10 Times Military Jets Tried and Failed to Intercept UFOs
Are we alone in the universe? It is a question that has plagued humans ever since we learned that there are other planets beyond our own in the universe.
Statistically speaking, it would make sense for life to exist elsewhere in the universe since the universe is so vast. For example, our sun is a normal star amongst 100 billion other stars and Earth is just a regular planet amongst 1024 other planets. In the 13.8 billion years that the universe has been in existence, it seems highly possible that at least one other planet would develop life. And if just one of those life forms were intelligent there is the possibility that they would try to reach out and try to contact other intelligent life, such as human beings.
Yet, there is no definitive proof that there has ever been any other intelligent life in the history of the universe other than us. Which is what makes the following stories so fascinating, because while it is debatable if alien life even exists, let alone visited Earth, there have been many reports of unidentified flying objects in the sky for decades. Sometimes the sightings are so legitimate that action by the Air Force is taken and planes have been sent out to investigate these UFOs. In a few, even rarer cases, some jets have even encountered the UFOs and tried to intercept them. However, the UFOs have always eluded their human pursuers leaving only a mystery as to what the mysterious flying object was.
The Stephenville Lights
On January 8, 2008, residents of Stephenville, Texas spotted a large object in the sky. Some witnesses said that the UFO was as big as a football field, while others said that it was a mile long and half a mile wide and had a number of flashing lights on it. Witnesses also claimed that they saw two F-16s chased the large object that was moving at a tremendous rate of speed.
Oddly enough, The Air Force originally denied that there were any aircrafts in the area at the time. Then, they changed their story and said that they were doing exercises in the area involving 10-year-old jets. However, many residents from all walks of life, including police officers in the area, said that the UFO was definitely not something from Earth.
Backing up the claims of the UFO is the fact that the lights were recorded by people on their cell phones. The story was even picked up by major news organizations like CNN and FoxNews.
The 2004 Iran Incident
In the fall of 2004, it was made public that Iran was building a heavy water nuclear reactor near Arak. After it was revealed, American un-manned drones were spotted in the area, so Iran started flying F-4 and F-4 inceptors to do surveillance around the area. That is when the Iranians started to spot UFOs on both ground and air radar. The mysterious aircrafts had the ability to fly at the speed of Mach 10, but could also hover. Just to demonstrate how fast Mach 10 is, that is 10 times the sound of speed and the fastest human built aircraft has a maximum speed of Mach 6.25.
In November, an F-14A was flying near the nuclear plant when the pilot saw a luminous flying object. When they tried to get a lock on the object on the radar, the radar mysteriously went out. It is believed that the object was putting off an electromagnetic field that was disrupting the radar. Looking to neutralize the mysterious flying object, the pilot tried to lock a missile on it, but when he did, the UFO took off like a “meteorite” and disappeared.
One obvious explanation for the UFOs is that they were drones. However, it was spherical in shape with a greenish afterburner, and the movements and the speed were unlike any known drones.
Amazingly, this wasn’t the only time that the Islamic Republic of Iran Air Force has tried to intercept a UFO.
1976 Tehran UFO incident
At about 11:00 p.m. on September 18, 1976 a command post in Iran received four phone calls from civilians and they were reporting a light in the sky north of Tehran. It looked like a bird or a helicopter, but it was much bigger. When they realized it wasn’t a star, two F-4 Phantom II jet fighters were dispatched to investigate.
As the jets approached, certain instruments on the plane stopped working within 50 miles of the UFO. However, when the planes turned away from the UFO, the instruments started to work again. Despite this problem, one of the pilots continued to tail the UFO, which was hard to describe, other than that it was diamond shaped, as big as a Boeing 707 and it had bright flashing lights on it. The flashing lights consisted of four colors – blue, green, red, and orange and they would flash so quickly that it was hard to tell that they were flashing.
The object also had some amazing flying capabilities. For example, according to pilot Lieutenant Parviz Jafari, it flew 28 miles in the blink of an eye. Also, a smaller orb-like object came out of the bottom of the diamond shaped craft. The orb flew around Jafari’s jet, which was traveling near the speed of sound, and then it returned to the original aircraft. Then, a second orb was released and it streaked towards Jafari’s jet. He believed that he was under attack, so he readied some heat seeking missiles, but then his instruments turned off when he got a lock. Jafari considered abandoning his plane, but then the orb changed direction and returned to the mother ship.
