Why I love seeing lenticular clouds here in New Mexico

(CLICK ABOVE FOR ENLARGEMENT – – taken by yours truly on January 10, 2017 in Rio Rancho, New Mexico)

by Norio Hayakawa,  March 5, 2023

According to Wikipedia, lenticular clouds  (Latin: Lenticularis lentil-shaped, from lenticula lentil)  are stationary clouds that form mostly in the troposphere, typically in parallel alignment to the wind direction.  They are often comparable in appearance to a lens or saucer.  Nacreous clouds that form in the lower stratosphere sometimes have lenticular shapes.

There are three main types of lenticular clouds:  altocumulus standing lenticular (ACSL), stratocumulus standing lenticular (SCSL), and cirrocumulus standing lenticular (CCSL), varying in altitude above the ground.

(CLICK ABOVE FOR ENLARGEMENT – – taken by yours truly on January 8, 2017 in Rio Rancho, looking at the Sandia Mountains)

It’s not everyday that you see these fascinating cloud formation.  I am fortunate to live in New Mexico where I have seen and photographed these wonderful work of nature, especially during the cold days.

(CLICK ABOVE FOR ENLARGEMENT – – taken by yours truly from near our home in Albuquerque, November 10, 2022, looking at the Sandia Mountains)

Even on cold days, however, there has to be a right atmospheric condition for these to form.

(CLICK ABOVE FOR ENLARGEMENT – – a huge one hiding behind another cloud, taken by yours truly on November 6, 2017, in Rio Rancho)

(CLICK ABOVE FOR ENLARGEMENT – – a rare, dark lenticular, taken by yours truly in Rio Rancho in May, I don’t recall the exact date)

(CLICK ABOVE FOR ENLARGEMENT – – The “morning glory” has appeared over the Sandia Mountains as I was taking a walk around the block, but then it dissipated within a couple of minutes – – March 10, 2023, 9 a.m., in Albuquerque, New Mexico)

My photos of lenticular clouds are not really that great but just seeing them with my naked eyes really gives me peace and admiration for the work of nature.  To me it’s God’s work and a personal reminder of his glory, even if it lasts only for a short time.

(CLICK ABOVE FOR ENLARGEMENT – – taken by yours truly on November 28, 2018 at Cottonwood Mall in Albuquerque)

Yes, it is a visible manifestation of God on earth, whose presence is portrayed through this fascinating natural occurrence.  It’s almost like a Shekinah glory, at least, to me.

What is the meaning of Shekinah glory?

This concept is found in Judaism.  The Hebrew Bible mentions several places where the presence of God was felt and experienced as a Shekinah, including the burning bush and the cloud that rested on Mount Sinai.  The Shekhinah was often pictured as a cloud or as a pillar of fire and was referred to as the glory of God.

Here are much better photographs taken by others.

This one was taken by Antonia Melendez from Albuquerque on January 3, 2021, above the Sandia Mountains:


And here is one taken by Bruce Welton on February 8, 2018 in Albuquerque, above the Sandia Mountains – – this is one of the best photos I have seen:




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UFOs, Psyops and Conspiracies – – Mysterious Library talks about the documentary film THE CONSPIRATOLOGIST

Dr. Dean Bertram and Jason McLean are still perusing the audio-visual wing of the MYSTERIOUS LIBRARY. 

This week they are taking a look a the new documentary THE CONSPIRATOLOGIST from filmmakers Stephen Bradford and Justin Jay Jones.

The film examines the colorful life of Norio Hayakawa, a 79-year old Japanese American conspiracy researcher living in Albuquerque, New Mexico:

Here is the entire 30 minute documentary THE CONSPIRATOLOGIST:

Please also click here and watch my latest interview of March 5, 2023:



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Please also watch Norio Hayakawa’s YouTube videos

There are at least 10 places in the world named Albuquerque (or Alburquerque)

by Norio Hayakawa, resident of Albuquerque, New Mexico

Not too many folks know that there are at least 10 places in the world named Albuquerque  (or Alburquerque), including the one everybody knows, the largest one being here in New Mexico, U.S.A.

