by Charles Lear
If you have an interest in UFOs you’ve probably come across the 2010 Hangzhou Xiaoshan International Airport case, which involved a UFO hovering over the airport sighted by a descending flight crew. The airport was shut down for an hour and the case made international news. China has a relatively open official policy regarding UFOs but according to researcher, Chuck Fei, any spiritual or quasi-religious activities associated with UFOs are strongly discouraged. Besides discovering some interesting cases, research into Chinese UFOs reveals an interesting relationship involving the subject between China and the Western powers of the United States and Britain.
At the 2016 Citizen Hearing before six former members of the U.S. Congress, UFO researcher and former Chinese diplomat Sun Shili, stated, “After years of research, a large number of Chinese UFO scholars, including myself, are convinced of the authenticity of UFOs and the existence of UFOs and aliens.” Shili was a chairman of Beijing UFO Research Society and that organization has a policy similar to many Chinese UFO research groups that requires its members to have college degrees. The group is respected by the government and air force officials have been known to attend meetings. The focus of most UFO research in China is very scientific and speculation is kept to a minimum.
The Chinese government was not always so tolerant of UFO researchers and one of them, Moon Wai, relocated to Oakland, California, adopted the name Paul Dong and made it his mission to acquaint the West with China’s UFO history. In his 1984 book, “The Four Major Mysteries of Mainland China” Dong describes some of China’s strangest cases. One case involving the abduction of a soldier is remarkably similar to the “Valdes Case” discussed in last week’s blog on Chilean UFOs. In 1975, two soldiers sighted a large saucer-shaped object hovering above them illuminated with a pulsating red light. One of the men went back to camp to notify his commander while the other remained. The commander and ten soldiers arrived at the site within a few minutes but both the UFO and the man who was keeping watch on it were gone. The commander ordered that the entire camp search for the man and he was found by four men who heard him groaning in a field. He was described as looking like a hermit who had emerged from a cave as his eyebrows and hair had grown significantly. His watch had stopped close to the time of the sighting and he could not recall any details of his time spent missing or how he had come to be in the field.
Another case reported by Dong involved three students from Beijing’s Mineralogy School. The students were camping on August 24, 1980 near the Great Wall when they spotted a shining disc in the eastern sky at approximately 4:08 a.m. which was dim in the center. One of them managed to take a picture of it and the photo was developed and published by the Beijing Evening News. The photo is considered to be the first UFO photo taken in the People’s Republic, which may seem strange but cameras were long considered to be objects of Western decadence and the general public’s use of them was discouraged.
Dong described the Gobi Desert as a UFO hot spot and in one instance there a prominent scientist, Pen Jin Mu, never returned to camp after leaving his fellow scientists to look for water. Hundreds of soldiers and about a dozen planes were sent to look for Mu but the only traces of him found were some footprints and candy wrappers. Dong speculated that he might have been abducted but the official explanation was that he was buried in a sandstorm.
An article by Elizabeth Rosenthal, published January 11, 2000 in the New York Times looks at the changes in China over the 25 years prior to the article. Sun Shili and others Rosenthal spoke to attributed the emerging openness to the UFO subject to liberalization and market reforms. Sun Shili is quoted as saying, ”As China has opened to the outside world in the last 20 years, people’s thinking has also opened.” Shili described the freedom to discuss UFOs in academic circles without fear of ridicule and felt that American academics were jealous.
Jealous or not, America and England were paying attention to China’s UFO activity. In an article by Andrew Koubaridis, posted on the New York Post website July 2, 2018, Koubaridis states that the files released by Britain’s Ministry of Defense reveal a genuine concern that China or Russia might have recovered an alien craft. This would give them an advantage if they were able to duplicate the alien technology and that is a national security concern. American official interest in Chinese UFOs is evidenced by CIA files that are available on their website. Concern in both the East and the West that the other had acquired or would acquire exotic technology resulted in a bizarre race that this writer feels probably involved disinformation by both to convince the other side that this had indeed happened. That such a race exists was reflected in the words of Harry Reid as he was arguing for funding for continued UFO research by our government. Speaking to George Knapp of Las Vegas’ KLAS News Team Reid said, “I’ll bet you anything that China is spending some money checking this out.”
China is yet another example that UFOs are a worldwide phenomenon. When looking into cases from various countries, one is struck by the similarities in the reports and the common enthusiasm of the researchers. What is also interesting are the differences due to cultural influences. UFOlogists the world over are very much the same but they’re also a little different.