The Groom Lake Desert Rat

"The Naked Truth from Open Sources."

Area 51/Nellis Range/TTR/NTS/S-4?/Weird Stuff/Desert Lore

An on-line newsletter.
Written, published, copyrighted and totally disavowed by Psychospy.
Direct from the "UFO Capital," Rachel, Nevada.

Issue #18. November 16, 1994

In this issue...


Incumbent Sheriff Prevails In Local Election

On Nov. 8, incumbent Lincoln County Sheriff Dahl Bradfield handily defeated his challenger Don Brown. That could mean four more years of secret Air Force "rent-a-cop" agreements, deputies harassing journalists and confiscating film without due process, as well as dismal confidence in law enforcement throughout the county. But, hey, wešre sanguine. The people have spoken, 58 to 42 percent. An election is the purest expression of the public will, and therešs no arguing with those numbers.

We canšt claim that the electorate was ill-informed. During his six years in office, Bradfield seemed to have committed every lapse of professional judgment in the book, and his heavy-handed "God Squad" of unsupervised deputies had pissed off a large portion of the county. We and some allies took out an ad in the Lincoln County Record to remind voters of his biggest gaffs and their enormous cost to the county [may be available at the FTP or WWW sites], and we thought our logic was flawless. All the Sheriff could offer in his ads were a few trumped-up endorsements from law enforcement organizations, one of which, the Las Vegas Sun reported, hardly knew he existed. The challenger, who was formerly a Nevada State Police chief and well-regarded Sheriff in Washington State, seemed like a breath of fresh air who could restore faith in local law enforcement. In the weeks approaching the election, we worked hard behind the scenes to support his campaign, and we were almost ready to count our chickens before they hatched until receiving a call late on election night shattering our faith in humanity.

We considered this election an important one. The big Groom Lake base is wholly within Lincoln County, yet returns only trivial economic benefits to the community. A nonexistent base doesn't have to pay its taxes and doesn't have to engage in any form of community relations. Being directly downwind of both the Groom Lake base and the adjoining Nevada Test Site, county residents have been dumped on for years by the federal government. In the days of above ground atomic testing, this meant dangerous levels of fallout and a predictable rise in devastating cancers. Given the raw treatment the county has received over the years, this place ought to be a hotbed of anti-government rhetoric, and it is, but that sentiment is rarely translated into action.

For a piddling contract fee of $50,000, the Sheriff's Dept. has essentially taken orders from the Cammo Dudes, seizing film, arresting naive trespassers and investigating law-biding tourists whenever the anonymous authorities called. This public police department, nominally an open entity responsible to the people, has seen no conflict in representing a government agency that refuses to acknowledge its own existence. The Sheriff pulled back from film seizures, perhaps temporarily, only when the election loomed and negative publicity began to build up in the Las Vegas press.

Similarly, the county tax assessor, an ossified 26-year veteran, has shown no interest in pursuing the base for the value of contractor facilities. Although the AF itself is not liable for local property taxes, the same does not hold for the private contractors that largely operate the base. [See DR#5.] If they occupy a government building, property taxes must be paid on it as if it were private land (NRS 361.157). As it stands, the AF gives the county an imaginary assessment, most recently $3.2 million, and the county blindly accepts it, billing the AF for the insignificant taxes implied, recently $80,000. Of course, $3.2 million wouldn't buy a latrine at a place like Groom, but the current assessor's attitude is that if county pushes the AF too hard, they might sue or pack up the base and move it elsewhere. Legal guidance, which should be provided by the county District Attorney, is lackluster at best. He seems more concerned with pursuing Campbell on the obstruction charge [See trial invitation below.] than in making the secret base pay its due.

Since the officials who were up for election had also offended the electorate in other ways, the prevailing sentiment ought to have been "Throw the Bums Out!" Indeed, that is what we thought we heard on the street in the weeks prior to Nov. 8. What happened, in fact, was the opposite: Every incumbent in major county offices was reelected. The District Attorney ran unopposed, apparently because there are not many lawyers willing to come to this area. The Sheriff topped his opponent easily, as did the Assessor, Clerk, Treasurer, an incumbent Commissioner and the Justices of the Peace (including Nola Holton, who will be trying the Campbell case).