Feeling it was unsafe to continue on, Jafari returned to the base. But as he did, another orb started chasing him. Both civilians and members of the air force saw the object and it appeared to crash in the desert. So Jafari was sent out to investigate, but he could find no evidence of the crash.
During Jafari’s debriefing, there was a member of the CIA present (Iran and the United States were allies at the time), and he made a report on the incident and the report was even sent to the White House. The briefing also said that the possible crash site was investigated, but no evidence of the UFO could be found.
The Mexican Air Force Incident
In March 2004, the Mexican Air Force was doing an anti-drug force sweep in the area around the coastal region of Campeche when they picked up 11 UFOs on the radar. Immediately, one of the pilots said, “We are not alone! This is so weird!”
What was interesting is that these UFOs were not visible to the naked eye, but when they turned on the infrared cameras, they clearly could see bright lights moving rapidly on the camera. They decided to give chase, but when they did, they found themselves surrounded by the UFOs, so they flew back to the base. When they got back, they admitted to being a little frightened because they had never encountered anything like that before.
Unlike many other UFO intercept attempts, there is some video of the incident and it was actually released to the public and it was confirmed as real by The Mexican defense ministry, but they refused to comment on what the lights possibly were.
The Belgian UFO Wave
Starting late on the night of March 30, 1990, and into the early morning hours of March 31, people in Belgium spotted strange objects flying in the sky. The lights looked like stars, but they kept changing colors. Radars even picked up the UFOs, which were described as triangular flying objects. Two F-16s were sent out to try and intercept the UFOs and they spent an hour trying to do so. They even managed to get a lock on a UFO three times on radar, but each time they did, the UFO would speed off and the lock would be lost. Another mysterious aspect was the UFOs were moving at a speed that would have been fatal to humans.
After flying around for a few hours, the mysterious objects disappeared from the sky. Substantiating the fact that this event really did happen is that there were 13,000 people who witnessed the event from the ground.
The Bentwaters-Lakenheath Incident
On the night of August 13 and the morning of the 14th, 1956, two separate radars at two different Air Force Bases in England, RAF Bentwaters and RAF Lakenheath, both in Suffolk, started picking up unusual activity. There were objects that were moving at incredible speeds, unlike any known aircraft. First, planes were sent from Bentwaters, but they didn’t encounter any UFOs. Next, Lakenheath sent some planes to search for the objects that were making the blips on the radar. One plane spotted the UFO and the pilot tried to intercept it. When he did, the UFO made a fantastic maneuver and ended up behind the plane. The pilot tried to lose the object, but was unable to shake it no matter what he did. They chased after him for about 10 minutes before he returned to the base, visibly shaken by his experience.
The Condon Committee, which was a group funded by the United States Air Force from 1966 to 1968 that investigated the possible existence of UFO said the following about the Bentwaters-Lakenheath Incident:
“In summary, this is the most puzzling and unusual case in the radar-visual files. The apparent rational, intelligent behavior of the UFO suggests a mechanical device of unknown origin as the most probable explanation of this sighting. However, in view of the inevitable fallibility of witnesses, more conventional explanations of this report cannot be entirely ruled out.”
The Washington, D.C. Jet Chase
In the summer of 1952, in the Washington, D.C. area, there were a number of UFO sightings. The most notable two were on two consecutive weekends, July 19/20, and July 26/27.
Twenty minutes before midnight on July 19, an air traffic controller at the Washington National Airport saw seven objects on his radar that were about 15 miles southwest of the city. There were no reported aircrafts in the area and the UFOS were moving erratically. They had the towers checked and discovered no problems with them. The UFOs were even seen on a different radar nearby. Also, when the air traffic controller looked in the direction of the aircrafts, he saw an orange light in the sky.
Slowly, more objects started to appear in the sky and they were even seen in the area around the White House and the Capitol Building, so the Air Force was called. At an Air Force base that was close to the airport, personnel there also confirmed seeing an orange light with a fire trailing behind it. Throughout the night, planes were sent out to intercept the UFOs, but any time they got too close, the UFOs would speed away. When the planes would return to base, the UFOs would return to the sky. This lasted until about 5:00 a.m. before the UFOs disappeared. The next day, the sightings made headlines around the country, with some newspapers proclaiming that that flying saucers visited the capital.