But there are 6 places in Brazil named Alburquerque.  There is also one in Angola, Africa.  And there is one in Bohol, Philippines.

Albuquerque, New Mexico’s namesake came from the town called Alburquerque in Spain.

The Spaniards and the Portuguese adapted the name Alburquerque from Latin word “Albus” which means “white” and “Quercus” which means “oak”. Namely, “white oak”.   The name “Alburquerque” did not come from Arabic, as some folks mistakenly think.

So, when young folks here in Albuquerque, New Mexico stylishly call their city “BURQUE“, they are not totally wrong.  I believe it is a linguistic coincidence.

Here are some photos of Alburquerque in Spain:

(ABOVE PHOTO, taken by Alan Gorenz)

(ABOVE PHOTO, also taken by Alan Gorenz)

Here is a photo of Alburquerque in Bohols, Philippines:

By the way, here is a photo of a bridge officially named “Albuquerque Bridge” in the city of Sasebo, Japan which is Albuquerque, New Mexico’s sister city:

Another photo of Albuquerque Bridge in the city of Sasebo, Japan:



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Final conclusion to the fraudster Phil Schneider story

by Richard Geldreich, Jr. – – September 22, 2022:


Norio Hayakawa has already done a deep dive on this guy’s personal life, and it sure looks like Phil Schneider was a fraud:

PHIL SCHNEIDER    (Phil Schneider’s Dulce Base “delusions”)


However, many won’t believe it, so let’s go further and show he really was a fraud.

Around 2018 Joe from Carolina  (BeyondTheory on YouTube)  and his research team issued a FOIA request about Phil Schneider to the FBI

On March 22, 1975 an acquaintance of Phil Schneider turned him into the FBI in Oregon.

Phil claimed to have been attempting to build a nuclear device, and had radioactive materials.

Phil removed 300 pounds of this radioactive material and kept it under his bed.

The FBI detected radioactivity outside of his residence, in the parking lot.  This guy was definitely not playing with a full deck.


Here is an excerpt from above:

Schneider had an uncle who was a surgeon and a physician named Leo Schneider, M.D.   Dr. Leo Schneider had been questioned by the FBI regarding Phil’s possession of radioactive material, and Leo turned over two pieces of the material which Phil had given to him to display in his medical office.

Dr. Schneider also stated that Phil claimed to possess approximately 80 pounds of the radioactive material.

When the FBI processed it, they reported that the material was examined by Ray D. Paris, a radio-chemist from the Environmental Radiation Surveillance Section as well as another specialist.

The initial examination determined that the material was uranium ore, and it was radiating 100 Milliroentgen per hour (100 MR/HR).  The experts that the FBI sent this powdered form of material to stated that prolonged exposure to, or ingestion of this uranium ore that Phi Schneider had in his possession (and had also given to his uncle) could be extremely hazardous.

Phil Schneider, according to this just Declassified document, had agreed to be interviewed by the Federal Bureau of Investigations on March 26, 1975 about his possession of a dangerous, radioactive substance.  

Schneider gave the FBI consent to search his residence and they traced the source of the substance (by Phil’s own report) to a man that he met in a local tavern by the name of George M.

By his own admission he did not get the material from an underground base and this uranium ore was traced back through the FBI who tracked down the guy that ha sold it to Phil.

The FBI was also very clear in reporting that Phil Schneider had no license to possess any type of nuclear source material.

Schneider granted FBI consent to search of his room as well as the property in which he purchased the ore, and specialists were evaluating the area where Phil was residing detected four to five time the normal background radiation in the parking lot of the building.

Materials were found in both the basement and attic, emitting 10-20 MR/HR of radiation and were disposed of by radiation specialists.

The Atomic Energy Commission was consulted regarding all materials and facts in the FBI report.

Schneider’s brother, a deputy sheriff named George Schneider, in Portland, Oregon, was provided information about Phil’s physical conditions and indicated that he would seek additional help for Phil.


Phil would show various “super heavy” materials to people that attended his lectures in the 90’s.  If you received any of these materials from him, you should definitely be aware that they could have been dangerously radioactive.