Philosophically, we cannot argue with the results. As an activist nipping at the heals of the Air Force, Psychospy is arguing in favor of democratic processes--that the secret base should be subject to the same public accountability as any other government agency. We cannot suddenly change our tune when the democratic processes let us down. We believe that every community, like every individual, has the right to self-determination. The liberties American society holds dear include the right to totally screw yourself up if you so choose. People and communities that make good decisions prosper, while those that make poor ones fail, and it is not the place of government or us aliens to intervene. As it stands, Lincoln County is a dirt-poor backwater, chasing away industry with its high taxes and bloated local government and showing little interest in changing. Like a person who drinks himself into a stupor, we can only conclude that this is the way the community wants to be.

Still, after expending significant energy on this election, we are disappointed in the results and annoyed that we misjudged them so badly. Removing the Sheriff and Assessor from office would have been a major blow to the legal and tax immunity of the secret base. The AF would suddenly find itself in a much less friendly environment and might have to start paying its due. We hoped that Lincoln County would become a "mouse that roared," demanding proper compensation from the feds for hosting this huge and potentially dangerous facility. Now, we expect no more than a squeak, and we have been trying our best to figure out what went wrong.

The incumbents were of all political affiliations--Democrat, Republican and Independent--so the national pro-Republican sweep did not explain the results. If local sentiments seemed overwhelmingly anti-incumbent before the election, why did the incumbents win? In Rachel, Bradfield was voted down almost two- to-one. Why didn't the same happen in the rest of the county? To understand the results, we must understand the society here.

Lincoln County Demographics

. The remote town of Rachel, with 71 voters, is on the border of Nye County, to which it is closely related in culture and attitudes. Nye is a place of rugged individualism, where brothels are legal and the prevailing philosophy is libertarian--meaning that people should be free to conduct themselves however they choose without interference from the government. With Psychospy's liberal eastern roots, we used to be annoyed by the blustering I'll-Take- Out-Fifty-Federal-Agents-Before-They-Take-Away-My-Guns rhetoric found in Nye and Rachel, but now we find it refreshing and even a tad appealing. Nye has been especially aggressive in pursuing its own secret base, the Tonopah Test Range, as well as other federal facilities within its borders, for taxes and law enforcement respect. During the Cold War, when anti-nuclear protesters starting marching en masse across the cattle guard at the entrance to the Nevada Test Site, the Nye County Sheriff and D.A. refused to handle them, so the feds had to construct tennis court-sized cages at Mercury to temporarily house the trespassers. Because the Nye county government actively asserts its rights and defends its independence, it doesn't get dumped on the way compliant Lincoln County does.

Rachel, we have discovered, is not representative of the rest of Lincoln County. Rachel is a relatively new town, existing for only about 30 years and thus composed mostly of "outsiders." The rest of the county has been frozen in time for generations. The main streets of the four major towns, Caliente, Panaca, Alamo and Pioche, have changed little in the past fifty years ago. The absence of economic development has helped preserved the county's historical sites, but it has also meant no significant influx of new ideas or new blood.

Culturally, Lincoln County is not part of Nevada but of Utah. Except for Rachel, the county is overwhelmingly Mormon. Mormonism, or Latter Day Saints, is a religion of great mystery to the outside world, known for its secret rites and a colorful history intertwined with the American West. Although Psychospy is agnostic, we regard religion as one of the unalienable liberties that an outsider has no right to interfere in. What concerns us about Mormonism is not its belief structure but how it interacts with rest of the world. Even then, we are not seeking to criticize, only to explain and understand.

LDS culture is very close-knit and upholds a firm respect for authority. "Family values" are paramount, and to help preserve these ideals, the church does not shy away from active involvement in all aspects of society, including business and politics. Perhaps because the group was persecuted in its early days, Mormons tend toward an "us-against-them" attitude similar to that of Judaism. LDS is a society that pulls together against real and perceived threats. In practical terms, this means that when the church's interests are seen as at risk in an election, Mormons tend to vote as a block under the guidance of church authorities.

In the Nov. 8 election, the incumbents had nothing in common except that they were mostly Mormon, while the challengers were mostly non-Mormons. Had the nascent anti-incumbent sentiment been allowed to express itself, the church might have lost political power in the county, resulting, it might be perceived, in the degeneration of public morality. Was the election in fact pre- ordained? From secondhand sources we have heard of local Mormons quietly expressing their displeasure at being told by their bishops how to vote but who obeyed the orders anyway. Evidently, God is omniscient and has many human spies. We have not spoken to any of these Mormon's directly, so the claim is unproven. Generally, Mormons don't talk to non-Mormons about the affairs of their church any more than workers talk about Area 51.