The following weekend, at about 8:15 on July 26, a pilot and flight attendant on a commercial plane flying into Washington saw a weird group of lights hovering above them. The lights were picked up on radar, and soon radars in the area started to pick up other UFOs in other areas around Washington. Jets were sent to intercept the UFOs, but again, any time one would get close to the UFO, they would speed away. And again, just like the week before, they stopped appearing on the radar in the early morning hours, disappearing as mysteriously as they appeared.
Washington, D.C., July 26, 2002
Oddly enough, 50 years to the day of the second Washington, D.C. sightings in 1952, there was another UFO sighting. On July 26, 2002, a doctor living near Andrews Air Force Base noticed a bright blue light traveling at a tremendous rate of speed. The bright blue light was also picked up by the Air Force and North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD). In response, two F-16s were scrambled to intercept the object that was flying in the restricted area. Witnesses on the ground said they saw the jets chase after the blue light at a high rate of speed. The witnesses even said that it appeared that one of the jets dipped its wing, as if to communicate with the UFO.
NORAD confirmed the object did appear on the radar and that two jets were sent out, but it wasn’t a UFO that they were chasing. However, they never did give an explanation as to what the blue light was.
The Thomas F. Mantell Incident
On the night of January 7, 1948, the Kentucky state patrol began getting calls from people claiming that there was a strange object flying in the sky. The callers said that the object was big, about 300 feet in diameter and it was flying slowly, heading west. The calls were sent up the chain of command and the military was contacted.
When military personnel looked out at the sky, they too saw the giant, slow moving flying object. So they sent out four F-51 Mustangs to investigate. When three of the four pilots reached 22,000 feet, they stopped climbing and pursuing the object. The fourth plane, piloted by 25-year-old Thomas F. Mantell, continued to climb, eventually reaching over 30,000 feet. Unfortunately, his plane was not able to handle the altitude and it went into a spin. It crashed and Mantell was killed.
The Air Force’s explanation for the crash was that Mantell was chasing a weather balloon, but there are people who think that this is a cover-up. For example, at least one of the pilots or personnel at the military base would have been able to recognize that it was a balloon. The second problem with the weather balloon story is the last transmission by Mantell before he went into a spin. He said, “My God, I see people in this thing!”
The Kinross Incident
When an unidentified flying object popped up on the radar at the Kinross Air Force Base near Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan on November 23, 1953, a plane was sent out to investigate it. On board that plane was Lieutenant Felix Moncla and radar man Second Lieutenant Robert L. Wilson. From the base, the ground control watched and saw the plane approach the blip on the radar. As they got closer to each other, the two radar dots became one and then the one dot shot off the radar. Moncla and Wilson never returned to the base.
A search was immediately launched by both American and Canadian forces. However, after days of searching, no trace of the plane or the men was found and their fate remains a mystery to this day. The official explanation is that the blip on the radar was a Canadian aircraft, which possibly collided with Moncla’s plane, but the Canadian government adamantly denied this. Another theory is that Moncla got vertigo and crashed the plane into Lake Superior.
The existence of UFOs, or the notion that UFOs have visited Earth, is often hotly debated between believers and skeptics. People who believe that we are not alone in the universe point to these instances, many of which were caught on radar, witnessed by people on the ground and backed up by the claims of the pilots who actually tried to intercept these UFOs, as proof that we are not alone in the universe.
One question that does linger is that if these UFOs weren’t alien life, what were they? Many times the official explanation is that the UFOs were some type of environmental phenomenon or that it was a weather balloon. Yet, these explanations do not explain the oddly shaped objects that reach speeds that humans have yet to achieve. These explanations also do not address the maneuvering ability of the UFOs or their ability to interfere with instruments like radar.
So whether they are aliens from a distant planet or some type of natural phenomenon, the cases of these UFOs remains some of the most mysterious close encounters with mysterious unidentified flying objects.
Until better explanations are available, the only thing to do is to keep watching the sky; you never know what you might see.