Re: The Neighbors

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Message posted by Peter Merlin (Member since 11/13/2003) on March 22, 2022 at 12:18:50 PST:

It would be awesome if it were possible to discuss Area 51 without ever mentioning Bob Lazar's name, but that is simply not possible. Whether one believes Lazar's tale or not, and whether or not he was ever really near or inside the classified test sites within the Nevada Test and Training Range, Lazar has had a significant effect on Area 51 history. It's sad, but true.

Before Lazar made his first anonymous television appearance, there was little public interest in Area 51 (not zero interest, mind you, but very little). There were no alien-themed attractions along Highway 375. Large groups of tourists did not flock to Tikaboo Valley and Rachel. Thanks to Bob Lazar the Rachel Bar & Grill was reborn as a tourist Mecca. During the 1990s, every gas station between Las Vegas and Ely was offereing UFO toys, T-shirts, and bumper stickers. The internet blew up with Area 51/UFO web sites, memes, and videos. Game companies began producing Area 51 video games. Television producers commissioned a seemingly endless string of Area 51 documentaries.

Tourism generated by the attendant publicity caused test operations to be delayed or cancelled, at a high cost to the government (and, therefore, the taxpayer). Large events required increased presence of local law enforcement, straining emergency response services that were already spread thin within rural Lincoln County. The Air Force seized Whitesides and Freedom Ridge to prevent public access to nearby observation points. It seems likely that none of these things would have occurred without the actions of Bob lazar.

Personnel at the Groom Lake test site, and elsewhere within the military testing community, initially hated the nonsensical connection within popular culture of Area 51 and alien/UFO mythology. This phenomenon became an unstoppable engine that generated additional public interest. Admittedly, it also provided a shield for "black" programs by creating a "chuckle factor." even now, it is nearly impossible to have a serious, academic discussion about Area 51 without someone scoffing, "You mean the place with the flying saucers and little green men."

Eventually, the Air Force seemed to get in on the joke. A significant number of project and organizational emblems from the "black world" now feature images of extraterrestrial beings and saucer-shaped craft. Again, this is ultimately attributable to Bob Lazar's "S-4" stories.

In Reply to: Re: The Neighbors posted by Art Bell on March 22, 2022 at 10:10:31 PST:


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