Since it has come up recently on Facebook, I thought that I would revisit the “Unholy Thirteen,” as named by Brigadier General Arthur Exon about two decades ago. It was Exon who brought this up in my first interview with him, it was he who described the committee, and it was he who linked it specifically to UFOs.
First, though, a little bit of background. Back in the late 1970s, when cattle mutilations were all the rage, I did an article about my investigations into them and the fact that I had found terrestrial explanations for these seemingly inexplicable events. I wrote an article for one of the half dozen magazines devoted to UFOs but the editor sent it back with a note that he, or the magazine, wasn’t interested in another discussion of cattle mutilations. Imagine my surprise when the next issue contained a long story about cattle mutilations. It seems he was not interested in solving the mystery, but rather in keeping it alive.
My lesson might not have been what he wanted it to be. I learned that if I was going to write an article explaining something, I had better find an alternative mystery. Or, if I was going to expose MJ-12, I had better find another mysterious committee to replace it. Exon provided that for me with his discussion of the “Unholy Thirteen.”
According to Exon, he had run into this committee while assigned to the Pentagon in the mid-1950s. He said that he was not a part of it, but he did know who some of the members were. He linked it to Roswell, but in today’s world, given what we know about the history of UFOs, the creation of this committee might have preceded the Roswell crash. The information about the debris was sent up the chain of command, and this oversight committee, whoever they were, would have been about the last stop on the journey. Exon didn’t know their official name and called them the “Unholy Thirteen.”
Exon said that the information about Roswell would have gone to Brigadier General Roger Ramey in Fort Worth because he was the next level of command. It would have been passed farther up the chain of command to Strategic Command Headquarters (Kenny) which was in Washington, D.C., to the Chief of Staff of the Army for Air (Spaatz), the Chief of Staff of the Armies (Eisenhower), to the Secretary of War for Air (Stuart Symington), the Secretary of War (Patterson, I believe) and finally to the President (Truman, if I need to point that out). Remember, this would have been the first word of the discovery, and today it doesn’t matter what you believe fell at Roswell, this protocol would have been followed because in July1947, these top people were worried about the identity of the flying saucers. They wanted to know what they were, who made them and if they were hostile… which is not the situation we find ourselves in today.
Exon also said, “I just know there was a top intelligence echelon represented (here I think he is referring to Colonel Howard McCoy who had been studying these things since the Foo Fighters of WW II and for more about McCoy see Government UFO Files: The Conspiracy of Cover-up which is a plug for my book but would provide the details of this for those who want it) and the President’s office was represented and the Secretary of Defense’s office [at the time, July 1947, Secretary of War] was represented and these people stayed on it in the key positions even though they might have moved out [Symington, for example, becoming a US senator].”
This is important because these guys who Exon named were not mentioned in MJ-12 document, but given who they were and what they were doing, they would have been tapped for this kind of committee… but then, if Eisenhower was on the committee, he already knew about Roswell and there would be no reason for the briefing given to him in 1952. Given the structure of the government in 1947, these are guys who would have been involved and that they are not mentioned in MJ-12 is just another indication that MJ-12 is not legitimate.
We know that this was going on because Edward Ruppelt, one time chief of Project Blue Book wrote, in his book, The Report on Unidentified Flying Objects, (page 109 in hardback, 147 in Ace paperback), “The only people outside Project Blue Book who have studied the complete case of the Lubbock Lights were a group who, due to their associations with the government had complete access to our files [emphasis added]. And these people were not pulp writers or wide-eyed fanatics; they were scientists – rocket experts, nuclear physicists, and intelligence experts [emphasis added]. They had banded together to study our UFO reports because they were convinced that some of the UFOs that were being reported were interplanetary space ships and the Lubbock Lights were one of these reports.”
Now, none of this proves that anything extraordinary fell at Roswell but it does suggest that there was some kind of high power committee of mixed civilian and military that oversaw the collection of UFO information. Given the situation in 1947, and what we have learned about interest in UFOs that began with the Foo Fighters, continued to the Ghost Rockets and then to the flying disks, there is no question about this. The motivation for the formation of the committee seems to have begun before the Roswell crash (for a detailed look into this again see Government UFO Files: The Conspiracy of Cover-up).
Stan Friedman, to counter this “assault” on MJ-12, wrote that I had misquoted Exon in the magazine article and UFO Crash at Roswell. I sent transcripts, as well as tapes, of Exon’s comments to Don Schmitt and to me, on to him along with a copy of the book and asked what I had misquoted. He acknowledged that the quotes were accurate and then complained that I had given more emphasis to his words than they warranted… well, that’s sort of my job, deciding what was important in the interview. The important point is that the quotes were accurate.
So, where are we then? Well, the committee existed and we have documents other than Exon’s claims to back that up. Their purpose was to answer questions about UFOs. Exon tended to link them to Roswell, but given what we know it seems the committee was formed prior to anything happening at Roswell. It was very high level, it contained those you would expect to be on it, and this information tends to negate MJ-12, which was the purpose of my article published in the Spring, 1992. The point is, there is evidence for a high level committee, it was not MJ-12, and the documentation proves it.
Or maybe the point here is to show that the name, “Unholy Thirteen,” was just something Exon invented because he didn’t know the official name of the committee and to him it was a useful way to discuss them. He knew they existed and that they were charged with determining the national security threat of the flying saucers… especially in 1947 when no one knew much of anything about them… and that was about all he knew about that.