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Alternate Perceptions Magazine, December 2020


THE GHOST ROCKET WAVE OF 1946

by: Rick Hilberg





After the end of World War II, the Soviet "Iron Curtain" came down and only increased tensions between the once allied nations that fought long and hard to defeat the Nazi Germany threat to take over all of Europe. "War Nerves", as the press called it led to suspicions of all sorts on both sides as to just who had benefited from the German scientific establishment that the East and West "liberated" to their respective sides after Hitler's fall in 1945. It was evident that the Germans were well ahead in the development of many weapons of war as evidenced by the V-1 and V-2 attacks on Great Britain, and the early deployment of operational jet powered fighter aircraft, and many still remembered the elusive "foo fighters" that were widely reported by Allied aircraft during the height of the war and generally attributed to the Nazi war machine.

Thus, in early 1946 it came to no surprise to many that reports of strange rocket-like things seen in the skies over the Scandanavian countries should begin to come in in ever increasing numbers by seeming credible witnesses. These reports only got more and more frequent, peaking in Sweden during that July and August and eventually spreading into European countries as the months wore on. Naturally, these sights were automatically attributed to the Soviets, as they got more than their fair share of the German scientists working on the Nazi rocket projects.

In the end it was found that the Soviets were not responsible for these thousands of reports, and after the sighting of the "flying saucers" in 1947 many speculated that the "ghost rockets" were one and the same with the elusive disks, and to a great extent remains believed by many historians to this very day.

Of the many, many reports in my files I plan on only list some of the ones that I feel are significant for various reasons, as a full reporting would easily fill a good-sized book. With that in mind, let us begin.

On Sunday, June 9, 1946, a rocket-like light filled the night sky over Helsinki, Finland. People there rushed outdoors in time to see a smoke trail in the sky and to hear a distant rumbling noise. A well illuminated afterglow lasted for more than ten minutes, and the "ghost rocket" had passed toward the southwest at an estimated altitude of 1,000 feet.

There were even reports of almost a dozen "crashes" of the strange rockets, but only one fragment found was in Sweden,  "a piece of graph-type paper used in recording devices," or according to one press source, "a small strip of movie film with some metal with a 'density less than water.'"

Another newspaper told its readers, "metal as light as paper." ( Shades of Roswell? ) A London paper carried another version on the matter dated July 12, which stated that "seven strange crashes" had taken place in Sweden. They also quoted a famous Swedish physicist, Dr. B. Blacklund, who said that in one case "paper" was discovered among some rocket fragments. To him, the presence of the paper precluded the speculation that the debris were part of a meteorite. So, unfortunately that remains our only tangible evidence to date.

While all this was going on in Scandanavia, On August 1 two American pilots were flying a DC-3 near Tampa, Florida, when a bright light was seen approaching them from over the Atlantic Ocean. 

At first it seemed that the lighted object was going to ram their aircraft, but the thing soon veered away. It approached close enough for them to have a good look at it, however. The fiery glow was from a long flame seeming propelling a long tube-like thing as big as their plane. They were even able to ascertain that they saw "portholes" down its side that seemed to be lit from the inside

The very next day, the Stockholm newspapers told their readers how silvery projectiles were sighted speeding just above the forests in northern Sweden. It was also stated that at least eight people had witnessed the passage of the mysterious objects.

One paper even stated that two rockets had been seen coming out of the interior and heading for the coast at a very low altitude. These objects reportedly blew up with a yellow-white flash as they reached the seas of the Baltic.

At this time the American newsmagazine Time noted all the excitement in Sweden by commenting, ..." a picture released by the Swedish Army last week finally convinced all the papers (except the Communists ) that the rockets were real, and that a foreign power was using Sweden as a testing ground. Blustered Stockholm's Social Democratic Morgantidigen: 'Intrusiveness must not be allowed to continue.'" ( See the photos at the top of this article.)

As of August 12, Swedish military authorities began a new and intensive investigation of the ghost rockets under very tight security because to them, the missiles were taken "most seriously." 

They stated that the shower of rockets seen the previous evening had covered the whole of central and southern Sweden. One rocket has swooped very low over Stockholm and had reportedly blown up in the air over the city's northern suburbs. One excited paper stating that the thing, which had just missed Stockholm, has made a straight shot across the sky only some six hundred feet up and was propelled by a bright exhaust which they described as a "sparkling tail of blue fire."

During the flood of sightings on the night of the 11th, another Swedish military officer reported seeing one of the strange ghost rockets. He said it looked to be about 65 feet long and looked like a cigar. He also claimed that the thing had white sides and a green front projecting part. The flying cigar was moving very low and very fast, he stated.

A special dispatch to the New York Times with a dateline of Stockholm on August 12, announced that American Intelligence officials were now on the scene in Sweden. 

Stated the Times," Two United States experts on aerial warfare General James Doolittle and David Sarnoff, arrived in Stockholm today, apparently independent of each other. The official explanation is that General Doolittle, who is now vice-president of the Shell Oil Company, is inspecting Shell branch offices in Europe and selling oil and gasoline, while General Sarnoff , who is president of the Radio Corporation of America and a former member of General Dwight D. Eisenhower's London staff is studying the market for radio equipment.

"The two men arrive here as reports on "phantom bombs" are more numerous than ever. The Chief of the Swedish Defense Staff, Colonel C. R. S. Kempt, said tonight he was extremely interested in asking two generals' advice and, if possible, would place all available reports before them."

Toward the end of August, a strange object was seen streaking through the heavens near Waterford, Ireland. And on the night of September 1, four mysterious rockets were sighted over Greece. One rocket passed over Salonika at 5,000 feet and fell into the sea, Asked the direction from where the rocket came from, a witness replied, "It certainly did not come from the Mediterranean." Other rockets passed over Mounts Belles and  Pailken, in Macedonia near the Greek, Yugoslav, and Bulgarian border, and over the town of Katharini, near Larissa.

From September 22nd through the 24th, the rockets, or whatever they were, appeared in the sky all over Italy. The cities of Rome, Turin, Bologna, Vercelli, Modena, Imola, Florence, Naples, and Bari reported sightings.

One rocket, seen flying over Florence, was distinctly seen changing direction in the air. As a result of the above-mentioned sightings, the Italian government ordered an investigation. 

Fed up with the large number of rocket reports coming in from all over Sweden, the Swedish defense staff issued a report on October 10 saying that they reached the conclusion that most of the rocket-like objects Sweden during the past months were ordinary celestial phenomena. They also emphasized that there was no evidence showing them to be V-bombs or any other type of man-made projectiles. Thus, the matter was settled and the more than 1,000 sightings over Sweden, as well as the others from all over Europe, were just a bad case of post-"War Nerves."

But the stage was set for the advent of the "flying saucers" only a few months away during the year 1947...




The photo taken on July 9, 1946, probably over Guldsmedshyttan, at Lake Rasvalen in Sweden.

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