The FBI document states that Phil was at the Dammasch State Hospital  (Wilsonville Oregon),  between 1968–1969, being treated for schizophrenia.

Under stress, he would mutilate himself, and he also amputated his two fingers and a thumb.

Please read the whole story here by Richard Geldreich, Jr.:





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When Bob Lazar lived near Albuquerque, New Mexico

by Norio Hayakawa, January 26, 2023

The UFO community is quite familiar with the eccentric and still enigmatic Bob Lazar who first gained fame  (or notoriety, as some would say)  after 1989, when he first revealed that he had worked at a secret location in Nevada, just 10 miles south of Area 51, which he called “S-4”, which was allegedly located at that time by Papoose Dry Lake.

Bob Lazar’s background is shrouded in mystery and much of his story still cannot be verified.

He was born in Coral Gables, Florida but apparently lived in New York and then later, in Southern California.  Later on, he allegedly moved to Massachusetts.   After that he moved to New Mexico and lived in Los Alamos where he claimed he worked for the Los Alamos National Laboratories  (under the auspices of Kirkmayer Corporation, a contractor for the Laboratories).

In the early 1980s, Lazar moved to Las Vegas, Nevada after Edward Teller allegedly recommended E.G. & G. Corporation that they hire him for a specific job at Nevada Test Site.  The rest is history.

But after his stint in Las Vegas ended, Lazar moved back to New Mexico, if I am not mistaken, in the early 2000s.  This time near Albuquerque. 

He settled down in a small community called Sandia Park, just behind the Sandia Mountains.    It was here that he set up his small company called United Nuclear, and he started selling small scientific equipment and chemicals to the public, but mainly to some small defense contractors in Albuquerque.   His warehouse was not too far from his house.  Some say that it was not Sandia Park but Edgewood, which is contiguous to Sandia Park.

I believe it was around 2007 or 2008  (I could be wrong on that.  In fact I was just told that the raid took place in 2006)  that Federal agents raided his home and his business in Sandia Park, alleging that he had been selling illegal chemicals as well as uranium to the public.   I only learned about the raid after my wife and I moved from California to New Mexico in 2008.

Whether or not Bob Lazar had any dealings with a uranium mine in the Navajo Reservation, I do not know, because, coincidentally, there is a large company called United Nuclear Corporation that owns a uranium mine and mill within the Navajo Nation in Church Rock, New Mexico.

In any case, after the raid, Bob Lazar then moved to Michigan and restarted his Unite Nuclear company.  Some say that at one time he did some work for Raytheon, a defense contractor.

But a few years ago, I understand that he and his operations now moved to Klamath Falls, Oregon.    While in Michigan, however, from what I heard, his house there and his business were again raided by Federal agents.

Here in Albuquerque, I met a gentleman by the name of Jim Brockway who said he interacted with Bob Lazar several times at Bob Lazar’s home in Sandia Park.  Jim was doing business with Bob Lazar since Jim was working at that time for a small company here in Albuquerque that dealt with scientific equipment and chemicals.

Jim told me that indeed Lazar was kind of eccentric but he knew his stuff very well.

Jim told me that one day Bob Lazar had a barbecue party here in Albuquerque and invited several of his clients  (including him)  to a house right near Thunder Scientific Corporation located right next to the main gate of Kirtland Air Force Base on Wyoming Blvd.

Whether or not Lazar had any dealings with Thunder Scientific Corporation I do not know.    As many in the UFO community are familiar, Thunder Scientific Corporation was founded by the late Paul Bennewitz, a scientist who lived in the Four Hills area of Albuquerque, almost right next to the former Manzano Underground nuclear storage site.   After Bennewitz’s death in 2003, his sons took over the company and even today, Thunder Scientific Corporation does business with Kirtand AFB, selling scientific equipment to the base, such as high altitude calibration equipment, etc. etc.

Here is an interview I just had with Jim Brockway:

In the interview, I believe there was a discrepancy (or confusion on his part) as to the year that he interacted with Lazar (he said it was around 2013) because Lazar was long gone from New Mexico by then.   After the raid (which took place in 2006), by 2008 he had already moved to Michigan.



