UFO researcher and author Richard Dolan writes: For the past several months, an intense controversy has been brewing in various UFO newsgroups and venues over a Brazilian abduction case that is currently under investigation by Linda Moulton Howe?I have a great deal of respect for the integrity and courage that Linda Howe has displayed in her many years of research into topics that the mainstream of our society typically treats with scorn.
There have been claims by some that the case she is investigating is a hoax. These claims originated with one very interested Brazilian person, A. J. Gevaerd, and have now been taken up by a few others. More recently, there are even more serious claims, that Linda has misrepresented crucial evidence in the case. Despite the consistently histrionic tone of most of these allegations, the questionable motives and background of the people involved, and especially the curious nature of the supposed evidence of fakery, it has amazed me that so many people who profess to be serious in their study of “ufology” seem to have jumped on the bandwagon. Whether this is a lemming effect, or sheer bitterness and vindictiveness, or something worse I can’t tell.
In any case, I want to bring to the attention of all interested parties that Linda Howe has updated her website to discuss the case and the evidence. In particular, you can go directly to the updated information. Linda’s presentation argues that there are NOT “two bed sheets” involved in this case, something that has been alleged by others in order to indicate a hoax. The updated site also illuminating interview discussing the main person in this case, Urandir Oliveira, as well as the main person that has been alleging a hoax, Gevaerd. Throughout, Linda has demonstrated remarkable restraint in her treatment of those who are attacking her. I firmly believe that this restraint is entirely due to her civility and commitment to discussing the case itself, and to avoid getting dragged into personality disputes.
It must be emphasized that Linda Howe has ceaselessly done the homework to investigate this case objectively and have it subjected to every possible scientific analysis. Let those who would debunk this case first confront the analysis of biophysicist Professor W.C. Levengood of Michigan, Professor Herbert J. Barndt, Director of the Grundy Testing Laboratory, School of Textiles and Materials Technology at Philadelphia University, and Professor Art Johnson, Professor of Geology, University of Pennsylvania. I have noticed in all of this controversy that no one has bothered to deal with the analysis that these scientists have conducted. Perhaps there is a good reason for this. This statement from Professor Johnson, by itself, is cause to follow up on this highly anomalous case: “You have presented us with objects that are well outside the things we have encountered before, outside our experience.”
As to whether the burning of the controversial bedsheets could have been effected by a hot iron (as argued by Phyllis Budinger), Professor Barndt has stated definitively: “No. If it was done with an iron or a soldering iron, the polyester threads would be flattened … So it was some other heat source,” one that would not come in physical contact with, or put weight on, the fabrics. “What that is, we don’t know.” If Phyllis Budinger seriously wishes to dispute this, let her take it up with Dr. Barndt.
Whatever the result of this case is, it must always come down to the science. As the case stands currently, the science has given more than ample cause to consider this a serious case, worthy of followup.
As for the claim that this is some sort of cult case, it is clearly the responsibility of those making such claims to provide clear evidence ? and by this we must say evidence that does not come out of Adobe Photoshop ? that indicates such activity. Without access to real facts, claims of a Brazilian Jonestown are hysterical, irresponsible, and self-aggrandizing.
Finally, it must be said that the spectacle of this incredible attack on Linda Howe that has been going on for so long ? this should be deeply disturbing to any serious and independent UFO researcher. That one person could so successfully drum up such a campaign of vilification against someone who has made more contributions to this field than most of us, that so many could join in, this should give pause to even the most stout-hearted, to say nothing of make one wonder just who we are dealing with. Ask yourself: how will independent UFO research be possible under these conditions?
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