Just when you think that the credibility of the mass media can't get any lower (see Major Media Reports 60-year-old Eighth-hand Rumor as Proof of a Crashed UFO. ), they fall for this one. According to a new book by Annie Jacobsen, "Area 51: An Uncensored History of America's Top Secret Military Base," what crashed at Roswell was not an alien saucer, but instead a collaboration between Stalin and ex-Nazi Mengele to cause panic in the U.S.
This absurd claim was presented in all seriousness by many of the major media, including the Huffington Post. The Albuquerque Journal (May 22) headlined, "Stalin, Nazi Implicated in Roswell Incident." The story was also reported in the Boston Globe, AP News, etc. Practically the only news outlet to show any proper skepticism was Bloomberg's review of the book, "Roswell Martians Might Have Been Nazi Kids From Mengele’s Lab."
No reporter worth his salt should ever have given credence to this preposterous claim, even for a minute. Any one who did belongs in some other profession. There are so many things wrong with this claim, one hardly knows where to start. But I'll give it a try:
First, the first publicized sighting of a disc-shaped craft was that of Kenneth Arnold on June 24, 1947. The Roswell incident occurred TEN DAYS LATER. Did Stalin and Mengele put this hoax together in just ten days? That's laughable. (Interestingly, Arnold described the objects he saw as boomerang-shaped, but the press reported "flying saucers," so that's what people said they saw. See Martin Kottmeyer's "The Saucer Error." )
Second, how did this thing fly? Its propulsion system would be immediately recognized by U.S. experts as conventional and terrestrial. Its electronics would also be immediately recognized as Soviet in origin, years behind the best U.S. made systems. The idea that Stalin could fool U.S. experts into thinking that they were examining an extraterrestrial craft is simply absurd. Stalin was indeed devious and evil, but he was not stupid.
Third, the children who had allegedly been deformed by the cruel Dr. Mengele to look like extraterrestrials reportedly did not all die in the crash. Surely their Soviet handlers knew that if any of them survived, they would immediately be screaming for help in Russian or German, and would reveal the deception at once.
Fourth, this is an attempt to explain something that does not need explaining. Jacobsen's wild claim attempts to explain the origin of a disc-shaped craft that allegedly crashed at Roswell, containing alien-looking beings. But there is no credible evidence whatsoever that this is what was actually found there. The man who actually found the Roswell debris, Mac Brazel, described it as looking like "large number of pieces of paper covered with a foil-like substance and pieced together with small sticks much like a kite." In other words, like the debris of a balloon's radar reflector, probably from Project Mogul (see my book UFO Sightings, chapter 4). There is no credible evidence that what was recovered at Roswell was ever anything bigger than tinfoil and sticks. It is not wise to invoke extraordinary explanations for ordinary phenomena. This is the Fallacy of Misplaced Rationalism, when the "rational" explanation is even more implausible that what it is supposed to explain (see my "Psychic Vibrations" column in the Skeptical Inquirer, July/August, 2008. Reprinted in Science Under Siege, Kendrick Frazier, ed.).
Fifth, as anyone who has read Solzhenitsyn's Gulag Archipelago surely realizes, Stalin never gave anyone who might have some information embarrassing to the Soviet state a chance to tell it. For example, millions of returning Soviet prisoners-of-war were sent to the Gulag for the "crime" of having first-hand knowledge of the outside world. We know that Mengele was hiding out in Bavaria under an assumed name from 1945 to 1949, and escaped to Argentina soon afterward - all while Stalin was still living. Thus the known facts of Mengele's life contradict this preposterous tale - at no time was he ever living in the USSR, or even in the USSR-occupied sector of Germany. If Stalin ever held Mengele, he would have placed him in the Gulag, probably in the "First Circle" (see Solzhenitsyn), where scientific and technical prisoners were held, but compelled to work for the Soviet state. Stalin never would have let him escape, and Stalin lived until 1953, by which time Mengele had been in Argentina for several years.
But when did the major media ever let common sense get in the way of a sensational story?