Conclusion...There is no secrecy and no evidence that such objects even exist."
Memorandum from Robert Low - Project Administrator CONDON Report (Oct 1966 -Jan 1969) to Colorado University V.P. Thurston Marshall
Section II-Summary of the Study
Edward U. Condon:
The Condon Committee was instigated at the behest of the United States Air Force, which had studied UFOs since the 1940s. After examining many hundreds of UFO files from the Air Force’s Project Blue Book and from civilian UFO groups NICAP and APRO, the Committee selected 56 to analyze in detail for the purpose of deciding whether "analysis of new sightings may provide some additions to scientific knowledge of value to the Air Force" and "to learn from UFO reports anything that could be considered as adding to scientific knowledge".
The Report was reviewed by a panel of the National Academy of Sciences, which endorsed its scope, conclusions and recommendations were generally welcomed by the scientific community, and have been cited as a decisive factor in the generally low levels of interest regarding UFOs among academics in subsequent years. Peter Sturrock writes that the report is "the most influential public document concerning the scientific status of this [UFO] problem. Hence, all current scientific work on the UFO problem must make reference to the Condon Report."
However, the report has faced much criticism as to its methodology and bias, from both investigators who worked on the project and others.
Some serious questions were raised about the objectivity (and active agenda) of the Condon Report -heres what Dr Mcdonald said about the Condon report in a talk presented to the Dupont Chapter of The Scientific Research Society of America in Delaware,1969.
Note: Dr James McDonald was the Senior physicist at the Institute for Atmospheric Physics and professor in the Department of Meteorology at the University of Arizona:
Scientific Research Society of America (RESA), Wilmington,
Delaware, Feb. 12, 1969.
James E. McDonald
The University of Arizona
The Condon Report's negative conclusions and recommendations with respect to scientific study of UFOs are now a matter of public record. I dispute those conclusions, challenging and criticizing them on the following principal grounds:
*The report analyses only about ninety cases, a tiny fraction of the significant and scientifically puzzling UFO reports now on record.
*It omits consideration of some of the most puzzling cases on record, famous cases that persons such as myself specifically urged the Condon Project to study. It even omits discussion of certain significant cases that Project staff actually investigated (e.g. Levelland and Redlands).
*Many of those cases which the Report does consider are of such trivially insignificant nature that they should have been ignored on the grounds that they are unrelated to the Project's prime mission, namely, seeking explanations of the kinds of truly baffling cases that have created the Air Force problem that led to establishment of the Colorado UFO Project [i.e. Condon report].
*Specious argumentation, and argumentation of scientifically very weak nature, abound in the Report's case-analyses. And, while broadly charging bias on the part of those who have taken the UFO problem seriously in the past, the Report exhibits degrees of bias in the opposite direction that deserve the sharpest of criticism.
*To anyone intimately familiar with relevant report-details, some of the cases considered in the Report exhibit disturbingly incomplete presentation of relevant evidence; in a few instances, such defects seem little short of misrepresentation of case-information. However, I believe that the latter instances bespeak bias, not intent to deceive.
*Despite all of the above, those who prepared the Report ended up with about a dozen (i.e., about 15 per cent) of their cases in their "Unexplained" category. Some are extremely significant UFO cases (e.g., Texas B-47 or Lakenheath); yet these Unexplained UFOs appear to have been casually ignored by Condon in recommending that UFOs be considered of no further scientific significance.
*Irrelevant padding has thickened the report to a bulk that will discourage many scientists from studying it carefully. Detailed UFO report-analyses should have been the primary content of this Report, yet trivia and irrelevancies, or secondary material, are present in objectionably voluminous proportions.
*The Report, it must be noted, does exhibit a few bright facets; but these are obscured by its high average defect-density.
*In all, I believe that the contents of the Condon Report fail dismally to support the strong negative recommendations which Condon has presented in his own summary analysis. The strong endorsement by the National Academy of Sciences will, I believe, prove to be a painful embarrassment to the Academy, for it appears to be the epitome of superficial panel-evaluation by representatives of a scientific body that ought always to warrant the prestige its good name enjoys.
My own estimate is that absolutely no further general progress towards scientific clarification of the UFO problem will come until the inadequacies of the Condon Report are fully aired in as many ways as possible. I intend to devote all possible personal effort to that objective; and NICAP is in process of preparing an extended rebuttal report. So small a fraction of the scientific community is currently aware of the potential scientific importance of the UFO problem that this rebuttal will probably be slow in taking effect; but the Report seems so unrepresentative of good scientific work, so highly vulnerable to scientific criticism, that I believe its negative influence (except with respect to USAF decisions about Project Blue Book) will be quite short-lived.
Other major discrepencies:
* Case material ignored -Large volumes of case material was apparently completely ignored,including the deaths of three Air Force pilots involved in UFO chases and a UFO encounter with an Air Force transport captain who said he believed they were "shot at."
* Use of ridicule -Dr. Condon stated that there should be no attack on the integrity of persons having different opinions on UFOs. Yet, he ridiculed UFO witnesses, well-informed scientists on the subject, and NICAP.
* Kook Cases Get Coverage -Dr. Condon takes up considerable space in the report discussing numerous hoaxes and "contactee" trips to Venus but did not include, in his sections, even one strong, responsible case from a good witness.
* Key Witnessess omitted -Among the omissions in the Condon report are the hundreds of detailed UFO sightings by reputable witnesses whose intelligence and credentials make examinations of their reports essential. Without an evaluation of these high-quality UFO cases any conclusions are meaningless.
* Pilots' Sighting Not Included -Reports by scientists were not the only category rejected by project investigators on the basis of their exclusion criteria. There was wholesale elimination of sightings by engineers and other technical personnel, including many airline pilots.
* Reports by Police ignored - Among the omissions are reports by police officers and sheriffs' deputies. In several cases, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) officials also figured in the reports, such as the one at Redmond, Ore.Other excluded cases in which police officers were involved are the well-known Socorro, N.M. report by Officer Lonnie Zamora, who observed a landed, egg-shaped object which left traces and the equally well-known police report of an 80-mile chase of a UFO from Portage County, Ohio, into Pennsylvania.
* Case Material/Significant Data Omitted - Another major defect of the Colorado Project was the meager use it made of the enormous reservoir of case material available to it. Over the 20 years preceding the project, between 10,000 and 15,000 UFO sighting reports had been recorded. Yet the report treats only 50 cases from this period, or 1/2 of 1% of the available material.
* Credible Witnesses Ignored -Hundreds of credible witnesses were therefore ignored because "they could not add anything new" to their original reports.
* Secrecy Denied -Dr. Condon denied in the report that there was any evidence of secrecy. NICAP gave him evidence of cases that were withheld, reports whose very existence was denied, and sightings whose conclusions were changed years later.
Condon on possible Air Force UFO secrecy:
"Maybe they are misleading us . . . I don't care much."
Rocky Mountain News, November 5, 1966.