The ‘Holy Grail’ of Hard Evidence: One of The Most “Spectacular” UFO Photos Ever Taken

In Brief

  • The Facts:
    • Former RAF officer Craig Lindsay has revealed a UFO photo he has kept hidden for 32 years.

    • In August of 1990, the photos were given to the Daily Record, who turned them over the the Minister of Defense.

    • At that point, the photographs simply vanished — along with the two young men who took them.

  • Reflect On:
    • We now know via unclassified information that governments from around the world have been interested and studying this phenomenon for several decades.

    • How much have they discovered? How many videos and photographs remain classified?

    • Can we ever rely on government to provide any sort of accurate and holistic view of the phenomenon?

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Dr. David Clarke, an associate professor at Sheffield Hallman University in the United Kingdom is known as an expert in the study of UFOs. He is a consultant for The National Archives UFO files project, and recently published a fascinating story about this photo:

 Former RAF officer Craig Lindsay with the photo he kept hidden for 32 years

The photo shows a large UFO with a military jet in the background., held by MoD insider Craig Lindsay who describes it as ” the most spectacular UFO picture ever captured, and the Holy Grail in terms of hard evidence that these things really exist.”

Clarke explained that the photo is one the MoD and The National Archives have “tried their utmost to keep hidden.” Normally, classified information is released after three decades. The original photo has still not been released and the MoD wants the names of the witnesses sealed until at least 2076.

The Story Behind The Photo, As Explained By Clarke

At 9pm, after a long day in a hot kitchen, they drove about 13 miles north along the A9 to Calvine, a spot on the edge of the Cairngorms, for a walk in the hills.

They hadn’t gone far when they saw a huge, solid, diamond-shaped object, about 100ft long, hovering silently in the sky above them. Terrified, they hid in some bushes and looked up.

Minutes later, they heard the scream of a jet aircraft going north: In 1990, RAF Leuchars in Fife had two squadrons of Tornado fighters on 24-hour standby to intercept Russian intruder aircraft.

The jet came back and circled the ‘thing’ before heading off on its original course, as if the pilot had seen the object too and had come back for a closer look.

And then, the photographs simply vanished — along with the two young chefs.

Today, we now know that scrambling jets so pilots can get a visual of these strange objects is nothing new. In fact, sightings by military pilots have been reported thousands of times, with some military pilots claiming to encounter them on a daily basis.

Not only are they seen, but in many instances they are tracked on radar. In many cases, like this one from 1976 in Iran, critical electrical equipment and weapons systems go offline when military jets approach these objects. They commonly perform maneuvers that are beyond anything we can understand.

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Years ago Clarke actually uncovered documents showing that the UK government was ‘desperate’ to capture UFO technology. His story continues,

As a university lecturer and investigative reporter who’s spent three decades immersed in the world of UFOlogy , I heard the story of the mysterious ‘Calvine file’ – as the missing photo and report of that incident at Calvine came to be known — many moons ago and have devoted the past 13 years doggedly searching for the images the men took.

What happened to the file, the men who pictured the UFO and how and why its very existence has been suppressed for 32 years, was a puzzle I was determined to crack. Wherever I searched for answers, however, I found insiders blocking my inquiries — until I struck lucky and found retired RAF officer Craig Lindsay, the first official to speak to one of the young chefs after that night.

He was willing to talk to me and, most exciting of all, I discovered that he’d broken protocol that day and stashed a copy of the image before, on Whitehall’s orders, sending the entire dossier — negatives included — to the Ministry of Defence in London.

He’d kept the secret copy in his desk for 32 years — hidden inside his copy of Great Aircraft Of The World. When I eventually tracked him down, now 83 and still living in Scotland, he sounded almost relieved.

‘I have been for waiting for someone to contact about this for more than 30 years,’ he said.

So, what do I make of it? The moment Craig showed the photograph to me I knew I was looking at something exceptional. Yes, it is a black and white image, printed on colour paper, and the trees and fence look a little blurry, as if the photographer took it in a moment of panic — which is consistent with their story. But the camera is focused on the weird diamond shaped object in the centre of the frame. Unlike many other UFO images, this is clearly a structured craft of unknown origin. It looks other-worldly and unlike any conventional aircraft.

And it is by far the best UFO photograph I have ever seen.

Believe me, I’m no gullible, deluded conspiracy theorist. I’d grown cynical after viewing hundreds of unconvincing photographs and films: Blurry, grainy, out of focus shots of what easily could have been frisbees, streetlamps or even seagulls.

But this was clearly something different. I’ve since had it analysed by Andrew Robinson, a senior lecturer in photography at Sheffield Hallam University. He is convinced it is genuine, and if it is a hoax, then a highly elaborate one, involving expensive, sophisticated equipment and flying models, not at the disposal of two jobbing hotel chefs.

He told me: ‘My conclusion is that the object is definitely in front of the camera, that is, it’s not a fake produced in post-production, and its placement within the scene appears to be approximately halfway between the foreground fence and the plane in the background.’

Mr Lindsay, a pragmatic, logical former civil servant who spent ten years in the military, is convinced the image — and the frightened man he spoke to on that day — are genuine. Initially, he was worried about speaking to me in case he was in breach of the Official Secrets Act. But after 32 years of doing what he was told, and keeping quiet, he now wants the truth to emerge.

‘As a press officer for Scotland, I dealt with many UFO reports but most were just of lights in the sky. It was obvious this one was different. When I asked what sort of noise it had made, the man said, “It didn’t make any noise at all.” Up to that point I wasn’t treating it very seriously but when he said it was silent, I suddenly realised there is no aircraft that I know of that is silent.’

Lindsay arranged for the negatives the men had handed to the Daily Record to be collected and faxed a copy of the best print to the Ministry of Defence’s now-defunct UFO desk in London.

‘Before I could even get back to my desk the phone was ringing and my contact said, “Tell me more about this. Can you get the negatives?”’

When he visited the MoD later that year, however, he saw the Calvine photo blown up to poster size on the UFO office wall.

‘I asked how they were getting on. They said it was being investigated. I was told to “leave it to London”… they asked me not to get involved, so I have done exactly that,’ he said.

‘The years passed and gradually I just forgot about the print in my drawer. Now I hope the two witnesses will come forward and tell their own stories.’

I hope so too. My interest in UFO sightings started in the 1990s when, working as a journalist in Yorkshire, I began using the Freedom of Information Act to request access to MoD files on famous UFO sightings such as the Rendlesham Forest incident that is often called Britain’s Roswell (an incident in 1947 in New Mexico long believed to have been a cover-up of UFO evidence).

In 2008, shortly before the MoD disbanded their UFO desk, I had become such an authority on the MoD files that I was offered the opportunity to curate the release of thousands of once secret UFO papers at The National Archives.

Fast forward: How the spot in Calvine where the mysterious photo was taken looks today

You can read the rest of Clarke’s article, as published in The Mail, here.

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