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Enjoy this trip down Memory Lane with Cosmic Ray! (Part-II)

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Ufology in the Sensational Seventies:  Saucers, Science, Space and Secrecy

By Dr. Raymond A. Keller, author of the international awards-winning Venus Rising book series, available on, while supplies last

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20 April 1975

End of the World Predicted

Dr. George Mendenhall, a professor of Ancient and Biblical Studies from the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, predicted that the world would come to an end by the turn of the century.  But it would not end with a global war or some momentous catastrophe.  “Rather than go with a bang,” the eminent historian noted, “it will pass away with scarcely more than a whimper.  Our world will collapse as governments stop working and lawlessness takes over.”  When interviewed by a reporter from the tabloid newspaper, the National Tattler (Chicago, Illinois), for an article that appeared in the 20 April 1975 issue of that periodical, the professor explained that his use of the term “end of the world” did not mean the literal end of everything, only of the financial, geopolitical, religious and social system of things “as we have come to know it.”  In other words, there will be nothing mysterious or unusual in the end of the world.  It has happened hundreds of times in the past, at least insofar as Mendenhall’s studies of both ancient and recent history indicate that it comes at the conclusion of cycles lasting approximately 250 to 300 years.  “We are now at the end of a cycle and the signs of another collapse are all here.  The possibility of our world ending within a generation is even stronger than the kooks and prophets of doom realize,” the prestigious professor elucidated.

Mendenhall opined that once governments fall apart, civilization will enter a new dark age.  The cities will be abandoned and the population will shift to small villages in fortified areas.  Small, warring bands will form, killing and robbing each other.  Without public education, future generations of many people will lose the ability to read and write.  Probably one-half to two-thirds of the world’s population will die off from disease, starvation and mini-wars.  Such cycles, following the pattern described above, have persisted throughout recorded human history, going back to the ancient Babylonians.  Of this dismal cycle, the professor said, “The Persians, during the Iron Age, lasted about 250 years.  Then the Greek Empire, from Alexander to the Roman takeover, existed another 300 years.  The Roman Empire stuck it out for 300 years, and then came the Dark Ages.  The Renaissance period followed and broke down in the Reformation after still another 300 years or so.  The Reformation was followed by the Thirty Years War, during which Europe lost a third of its population.  That was about 1650.  Now we are in 1975.  Time is just about up.”

Signs of the Times

The ancient history scholar explained his interpretation of this cycle in greater detail in his book, The Tenth Generation (Baltimore, Maryland:  Johns Hopkins University Press, 1975).  To sum up his conclusions, however, he told the National Tattler reporter:

“We are finding fantastic similarities between ancient times and our own problems by studying ancient records.  We know now, for example, from ancient Babylonian myths and archaeological evidence, that ancient intellectuals and politicians knew they were being faced with overpopulation and urban renewal problems just before their world fell.  Other typical signs appearing before a fall, in ancient literature, include a sense of lost purpose and goals, increasing lawlessness and violence, especially a sense of foreboding and doom.

“Overpopulation, poverty and starvation are other indications of a civilization about to collapse.  But the most striking feature is the breakdown of confidence in the social and political organizations, like government, the family, established religions and interpersonal relationships.  When I read these ancient translations, I am reminded of the same things happening today.  In those dying civilizations, there were wasteful excesses, extravagance and foolish military ventures.  Just before the falls, there was a nostalgic longing for glories of the past, for the ‘good old days of Egypt,’ for example.”

President Joseph Biden’s fiasco in Afghanistan is depicted in this New York Post photospread.

President Joseph Biden’s fiasco in Afghanistan is depicted in this New York Post photospread.  Professor Mendenhall noted in 1975, of cultures on their “last legs,” that, “In those dying civilizations, there were wasteful excesses, extravagance and foolish military ventures.”

            Mendenhall believed that ancient Egypt presented us with a perfect counterpoint to modern America because in Egypt’s last days, there was a surge in the superstitious elaboration of old religious cults and offbeat oddities.  “We see a repetition of this tendency today,” he said, “in the rise of Satanism, witchcraft, food fads and astrology.  Americans spend more on astrology than they do on astronomy; and modern astrology is even more primitive than it was in the days of the ancient Babylonians.  The Babylonians knew perfectly well that these heavenly bodies could not really affect men’s destinies.

“Kooky and offbeat religions sprung up left and right during the last days of Egypt, Greece and Rome,” he pointed out, adding that, “The same thing is happening today.  The need for an escape from the uncertainties of a falling civilization was there in the ancient world, as it is here today.”