We were unimpressed, however, by a candidate's night we attended at a high school shortly before the election. It was presided over by the bishop of the local LDS ward. We knew he was a bishop even before being told because he had that air of moral rectitude. In his introduction, the bishop said, in effect, that there were no conflicts in Lincoln County, and as if to prove the point no debate between candidates or questions from the audience were permitted. This meant, of course, that no embarrassing questions could be posed to the incumbents regarding their past performance and newcomers couldn't show their strengths in a direct exchange. Candidates were reduced to bland three minute statements at the podium. Given that the candidates had already visited most voters door-to-door, we didn't see the purpose of a candidate's night if the candidates couldn't challenge each other.

The Sheriff, an overweight, young-looking man, seemed to have nothing to offer in his three minutes except that he had taken some law enforcement courses and had instituted a 911 telephone system. Like many of the other candidates, he had grown up in Lincoln County and attended Southern Utah College in nearby Cedar City. In comparison, his opponent, tall, thin and in his 60s, seemed a paragon of worldliness and maturity. He recounted his experience as a law enforcement administrator in a series of prestigious posts outside the county. "Good show!" we thought to ourselves as he passed the two minute mark. The challenger then went on to explain that recently he had dedicated himself to "Vampire 2000," an organization of law enforcement officers fighting the "new order" and the encroachment of federal control. We began sinking slowly into our seat as the challenger proclaimed that he would tolerate no restrictions on assault rifles in this county, but murmurs of approval from the audience picked us up again.

The strangest appearance of the evening was that of the District Attorney, who although he was running unopposed, was game enough to offer his three minute resume. Given that a part of the DA's job is to argue cases in court, he seemed surprisingly weak as a public speaker. He is apparently no intellectual slouch, however, having attended Stanford University followed by a law degree at the University of Florida and a stint in corporate law in Miami. A non-Mormon in his mid-30s who ought to have a better grasp of democratic principals than most natives, he seemed to us to be misplaced soul, and we wondered what made him tick. The one-man DA's office both prosecutes criminal cases and serves as legal counsel to county government. As an elected official, his office is independent and responsible only to the voters, but you wouldn't know it from his past performance, in which he has pretty much toed the line of the Sheriff's Dept. Since his position is secure, he ought to be beholden to no one and free to do what is right for the county, but so far he has not lived up to that promise.

As stated, we cannot prove that the incumbent landslide was the result of the Mormon majority voting as a block. There were certainly other factors at work. In a long-established county with little population turnover and only 2300 voters, it is nearly possible for everyone to be related to everyone else. Indeed, a glance at the tiny Lincoln County phone book (18 pages) reveals a disproportionate number of repeated last names. If you take the Sheriff and his extended family and personal allies, add those of the Undersheriff, whose position is also threatened, and the families and cliques of all the various deputies who fear a loss of their current freedom or job security.... Given that this is one of the largest per-capita police forces in the country in one of the poorest counties, you could have a majority right there. One fact is certain: In the Sheriff's hometown of Panaca, where his family ties are deepest and, coincidentally, the Mormon Church is strongest, he was also reelected by the biggest margin, almost three-to-one.

Panaca was also the source, according to the postmark, of the only hate mail we received as result of the election. (We've received more from UFO buffs who believe we work for the government.) The anonymous scrawlings from Panaca said, "If you don't like the way Lincoln County is run--LEAVE!" Indeed, that is exactly how democracy and free enterprise work. Every community has the right to choose its own destiny, to uphold its own values and present its own chosen face to the world. Individuals and businesses, in turn, have the right to move to wherever the opportunities are the best for them. If, for example, the Mormon majority makes the environment uncomfortable for all non-Mormons, deprives them of political power and enforces upon them their own religious values, then indeed the others will move out and none will move in. The only downside is that most industry beyond the walls of this tiny kingdom is not controlled by Mormons, and businesses would be foolish to invest where they have no power. The moral purity of the community may be preserved, but not its jobs.

Is it legal to vote on behalf of your religion or your family. Certainly. Is it right? No. The root of democracy is individuals making their own decisions, in private and without fear of retribution and through their own independent conscience. Otherwise, the system is as totalitarian as any Communist regime. We recall, with bittersweet amusement, the caption on the Review- Journal cartoon....

