Page 9 - The 'X' Chronicles Newspaper - May/June 2022 Edition
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Mysterious UFOs Seen by WWII Airmen                                                                                               9

         Mysterious UFOs Seen by                         two lights in a large orange glow, seeming to rise doughnuts and the derivatives of the grape.”
                                                         from the earth to 10,000 feet, tailing the fighter
               WWII Airman Still                         “for approximately two minutes.” After that, the Lt. Krasney’s son, Keith Krasney, says his late
                                                         lights, “peel off and turn away, fly along level father didn’t fit the stereotypical profile of a
                     Unexplained                         for a few minutes and then go out. They appear UFO theorizer. In fact, he never even suggested

                                                         to be under perfect control at all times,” that the glowing wingless cigar-like object that
                                                         according to Keith Chester’s Strange Company: flew next to his plane was extraterrestrial in
        It was nearly the end of World War II. But for the Military Encounters with UFOs in World War II. origin.
        airmen of the 415th Night Fighter Squadron, it
        felt more like the beginning of  War of the And then there was Lt. Samuel  A. Krasney’s “He was very level-headed, very analytical,”
        Worlds.                                          experience: a wingless cigar-shape object, says Krasney of his father, adding that he kept a
                                                         glowing red, just a few yards off the plane’s notebook where he wrote about (and drew) his
        Lt. Fred Ringwald was the first to see it. He was wingtip. Lt. Krasney, justifiably spooked, foo-fighter sighting. But although he never
        riding as observer in a night fighter piloted by instructed the pilot to attempt evasive seemed prone to conspiracy theories, Krasney
        Lt. Ed Schlueter, with Lt. Donald J. Meiers on maneuvers, but the glowing object stayed right says his father was open to one: “He entertained
        radar. It was a late November evening in 1944, next to the jet for several minutes before it “flew the idea that it could be late-breaking German
        partly cloudy with a quarter moon. They were off and disappeared.”                                technology. He did express the view that there
        roaming the Rhine  Valley just north of                                                           were a lot of things during the war that were
        Strasbourg on the French-German border when Eventually, the airmen named the lights: foo kept quiet.”
        Ringwald said, “I wonder what those lights are, fighters, inspired by the comic strip “Smokey
        over there in the hills,” according to an Stover,” in which Smokey (a firefighter) would          Was      it    the     work       of     Nazi
        American Legion Magazine story on the often declare, “Where there’s foo, there’s fire.”
        sightings from 1945.
                                                         The ‘combat fatigue’ explanation
        There were eight to 10 of them in a row, glowing                                                  Holding Nazi Germany responsible for the
                                                                                                          flying glowing orbs isn’t too far-fetched. For
        fiery orange. Then Schlueter saw them off his    An Associated Press reporter broke news of the   one thing, the sightings took place over Nazi-
        right wing.  They checked with  Allied ground    foo-fighter sightings on January 1st, 1945, and  occupied Europe, at a time when Germany’s
        radar, but they registered nothing. Thinking that  theories about their origins quickly abounded:
        the lights might be some kind of German air      The sightings were flares, or weather balloons or  Luftwaffe was making tremendous strides. Then
                                                                                                          there’s the fact that the sightings stopped once
        weapon, Schlueter turn the plane to fight…only   St. Elmo’s Fire—a phenomenon where a light       the German army was defeated.
        to have the lights vanish.                       appears on the tips of objects in stormy weather.
                                                         But the members of the 415th rejected all those  But the most compelling link to the foo fighters
        At first the men said nothing, fearing they’d be  theories. Flares and weather balloons can’t track
        ostracized. But then the sightings spread through  planes like these objects could, and they’d seen  might be  Wernher von Braun, a 32-year-old
                                                                                                          wunderkind rocket engineer. Von Braun helped
        the unit.                                        St. Elmo’s fire and could distinguish the two.
                                                                                                          the Nazis develop the V-2 rocket: a long-range
                                                                                                          guided ballistic missile that Hitler was using in
        On December 17, 1944, near Breisach,             Then there were those who claimed that the       1944 against Belgium and other parts of Allied
        Germany, a pilot was flying at approximately     airmen were suffering from “combat fatigue,” a
        800 feet when he saw “5 or 6 flashing red and    polite way of saying that war stress was driving  Europe. It’s not to hard imagine pilots—
        green lights in ’T’ shape.” The lights seemed to  them insane. But there was scant evidence to    comparing these rockets to a cigar-like wingless
        follow him, closing in “to about 8 o’clock and   suggest collective psychosis: The 415th had an   planes.  The  V-2 could even explain the glow,
        1,000 ft.” before disappearing as inexplicably as  otherwise excellent record, and when a reporter  since its tail emitted a long burning plume.
        they came.                                       for American Legion Magazine went to report
                                                         on the squadron he described them as “very                             (Continued on Page  10)
        Then on December 22nd, two more flight crews     normal airmen, whose primary interest was
        sighted lights. One crew, near Hagenau, reported  combat, and after that came pin-up girls, poker,
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