October 24, 1969
incident involved a Chilean Naval destroyer and was witnessed
by crew members and the commander of the vessel. Up to
six UFOs, including one large object, were observed. The
objects were verified on radar and observed visually.
As the main object moved over the ship, the vessel's power
An Extraordinary UFO Incident Off Chile
Chalker, an industrial chemist by profession, is one of
Australia's leading UFO investigators. He lives In New
note: Incredible tales of military UFO encounters and
cover-ups are legion in the ufological literature. Most
depend on the testimony of a single informant. This one
is no exception and for that reason must be viewed, unless
and until verifying evidence comes forward, as no more
than an interesting anecdote. We are publishing it not
because we consider it "evidence" of anything
-- it clearly is not -- but because it resembles other
such stories in a remarkable way.
means that either the claimant is drawing on a body of
widespread folklore or he, like other claimants telling
like tales, is speaking the truth. Chile, a military dictatorship,
does not have a Freedom of Information Act to which inquirers
seeking verification can turn. Readers who might have
access to information that could shed light on this claim
are urged to write IUR.
of a series of chance events and an overseas trip, I had
the opportunity to interview an alleged witness to an
extraordinary event that supposedly took place in the
Pacific Ocean, about 350 miles to the south of Valparaiso
Port, off the coast of Chile. The incident involved a
Chilean Naval destroyer and was witnessed by crew members
and the commander of the vessel. Up to six UFOs, including
one large object, were observed. The objects were verified
on radar and observed visually. As the main object moved
over the ship, the vessel's power went out.
extraordinary as the event itself is its alarming aftermath.
According to my informant, a cover-up followed and the
witnesses were held in confinement in port for two days,
subjected to intense psychological pressures to force
them to believe they saw nothing out of the ordinary.
name of my informant cannot be revealed. He says, however,
that he was on duty during the incident and observed the
whole event. The location of the interview, even the country
in which it took place, also cannot be given. The witness
fears that disclosure of either detail could cause him
to be recalled to active service in the Chilean Navy.
Although he has already served his term of service, he
is concerned that enforced military service could be used
as a form of punishment.
must point out that from the very beginning I have been
skeptical of many UFO cover-up claims. From my experience
as the first civilian researcher to have comprehensive
access to the Royal Australian Air Force UFO files, however,
I have become more open-minded about such allegations.
In this regard I was willing to consider the testimony
of my Chilean informant, who to all appearances was sincerely
frightened by the events he described to me. That does
not mean I have become a 'believer,' only that I believe
such claims deserve a fair hearing.
after midnight, on or about October 24, 1969, a Chilean
Navy destroyer, a week out of dry dock at Talcahuano Port
(where the ship's axle had been removed and replaced),
was navigating at 20 knots and heading north 20 degrees
portside from NNW). The incredible events that followed
took place over the next eight minutes.
12:43 A.M. the radar officer reported a long-range flying
contact. A minute later the "contact" was at
400 miles. Because of the "object's" speed,
the operator suspected a malfunction in his equipment.
In the next minute the contact was approximately 150 miles
away closing from 331 degrees of true north. But the operator
and officer in charge during the late night duty (an officer
of second-class rank) speculated that the contact was
a "plane flying southeast" --but at 213 miles
in a minute: 12,780 mph!
officer in charge advised the ship's commander, who asked
that an eye be kept on the object. At 12:47 the contact
was only 12 miles away. Suddenly the single contact became
six "targets." The "thing spread .... Little
dots appeared in the fire of the light on the radar...."
officer in charge informed the commander just as the objects
making the returns came into view. Both eyewitnesses and
radar were reporting six objects approaching the ship.
The commander came up to the ship's bridge to see what
was going on.
was a fantastic sight. One massive object and five small
objects were approaching at high speed. The "big
thing looked like a big box [with] semicircles in the
side" looking as if they had been scooped out. It
was bathed in brilliant light. "The thing must have
been metallic," my informant told me. "It was
bigger than the destroyer, which was about 110 metres
long." He thought it might be at least twice the
length of the ship but it was difficult to tell because
"the light was bright."
five smaller objects were egg-shaped and appeared to be
no bigger than eight feet long and five to six feet wide.