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The enduring mystery of an aggressive FBI raid near Area 51

by Lucas Ropek, GIZMODO, January 19, 2023



When federal agents kicked in his door one icy morning last November, Joerg Arnu was still asleep.  Roused by deafening bangs and shouts, the 60-year-old retired software developer stumbled out of bed to find a crowd of unfamiliar men in military gear standing in his foyer.

One of the half dozen men, he remembers, was visibly armed and pointing a gun in his direction.  Another was holding a riot shield.  “This is the FBI,” one yelled.  “Put your hands against the wall!” 

Less than a minute later, Arnu was being handcuffed and led forcefully outside, dressed only in sweatpants and a T-shirt.  His house, located in the remote town of Rachel, Nevada, had been swarmed by police vans.  Shivering from a lightly falling snow, he was placed in the back of one of the vehicles, while over a dozen agents from the FBI and the Air Force Office of Special Investigations – – the Air Force’s secretive counterintelligence wing – – poured into his home. 

Not long afterwards, agents started asking him questions.  One of the first things they wanted to know was: “Are there any booby traps on the property?”  To Arnu, it seemed like a pretty weird thing to ask.  A retired software developer and self-admitted senior citizen?  Did that really sound like somebody who would boobytrap his own house?

Of course, Arnu had one particular hobby that he felt might be of interest to federal investigators: he had spent the last two decades tending to a popular blog about “Area 51,” the remote military base near Rachel that was known for its shroud of mystery and UFO lore. 

Arnu’s site,  DREAMLANDRESORT,  regularly posted news about the base – – including articles about its alleged connection to “black projects” and other clandestine government operations.  When police crashed into his life that wintry day, he suspected it had something to do with this.  Still, running a blog wasn’t illegal, and the force with which the government had come down on him seemed unbelievable.  Just what exactly were agents looking for what?  And what did they think he’d done?

On the same morning of the raid in Rachel, federal law enforcement descended on another property owned by Arnu, a house in Las Vegas, where his girlfriend Linda Hellow was staying at the time.  She said that the raid similarly involved 15 to 20 armed agents in riot gear.  “I heard and felt a large ‘BOOM,’” said Hellow, who was upstairs when police first entered the residence.  “Don’t ask me what I hollered, probably ‘Who the eff are you?’”

After identifying themselves as the FBI, agents quickly escorted her outside in her underwear  (she wouldn’t be allowed to dress properly until later, when an agent brought her a pair of pants).

Arnu shared pictures with GIZMODO of the damage caused by the feds as they stormed both residences.  They clearly showed door frames that have been violently impacted.  Arnu says that agents also tracked mud all over his carpeting, broke a desk and a lamp, and left his homes in a state of disarray.  The damages from the raids total approximately $5,000, he said.

The biggest loss that the blogger suffered, however, was the assets that police seized during the raids: approximately $20,000 worth of electronics, according to him.  This included five computers, multiple phones, external hard drives, digital cameras, and an expensive drone, among other items.

“I’d really like to have my stuff back,” Arnu said in an interview.  “I lost all of the backups.  I lost literally all of the information that I had saved on my computers, including tax information, financial information, medical records – – all of that is gone and is basically being held hostage by the FBI right now.”

As of this week, it’s been more than two months since the government raided both of Arnu’s properties, but he still hasn’t been charged with a crime.  He was served with a search warrant that was missing dozens of pages and gave no reason for the raid; the case records related to the warrant have been sealed, so there’s no way of telling what the point of the search was.  He also hasn’t been able to get in touch with the FBI, aside from a letter from the agency’s legal department denying reimbursement for the damage caused during the raids, he said.  And, it goes without saying, he never got his stuff back.

“I believe the search, executed with completely unnecessary force by overzealous government agents, was meant as a message to silence the Area 51 research community,” Arnu recently wrote on his website.

The lingering questions around the case have yet to be answered: what were federal agents after when they ransacked his residences in Rachel and Las Vegas?  Why did they feel the need to conduct their raids with such force?  And what exactly did Arnu do to incur their wrath?

