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A Short History of the Roswell Incident
The Facts
In Early July of 1947 ranch manager, Mac Brazel, overseeing a spread near Corona, NM came across a large debris field of strange material while checking fences on the ranch. New Mexico was a hot spot for military testing and there were numerous crashes of military equipment. Brazel knew the military paid civilians a reward for the return of any material they found. He gathered up some of the debris and made the 70 mile trip to Roswell. The sheriff in Roswell directed Brazel to the Roswell Army airfield where the material was turned over to Col. William Blanchard, the commander of the 509th Bomb Group. The only atomic bomb group in existence, and the group that dropped the atomic bombs on Japan in 1945.
Col. Blanchard directed his chief intelligence officer, Maj. Jesse Marcel, to go with Brazel to the site in an attempt to find out exactly what had crashed on the ranch. Marcel returned the next day with a car full of the strange debris. After examining the material Col. Blanchard put out a news release stating that the 509th bomb group had recovered the remains of a crashed disc or flying saucer. Flying saucers were making big news at that time and being spotted all across the country. This news release caused an uproar around the world. 
In the meantime the debris was put into a bomber and flown to 8th Air Force headquarters in Ft. Worth, TX. It was in Ft. Worth where the commander of the 8th Air Force, Gen. Roger Ramey, held a news conference and said that the debris was just the remains of a weather balloon. The press was satisfied and the story lost traction and disappeared.
In early 1978, UFO investigator/researcher, Stanton Friedman, stumbled across the retired Jesse Marcel living in Houma, LA. Marcel related a strange story to Friedman about the weather balloon story being totally fabricated and the debris he found was like nothing he had ever seen. Friedman starting researching the crash story and many other people involved in the event soon began telling their own incredible stories. Many told of seeing small humanoid bodies taken to the base hospital and a request to the local funeral home for child size caskets and a means to preserve bodies. The story gained traction as more and more people came forward and the belief that an extraterrestrial craft crashed on the Corona ranch grew into a major conspiracy theory.
As the years passed the story became huge with a number of books written about it along with TV shows and movies. Even a New Mexico congressman brought pressure on the Air Force and the GAO to release information on the so called Roswell Incident. Also, the crash of a second craft involved in that same incident has come to light. With all of this building, so much pressure was brought to bear on the Air Force that they issued a new report in 1995 that admitted the weather balloon story was a cover-up. The new report stated that what actually crashed in Corona was a secret project to spy on Russian nuclear tests called Project Mogul. The report also stated that the bodies seen by some people were actually crash-test dummies sent aloft with balloons to test high altitude pilot aircraft ejection.
The Roswell debunker's said "case closed" but the believers said the Air Force story had more holes than swiss cheese. The debate continues to rage on.
Conclusions 
I have studied the Roswell Incident for number of years. In addition I have attended two Roswell UFO festival events as the guest of the UFO Museum and Research Center. While there I have discussed the incident with a number of experts in the case such as Stanton Friedman and Don Schmidt, people who have put in thousands of hours to research the incident.
With that background I am compelled to place myself in the camp of the believers. I do that for the reasons listed below.
1) The Air Force has to date told three different stories about what happened at Roswell.
2) Project Mogul was a secret project but the equipment used was not. There was a daisy chain of common weather balloons, basic radio equipment that still used vacuum tubes, and simple radar reflectors. Why would damaged equipment that could very well be thrown into dumpsters be packed up and flown to Ft. Worth and then to Wright Field in Ohio.
3) The project to test high altitude ejection using crash-dummies didn't start until 1953, some 6 years after the Roswell incident.
4) Gen. Ramey's second in command, Col. (later General) Thomas Jefferson DuBose told Stan Friedman before DuBose death, that he took a call from the Vice Chief of Staff of the Air Force telling him to have Ramey kill the disc story and get the debris to him as quickly as possible.
5) Jesse Marcel, Jr. has stated many times on the record that his father brought some of the material into his home before taking it to the base. Marcel, Jr. states that there was aluminum foil like material that had no weight, that could not be torn, cut or burned, and when balled up in your hand it would return to it's original shape without and wrinkles or creases. There were also small I beams that had no weight, that could not be cut or burned, and had strange markings on the flange. Jesse Marcel, Jr. is an MD, a pilot, a Col. in the Air Force reserve, and a trained aircraft accident investigator. He states he believes the material was extraterrestrial in organ.
6) Dr. Edgar Mitchell, the sixth man to walk on the Moon, grew up in Roswell. He has stated numbers of times that it was common knowledge that what crashed at Carona and brought to Roswell was an extraterrestrial craft. In those days people took the word of, and listened to the military as high authority. The citizens were told by the military to keep what they saw and heard to themselves and they did until the story became public knowledge in the early 1980's.
7) Congressman Steve Schiff, under pressure from his constituents, asked the GAO to find information on the Roswell incident. After much work the GAO reported that records from the Roswell Army Airfield for the period covering the time period of the Roswell incident were missing.
8) The GAO investigation did uncover a FBI memo about a request from Gen. George Schulgen with Army Air Corps intelligence requesting FBI help in investigation of flying saucer reports. On the bottom of this memo is a handwritten memo from J. Edgar Hoover stating "I would do it but before agreeing to it we must insist upon full access to discs recovered. For instance in the Sw case the Army grabbed it and would not let us have it for cursory examination."
9) Finally, and perhaps most importantly, it is inconceivable to think that the chief intelligence officer of the most elite bomb group in the Air Force, and his commander, could not recognize weather balloons, radio equipment and balsa wood and foil radar reflectors used in Project Mogul.
These and many other matters make me feel certain that what crashed at Corona, NM was not Project Mogul equipment but in all probability a machine of extraterrestrial origin. The evidence to support this conclusion has become to mountainous to be written off. The story is extremely complicated with many roots and branches to explore. The subject continues to be compromised by hoaxers, debunker's, disinformation, and a huge nut fringe. However, the evidence is so compelling that even skeptics are starting to become believers or at least agnostics with just the most cursory of study.