There was one fully documented and substantiated case of a "landing" during the flap. On August 25 two young ladies in Mosjoen, Norway, made every major
newspaper in the world when they encountered a "saucer-man." They said that they were picking berries when suddenly a dark man, with long shaggy hair,
stepped out from behind some bushes. He was friendly; he stepped right up to them and started to talk rapidly. The two young ladies could understand English but they
couldn't understand him. At first they were frightened, but his smile soon "disarmed" them. He drew a few pictures of flying saucers and pointed up in the
sky. "He was obviously trying to make a point," one of the young ladies said.
A few days later it was discovered that the man from "outer space" was a lost USAF helicopter pilot who was flying with NATO forces in Norway.
As I've always said, "Ya gotta watch those Air Force pilots-- especially those shaggy-haired ones from Brooklyn."
The reporting spread to Italy, where thousands of people in Rome saw a strange cigar-shaped object hang over the city for forty minutes. Newspapers claimed that
Italian Air Force radar had the UFO on their scopes, but as far as I could determine, this was never officially acknowledged.
In December a photograph of two UFO's over Taormina, Sicily, appeared in many newspapers. The picture showed three men standing on a bridge, with a fourth running up
with a camera. All were intently watching two disk-shaped objects. The photo looked good, but there was one flaw, the men weren't looking at the UFO's; they were
looking off to the right of them. I'm inclined to agree with Captain Hardin of Blue Book--the photographer just fouled up on his double exposure.
Sightings spread across southern Europe, and at the end of October, the Yugoslav Government expressed official interest. Belgrade newspapers said that a "
thoughtful inquiry" would be set up, since reports had come from "control tower operators, weather stations and hundreds of farmers." But the part of
the statement that swung the most weight was, "Scientists in astronomical observatories have seen these strange objects with their own eyes."
During 1954 and the early part of 1955 my friends in Europe tried to keep me up-to-date on all of the better reports, but this soon approached a full-time job. Airline
pilots saw them, radar picked them up, and military pilots chased them. The press took sides, and the controversy that had plagued the U.S. since 1947 bloomed forth in
all its confusion.
An ex-Air Chief Marshal in the RAF, Lord Dowding, went to bat for the UFO's. The Netherlands Air Chief of Staff said they can't be. Herman Oberth, the father of the
German rocket development, said that the UFO's were definitely