The Disclosure Australia Project is auspiced by the Australian UFO Research Network, PO Box Box 738, Jimboomba, Queensland, 4280, with an Adelaide based Secretariat, operated by the Australian UFO Research Association, PO Box 786, North Adelaide, South Australia 5006. As this second issue is being distributed to a wider audience than issue One, some of the introductory material will be repeated.
The Project’s Mission Statement is:
To ascertain the extent of official Australian Government knowledge of the UFO phenomenon; then to document both this and civilian knowledge on the subject.
The Project’s aims are:
- To collect, collate, analyse and disseminate information about what is currently known about Australian Government knowledge of the UFO phenomenon.
- To document and make available the “best” Australian UFO cases held by both civilian and Government sources.
- To ascertain what knowledge of the UFO phenomenon may not currently be in the public domain, and seek to document and disseminate this information to interested parties.
The role of the Secretariat:
A dictionary definition of a “Secretariat” is that it is an office responsible for the secretarial, clerical and administrative functions of an organisation. In this Project, the members of the Australian UFO Research Association (AURA), based in Adelaide, are undertaking this role of a Secretariat to the Australian UFO Research Network (AUFORN), our National level umbrella group to which most of us are affiliated.
Functions of the Secretariat for this project include:
• Newsletter production and distribution
• The Project website at http://disclosure.freewebpage.org
• Mining the Government archives
• Liaison with Australian UFO groups and interested individual Australian UFO researchers
• The Project UFO reports Archive.
Further details of AURA, e.g. its Mission Statement and Aims may be found in attachment 1 to this Newsletter, and at: http://aura.freewebpage.org
The role of AUFORN:
The Project is “auspiced” by the Australian UFO Research Network. A dictionary definition of “auspice” in this respect, means “patronage;” where patronage is to give support to a project. AUFORN is the only national level body to which most Australian UFO groups are affiliated, plus it also maintains a national coverage of individuals who support AUFORN and conduct investigations of UFO reports received by the national UFO free call Hotline. The Project would not be possible without this support.
Appointment of liaison officers:
Thank you to all those UFO organisations who have nominated a liaison person between themselves and the Project Secretariat. We have acknowledged receipt of each nomination in writing and then have contacted that individual by telephone, or in person, to introduce ourselves as members of the Secretariat.
To all those interested individual UFO researchers who have responded to our invitation in Newsletter One, welcome to the project and to this second Newsletter.
Web presence and archive:
By now you should be aware that the Project has a web presence at:
At this location you will find:
- A background paper tabled at the Third Australian National UFO Conference in Brisbane in June 2003
- Newsletters One and Two
- A link to the Disclosure Australia Project Archive. This archive currently contains a sample of documented Australian UFO events, and a series of catalogues on specific aspects of the phenomenon.
Government document search:
As a first step, an electronic search of the Australian Government National Archives has commenced, to determine records held by the Archives, of interest
to us. A preliminary search has produced a listing of 30 titles which include:
- A series of files titled “Reports on Flying Saucers and Aerial Objects”. Series A703. Control symbols 580/1/1 Parts 1-20, covering the years 1955-1973. Parts 1-9, years 1955-1968 are shown as “Open access.” Part 10 “open with exception”. Parts 11-20, 1969-1973 are shown as “Not yet examined”
- Series number A705, which includes files control symbol 159/2/304 titled “Mr Downer (MP) Parliamentary question re flying saucers” 1953; and “(Intelligence general) Reports on flying saucers and other aerial objects” Control symbol 114/1/197, covering the years 1953-1955
- Series number M1148. “Flying saucers 1954 to 1955.” Control symbol of the same name
- Series number C273. Control symbol 1957/619 “Reports on Flying saucers and strange lights in the sky (Department of Civil Aviation, New South Wales)” 1954-1960
- Series number MP926/1. Control symbol 3079/101/1. “Unidentified objects (flying saucers sighted by Navy pilot over Goulburn) 1954
- Series number A9778. Control symbol M1/F/31 “Flying Saucers-Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research.” 1952-1957.
It should be noted that Bill Chalker has already extensively reported on his inspection of RAAF and other agency files, in a series of published papers; in his 1996 book, and on his website. Some of the above files are included in Bill’s reporting.
- Has found that a number of these files are available for viewing on the Net and has already looked through 580/1/1 Part 7 of 371 pages; 114/1/197 1953-1955, of 210 pages, and M1/F/31 of 15 pages
- Has ordered a number of other files
- Is making inquiries about having some files transferred to the Adelaide reading room of the National Archives for inspection in person.
To some, this may seem like covering old ground; or prove unlikely to uncover anything new. However, unless a thorough search is conducted, previously
unseen documents may be overlooked.
Assistance is sought from anyone who has a copy of any articles, published or unpublished concerning Australian Government Federal Parliamentary questions on the subject of “flying saucers” or UFOs. You will see from the National Archive listing that there is a document concerning a Parliamentary question from Mr Downer MP in 1953. A copy of this will be requested.
The following outlines the proposed process for case file submissions to the Project Archive. We welcome feedback on this proposed system.
- New documentation on a new UFO case received.
- Acknowledgement sent to originator.
- Documentation forwarded for review, to two Australian researchers independent of the Secretariat. Reviewers will be chosen for their expertise relevant to the type of report submitted.
- Reviewers’ comments received back by the Secretariat.
- Secretariat holds discussions with the originator. Points of clarification sought if necessary.
- Steps 3-5 repeated if necessary.
- Secretariat accepts or rejects the submission.
- If accepted, issues of any copyright resolved.
- Secretariat edits the case file to a standard Archive format.
- Originator reviews Secretariat’s version.
- Originator and Secretariat agree on final version to be posted.
- Material posted to the Project Archive.
The objective of this process, is to ensure that the final Archive contains peer reviewed material of the highest standard. Current material in the Archive is for sample purposes only and may or may not remain, and will be subject to the same peer review process. It is currently placed there for illustrative purposes only.
Transparency and accountability:
AUFORN and the Project Secretariat are undertaking this work on behalf of the Australian UFO research community, while making the whole process transparent and accountable to this community. We therefore ask that if you are not clear on any part of the project, or wish to comment, that you do so directly to us-and not through third parties. Your feedback is always welcome and will receive utmost consideration and a response.
The Secretariat invites you to provide a link to the Project website on your own website.
Ideas rolling action list:
In order not to loose any of the ideas which you submit, an “Ideas rolling action list” has been started. This ongoing list will be included in each Newsletter.
So far it reads:
||Follow up action
|1. Access to any relevant State level Police records
||Research FOI Acts in each State and territory
||Not assigned as yet.
If you see any items here which you can contribute to, then please get in touch with us. For example, probably a few of us already know, or work with, a particular state FOI Act.
Contacting the Secretariat:
The members of the Secretariat look forward to continue working with you on this Project. Should you have any queries please contact us as per below:
Snailmail: The Secretariat, Disclosure Australia, PO Box 786, North Adelaide, South Australia 5006
Telephone: 041 141 7594.