"Entering Lincoln County.... Now Leaving America."


Larry King Feedback

The following postings on internet newsgroups were passed on to us by our network of cyberspace spies following the Oct. 1 Larry King Special on TNT, UFO Cover-Up: Live from Area 51. In addition to taped segments, there were four live panelists: Stanton Friedman and Kevin Randle, representing the Roswell Incident; Dr. Steven Greer, founder of the CSETI UFO group; and Rachel resident Glenn Campbell, classified as an "activist." Only Campbell did not wear a suit and tie.

"The show is off the air 10 minutes and I am left with the feeling that Glen Campbell works for the government. I have no evidence to that fact, I am new to this whole line of information, but Mr. Campbell in my opinion seemed to soft-peddle the entire affair in a much to uncomfortable way for me to give him any credibility. Friedman on the other hand, pending further information, seems very credible and quite likable, if not eccentric."

-- buddhatek@aol.com

"Okay, the show is off the air 28 minutes now, and you've got an interesting theory. What better place to plant a disinformation artist than as a crusader? Campbell, you're correct, was very soft-shoe about the whole affair, even though he moved his entire lift from Boston to live in a trailer in the desert. Oops, I forgot... that trailer is actually The Area 51 Research Center.

"Whether or not he's actually a disinformant remains to be seen. What was evident, however, is that Glenn Campbell couldn't hold his own against the scientists and researchers on the panel. Let's face it, Campbell is not a scientist, a physicist, even a serious author. He's simply like one of us, an 'enthusiast' (I hate that term) who's taken it to an extreme. He seems very uninformed on the UFO phenomenon, which strikes me as remarkable. How can you claim to be the Area 51 researcher extraordinaire and not give a hoot about UFO's? The two subjects are so intimately linked.

"I'm not sure he's a government agent. He may just be a boob."

-- sharvey@interaccess.com

"The guests on Larry King had mixed beliefs and ideas... much of what is a cross section of the people who are interested in UFO study. Stanton was correct in pointing out that there has been no serious study of the phenomenon. Glenn Campbell is a better writer than interview guest, he really doesn't have a UFO position, he just wants the military to stop acting like Area 51 isn't sitting out there. Greer is pushing the envelope with the CE5 stuff. Hey, if he gets out in the fresh air and gets some exercise waving a spotlight around the sky, more power to him. Maybe they'll take him to their leader, who knows."

--d.beaty2@genie.geis.com

"Steven Greer spent some time in Gulf Breeze, FL. I was there at the same time. He was received warmly and with healthy open- mindedness. Then, it became PAINFULLY obvious that his claims were completely exaggerated. For instance, on March 14th, 1993 (I think it was '93.), three of the Gulf Breeze 'red light' UFOs appeared AND WERE VIDEOTAPED. He immediately claimed that he was 'telepathically' in contact with them, and invited them to 'land on the beach behind us.' He asked all present to 'send out your awareness to them.' He was heard to say (to the UFOs), 'We welcome you, we love you, we invite you to land,' etc. When the UFO disappeared, he claimed it was 'A MAJOR CE-5'.

"Later that year (in June), he tried his tricks again (calling them in). He was in a parking lot on Santarosa Island, about seven miles from the other watchers at Shoreline Park. The UFO did appear that night--about a mile from Shoreline, and about eight from Greer.

"Later, he claimed that the craft 'appeared overhead' at a very close range. Other witnesses deny this, as do their videotapes. Perhaps he saw something all the others didn't?"

-- dxr41@po.cwru.edu


Dr. Greer On "48 Hours"

Larry King panelist Dr. Steven Greer is an M.D. from North Carolina and the founder of CSETI, a group that seeks direct communications with extraterrestrials. We know little about him except for his prior appearance on "48 Hours" in which he and his group journey to Mexico where they hope to be taken aboard a UFO.

Greer: "I'm serious enough about this that I have transferred every asset I have into my wife's name."

The group sets up an observation post and their array of cameras, communicators and signaling equipment near the small town of Metepec, which happens to be about 50 miles from the busy Mexico City airport. Sure enough, the group has seven sightings in six nights--bright lights hovering above the distant horizon that are captured on video tape. (Later, two film analysis experts say there is nothing to distinguish these lights from ordinary aircraft.) The group even claims communications with one of the UFOs through light signals.