For decades, Area 51 has been popularly associated with UFO sightings and with extraterrestrial lore.  But Arnu doesn’t believe in little green men, and if you peruse Dreamland, you’ll find that he doesn’t think the secretive military base has anything to do with aliens.  Instead, the hobbyist researcher says that America’s UFO mythology is little more than a smokescreen to hide the much more mundane reality of what goes on at Area 51: the testing of classified military projects and aircraft.

The UFO craze first “started when Area 51 was first founded in the 1950s for the U2 spy plane project,” Arnu said.  “All of a sudden airline pilots would see something way above them, at 80,000 feet or whatever [where the U2 was known to fly].  So that’s when this whole ‘UFO’ story was born as a diversion from what is really going on.”

Arnu said that, over the years, he has met a lot of people who have claimed to have seen something strange in the skies around Rachel.  “By seeing how easy it is to misidentify something they see as a ‘UFO,’ I really became a skeptic,” he said.  “I came to realize it’s really all about military aviation.”

Other writers and researchers have come to similar conclusions.  Journalist Annie Jacobsen’s AREA 51:  AN UNSENSORED HISTORY OF AMERICA’S TOP SECRET MILITARY BASE , tells the story of how – – at the height of the Cold War in the 1950s and 60s – – the CIA used the base to develop new surveillance planes to spy on the Soviets.  These included the U-2, as well as “Operation Oxcart,” a program that spawned numerous surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft.

This is where the possible motive for the government’s raids comes in.  What the agents were looking for may have been evidence that he had illegally photographed the military base, according to Arnu and others who know him.

According to Hellow, an agent present at the Vegas raid told her: “Your boyfriend took pictures of a military installation – – that’s against the law.”  In a blog post on Dreamland, Arnu similarly said that all he was told about the investigation was that it was “related to images posted on my Area 51 website.”

Taking an unauthorized picture of a defense installation  (such as a military base)  is a federal misdemeanor offense – – on par with hunting or fishing in a wildlife refuge.  It carries with it a punishment of a $1,000 fine and up to a year in jail.

However, Arnu maintains that he never broke the law and that the government’s case against him – -whatever it is – – has zero merit.  “I had some photos [on my website] of Area 51 that were about two years old,” said Arnu, which he believes were the reason for the raid.  “They were legally obtained.  There’s absolutely nothing illegal about them,” he said.  “Most of these photos were not taken by me, I just published them [on the site].”  He adds that they were “not classified photos” and that they “were not taken from inside the boundary” – – that is, the area inside the perimeter of the base that is off-limits to civilians.  Arnu says the photos had already been widely circulated on other news websites and TV shows, making it inexplicable why the government would target him and him alone.

A Fishing Expedition?

Without expedient answers from the government, Arnu has taken to calling officials’ raid a “fishing expedition”—an attempt to dig up dirt on him without a concrete basis.  He also thinks it was the government’s way of intimidating him into shutting down his blog.  In particular, the confiscation of the computer equipment that he uses to operate Dreamland Resort seems – – to Arnu – – like a naked attempt to shut down the site.

Michael German, a former FBI agent who has been critical of the bureau since leaving it, called Arnu’s case “troubling.” German, who now works as a fellow with the Brennan Center for Justice in New York, told GIZMODO that it wasn’t unusual for the FBI to conduct an operation like this to “send a message,” and to cow a specific individual or community.  That’s particularly disturbing given Arnu’s role as a person involved in media, he added.

“Certainly it [an operation like this] could intimidate other journalists who were writing about these secret government programs.  That chilling effect seems to be part of why they would be so aggressive in a case where the level of dangerousness is not clear,” he said.  On top of this, German notes that the targeting of Joerg’s computer equipment “raises concerns that the intent may have been to impede his ability to exercise his First Amendment rights.”

Peter Merlin, an aviation historian, fellow Area 51 researcher, and colleague of Arnu’s  (he occasionally contributes to Dreamland),  said the raids seemed designed to discourage Arnu and others from engaging in further Area 51 research. He does not blame the agents who conducted the raids, however, so much as whoever decided to mobilize them.

