UFO Conjecture(s)

Monday, February 10, 2014

Was Socorro a college prank? No, but….

Copyright 2014, InterAmerica, Inc.

Anthony Bragalia has long contended that Lonnie Zamora was the victim of a college- induced hoax (in Socorro, 1964).
Mr. Bragalia has provided reams of circumstantial piffle to bolster his thesis but neglects the one clue that could prove (or disprove) his hypothesis: the Socorro Insignia:
Reading, in The London review of Books [2/6/2104, Page 25], about a college prank of 1755 involving a pamphlet called Pope ein Metaphysiker!, that involved an attempt by an anonymous writer or writers (students?) “to make fun of the learned members of the Royal Prussian Academy” accusing “them of dishonouring the memory of their found member, Gottfried Leibniz,” brings to my mind what any real hoaxer or hoaxer of the Socorro incident might do.

Reviewer Jonathan Rée, who presents the story, writes, “Pope ein Metaphysiker! Was an impudent prank at the expense of the cultural establishment in Berlin, and the perpetrators covered their tracks by suppressing their names and getting the pamphlet printed in faraway Danzig. But they seemed to have wanted to be found out in due course, and on the title page they left a riddling clue to their identity: a vignette depicting a chubby cherub holding a bearded mask to his face and startling two naked boys. Intriguing, but what could it mean?” [Italics mine]

As Curtis D MacDougall points out in Hoaxes [Dover Publications, NY, 1940/1958], there are many reasons to hoax, but it’s psychiatry that addresses the need by some hoaxers to become known, after the fact of heir hoaxing.

This is what, it seems, the “students” wanted to happen in the Pope ein Metaphysiker! incident wanted.

And I think that might be the case in the Socorro incident, if the episode was a prank or hoax.

But Mr Bragalia doesn’t pursue the Insignia. He pursues and is still pursuing the driver of the car that Officer Zamora was chasing and the co-conspirators of the prank. And he thinks he’s made some headway.

The Insignia or symbol, described by Officer Zamora and made, maddeningly convoluted by the insistence of Ray Stanford and others that the well-known drawing was a ruse and the real insignia was this: 
Mrs. Zamora confirmed, for me, in a 2006 telephone call, that the commonly known insignia is what her husband saw and drew.

That’s the clue to whom created the incident or was the creator(s) of the “egg-shaped craft’ that Officer Zamora saw.

If Mr. Bragalia could nail down the insignia, as originating from or in the New Mexico Technical school, he might make his case.

But, as it stands, the connection to Howard Hughes and the CIA as the originators of the craft and the insignia have more credence, which has been addressed here and elsewhere by us and Matthew Gilleece:



  • I have determined (and written extensively)about the origin of the Socorro UFO symbol-it is inspired by the red/white logo for International Paper in the early 1960s. In prior pieces I confirmed that the IP logo was on paper reams found at NMIT at the time. The comparison between the "UFO" symbol and the IP symbol is obvious...


    By Blogger Anthony Bragalia, at Tuesday, February 11, 2014  

  • And did your paper logo tell you who did the prank/hoax?


    By Blogger RRRGroup, at Tuesday, February 11, 2014  

  • Are there any admissions from alleged hoaxers in the intervening years? If so, is there a link to an article on their admissions to a hoax. If not, what might that suggest.

    ~ Susan

    By Blogger brownie, at Tuesday, February 11, 2014  

  • Brownie,

    The idea of hoaxers has never been proven. If it was a hoax, no one knows who they were.

    Bragalia doesn't understand the difference between a supposition and a fact. He did uncover some evidence of a possible hoax but it was second hand and has never been confirmed. This was good work which Tony squandered with his penchant for crudely and childishly mischaracterizing the evidence (we see the same thing in his post above: just because paper from the largest supplier of paper was used at the university, that does not mean that the logo was used on a hoaxed UFO--it's idiotic to claim so).

    Considerable effort was made (not by Bragalia but by skeptics) to coax former students into admitting the hoax after all these years on a web site for alumni. But no one has turned up.

    So skeptics somehow turned off their demonical desire to debunk at all costs with any explanation at all and looked at Bragalia's evidence and found that it came up short.

    This would not be the only time that skeptics (along with believers) had to dismantle one of Bragalia's debunkings. He made a complete fool of himself in the Trent photo case as well.



    By Blogger Lance, at Tuesday, February 11, 2014  

  • RR -
    I have nothing of value to add here (if ever), but I wanted to go on internet record as being in complete agreement with you view on Socorro...

    ...but more than that, I want to tel you that I intend to steal and use the phrase "reams of circumstantial piffle" whenever I can!

    By Blogger Kurt Peters, at Tuesday, February 11, 2014  

  • Lance - Thanks for taking the time to write out an explanation to me.

    I haven't followed this case closely, except to read the basics. Whatever 'it' was, certainly scared Zamorra.

    ~ Susan

    By Blogger brownie, at Tuesday, February 11, 2014  

  • I'll just point out that the 'real' drawing of the insignia with the 4 parallel bars is nearly identical to a variant of the Star Trek comm badge...

    By Blogger Cat Vincent, at Tuesday, February 11, 2014  

  • Yo Cat Vincent!

    ...obviously you are totally unaware that Star Trek Next Generation writer Tracy Torme' (son of the Velvet Fog) is an complete UFO fan-boy:


    ...so, what does that imply to you?

    By Blogger Kurt Peters, at Tuesday, February 11, 2014  

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