Greer: "It interacted beautifully, though, in terms of the off and on. I mean, that was incredibly good CE-5. In no way could a conventional craft move in a way where it could signal back and forth like that with the lights on and off."


Our Readers Respond To Previous Rats

Nuking Vegas [DR#11]

"I thought your views on Las Vegas were disgusting. Yes I agree there is little cultural worth there, but there are still humans that live there. I hope someone wants to destroy you and where you live. No I do not live in LV, but feel destruction of life through terrorist action is absolutely stupid. I hope there are no further commentaries like this one in your newsletter."

-- 74541.1743@compuserve.com

"It's obvious that the only reason that you've ever been to LV is to shop and immediately head out of town. I've lived here for 24 years, my family has been here since 1943, and I find that it is a very reasonable place. There are actual neighborhoods with children, schools, parks, and other "normal" activities.... Most of our problems are caused by people that have come to town in the last 10 years or so which has caused a lot of growth which has pretty much ruined any chance of a pleasant life. East Coast people (and I use the term "people" loosely) are usually morons who are going to rough it out West and end up destroying or over- regulating things and generally making a mess.... One can only hope that the exhaust from a UFO completely fries the top of Freedom Ridge the next time you clowns are up there."

--john@cephas.isri.unlv.edu

Ed.: We admitted were wrong about Vegas, and we still feel guilty and ashamed. We repented in DR#16, suggesting a different target....

Nuking New York [DR#16]

"...But really, how closed minded can you be to condemn an entire city based on your limited experience. Maybe everyone doesn't want to live in the woods or the desert. Being a NYC resident myself, I find your comments very ignorant and scary. I enjoy the culture here and the sensory overload experience of working and living in this metropolis. When I want to get away from the crowded spaces I get in my car and drive to the Adirondack State Park which has over 5 million acres of some of the most beautiful high peak woodlands in the country. During the summer months we NYC people who appreciate natural beauty get in our cars or buses and spend weekends out in the Hamptons where we have clean and uncrowded beaches surrounded by sandy dunes and farmlands. Perhaps you should limit your coverage to topics that you know something about. Your reckless comments certainly don't help your credibility on matters that you are trying to shed light on."

-- macinwi@ffhsj.com

Ed.: Nuke it!

California Falling Into Ocean [DR#16]

"Kindly inform the person wanting the map of the western US after the coast falls into the ocean, that he's got it all wrong. After the big one hits, we on the Left Coast expect to watch the entire eastern portion of the US slide into the Atlantic."

-- dhomuth@ednet1.osl.or.gov

Ed.: Please note that on NO OCCASION has Psychospy advocated the nuking of California. (But now that we think about it....)

Cloning Update

The letter by the cloning activist G.S. in [DR#16] prompted one of our readers, Andy S., to do some research and confirm that indeed his claims were true. According to contemporary news accounts, a live KNBC-TV news broadcast was interrupted on Aug. 9, 1987, when a station visitor placed a toy gun to the head of consumer reporter David Horowitz and demanded that he read a statement on the air. The visitor, Gary Stollman, the son of the KNBC pharmaceutical reporter Max Stollman, had gained entry to the studio by mentioning his father. Only a few seconds of the statement were actually broadcast before being cut off, but the Desert Rat has obtained the full text. It begins...

"The man who has appeared on KNBC for the last 3 years is not my biological father. He is a clone, a double created by the Central Intelligence Agency and alien forces. It is only a small part of a greater plot, to over throw the United States Government, and possibly the human race itself. The CIA has replaced and tried to destroy my family, and those of my friends.

"Although I have known about this since 1981, I have not taken any action about it for fear of the lives of my family. I have been forced into CIA-run mental hospitals, such as Cedars-Sinai Thalians, where I am shown being interviewed by many different doctors, although I spoke to nobody there for two weeks. At UCLA- NPI, I attempted to have myself released by a court several times, but was asked by a Dr. Martin Zsuba to keep removing my requests for a writ-hearing. I have been unable to obtain records from several other hospitals, including Ben Taub Hospital in Cincinnati, where all the phones were turned off for 48 hours after I arrived.

"I do not know where my real family or others are being held, but I believe it is somewhere in California...."

Ed.: See what we mean about California?