A sad fact emerging from all of this is that even as the ancients’ world was falling apart around them, they continued to insist that their situation would improve and that their empires would last forever.  “This is common to all falling cultures,” remarked the professor, warning us that, “They reassure themselves by insisting, ‘It can’t happen to us.  We are too advanced, too smart.’  But, alas, it did happen to them and it could happen again.  There are strong indications that history does repeat itself.”

Mendenhall, whose theories coincide with those of the great historians Edward Gibbons (1737-1794), author of the Rise and Fall of the Roman Empire (London, United Kingdom:  Harper and Brothers, 1900), and Arnold Toynbee (1889-1975), professor of international history at the London School of Economics in the United Kingdom, is in good company, albeit his predictions with regard to the American-led Western Bloc of nations seems off by about 50 years if all the shouts of “Let’s Go Brandon!” on the home turf have any bearing here.

In light of this deteriorating situation, as predicted by Dr. George Mendenhall, let’s hope the Venusians, working behind the scenes, have “got our backs,” so to speak.


26 August 1975

Billy Graham: “Billions of angels surround us….”

The 26 August 1975 edition of the National Enquirer (Lantana, Florida), carried an interesting article by correspondent Harold Lewis concerning some controversial statements by the popular American evangelist Billy Graham.  At his various rallies held throughout the world, the firebrand preacher has emphasized the role that billions of angels play in protecting us from evil, occult forces.  In this interview with the tabloid, Graham noted that, “Unfortunately, we don’t recognize the power of angels as we recognize the power of demons and devils.  But their power is every bit as great.”

Graham’s latest book, Angels:  God’s Secret Agents (Nashville, Tennessee:  Thomas Nelson, 1975), had just arrived on bookshelves nationwide, its theme underscoring his ardent determination to intensify the public’s awareness of the amazing cosmic powers that these exalted beings exercise in affecting human destiny, both individually and collectively, being arrayed, as they are, in the forces for good.  In explaining this to journalist Lewis, the evangelist noted that, “At various times in their lives, people come close to a brush with death.  They may escape from an auto crash and it might look like a miracle.  But I believe it was because an angel was sent to protect them.  And I believe that when you eventually die, an angel takes you into the presence of God.”

Of course, we all know that angels were created by God.  But as to their mode of existence, Graham pointed out that, “Sometimes they exist in spirit form.  Sometimes they take on physical form.”  He also noted that, “There are ranks of angels, divisions of angels; and they are assigned certain duties and responsibilities.”  And as to their abode, the evangelist declared that, “I believe that the Earth is not their only place in the whole universe.  There are probably billions of them (inhabited planets).”

Forces of Evil Abound

Turning his attention to the sinister forces of evil afoot in the world, Billy Graham stated, “I truly believe that what we are seeing in the world today- crime, violence and war- is due to tremendous demon activity.  If these forces were to prevail, the world would suffer upheaval of a magnitude it has never known before.  We would be living in a time more terrible than the Dark Ages.  What is happening is that tremendous interest is building up in the forces of evil, giving it the impetus that is bringing about all of this strife.  Go into any bookshop and you will find the shelves lined with works on demons, devils and Satan.  The world has become obsessed with such subjects; and this actively encouraged the growth of evil.”

Graham explained that all of these factors listed above are what compelled him to write the book on angels.  “I felt,” he said, “that in this way I could play my part in helping to stifle the forces of evil, forces which have been allowed to grow because there has been very little effective opposition to them.”


Growing Awareness

            Graham discovered a “tremendous vacuum” existed among the American populace when it came to angels and their mission here on Earth when he preached a sermon about these illustrious beings and subsequently received over 200,000 requests in the mail for copies of his sermon.  “I then knew that I had to expand that sermon into a major book,” remarked the well-known clergyman to Lewis, who interviewed Graham in Keswick, England, immediately after the evangelist’s appearance as a guest speaker there at a religious convention had successfully concluded.  Graham encouraged the Enquirer’s readers to secure a copy of his new book, insofar as, “It contains a wealth of material on angels that has never been gathered before.  It sets right the score between evil and good.  No there is something to turn to that doesn’t just dwell on demonology.”


Angels and Aliens

          For those in the UFO community who wonders what the evangelist has to say about any connection between angels and extraterrestrial aliens, Graham opined in his Angels book that, “Some reputable scientists deny and others assert that UFOs do appear to people from time to time.  Some scientists have reached the place where they think that they can prove that these are possibly visitors from outer space.  Some Christian writers have speculated that UFOs could very well be part of God’s angelic host who preside over the physical affairs of universal creation.  While we cannot assert such a view with certainty, many people are now seeking some type of supernatural explanation for these phenomena.  Nothing can hide the fact, however, that these unexplained events are occurring with greater frequency” (Graham, Angels, 21).

