Thursday, May 11, 2017

Empirical evidence in the Richard Höglund case

In the American magazine UFO Report 1977, John Keel wrote a very interesting article, The Contactee Key, presenting some of his conclusions and advice from several years of field investigation. He noted the great mistake made by the early UFO organizations, APRO and NICAP,  in regarding all contactees as hoaxers and consequently missing a lot of valuable data: ”Had these groups applied some fundamental logic to the situation they might have realized their approach was wrong… By publicly dissociating themselves from the contactees, the early ufologists left this fruitful aspect entirely in the hands of the government.” (UFO-Report, vol. 4, no. 4, August 1997).

John Keel (in the middle) during his visit to Sweden 1976

What John Keel discovered during his field investigations was that some contactees were actually genuine and did encounter visitors from somewhere and that this aspect of the UFO enigma required a different approach than ordinary mainstream UFO research. Jacques Vallee, in his Messengers of Deception, let the character Major Murphy define this problem facing ufologists: ”What makes you think UFOs are a scientific problem?... science has certain rules. For example it has to assume that the phenomenon it is observing is natural in origin rather than artificial and possibly biased. Now, the UFO phenomenon could be controlled by alien beings. If it is, added the Major, then the study of it doesn´t belong in science. It belongs in Intelligence. Meaning counter espionage.” (p. 68).

During my many years of contactee investigation I discovered that in a few physcial contactee cases there was independent or circumstial evidence that the contactee really was meeting ”strangers”, whoever they were. Lou Zinsstag found this out regarding George Adamski and ufologist Ted Bloecher changed his mind on contactees when he discovered a similar situation in the Woodrow Derenberger case.

Based on these experiences what I find rather frustrating in mainstream UFO research, at least in Sweden,  is the large amount of time spent by field investigators on ordinary UFO observations and misidentifications. In my view a complete waste of time and money that will never solve the UFO enigma. I have for years tried, without much success, to convince active ufologists in Sweden to forget misidentifications and reports with very little empirical data and concentrate one hundred percent on close encounters and contact cases. My advice is as ever, try to be more of a UFO detective or intelligence agent than investigator of lights in the sky.

One of the most intriguing and complicated UFO contacts I have ever investigated is the Richard Höglund case, summarized by Timothy Good in his latest book Earth - An Alien Enterprise. I will not repeat the summary here as you can find the case here and on several of my blog entries. But I would like to give a few details of the circumstancial evidence indicating a genuine contact.

Richard Höglund

1.  Disappearance of kidney stones.
Richard claimed to have been healed from his kidney troubles with an instrument placed on his back during the first contact on December 9, 1965. The pain left him instantly when the alien visitor held an instrument to his back. There were x-rays taken both before and after this incident. I received written statements from three medical doctors involved with the x-rays. They confirmed that no stone was visible on the plates after December 9, 1965, but there is a possibility that the stones could have left the body in a natural way. According to one of the doctors, Karl Erik Swenson,  the later plates after the incident seems to indicate a man who never had any kidney stones.

Karl Erik Swenson M.D. Richard´s physician

2. Telephone interference
Two of Richard´s friends Gösta and Sture Johansson many times experienced strange telephone problems talking to Richard. Often when Gösta Johansson called Richard on the phone, the line was broken and a harsh voice simply said ”it is wrong”, always the same voice. Sometimes when talking on the phone a clicking sound was heard and then Richard became very nervous and wanted to end the conversation. Once the clicking sounds could be heard after the conversation had ended and the phone was dead. Then a call came and when Gösta answered the same voice only said ”it is wrong”. Gösta Johansson was convinced that Richard´s phone was tapped.

Gösta Johansson 1986

3. Invisible entities
Once on the Bahamas Richard was sitting on a bench talking with one of his alien visitors. Some people are passing by and suddenly Richard find himself talking aloud alone and the visitor is gone. He felt very embarrassed of the situation. Obviously the aliens could make themselves invisible. In the beginning of the 1970s the couple Sture and Turid Johansson become involved with Richard´s activities. On a Monday evening around midnight when the couple have gone to bed Turid is awakened by the sound of their front door opening and someone walking around with heavy steps in the apartment. Believing she has forgotten to lock the door Turid goes up only to find the door closed and no one there. She goes to bed again and then the heavy steps are heard once more, like someone is walking around in the rooms. She wakes up her husband. They look for some intruder to no avail and after a while no footsteps are heard.
During a telephone conversation with Richard a few days later Turid mention the name Var de Cartino, the name of one of the alien visitors. Richard answers: ”Yes he was here for three days and he visited you one evening and said you had a nice apartment”. Then Richard gives a detailed description of Sture and Turid´s apartment, although he had never been there.

Richard Höglund in Nassau, Bahamas

4. Travels
Richard was often gone from home, sometimes for months. He claimed that the space people picked him up in their craft, often visiting the base hidden in the Bahamas and also Mexico. Richard complained once to Gösta Johansson that he was not allowed by his contacts to visit the Olympic Games in Mexico in 1968. Gösta noticed that sometimes in the middle of the Winter he found Richard with a deep suntan when he returned to Sweden. Richard was a retired rock blaster with very little money. He couldn´t  have gone on regular flights around the world based on his meager income.

5. Gunvor Höglund´s Bahamas encounter
Richard´s wife Gunvor was not allowed to participate in the meetings with the alien visitors but she observed them many times when they came to their home. But once, at a restaurant in Nassau, Bahamas, she was introduced to one of Richard´s contacts: ”It was a small and crowded premise. Richard recognized one of his contacts and they came to our table. I watched this man and he looked at me.. He had a brown suit, a sort of suntan, not very tall and rather thin, a southern look in appearance. And he wasn´t very tall. My God, I thought, your suit is too large. He greeted me but we didn´t shake hands… His gaze was very intense and hypnotic. He smoked and left the rest of the cigarette on the table and then went away. I saved the cigarette butt as evidence.”

Gunvor Höglund

6. Reluctant contactee
Richard was a reluctant contactee. He was given no message but ordered to start a Peace Movement in Sweden. This failed and he was reprimanded because other contactees had succeeded in founding organizations that made a lot of money. Richard didn´t trust the alien visitors and noticed that they were not of high morals. He was actually afraid of them but felt compelled to continue working for them. From a psychological viewpoint his thoughts and reactions are interesting, speaking in favor of a genuine contact.

When investigating contactee cases like Richard Höglund it is important to be aware of different alternatives in interpretation and try to find corroborative evidence supporting the claims. In my book on the Höglund case I presented several possibilities: The contact claims as a cover story for criminal activity or espionage, a hoax for making money from gullible followers, fictional story as a result of drug abuse, mystic visionary experiences with no physical evidence, the contactee a mental case, mythmaker or fantasy prone personality. During one period Richard´s friends, Sture and Turid Johansson, speculated that because of his many travels, he was a courier in the international drug trade, but they later came to accept his contacts as genuine.

When ufologists become involved in contactee cases like this the advice and experiences of John Keel and Jacques Vallee will prove invaluable. This is a world very different from investigating and documenting misinterpretations of Venus and airplanes.