[Later Stollman reference in DR#31]

A New Type Of Sensor? [DR#17]

"I was in the Air Force during Vietnam. We used "dog do-do" sensors to monitor an area. It looked just like a piece of you- know-what with a little wire antenna on one side. It was activated by a small pin you removed. It had a life of two or three days and if anyone walked near it a signal was sent out. They came packaged in shrink wrap packages 6 to a pack.

"Keep an eye out for devices like that."

-- Jcarter@orl.mmc.com


BLM Environmental Assessment Released

People who made comments to BLM on the proposed White Sides/Freedom Ridge withdrawal should have received by now their copy of the proposed Withdrawal Amendment and Environmental Assessment for the Freedom Ridge/White Sides land withdrawal. A 30-day protest period on the document is now in effect (ending Dec. 9), but it is open only to those who made comments during the previous planning process. (Apparently you qualify if BLM sent you a copy of the document.)

To file an effective protest, you must show that the environmental and land use issues raised during the previous comment periods were not adequately addressed in the current document. There is no sense in ragging about the UFO cover-up, black budget accountability or defense priorities. Your protest must directly relate to the document at hand.

We note with interest that the stated purpose of the withdrawal has changed since the public comment period. The only initial official Air Force explanation in the Federal Register and at the hearings was: "The purpose of the withdrawal is to ensure the public safety and the safe and secure operation of activities in the Nellis Air Force Range Complex."

The new document says: "The purpose of the withdrawal is to provide a security and safety buffer to prevent a compromise of national security interests and to protect assets of the adjacent withdrawn Nellis Air Force Range."

The document also provides the following significant admission: "In 1988 the U.S. Congress withdraw the Groom Range Addition to the Nellis Air Force Range as a security and safety buffer zone between public lands administered by the BLM and the NAFR complex. The USAF subsequently discovered that two areas adjacent to this buffer zone provide viewing of military activities on this portion of the NAFR. Public viewing of military activities (which has often included illegal photography of range activities) has increased during the past few years, necessitating the diversion, postponement, or cancellation of missions to prevent a compromise of national security."

There is nothing remarkable in the content of these statements, and the purpose may even be justified (if they can also neutralize the OTHER viewpoints like Tikaboo Peak that haven't been touched). What is disturbing about these statements is that this is the first time we have ever heard them from the Air Force (if, indeed, this document conveys the Air Force position). For example, we have never heard the Air Force admit that it erred in 1988.

Here's the scenario we see: The AF applies for a land withdrawal, but gives only vague reasons--"public safety," "secure operation of activities," etc. The public is allowed to comment on the action based only on this vague explanation--which makes meaningful comment very difficult. After the comment period is over, the AF starts fleshing out its reasons for the withdrawal, providing more specifics and admitting its mistake in 1988. By the time the application reaches the Secretary of the Interior, maybe the AF even admits that there IS a base at Groom Lake and that they want the land specifically to keep people from looking down on it. That admission appears to be what we were seeking from the beginning. The only problem is, the information was presented only AFTER the public comment period was over, so obviously the public had no access to it. In essence, the withdrawal becomes a closed process with only the theatrical appearance of public input.


Campbell Trial Invitation

All members of the press and public are hereby invited to attend the trial of political activist GLENN CAMPBELL of Rachel, Nevada, on the charge of Obstructing a Public Officer (NRS 197.190) for pushing down the car door locks during the seizure, without a warrant, of the news video tapes of KNBC-TV of Los Angeles near Freedom Ridge, July 19, 1994. (The tapes have still not been returned.)

Charges to be presented by Lincoln County District Attorney Thomas A. Dill before Justice Nola Holton of the Pahranagat Valley Justice Court in the County Annex Building, Alamo, Nevada (on US- 93, 90 miles north of Las Vegas and 50 miles east of Rachel).

The trial will begin with jury selection on WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 21, 1994, at 10:00 a.m. and may take one or two days.

It is advised that those who wish to attend confirm the date and time just before the trial. Local lodging is available at the Meadow Lane Motel and Alamo Motel, both at (702)725-3371.

COMMENTS. This will be a jury trial, so the judgment on Campbell will be rendered by the same body of local voters that re-elected Bradfield. (Keep this in mind when placing your bets.) In any case, we regard the process as more important than the outcome. If found guilty, Campbell will be subject to a fine but no jail time. At one point, the DA offered to seek only a $50 fine if Campbell pleaded "no contest," but the defendant declined.