“It’s almost pointless to get mad at the Air Force for doing this, or even the FBI,” Merlin said.  “If someone shoots you in the leg, do you get mad at the gun?  No, you get mad at the guy who pulled the trigger.  These guys are just a tool and somebody obviously weaponized them because they wanted to send Joerg a message.  Somebody doesn’t like what he’s doing.”

The government has continued to be tight-lipped about the episode.  GIZMODO reached out multiple times to both the FBI and the Air Force Office of Special Investigations for comment on the November raids.  The FBI responded but refused to commentAFOSI never responded.

While Arnu waits for answers, he’s trying to get on with his life.  In addition to a slew of interviews with the press, the blogger has launched a  GOFUNDME  to help pay for the damages inflicted by the raids and to finance his legal expenses (he has now hired a lawyer).  He’s also trying to make up for the thousands of dollars of computer equipment that have vanished into government evidence lockers.

“I was treated like a drug dealer or some hardened criminal,” Arnu said during o ne of our interviews.  “I was manhandled.  I’m a sixty-year-old guy.  There was no reason to bang me against the wall and drag me out of my own home in handcuffs…I just don’t see any reason to treat an unarmed senior citizen that way.”





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Please also watch Norio Hayakawa’s YouTube videos

Do aliens exist?

by Norio Hayakawa, January 18, 2023:

My answer is:

We still do not know for sure.

As I stated before many times elsewhere, it seems to me that the UFO phenomenon is real, even though we still have not been able, yet, to get to the bottom of what this phenomenon truly is.   As far as “aliens” are concerned, there is no scientifically proven evidence yet of their physical existence, so far.

The only thing we know is that we humans exist:

Sentient, intelligent, physical terrestrial biological entities


In the meantime, as far as “aliens” are concerned, it is so important here to understand the definition of “aliens”, as widely interpreted, if they exist in any shape or form.

Here is the most universally accepted definition of “aliens”:

Sentient, intelligent, physical, extraterrestrial biological entities    (But so far there is no scientifically proven evidence for their physical existence)


To this I would like to add my own definition of “aliens”:

Sentient, intelligent, extradimensional, “paraphysical”  entities  (Even though so far there is no scientifically proven evidence for their existence)


Some say God is an “alien”.

And in this sense, those folks say that what are popularly regarded as angels  (whether they are “benevolent” ones, such as “guardian angels” or “malevolent” ones, such as “fallen, demonic ones”)  are “aliens”.

Whatever the case may be, it is my opinion that only humans are given a chance to change. 


Lastly, here is an interesting comment by this site’s frequent commentator, Jon D,  on all this:

“I believe the best way to describe what ‘aliens’ are, is any form of life that may be more intelligent than we are.  That generally scares most of us.  Why does the thought of something more intelligent inflict fear?  I think it’s the result of a damaged or karma-induced human psyche.  We’ve mistreated forms of life we have deemed less intelligent than us for millennia now, so we fear something more intelligent than us would be capable of treating us the same way.”



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Growing up international at St. Joseph College in Yokohama, Japan

By Kunio Francis Tanabe, April 6, 1997



“GIVE ME a girl at an impressionable age, and she is mine for life,” the Edinburgh schoolmistress confidently declares in Muriel Spark’s memorable novel THE PRIME OF MISS JEAN BRODIE.

Although I did not have a single teacher as overwhelming as Miss Brodie (thank the Lord), so much of my own identity has been shaped — yes, for life — by the people at St. Joseph College.

For 12 impressionable years, from the age of 6 to 18, I was a student at this small all-boys Catholic school in the port city of Yokohama, Japan.


The entire school had fewer than 500 students in both primary and secondary levels during the peak years and has only 156 students today.

In 1982 the school became coeducational, and two years later the name of the school was changed to St. Joseph International School.

But ever since its founding in 1901 by the Society of Mary, the school has operated continuously — the only interruptions being the Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923 and the aerial bombing during World War II, both of which demolished much of Yokohama, (now) