The Ambiguous Case of Bob Lazar

Most people reading this article are likely knowledgeable UFO fans and have heard the story of Bob Lazar. Just in case you haven’t I’ll give you a quick recap. In 1989 Bob Lazar reported to the world that he had worked on recovered alien flying saucers for the government at a base called “Area 51” in a location nearby called S-4. He reported this to George Knapp, an investigative reporter at a Las Vegas news channel. He primarily did this because he had revealed the date, time and location of test flights of this technology to a few close friends. He and those friends were caught and arrested while viewing these top-secret test flights one night near Area 51. As a result, he received threats from the government and felt the only way to save his life was to make this public. In fact, this action made the most secret military test site in the world, the most famous test site in the world!

I just watched the movie Bob Lazar: Area 51 and Flying Saucers by Jeremy Corbell. While this is not a review of the film, I thought it was excellent in its content, writing, production and artistic flare. My congratulations to Jeremy Corbell, George Knapp and Bob Lazar. I thoroughly enjoyed it. I highly recommend watching it for a very humanizing look at Bob, his family, work, and the impact this has made in his life over the last 30 years. I really came away liking Bob as a person.

Bob Lazar movie poster
Bob Lazar movie poster (Credit: JKLC Productions)

Now, obviously this is a case that borders on the fantastic. So, this case has many supporters and many detractors. The main reason is, like any case in Ufology, that there is no actual PROOF that it is true.

Now, many detractors point to inconsistencies in the story, missing information, the obviously fantastic nature of it, as well as a lack of documentation to back up his claims of education, employment, and just plain skepticism. To that I say, “Fair enough!”

Now, many supporters point to the fact that his story has not changed over 30 years, that he has avoided the spot light, has suffered rather than benefitted from this, has provided information that is backed up by documentation, and various points that do back up some of his claims. I also say. “Fair enough!”

My point is: This case, like every other case related to UFO’s has some questionable facets to it and some solid evidentiary facets to it. I certainly appreciate the hard work investigators have accomplished in researching, challenging and verifying everything possible in this case. However, the sad truth is we can all argue for one position or the other (opinions based on our own interpretation of the data) and get absolutely nowhere in determining its reality or not. We will likely never KNOW (as in proof) if it happened or not. Perhaps no one even knows for sure what went on, including Bob Lazar himself.

I like to use the simile Stanton Friedman uses regarding belief in a particular case or notion, and that is of the three in-baskets: White and Black for what one is convinced is true (pro and con) and a Grey basket for that which is undecided. I myself, place the Bob Lazar case in my “grey” basket. I believe it could be true, but there is no proof.

I think this case classically represents the frustration presented by the phenomena, because it is inherently ambiguous. That is why there is so much acrimony within the UFO community. All we truly have-to-go-on at this point is our individual OPINIONS of the scant data we have in our possession, data which is ironically open to interpretation in of itself. There is no case to my knowledge that has presented proof of an alien intelligence visiting our planet. Don’t get me wrong, I think this is in fact happening, but I can’t prove that and neither can anyone else!

So, what do we do, give up? No, we continue to gather facts, analyze them as scientifically as possible, share our conclusions with each other and keep an open mind so that when the phenomena reveals’ itself to us, we are ready to accept it. Or, if we have faithfully executed the scientific process and have the good fortune to obtain such proof, we accept that. This process is incredibly important, interesting, satisfying, and meaningful.

So, whether the Bob Lazar story falls in your white, black or grey basket, remember it is a part of Ufological history and we are all a part of it too. And I unambiguously think that is cool!

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