REFERENCES. The incident for which Campbell was arrested was recorded in the Las Vegas Review-Journal, July 21 (with an editorial July 22 and an editorial cartoon July 26); Las Vegas Sun, July 21; wire service reports and Publisheršs Auxiliary (organ of the Reporteršs Committee on Freedom of the Press), Aug. 1. [Also DR#12.] For general information on Campbell and his goals, consult feature articles in the New York Times Magazine, June 26, 1994; Omni Magazine, Sept. 1994; Popular Science, March 1994; Reno Gazette-Journal, July 24, 1994; and Dayton Daily News, March 20, 1994.

[Complete Area 51 articles: 1992 | 1993 | 1994 | 1995 | 1996]


Hazardous Waste Pre-Trial Hearings

On Nov. 10, we attended a brief pre-trial heading on the lawsuit filed by a widow and several "John Doe" plaintiffs charging injuries at Groom Lake stemming from illegal hazardous waste disposal. When we walked into the courtroom, there were children everywhere. Twelve kids in the jury box, a girl in the judge's chair, a boy on the witness stand and a sniffling wimp at the defense table represented, evidently, by two young gentlemen making rude sounds into their microphone. Across the aisle was a gangly, blond-haired DA who clearly hadn't had an opportunity to go to Stanford yet.

It was a field day to Las Vegas Federal Court by a local grade school. The youths, we guessed, were about 12 years of age. Earlier in the day, they had witnessed the sentencing of a real drug dealer, a pregnant woman condemned to a couple of years in a non-fictional slammer. From their places in the courtroom, the students fired questions at the real judge, who towered above the melee in his judicial robes. Would the woman do to jail for having the baby? Would she be able to keep the baby? Why was she crying?

Someone in the jury box asked U.S. District Judge Philip Pro what his salary was. He said he made $135,000 a year.

Then the children filed out and grownups filed in. Three gentlemen in dark business suits represented the government: Two from the Justice Dept. and one from the EPA. The lead lawyer was Richard Sarver, who we understand is a former Air Force officer and possesses a security clearance. Lawyer Jonathan Turley, representing the workers, sat alone at the other table. In the pews were the widow and her family and a handful of reporters scribbling notes on steno pads.

The hearing was conducted in legalese, much of which was beyond the grasp of our own tiny brain. We did pick out a few tidbits, though. The judge asked if there were any ongoing negotiations to reach a settlement, and Sarver said they were "almost DOA"--dead on arrival. The judge also asked Sarver repeatedly whether the government would "stipulate that the base exists." The government lawyer declined the opportunity--meaning that the government still does not acknowledge any base at Groom. However, Sarver did repeat the official line that there are "facilities at Groom Dry Lake." It's a subtle distinction lost to meager minds.

We noted that six months would be allowed for the discovery process, during which each side of the case will be seeking information from the other. The content of the rest of the hearing was beyond our comprehension. At one point, some angry- sounding words were exchanged between Turley and Sarver, but the subtext was not apparent to us. The hearing ended after 45 minutes, and the lawyers dispersed.

Whatever it was that happened, Turley walked out of the courtroom looking like the cat that ate the bird. Apparently, the government had overplayed its hand. It had attempted to suppress the entire case on national security grounds, and that gambit had failed in a manner that still escapes us. All we know is that Turley was bubbling. "Sex" and "law" were used in the same sentence, with law being rated as superior.


Enemy Update

-- In DR#16, we reported that our intimate enemy list included Lazar's gatekeeper GENE HUFF. We are now as surprised as anyone to report a change in status: Huff and Psycho have kissed and made up, and all those harsh words of the past have been forgotten.

Huff has even sold us a shipment of the handsome Lazar saucer posters, which are now available from us for $15 (plus $3.50 postage in the US). This 22" x 34" poster features three schematic views of the "Sport Model" flying saucer that Lazar says he worked on at "Area S-4." In the background is a Russian satellite image of the Papoose Lake area. It happens that in the mountains north of the lake bed, a tiny saucer shape appears, but we suspect that it is a photo artifact. (Huff says that the "saucer" did not appear on other frames taken at the same time by other cameras on the satellite.) The poster was produced by Lazar and Huff to coincide with the release of the Testor's S4 saucer model.

