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Martin: Hi, everyone, I have, author of UFOs: Generals, Pilots, And Government Officials Go On The Record, Leslie Kean on Skype. Hi you doing, Leslie?
Leslie Kean: Doing well, Martin, how are you? Thanks for having me on.
Martin: Uh, I’m thrilled that you’re on, and, you call yourself a UFO agnostic. I like that, and, it gives you a great sense of integrity while you’re doing your researching and writing. Can you tell the listener, who may not know your story, how, as a journalist, you got involved in the UFO phenomena.
Leslie Kean: Sure, uh, ’cause I never expected to get involved. So, um, what happened was back in 1999 I was working at a public radio station in the San Francisco Bay Area producing and co-hosting a daily investigative news program, there, and a colleague in France sent me this extraordinary report written by high-level military people in that country and it was – a, a, a – an English translation of this ninety-page study that was eventually going to be released in the States, but he gave me, kind of, an advanced copy of it, and what it was a three-year study performed by – among the group were four generals, an admiral, the former head of the National Space Studies Center in France, which is the equivalent of NASA in this country, some scientists, some engineers, these very, very sophisticated, knowledgeable, and high-level people had, had focused on this issue for a number of years and they issued a report because they were concerned about the national security implications, the defense implications, of these things that were being seen by pilots and aviation people around the world and they studied only the mo – the official cases that they – and the most official and the best cases – the cases for which we have so much evidence that you really can’t find an – a conventional explanation for anything, so – at least for the cases they studied. So, I received this report and I was s – just very, very struck by, the conclusion – not only the cases presented, but the conclusions of these high-level people, which was that, uh, the phenomenon, in the cases they studied – which, again, are the cases with the best evidence, officially investigated – the phenomenon in – the best explanation that they could come up with, for those cases, was what they called the Extraterrestrial Hypothesis, and they said this was the most valid, the most likely explanation for these objects that were being seen and I thought, as a journalist, then, just, sort of, looking for a good story – I thought when you have generals and admirals saying that it’s very likely that we are being visited by extraterrestrial craft, of some sort – I thought this was a big news story. I mean, imagine if the equivalent officials in America came out with a statement like that – it would be a huge thing. So I was very struck by the power of their conclusion and the writing in this report was also very, very strong and powerful and interesting, and that’s what got me started – I, I wanted to look into it based on their conclusions and I wrote a story for the Boston Globe based on this French report, which is known as the COMETA report, and that story came out in the spring of 2000, and that’s how I got started and ever since then I’ve been, pretty much, primarily focused on this.