Revisiting the 1952 Washington DC UFO Flap

“A few days prior to the incident, a scientist, from an agency that I can’t name and I were talking about the build-up of reports along the east coast
of the United States”. At the end of the two hour conversation, the scientist made a prediction: ….. ‘Within the next few days….they’re going to
blow up and you’re going to have the granddaddy of all UFO sightings. The sighting will occur in Washington or New York,’ he predicted, ‘probably

Source : Captain Edward Ruppelt – ”The Report on Unidentified Flying Objects”

Whilst this story has appeared in a number of past threads I was inspired by another member ‘PlanetXisHERE’ ( in another thread) to look into this
case further.

Mainly because I remembered reading the story back when I was kid (even though it was probably a good 25+ years old by then) and I thought it may be
time to refresh my memory. Hopefully a few of you will be able to add your own angle on one of the first mass UFO sightings of modern times.

The thread is a reasonably long one and will constitute 6 different parts:


First Weekend of Contacts July 19th 1952

The Second Weekend of Contacts July 26th 1952

President Truman Gets Involved?

Official Air Force Conclusions and Press Conference

The Robertson Panel

So let’s roll………………


Statistically speaking – the 1952 Flying Saucer flap was one of the largest in the United States.

According to a study J.Allen Hynek conducted on “unknowns” in Project Blue Book, 1952 was also the peak year by some distance. Part of the reason
behind this was that ‘Blue Book’ was getting snowed under with reports and was severely under staffed. Consequently some reports were never looked
into in any detail and remain unknown for that reason alone. But something more than vivid imaginations were at work.

Hynek – The UFO Report 1977

The peak month in 1952 was July. A month of 55 “unidentified” cases (more in total than in many other years).

Sightings occurred across much of the United States and close to U.S. military installations in Korea, Japan, Greenland, Newfoundland and (then) West
Germany. Many of these reports came from military fighter pilots. There was also a major UFO flap during Operation Mainbrace, a series of NATO
military exercises happening in Europe during September of 1952.

However the events that have always been the focus of the 1952 Flying Saucer wave were the two July weekends of major UFO sightings when unidentified
flying objects supposedly buzzed Capitol Hill , the White House and the Pentagon. This was also the first time that the US Air Force had confirmed
visual sightings of unidentified objects had also been tracked by radar.

Washington UFO wave on video

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