shelter from Armageddon. The tunnels were built in the early part of the 19th century by reclusive tobacco tycoon Joseph Williamson.

Another story puts the tycoon as a member of an extreme religious sect that believed that Armageddon was on the way.
The tunnels therefore were a place of sanctuary for Williamson and for fellow believers to flee to and emerge from to start a new city once God had wreaked his vengeance on the world.

Another possibility is that it was all just an early job-creation scheme. The enigma of Liverpool's labyrinth - BBC News, October 25th 2002.

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It must've been Charlie Chaplin then

Lot 666 has been withdrawn from a Shrewsbury auction after the Hitler figurine proved to be a fake. Jeremy Lamond, of auctioneers Halls Fine Art said It appears that the lot number 666 given to the figure was wholly appropriate. Who did you think you'd kid with Mr Hitler? - Shropshire Star, October 24th 2002.

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October 22, 2002

Blue Monday

A statue of the goddess Lakshmi has mysteriously changed colour in Kolkata.

Deep Ghosh, a trader in fish fodder, and his wife Rita had sat down for dinner on Sunday night at their Chetla home, when they noticed something rather strange. The idol of Goddess Lakshmi had changed colour and acquired a distinctive greenish hue. If this was not enough, by Monday morning, the Ghosh family was astounded -- the image has turned blue. The news of "Lakshmi turning into Kali" spread like wildfire among the neighbours and residents living nearby. By evening there were large queues of faithfuls outside Ghosh's home on 85 Chetla Road, to witness this miracle.

Police investigators think a chemical reaction, possibly associated with a gas cylinder in the same room, is the cause. 'Miracle' in city: Lakshmi idol changes colour - The Times of India, October 22nd 2002.

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October 11, 2002

Be careful what you ask for

God has granted a Nigerian pastor her wish in dramatic and public fashion. Pastor Pricilla C Emeh, of the Unique Women on Fire for Jesus Fellowship International, was conducting a service in the Gambia and gave a sermon on Colossians 3:1-4 which advise believers to set their eyes on things above - on spiritual things in heaven where Christ is. Shortly after telling the congregation my desire is to sit where Jesus sat, she heaved, collapsed and died in front of them. Pastor dies in pulpit - The Daily Observer (via allAfrica.com), October 8th 2002.

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October 4, 2002

My Wife Was a Witch

Pravda has a really strange account of a man and his magic-using wife:

I remember a more interesting incident. When Ayra was taking a shower, she incidentally broke her favorite china cup. She did not actually break it. She hit it with her elbow, and when the cup was falling down on the floor, she 'caught' it with her eyes. The cup stopped its fast falling, it turned over and landed on the stone floor softly, like a leaf. There was not even a crack on it.

My Wife Was a Witch - Pravda, October 3rd 2002.

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September 24, 2002

Kew circle

A crop circle has appeared in a wheat field at London's Kew Gardens. The flower-shaped formation appeared overnight on Sunday. Crop circle drives botanists round the bend - IOL, September 23rd 2002.

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September 16, 2002

Europe saved by aliens

Half of Europe would no longer exist if UFOs hadn't stopped an even worse disaster at Chernobyl, according to Pravda.

When troublesome events started to occur, some people saw a spaceship hovering above the fourth generating unit of the Chernobyl plant. Eyewitnesses say that an UFO was there for six hours and that hundreds of people saw it. People started writing about it only two years after the catastrophe. Of course, such information appeared in magazines on ufology. As it is generally believed, serious people don't read such magazines and journals.
Here is what Mikhail Varitsky had to say: I and other people from my team went to the site of the blast at night. We saw a ball of fire, and it was slowly flying in the sky. I think the ball was six or eight meters in diameter. Then, we saw two rays of crimson light stretching towards the fourth unit. The object was some 300 meters from the reactor. The event lasted for about three minutes. The lights of the object went out and it flew away in the northwestern direction.
The UFO brought the radiation level down. The level was decreased almost four times. This probably prevented a nuclear blast.

They apparently came back three years later to check the environmental damage. UFO prevents blast at Chernobyl nuclear plant - Pravda, September 16th 2002 (thanks, Charlie).

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Holy leaky roof

Hundreds of devotees have flocked to the Rajinder Surji Mandir - a Hindu temple - in Chickpet to have a look at a fluid seeping out of the roof in tiny droplets.

