The Presses Roll -- The Air Force Shrugs
The Grudge Report was supposedly not for general distribution. A few copies were sent to the Air Force Press Desk in the Pentagon and reporters and writers could come in and read it. But a good many
copies did get into circulation. The Air Force Press Room wasn't the best place to sit and study a 600-page report, and a quick glance at the report showed that it required some study--if no more
than to find out what the authors were trying to prove--so several dozen copies got into circulation. I know that these "liberated" copies of the Grudge Report had been thoroughly studied because
nearly every writer who came to ATIC during the time that I was in charge of Project Blue Book carried a copy.
Since the press had some questions about the motives behind releasing the Grudge Report, it received very little publicity while the writers put out feelers. Consequently in early 1950 you didn't
read much about flying saucers.
Evidently certain people in the Air Force thought this lull in publicity meant that the UFO's had finally died because Project Grudge was junked. All the project files, hundreds of pounds of reports,
memos, photos, sketches, and other assorted bits of paper were unceremoniously yanked out of their filing cabinets, tied up with string, and chucked into an old storage case. I would guess that many
reports ended up as "souvenirs" because a year later, when I exhumed these files, there were a lot of reports missing.
About this time the official Air Force UFO project had one last post- death muscular spasm. The last bundle of reports had just landed on top of the pile in the storage case when ATIC received a
letter from the Director of Intelligence of the Air Force. In official language it said, "What gives?" There had been no order to end Project Grudge. The answer went back that Project Grudge had not
been disbanded; the project functions had been transferred and it was no longer a " special" project. From now on UFO reports would be processed through normal intelligence channels along with other
To show good faith ATIC requested permission to issue a new Air Force-wide bulletin which was duly mimeographed and disseminated. In essence it said that Air Force Headquarters had directed ATIC to
continue to collect and evaluate reports of unidentified flying objects. It went on to explain that most UFO reports were trash. It pointed out the findings of the Grudge Report in