UFO’s are tricky little blighters. Those three letters have caused so much controversy over the years and I find myself, yet again, discussing one of the most misrepresented acronyms in the entire Universe. UFO stands for ‘Unidentified Flying Object’ and, if you have never seen a helicopter before, then its a UFO, its unidentified and flying! Forgive me then when I saw the news on January 28, 2011 of yet another UFO sighting and cries of alien visitors as if it were obvious. Well stop right there…..
I’ve been an astronomer for about 20 years and I look at the sky and objects in it, quite a lot. Strange then that I have never seen anything that has made me think yep, the little green men are here. Amongst my astronomer chums, I don’t know anybody that has seen anything that raises even so much as an eyebrow. Astronomers and perhaps meteorologists are perhaps the only bunch of people who have real experience studying things in the sky but, leaving that aside lets talk about the recent sighting in Jerusalem.
The strange light at the centre of the controversy appeared over the ‘Dome of the Rock’ , a shrine in Jerusalem. It hovered there for a short while before seemingly giving off a flash of light and then shooting off, into the night. What gives the whole thing more credibility though is that a number of different people seem to have captured the strange event from different places around the city. Usually, UFO sightings are recorded on just one, dodgy video but to have it recorded many times, surely means its genuine.
Apparently not, according to UFO skeptic Larry Robinson who told Universe Today “One item seems to indicate a hoax. The guy yells ‘Whoa’ before the object jumps into the sky, not after.” He goes on to explain that the whole thing could easily have been knocked up using a flashlight and a window “This could be something like a flashlight reflected from a pane of glass. Tilting the pane of glass moves the UFO.” It seems then that the footage may not be quite so genuine after all.
The whole thing about alien visitors is a little far fetched for me I’m afraid to say. Human’s have only been capable of space travel of ANY form for the last 50 or so years now given that the Universe is about 14 billions years old, it really is the tiniest fraction of time in the scale of the Universe. Consider too that the Universe is totally and utterly colossal and then ask yourself what are the chances that another civilisation have really nailed space travel so well and exist in the same part of the Universe as us! I think those chances are pretty slim, not zero, but pretty slim. I certainly won’t be staying up tonight just in case ET decides to pop by and say hi.
Larry’s UFO website: You’ve Been Hoodwinked