The devotees who virtually blocked the narrow lanes insisted that it was nothing short of divine providence that had sent the kesri fluid.

A similar brownish liquid appeared at the same temple two years ago. `Kesri fluid miracle' at Chickpet temple - The Times of India, September 15th 2002.

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September 15, 2002

Aliens invade Israel

It's bad enough when your neighbours want to drive you into the sea, but people in certain parts of Israel have to deal with aggressive aliens as well.

Residents of the towns of Kadima and Rishon Letzion have reported numerous sightings of UFOs in the spring of 1993. Some people have even claimed that UFOs have landed on their lawns. Circles were found on the landing sites, and ufologists discovered silver-colored metal pieces or an oil-like red in the circles.

Some witnesses report seeing the craft's tall, bald-headed occupants, and they haven't come in peace!

Hanna Sameh from the settlement of Burgatu (two miles from Kadima) was doing some housework in the kitchen. All of a sudden, she heard her dog barking very loudly. The woman could see the dog in the window, and she did not believe her eyes. The dog was raised in the air; then it flew by the window and slammed into a wall. Hanna opened the door in order to see what was happening outside. When she stepped out of her house, she could not take another step further. She saw a tall, bald man. The man was gazing at her pickup truck. What have you done to my dog? asked the woman. It was bothering me, as you are now. I can do the same to you; get out of here answered the weird stranger.

Other incidents include the deaths of all the domestic animals in Moshe Poret, including a flock of sheep whose corpse did not decay for four months, and the mysterious illness of a witness in a small village near Rishon Letzion. The aliens have also been hyponotising drivers and reading their minds. Dozens of such incidents have been reported in Israel since 1993. There is the impression that aliens have a plan for Israel. However, no one knows the purpose of their activity. Israel occupied by aliens - Pravda, September 13th 2002.

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September 14, 2002

Russian invents flying saucer

A Russian inventor is looking for $15 million in venture capital to develop a five seater Diskolyot, or flying saucer. The means of generating lift is unconventional and covered by a Russian patent, but Yuri Bezrukov is keeping the details secret as he can't afford an international patent.

Bezrukov hasn't tested a life-size model because of finances, but a smaller electric-powered model he made in 1999 did lift 20 centimeters (8 inches) into the air, he says.
There is a principle of likeness in science, Bezrukov says. If a small one took off, then a larger one will, too.
The flying saucer is designed to be six meters long and fly at a speed of 700 kilometers per hour (437 mph) using two 250-horsepower engines. The price tag for each saucer would be $120,000.

He plans to produce 786 flying saucers per year at the Progress military aviation plant in Arseniev. Russian inventor peddles "flying saucer" at APEC mart - Vladivostok News, September 12th 2002.

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August 18, 2002

Elvis statue weeps

A plaster bust of Elvis Presley wept on the 25th anniversary of the singer's death, according to its Dutch owner. Toon Nieuwenhuisen, professional Elvis impersonator and spiritualist medium, said the tears started at 10am and tasted salty. The statue has apparently cried on several occasions during the past five years. 'Saint' Elvis bust weeps salty tears - IOL, August 16th 2002.

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August 13, 2002

Strange deaths in India

Seven people have died in Uttar Pradesh of mysterious injuries which locals blame on UFOs- in this case flying spheres with flashing blue and red lights.

Raghuraj Pal, whose neighbour Ramji Pal died recently in Shanwa, said: A mysterious flying object attacked him in the night. His stomach was ripped open. He died two days later.

More prosaic explanations include mass hysteria in which the victims unconsciously inure themselves, and a particular type of insect which leaves 9cm bite marks.

Still in India, eight people were killed and fifteen injured during a procession in honour of a local goddess in Hyderabad. A tractor had been converted into a tall chariot for the occasion and the devotees were electrocuted when it hit high tension electricity cables.

At least seven dead in reported UFO attacks in IndiaAnanova, August 12th 2002. 8 electrocuted during religious festival; 15 hurt - Daily Pioneer, August 13th 2002.

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August 11, 2002

Raelian circles

More and more crop formations look like the Raelian logo, according to the Raelian Movement.

The Raelians consider some crop circles to be a passive communication confirming the messages given to their founder "RAEL" on Dec 13th 1973 during a face-to-face encounter with a human being from another planet.

The beings asked Rael to build an embassy where they could land and meet.

