Monday, March 12, 2012

Into Thin Air

Kevin Coolidge

I find myself missing him. Folks might have known him as Lefty, on account he lost half of his right hand during the war, but to me he was always just the big, jovial guy I called Uncle Chuck. Quick with a joke, and slow to anger, but he’d suddenly grow serious and quiet when I asked about his hand. I had to know. I couldn’t help but stare. I’d never seen anything like it.

It wasn’t just that Chuck was Dad’s oldest brother, but still looked like his old Navy photos. I’d hear people crack jokes about bargains with the devil. He was a grownup, and that made him old to me. His hand, it was just short of where his knuckles should be, and sometimes I swear I could see fingers twitching, but they were never there. I miss him. He’s not dead. He’s just gone, at least for now…

On July 22, 1943, a secret experiment by the U.S. Navy attempted to cloak the USS Eldridge. Their goal was to make the destroyer escort undetectable to enemy radar. The science said it might be accomplished with the use of large electrical generators to bend light around the ship, making it invisible.

During the first test, a “greenish fog” surrounded the ship and rendered the Eldridge almost completely invisible. Many of the crew complained of nausea, and when the ship reappeared, some sailors were embedded in the metal structures of the ship. One sailor is said to have had his hand embedded in the steel hull.

The experiment was altered, and on October 28, 1943, the objective was solely to make the Eldridge invisible to radar. When the equipment was turned on, she vanished in a flash of blue light and teleported to Norfolk, Virginia – over 200 miles away. When she disappeared she was in full view of the SS Andrew Furuseth in the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard. Many of the crew suffered severe side effects—such as mental disorders—or simply vanished.

Of course the U.S. Navy maintains no such experiment occurred. It contradicts the laws of physics. There isn’t actually a Unified Field Theory, at least not one that exists in the textbooks. Though it’s rumored that Nikola Tesla had completed one shortly before his death earlier in January of 1943, we may never know. The United States Alien Property Custodian impounded his papers, even though Tesla was a naturalized citizen.

Is the Philadelphia Experiment a far-reaching conspiracy? Does the U.S. government control the weather with HAARP? Did NASA hide evidence of a face on Mars? You don’t have to be a conspiracy theorist to enjoy the books by Jon E. Lewis, a writer and a historian.

We live in an age of conspiracy and cover-up. Was it a lone shooter on that grassy knoll? Was princess Diana murdered? Who is the war on terror really against? Jon E. Lewis explores these questions in The Mammoth Book of Cover-ups and the follow up, The Mammoth Book of Conspiracies. Some of these theories skirt along the edge of madness and some raise real issues about the abuse of power.

Don’t believe everything you are told. Search for the facts. Question everything. The truth is really out there, and so is my Uncle Chuck…

Men in Black? Bible Code? Or are you just being paranoid? Miss a past column? There’s no conspiracy here. Seek the answers and past columns at our blog Be sure to catch Hobo’s new book on the massive dog cover up called “Man’s Best Friend or Canine Killer?” Be sure to buy it before you bring home that cute puppy…