The "Pentacle Memorandum"
Including Text of Correspondence from Dr. Jacques Vallee


17-AUGUST-1993 - The "Pentacle Memorandum" has been a controversial item since its existence was revealed to the wider UFO community by Dr. Jacques Vallee in his excellent work Forbidden Science, (Copyright 1992, Jacques Vallee, North Atlantic Books, Berkeley CA, ISBN 1-55643-125-2). 

Vallee found the two page memo in 1967 while working with Dr. Allen Hynek's papers and partially described it in Forbidden Science, giving the author of the memo the code name "Pentacle". 

Shortly thereafter, a document which purported to be the Pentacle Memo came into limited circulation among certain researchers.  We obtained our copy from Mr. Barry Greenwood , P.O. Box 218, Coventry, CT 06238). 

Among other things, this document contains confirmation that Battelle Memorial Institute was working on UFO project(s) at the time of the Robertson Panel, (January 1953), and apparently could exercise some amount of control over the handling of the subject matter. 

Since we believe that the 1952 - 1953 period is pivotal to understanding the nature of our government's response to UFO, we were pleased to discover that Dr. Vallee was working in some of the same areas (preparing Forbidden Science). 

Although there is now testimony of a respected person in the 'UFO Community' regarding the Pentacle memo's authenticity, confirmation of the document by official release would be final proof.  Since that has not as yet happened, this file has been placed the "Other Files" file section of CUFON.

This file contains the text of correspondence between Jacques Vallee and Dale Goudie, and between Dr. Vallee and Barry Greenwood.  Mr. Goudie has provided the texts and we have chosen to post the letter from Vallee to Greenwood because we felt that it represented a clear, concise statement of the reasons Dr. Vallee thinks the Pentacle document so important, and as such, should be made available. The text of the Pentacle Memo is also included. 

   Dale Goudie          Jim Klotz


"Disclaimer": CUFON lists the following references to the Pentacle Memo as a service to the reader only; there is no intention of providing a comprehensive listing of references.  CUFON does not necessarily endorse any of the viewpoints expressed in the listed articles.  

    1. UFO Magazine, Vol.8, Nos.2 and 3, 1993.  UFO Magazine P.O. Box 1053, Sunland, CA

    2. Just Cause, Number 35, March 1993.  PO Box 218, Coventry, CT 06238. 

    3. International UFO Reporter (IUR), Vol. 18, No. 3, May/June, 1993. J. Allen Hynek Center
        for UFO Studies (CUFOS), 2457 W. Peterson Ave., Chicago, IL 60659 


San Francisco, CA                                                                             12 June 1993

        Dear Dale:

        I welcome your inquiries, and I am glad to see that the 'Pentacle' memo has come out of obscurity.  The document you sent me appears to be genuine.  It corresponds to the one I saw.

        The question of its origin may be unimportant.  Perhaps the people who released it will go public eventually (I have an idea who they might be).  The best course of action, however, would be to seek access to the original document, and to others of the same vintage.

        I enclose a copy of my recent comments to Barry Greenwood on the same subject.

        With best regards,

                            /s/ Jacques


                Dale: FYI
                (I don't know if this will be published by Greenwood.)   J.V.

                                                            27 April 1993

Barry Greenwood

Dear Barry:

  Thank you for sending me your thoughtful commentary about the Pentacle document. I do agree with you on one point: the significance of the memo comes, in part, from what it does not say. In particular, it makes no reference to any recovered UFO hardware, at Roswell or elsewhere, or to alien bodies. The greater significance of what it does say will slowly emerge in coming years as the overall implications come to light. Let me draw your attention to three specific points. 

  1. Project Twinkle and other observational efforts by the military, which you mention in an effort to show that Pentacle was only dusting off an old idea, were purely passive projects. In sharp contrast the Pentacle proposal goes far beyond anything mentioned before. It daringly states that "many different types of aerial activity should be secretly and purposefully scheduled within the area (my emphasis)." It is difficult to be more clear. We are not talking simply about setting up observing stations and cameras. We are talking about large-scale, covert simulation of UFO waves under military control. 

  2. The greatest implication, which is perhaps not obvious on first reading but which amounts to a scandal of major proportion in the eyes of any scientist, has to do with the outright manipulation of the Robertson panel. Here is a special meeting of the five most eminent scientists in the land, assembled by the government to discuss a matter of national security. Not only are they not made aware of all the data, but another group has already decided "what can and cannot be discussed (Pentacle's own words!)" when they meet. Dr. Hynek categorically stated to me that the panel was not briefed about the Pentacle proposals. 

  3. Revelation of this document may seem irrelevant to Just Cause, but its explosive nature wasn't lost on Battelle. As I noted in Forbidden Science, and as Fred Beckman vividly recalls to this day, the Project Stork team reacted with fury when Hynek went back to Battelle in 1967, demanding to know the truth. The man I have called Pentacle snatched his notes away and told him in no uncertain terms that the contents of the memo were not to be discussed, under any circumstances. 

  I find it odd that a group that claims to be interested in the historical study of our field, as Just Cause does, should fail to see the significance of the Pentacle Memo, which is an authentic document, when so much time, money and ink have been devoted over the last several years to an in-depth analysis of the MJ-12 papers, which were faked. Perhaps the Pentacle memo only proves that scientific studies of UFOs (and even their classified components) have been manipulated since the fifties. But it also suggests several avenues of research which are vital to the future of this field: why were Pentacle's proposals kept from the panel? Were his plans for a secret simulation of UFO waves implemented? If so, when, where and how?  What was discovered as a result? Are these simulations still going on? I invite your group to turn its investigative resources and its analytical talent to this important task. 