RAEL was given the specific dimensions of this embassy. Remarkably, a pictogram of the embassy appeared in Wiltshire, England in August of 1990.
This most recent crop circle is the 10th in a series of crop circles that have appeared resembling the Raelian logo in the past few years.
On August 21st 2001, two of the most intricate crop formations appeared alongside Chilbolton (Hampshire) Radio Observatory - the elaborate 3 dimensional "face" and the extraordinary binary code. This "reply" to the 1974 Arecibo radio transmission, and the message contained within, is of the utmost significance. Like the other formations, the complexity rules out any possibility of a manmade hoax.

The current Raelian logo is a Star of David with swirls going in to the centre. The popularity of six-sided formations among circlemakers is, of course, nothing to do with the ease of creating six-fold geometry with nothing more than a length of rope. Crop Circles Reveal "Signs" To Raelians - Raelian Movement press release (via Scoop), August 8th 2002.

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August 9, 2002

Pretty pictures

On final approach into Luton Airport on Monday afternoon, I saw this rather impressive work of art.

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August 4, 2002

Strange panic in Zimbabwe

The headmaster of an Anglican school in Mhondoro, Zimbabwe, has fled after parents alleged he owned invisible goblins which assault and sexually harass female pupils and staff. An anonymous teacher at St. Mark's Secondary School told the National News:

I witnessed one incident when a student went into a trance. He was demanding meat, threatening that after finishing with the students, the spirits would attack the teachers next. We are living in fear here.

The panic started about six weeks ago:

The mysterious incidents started about six weeks ago when students complained of being harassed by mysterious beings during the night, believed to be goblins,known in Shona as zvikwambo, mubobobo or as tokoloshe in Zulu.
About 30 students have been victims of the attacks and we can't bear spending another night at this haunted place, said a student.
A friend of mine was bitten on the arm after she wrestled with a ghost which wanted to sleep with her, she said.

The school's Scripture Union has been quick to take advantage of the situation, using the alleged incidents to lure vulnerable young people to their prayer meetings with hopes of exorcism. Headmaster flees as hysteria grips school - National News, July 30th 2002.

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July 10, 2002

The bottom line

A blind clairvoyant in Germany has pioneered a new technique - buttock reading.

The 39-year-old, who's been blind since he was three, says the bottom is more "intense" than the hand.
He says a reading can give information about his clients' personalities as well as their future wealth, happiness and health.

Psychic 'reads people's futures by feeling naked buttocks' - Ananova, July 9th 2002.

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July 2, 2002

Curse of the dinosaurs

Five women have been exorcised by a mor phii, a Thai traditional healer, after they collapsed during a visit to a dinosaur fossil site. A week ago, 15 students collapsed at the same site.

(Professor Panya Lertkrai, of Rajabaht Institut) said old people nearby believed supernatural powers were present at the camping site.
They could have been upset by the students' behaviour. Some might have taken dinosaur remains home he said.
To make everyone feel better he and the students would return to the camping site and ask the guardian spirits there for forgiveness.
Local villagers said the cave was a former communist base and a burial site for those killed in the government crackdown. It could have been the work of those spirits one villager said.

5 collapse on visit to dinosaur fossil site - Bangkok Post, July 2nd 2002.

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June 23, 2002

Aliens prefer Scotland

Scotland is the UFO capital of Europe. According to a VisitScotland survey published tomorrow, Scotland had 300 UFO sightings each year, more than four times as many as second and third places France and Italy. Passing UFOs make beeline for Scotland - The Observer, June 23rd 2002.

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May 1, 2002

Changing Tombs

A famous ghost is delighted with plans to renovate a 15th century chapel near Preston according to Spiritualist medium Suzanne Burton. The White Lady at Samlesbury Hall is believed to be the spirit of Lady Dorothy who killed herself in the 16th century after her lover was murdered by her brother. Her family were Roman Catholics who considered the Protestant knight an unsuitable match. Keeping up appearances at ghost lady's manor - Lancashire Evening Post, April 29th 2002.

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April 17, 2002

He didn't see it coming.

A Scottish radio station has closed one of its studios, blaming ghosts for attacks on presenters and technical faults. One of the victims, astrologer Frank Pilkington offered to exorcise the studio after he received mysterious scratches on his arm, but Radio Clyde bosses plan to turn the studio back into a storeroom and build a new facility elsewhere. Ghosts force Clyde to close studio - Sunday Mail, not dated (probably April 14th 2002).