That the evangelist felt a linkage of angels with aliens would have a positive impact on society at large was expressed in the following statement to an independent blogger in 2005, “From my studies of the Scriptures, I can find nothing that would change our faith in the Gospel if we discover (intelligent) life on other planets.  And our society would benefit greatly by the discovery.  We would have everything to gain!”[1]

Future Predications

In concluding his interview in the National Enquirer with the correspondent Lewis, Graham spoke optimistically of the future.  Smiling, the evangelist said, “All the devils will be destroyed on Judgment Day.  God will triumph; and His angels will triumph in the great war between good and evil that has yet to come.”  With this age of pandemics, pollutions, wars and a wide variety of other tribulations taking place, one has to wonder just how close we are coming to the Lord Jesus Christ’s return to Earth?


October 1975

Potential of Radio Telescopes in Search for Extraterrestrials

By October 1975, top personnel in the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), were pushing for the United States Congress to authorize eight billion dollars for the construction and installation of powerful radio telescopes with the capacity to establish ongoing communications with intelligent life on other worlds, as soon as the country pulled out of the economic malaise that it found itself in.  Dr. James Fletcher, a then 56-year-old physicist and director of NASA since 1971, told a reporter from the National Enquirer (Lantana, Florida), as published in the 28 October 1975 issue, that, “There must be intelligent life somewhere out in space and we should make an all-out effort to contact them.  The United States has only one radio telescope right now.  It is at Arecibo, Puerto Rico.  We used it earlier this year to send out a message which will travel through our galaxy.  It was in a universal code that can be understood by any intelligent form of life out there.  I’d like to see a whole network of telescopes like the one at Arecibo, huge scanners which would enable us to listen in on other worlds.  They would cost about eight billion dollars and it would take ten years to build them all.”

Fletcher further explained, “I think we should be spending money on radio telescopes and on a power source which would get us to distant worlds.  But I know the time isn’t right because of the economy and the way people feel about space projects right now.  Nevertheless, there is no way you could measure in dollars that gains we would make by contact with a superior civilization.  It is a practical certainty that there is intelligent extraterrestrial life.  I would give you odds of a thousand-to-one on that.”  Of course, there were some possible drawbacks to this plan, which the NASA director did acknowledge: “Any civilization out there may be millions of years more advanced than us.  They may view us the same way we view insects and we may end up being colonized.  But even so, we must try to contact them.  There is so much we could learn.”

In 1975, the United States government maintained only one operational radio telescope, located at Arecibo, Puerto Rico.

In 1975, the United States government maintained only one operational radio telescope, located at Arecibo, Puerto Rico.


Fletcher did take note that in the following year, on the Bicentennial Anniversary of the founding of the United States, NASA was scheduled to land space probe on the surface of Mars, and remarked that, “I believe we may find some form of planet life there.”  Also, speaking of future NASA missions, the director continued, “We are going to look at a moon of Saturn called Titan in 1979 as part of the probe of Jupiter and Saturn.  We know that Titan has the right temperature and lots of cardo dioxide, constituents which could give rise to life.  And we plan to send a probe to Jupiter in 1981, which may turn up primitive signs of life like algae and bacteria.  After we have covered these three places and discovered life, that will give us and everyone else the incentive to go for the stars.”

Unfortunately for the public at large, when these NASA probes did arrive at the designated locations, the space agency reported that their searches for life on these orbs had proved “inconclusive.”  On 29 July 1968, the United States House of Representatives’ Committee on Science and Astronautics convened a one-day Symposium on Unidentified Flying Objects, chaired by then-Indiana Congressman J. Edward Roush.  At that important conclave, Stanton Friedman (1934-2019) of the Westinghouse Corporation’s Astronuclear Laboratory in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, when asked if UFOs could come from our own solar system, testified, “They certainly could.  We have no data from any other body in the solar system which rules out the existence of advanced civilizations.”  Friedman, who authored many articles and books on the subject of UFOs,[2] maintained an unshakeable belief in the existence of these objects, with some of them as extraterrestrial spaceships, throughout his life, and felt that if intelligent life did not evolve on worlds in our solar system, to include the Earth, it was certainly transplanted here from another solar system.

Nansen Class Anti-Submarine Warfare Frigate utilized by forces of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO)

Nansen Class Anti-Submarine Warfare Frigate utilized by forces of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) in conjunction with the Norwegian Navy.  In 1975, they were deployed to hunt Soviet subs; but in at least one case, were dispatched in search of an unidentified submarine object (USO).