In reading Forbidden Science, you should recognize that the book is a Diary, not an analytical report or a memoir. Therefore many important inferences, many relevant details, can only be found by reading between the lines. Your preliminary analysis of the Pentacle memo is not unfair, but it is somewhat simplistic, and it takes it out of context. I invite you to go back for a second, closer reading. 

cc: Fred Beckman

        /s/ Jacques Vallee




cc: B. D. Thomas
  H. C. Cross/A. D. Westerman
  L. R. Jackson
  W. T. Reid
  P. J. Rieppal
  V. W. Ellsey/R. J. Lund January 9, 1953
  Extra [handwritten]

Mr. Miles E. Goll 
Box 9575
Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio

Attention  Capt. Edward J. Ruppelt

Dear Mr. Goll: 

       This letter concerns a preliminary recommendation to ATIC on future methods of handling the problem of unidentified aerial objects. This recommendation is based on our experience to date in analyzing several thousands of reports on this subject.  We regard the recommendation as preliminary because our analysis is not yet complete, and we are not able to document it where we feel it should be supported by facts from the analysis.

       We are making this recommendation prematurely because of a CIA-sponsored meeting of a scientific panel, meeting in Washington, D.C., January 14, 15, and 16, 1953, to consider the problem of "flying saucers".  The CIA-sponsored meeting is being held subsequent to a meeting of CIA, ATIC, and our representatives held at ATIC on December 12, 1952.  At the December 12 meeting our representatives strongly recommended that a scientific panel not be set up until the results of our analysis of the sighting-reports collected by ATIC were available. Since a meeting of the panel is now definitely scheduled we feel that agreement between Project Stork and ATIC should be reached as to what can and what cannot be discussed at the meeting in Washington on January 14-16 concerning our preliminary recommendation to ATIC.

       Experience to date on our study of unidentified flying objects shows that there is a distinct lack of reliable data with which to work. Even the best-documented reports are frequently lacking in critical information that makes it impossible to arrive at a possible identification, i.e. even in a well-documented report there is always an element of doubt about the data, either because the observer had no means of getting the required data, or was not prepared to utilize the means at his disposal.  Therefore, we recommend that a controlled experiment be set up by which reliable physical data can be obtained.  A tentative preliminary plan by which the experiment could be designed and carried out is discussed in the following paragraphs.

       Based on our experience so far, it is expected that certain conclusions will be reached as a result of our analysis which will make obvious the need for an effort to obtain reliable data from competent observers using the [... unreadable...] necessary equipment.  Until more reliable data are available, no positive answers to the problem will be possible.


Mr. Miles E. Goll                                       -2-                                    January 9, 1953

       We expect that our analysis will show that certain areas in the United States have had an abnormally high number of reported incidents of unidentified flying objects.  Assuming that, from our analysis, several definite areas productive of reports can be selected, we recommend that one or two of theses areas be set up as experimental areas.  This area, or areas, should have observation posts with complete visual skywatch, with radar and photographic coverage, plus all other instruments necessary or helpful in obtaining positive and reliable data on everything in the air over the area.  A very complete record of the weather should also be kept during the time of the experiment.  Coverage should be so complete that any object in the air could be tracked, and information as to its altitude, velocity, size, shape, color, time of day, etc. could be recorded.  All balloon releases or known balloon paths, aircraft flights, and flights of rockets in the test area should be known to those in charge of the experiment.  Many different types of aerial activity should be secretly and purposefully scheduled within the area.

       We recognize that this proposed experiment would amount to a large-scale military maneuver, or operation, and that it would require extensive preparation and fine coordination, plus maximum security. Although it would be a major operation, and expensive, there are many extra benefits to be derived besides the data on unidentified aerial objects.

       The question of just what would be accomplished by the proposed experiment occurs.  Just how could the problem of these unidentified objects be solved?  From this test area, during the time of the experiment, it can be assumed that there would be a steady flow of reports from ordinary civilian observers, in addition to those by military or other official observers.  It should be possible by such a controlled experiment to prove the identity of all objects reported, or to determine positively that there were objects present of unknown identity.  Any hoaxes under a set-up such as this could almost certainly be exposed, perhaps not publicly, but at least to the military.

       In addition, by having resulting data from the controlled experiment, reports for the last five years could be re-evaluated, in the light of similar but positive information.  This should make possible reasonably certain conclusions concerning the importance of the problem of "flying saucers".

       Results of an experiment such as described could assist the Air Force to determine how much attention to pay to future situations when, as in the past summer, there were thousands of sightings reported.  In the future, then, the Air Force should be able to make positive statements, reassuring to the public, and to the effect that everything is well under control.

                                               Very truly yours,


                                                H. C. Cross



Addendum:  18-February-2000 - Thanks to the work of several dedicated researchers into the historical aspects of UFO, much more is known today than was known back in 1993, but much yet remains to be uncovered.  Wendy Connors of the Project Sign Research Center, is one of these fine researchers; she provided the following comments:

"Col. Miles Goll was an early kingpin at Wright Field and first worked as head of Fire Control for the Armament Lab during the war. Later, he was in T-2 and controlled access to the special situation room. Very little else is known about him, but he did have great connections at Wright Field and the Pentagon. I've been trying to dig up stuff on him, but it's pretty sparse."


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