-- Replacing Mr. Huff on our mortal enemies list is German UFO filmmaker Michael Hesemann. (Big round of applause, ladies and gentlemen.) We met him on only one occasion, when he came to Rachel to videotape part of a UFO documentary. He struck us as narcissistic and highly unprofessional. He was abusive of his crew (or so we gathered from his tone of voice, as we do not speak German), and he insisted in appearing in every shot of his interview with us. When a German journalist later asked us what we thought of Hesemann, we summed up succinctly: "He's an asshole." That translates into German as "Arschloch," a sentiment apparently shared by many in the German UFO field. Eventually, our analysis made it back to Hesemann himself, who called us from Dusseldorf to leave a long and unhappy message on our answering machine. Listening to it, we were reminded of Col. Klink threatening Col. Hogan. Hesemann said he was going to cut us out of his documentary, but he was kind enough to give us one last chance to regain favor: If we wrote him a letter of unconditional apology, which he would publish all over Europe, then he would not sue us. We were trembling, of course, especially in light Hesemann's written comments to the journalist, the ominous tone of which is best experienced without translation....

"Wie Herr Campbell, den ich in der Tat WIE JEDEN interviewte, der in der Area 51 forschte, mein Video beurteilen kann, das derzeit uberhaupt erst im Schnitt ist ist vielleicht das grosste Ratsel der Wuste von Nevada. Ist er ein Medium? Oder hat er selbst so einen Scheiss gesagt, dass der Film schon wegen seines Interviews (von den anderen Interviews weiss er ja nichts) schlecht sein MUSS? Was, bitteschon, soll er uber mich gasagt haben? Nun, Campbell hat ein Manko. Als er in Rachel eintraf, sind die 9 Scheiben--zumindest laut John Lear--langst nach White Sands verfrachtet worder. Darum hat er nie selbst was gesehen. Ich war das achte Mal in Rachel, als ich ihn interviewte. Ich hatter bereits, zusammen mit einem ABC-TV-Team, eine sehr beeindruckende Sichtung. Er nicht. Pech. So what? Neid???"

[Translation and "Col. Klink" cartoon, by a reader.]

-- Conspiracy nutcase Gary Schultz is still our treasured enemy. He showed up in Rachel during the Larry King show and afterwards had the gall to visit our Research Center and try to strike up a conversation. Since this is the twerp who once phoned our neighbor to spread vague rumors of child molestation against us (false, we must emphasize), we regard our differences as irreconcilable. No kissing and making up here. We ordered the little dip from the premises and told him never to come back.

-- The enemy status of Sean David Morton remains unchanged. At a Nov. 5-6 UFO conference in the Bay Area, Sean described his relationship to us as being like Michael Jackson to Weird Al Yankovich. (This is fine by us, as we have already proclaimed that we are not a child molester.) In our continuing campaign to "data him to death," we are thinking of setting up a World Wide Web page devoted entirely to the bigger- than-life exploits of this modern Munchhausen. Another neat idea would be to establish an internet newsgroup, alt.fan.sean.morton, where Sean's growing legion of "fans" can exchange information and insights about their hero. We don't currently have newsgroup host capabilities, however. Is there a sysop out there interested in sponsoring this?


Intel Bitties

BILBRAY DEFEATED. One bright spot in the Nov. 8 election was the defeat of Democratic Representative James Bilbray, Congress's most vocal defender of the secret base and Air Force interests in Nevada. Bilbray came closer than any other government official to admitting that the base was there, but he seemed 100 percent in support of is continued official nonexistence. In an interview on the Fox Encounters segment on Area 51 [7/22, DR#10, 15], Bilbray said that he had been all over the Nellis complex but had seen no evidence of alien craft. Critics counter that Bilbray would have only gone where the military wanted him to.

THE CAMPING SEASON IS NOW OVER in the Rachel area, as nighttime temperatures drop through the 20s enroute to a winter low approaching minus 10 F around the first of the year. Daytime weather can still be pleasant (or horrible), but you'll need a warm jacket. Light snow is common here in December and January, and snow on the ground brings inpenetrable fog to the valleys. The normally clear desert skies are often heavily overcast in the winter.

GROOM LAKE VOR. The frequency for the Groom Lake VOR (navigation beacon) is 117.5 MHz. [For other frequencies see DR#15]

WWW UFO PAGE. A new World Wide Web page on UFOs, pointing to back issues of the Desert Rat as well as a variety of UFO files, is available at " http://www.bgsu.edu/~jzawodn/ufo/".


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