Sep 17, 07
Conspiracy nuts & alien humorists.
Read in November, 2004
I love books like this. This nonfiction work is written by Col. Philip J. Corso, former Army intelligence officer, and it comes with a forward by Senator Strom Thurmond claiming that Corso is in no way a nut, and is a reliable hero that people should trust. Of course, when the forward was written, Thurmond was old enough to have been completely senile, so maybe Corso's credibility is still in question. Thurmond's as well, but that's a different book review and an unfair digression. Regardless, Corso claims that he was tasked by no less than President Truman with salvaging alien technology from the wreck at Roswell, then reverse engineer that technology and seed it into American industry for the benefit of our economy and our military. As a result, the book claims, everything from microwave ovens to night vision goggles, from tiny computer processors to aircraft design, from advanced metals to various household appliances were all a result of salvaged alien technology. The list of companies Corso claims benefited from this project include Hughes Aircraft (the biggest military contractor at the time), IBM, Bell Labs, Dow and dozens of others. There's limited documentation to support many of Corso's claims, though advocates would point out that the limit on supportive information is the result of a government cover-up not Corso's manipulation, and that Corso does, in fact, present some interesting documentation in the book. Though the footnotes are limited, there are some photocopies of supposed military documentation of these events at the end of the book. Corso has a mixed reputation and is known as somewhat of an extremist conspiracy theorist, with ties to numerous conspiracy theories ranging from Roswell to J.F.K.'s assassination. The thing is, if you take this book for what it is, or isn't, and don't take it too seriously, it really is a fun read and an interesting speculation on the "maybes" and "what if?"s of the famous Roswell incident. More interesting - assuming Corso is making all this up, what the heck is he really up to, and how did Strom Thurmond's notoriously astute handlers think a character reference from him would be a good idea for anyone involved in this book?