They were bluish in color.
about 2000 yards out from the destroyer the smaller objects
left the proximity of the larger object. Three went portside
and two went starboard. The smaller objects at times seemed
to be flying in "elliptical circles backwards and
forwards between the big one and our vessel ...."
main thing did not change direction -- if it had been
in the sea there would have been a collision."
humming noise was audible when the large object got to
within 300 yards. It was at this point that the power
went out. For a couple of seconds all instruments went
dead as the huge craft passed overhead.
this point the commander came on to the bridge, asking,
"What the hell is that?" My informant remarked
that the commander "was very calm, because probably
he knew what he saw. We didn't.
could see the whole thing, the light was so strong. You
could see the water, the funnel head, the head of the
ship, the towers, everything... Everybody on the bridge
was sort of listening to the noise. I don't know how long
this thing took to go across."
bright red lights underneath the main UFO seemed to be
moving back and forth inside the "box," shining
through a half-circle or crescent shape on the bottom
of the object. On the side were what looked like "corn
cobs," with green or turquoise pulsing lights. These
lights, my informant said, "went right through your
large object passed over the powerless ship. When it was
200 yards away, everything returned to normal. The smaller
objects, never coming closer than 500 to 1000 yards, flew
around the ship and joined up with the larger object on
the other side.
main object continued on its way until it was about two
miles beyond the ship. At that point, along with (we assume)
the smaller-objects, it vanished. "It was like somebody
opened a big door; then it closed and it was darkness.
The only thing that was left behind was like floating
little bits of metallic paper."(!)
least eight minutes had passed. Three persons had tracked
the UFOs on radar. Five persons saw the objects themselves.
The ship's commander ordered everyone to keep silent about
what they had seen.
"cover-up" started immediately, According to
my informant, the officer in charge (the second-class
officer) had made several entries concerning the UFO incident
in the ship's log.
entries at midnight and on either side of the UFO entries
- were routine. Duty proceeded normally for the rest of
after he had retired from his shift, the officer rechecked
the log, only to find normal entries in what appeared
to be his own handwriting. The UFO incident was not mentioned.
The officer had been left-handed but an accident had forced
him to use his right hand. Because writing was difficult
for him, he had to press down hard on the paper. He had
to press down so hard, in fact;-that the outline of what
he wrote was always visible on the page. But when he checked,
it was not. In other words, someone had forged his handwriting
but neglected this telltale physical detail.
6:45 that morning the destroyer arrived in Valparaiso
Port. After eating breakfast, the men on duty during the
UFO event were asked to report to the commander. He told
them that some people were coming to talk with them and
that they were to go with them. The visitors turned out
to be two Chilean Navy officers and four Americans in
civilian clothes. The Americans, who spoke Spanish, were
identified as naval attaches with the U.S. embassy.
six witnesses were taken to a mine- or torpedo-storage
area at the port. Each was taken to a separate room.
informant was directed to explain what happened last night.
When he told them, they said, "No, you didn't see
said that's what we saw," my informant related to
me. "They started getting very cranky. They said,
'No, you didn't see it. You didn't see anything. You know
spoke to the highest-ranking officer there, a tactic commander
in the Chilean Navy: 'Are we under arrest or what?' He
said, 'No you are not. "
why they were there, the Chilean officer replied, 'You
are under orders. These people just want to talk to you,
to put you on the right track."
informant claimed, "While the men never asked us
to go through the story in detail, they knew what had
happened by the questions they asked. They also had the
radar-plot blueprint." They were more interested
in securing his silence than in getting information about
the event from him.
two days the harassment continued. "Every two hours,"
the informant said, "this guy would come up. 'What
do you think now?' he'd say... We had arguments. They
didn't have any right to do what they were doing."
informant threatened to complain when he got out. He was
told that if he did so, that would be the end of him.
He did not see the other witnesses at any point during
the two day interrogation. He was not allowed to sleep
until he signed a document. Finally, after he had done
so, he was put in a jeep and driven to another location.
One week later he was transferred unexpectedly from destroyer
duty. He never saw the others again.
I listened to this man tell his story, I was struck with
the passion of his tone. If he was making this up, he
was an excellent actor.
claim that he had been placed in confinement following
the sighting was especially interesting to me. In fact,
the account sounds exactly like something out of the NBC-television
movie The Disappearance of Flight 412, said to have been
based on the real life experience of one of the scriptwriters,
Neal B. Burger. Burger's experience supposedly took place
in 1951. (My informant claimed not to have seen the movie.)
A similar story, involving a U.S. Navy man who allegedly
was subjected to similar pressures in Panama in 1973,
is recounted in Fawcett and Greenwood's Clear Intent (1984).
reference: International UFO Reporter September/October
1985, pp. 4-6