Monday, January 18, 2016

Number 1842: “I Saw Something!”

This unusual war story, scanned from Harvey’s Fighting Fronts #2 (1952), is based on a real-life incident. In 1948 Captain Thomas Mantell of the Kentucky Air National Guard was flying out of Goodman Field at Fort Knox, Kentucky. He became involved in the pursuit of a large airborne object, and died when his P-51 Mustang crashed. The story lives on in UFO/flying saucer literature, including this 1950 book, The Flying Saucers Are Real by Donald Kehoe.

The story is transferred to Korea and the pilot’s name is changed for this story, but it is loosely based on the same event. Here is a link to the Wikipedia entry on the Mantell Incident.

Art is by Jack Sparling.


Daniel [] said...

Of course, when anyone says “UFO”, a typical person is going to presume a craft of some sort, because that is how UFOs are so often explained. I like the term “unknown aerial phenomenon”, because it doesn't make the presumption that something is flying; it merely acknowledges that something unknown is perceived or recorded as being in the air. For some sightings, explanations have been offered that are scientifically plausible yet out of the mainstream, and therefore fascinating to people such as me.

Setting aside all that, though, this story touches on an issue of deep importance to our lives — that of how we deal with the potential for illusion and for delusion. All of our understanding of the world is founded upon our own sensations, sense-perceptions, perceptions, and memories. Even when we accept the pronouncements of others, this is done through models of the world that we have built — based upon our sensations, sense-perceptions, and perceptions — in which there are others, and theories about the reliability of those others. Some things seem better explained by models which treat our sensations, sense-perceptions, perceptions, and memories as “faulty” — which is really to say that they are not subject to ordinary patterns of interpretation. But we have no choice but to use our own minds in assessing the reliability of … our own minds. Even the act of accepting the judgment of someone else is an act of our own minds, and doing so can be a mistake!

Pappy said...

Daniel, well put.

Our senses trick us all the time. After watching the progression of my late mother's dementia, things that sound impossible to us can be very real to others.

J_D_La_Rue_67 said...

Have you noticed those lines?:
"WHATEVER you are, I'll shred ya to bits!"
Why aliens should come round here, i just can't figure.

Daniel's point is very interesting, I agree that "reality" can be perceived only through our senses. So, if we had to describe an "alien" or some entity that our senses are inadequate to grasp, we migth not be able to describe it (same goes for the alien of course).
For a dog, or a fly, the perception of our world is different. That's probably the reason why Moses saw a burning bush when he met G_d (I'm not saying that G_d is an alien and I'm desperately trying not to be offensive).

As for the elaborations of our mind, well, I know what you mean. My grandmother had Alzheimer, and although she did not "see" many things (her illness affects memory and behavior) what she was seeing was darn real to her.

Daniel [] said...

J.D., we shouldn't look simply for the strongest system that might be built from our own beliefs, but for the best that might be done with alternatives. So, either way, it's an interesting exercise to find deeper significance in the constructs of religion. Although I'm an atheist, I'm more interested in conversations with friends who can look for a deeper significance in those constructs than I am with those who will simply wave-away the constructs as silliness.

Indeed, we simply could not perceive most of G_d, and perhaps the closest thing to the appearance of G_d that Moses would be able to convey to his audience would be something like the burning bushes that are to this day found in the Holy Land (dead plants, wicking petroleum products).

Debbie American Hooray! said...

Keyhoe LOL xoxoxoxoxo