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April 14, 2002

Haunted Knickers

The owner of a Margate sex shop plans to bring in a psychic to deal with some untidy ghosts. The restless spirits are thought to be those of prostitutes from a brothel which formerly stood on the site. Most nights, they throw knickers and bras all over the shop floor. As the owner, Alan Butler, put it, It's like an orgy's taken place. Sex shop 'haunted by messy prostitutes' ghosts' - Ananova, April 14th 2002.

Posted by Feòrag in Forteana at 12:24 | View blog reactions

April 5, 2002

Pub protects against spirits

A pub landlord in Suffolk has insured his premises against ghosts. The Royal Falcon Hotel in Lowestoft is next to a graveyard and is reputedly haunted by a monk who committed suicide. Customers can now drink safely knowing that up to £1 million will be paid out if they are killed or suffer permanent disability caused by ghosts, poltergeists or other abnormal phenomena on the premises;. Landlord insures against ghosts harming drinkers - Ananova, April 4th 2002.

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March 22, 2002

A Grave Mistake.

The late Communist leader, Marshall Tito, is one of a group of ghosts said to be haunting a block of flats in what used to be Yugoslavia. The ghosts are making weird noises in the night and Tito's image has appeared on the bedroom wall in one flat. The block is built on a First World War military graveyard in Nis, Serbia. Grave twist for tenants - Edinburgh Evening News, March 22nd 2002.

Posted by Feòrag in Forteana at 22:56 | View blog reactions

March 12, 2002

Jesus in strange places

Forget the holy aubergines or the concrete simulacrum featured in the latest Fortean Times, here's the face of Jesus on a stretch waterproof plaster:

In his hands was a blood stained plastic bandage strip that had been covering a small scrape on the knee of his young niece. When he showed me the blood stain I could hardly believe what I was seeing! The blood stain on the bandage clearly showed the image of Jesus Christ!

They'll even sell you a postcard. Apparition of Jesus - The Vision.

Even though it's a little distorted, the image isn't too bad. These Hubble Space Telescope images offered as proof of the existence of God are much harder to make out, and it would be impolite to accuse the author of special pleading. If you can't see it, it's because you don't believe: this page and it's contents are all biased toward God the creator. Due to variations in personal beliefs, you may or may not see any value in the information.

Spritual eye sight is also required to see the images of Jesus, Mary and angels in these photographs: Christ in the clouds.

Posted by Feòrag in Forteana at 22:36 | Comments (1) | View blog reactions

Worth a flutter

Bookies William Hill have slashed the odds on proof being found that Nessie exists from 500-1 to 250-1. The change in odds comes after the discovery of a spectacular three and a half minute video of an unidentifiable creature in Loch Ness. The tape was recorded in 2000 by a Glasgow man. William Hill halve odds on Nessie existing, Ananova March 12th 2002.

Posted by Feòrag in Forteana at 22:34 | View blog reactions

March 2, 2002


A group of scientists have mapped the effects of meditation with the aid of a group of Buddhist monks. By tracing the path of a radioactive tracer in the bloodstream of a deep meditator, they created some interesting brain scans. Meditation mapped in monks, BBC News March 1st 2002.

Posted by Feòrag in Forteana at 22:19 | View blog reactions

January 14, 2002

Here kitty, kitty.

An Aberdeenshire woman has been bitten by a large, black cat leaving marks down her left thigh. The sleek, black beastie was about the size of a labrador dog, but with the shape and motion of a cat. There have been a number of big cat sightings in the area, and experts have suggested they are a hybrid between a wildcat and a domestic cat. Big cat fear as beast bites woman, Aberdeen Press and Journal, 14th January 2002. (The Press and Journal story has now expired, so here's Ananova's version).

Posted by Feòrag in Forteana at 19:18 | View blog reactions

January 9, 2002

404 Sysop not found

Oh dear, looks like the Fortean Times web site has been cracked by some illiterate script kiddie. Follow the link, or (once they've fixed it) check out this screenshot. I went to a non-existent page on the site as well, and the 404 message told me something which will surprise precisely nobody whatsoever: the idiots were using Microsoft IIS instead of a secure and reliable web server.

Posted by Feòrag in Forteana at 19:09 | View blog reactions