5 November 1975

Unidentified Submarine Object (USO) Off Coast of Norway

Slightly after daybreak on Wednesday, 5 November 1975, a 10,000-tons Bulgarian ship dropped anchor in the Bay of Ogna in the South-Jaeren area along the coast of Norway.  The ship was having engine problems and the captain, after consulting with the navigator and navigation charts, determined that the best protection from a rough sea could be obtained by anchoring at this point.  Coincidentally, at the same time the Bulgarian shipped dropped anchor to check on the engine and make repairs, Norwegians onshore reported seeing a submarine-like, cigar shaped object surfacing about two miles out into the Bay of Ogna. This was an object distinct from the Bulgarian ship.  The Norwegian Navy Headquarters, receiving the submarine sighting report, immediately sent a sub-hunting patrol boat into the bay to localize the alleged intruding submarine, but only came across the distressed Bulgarian ship, which was boarded by the Navy personnel, including experts who confirmed that the ship was undergoing engine repairs, provided what assistance they could, and then returned to base.

16 November 1975

Noted Scientists Finds Few “Kooks” Among UFO and Alien Spotters

          The vast majority of people who claim to have seen flying saucers and/or their occupants are probably quite sane; or so claimed a prominent associate professor of psychology from the University of Wyoming at Laramie, Dr. R. Leo Sprinkle (1930-2021), in an exclusive interview with National Tattler (Chicago, Illinois) correspondent Cliff Linedecker that was published in the 16 November 1975 issue of that tabloid publication.  Sprinkle, the Director of Counseling and Testing at the time, noted that, “Witnesses to UFOs are normal persons who perceive and report abnormal phenomena.”  He cited a wealth of statistics from opinion polls and scientific surveys for the benefit of reporter Linedecker, serving to refute the popular hypothesis maintaining that UFO and ancillary alien reports are made by individuals with grave psychological problems.  “The available evidence just does not support the hypothesis that ‘kooks and cultists’ are the primary source of UFO sightings,” added Sprinkle, who further declared that, “In fact, the available evidence suggests that UFO reports are submitted by persons who represent a wide range of psychological and sociological characteristics.”

Dr. R. Leo Sprinkle (1930-2021),

Dr. R. Leo Sprinkle (1930-2021), psychologist emeritus from the University of Wyoming at Laramie, attested to the credibility of UFO and/or alien witnesses.  He also wrote the introduction for Dr. Keller’s first book in the Venus Rising series. 

Facts Speak for Themselves

          Dr. Sprinkle cited a Gallup Poll in the interview that backs up everything he was explaining concerning the UFO witnesses.  It seems that in 1975, if the Gallup Poll was correct, there were approximately 11 percent of the American adult population, or some 15 million adults, who claim to have sighted a UFO.  Also, about half of the population of the United States believed, along with the majority of leaders in 72 nations, that not only does life exist on other planets, but that it takes a decidedly human form.  The poll also indicated that younger and better educated individuals were the most likely to express a belief in flying saucers as extraterrestrial spaceships.  And about 15 percent of urban dwellers, with largely liberal political views, maintained that they had actually sighted a flying saucer.  In Dr. Sprinkle’s opinion, however, that the non-believers, or skeptics, still outnumbered the believers, could be explained in the context of the type of evidence being presented and not the amount of it.  “There is something very bothersome to many investigators about the weight of evidence of flying saucers or UFOs,” the Wyoming psychologist noted.  He further stated that, “The evidence rests largely upon the testimony of persons; the perception of UFO observers or UFO percipients.”

The seeming lack of hard evidence in the form of a captured spaceman or a crashed UFO causes many critics to doubt the sanity of the witnesses.  “This approach,” said Sprinkle, may be seen as a more sophisticated approach than that of ancient kings who, upon receiving bad news, would kill the messenger.  Now, in these more modern times, we need not kill the person who reports a UFO sighting.  We can ridicule the messenger and/or we can doubt the interpreter of the message.  With either approach, the message can be ignored.  In my experience, the personal and professional integrity of UFO investigators is high.  If they were not men and women of integrity, UFO investigators probably would turn to other fields of investigation where the social and professional rewards are higher and where knowledge is more certain.”

We have seen over the years that Dr. Sprinkle’s assessment of the UFO situation has proven true.  One motive for downplaying the credibility of the UFO and/or alien witnesses may be the interest of national security.  It is easier for government representatives to dismiss the observers as “kooks and cultists” precisely because admitting they were reliable, after all, might lead the investigators of these phenomena to discover that there really are captured interplanetary space travelers and crashed flying saucers.  The testimonies of the UFO percipients are indeed, more substantial than the rantings of conspiracy theorists that government authorities might like us to think they are.

[1] See footnote 23 for vic (blogger) in Raymond A. Keller, Cosmic Ray’s Excellent Venus Adventure (Terra Alta, West Virginia:  Headline Books, 2017), 18.

[2] For a carefully selected listing of Stanton T. Friedman books and DVDs, please see the official Stanton T. Friedman website at (Accessed 9 November 2021).

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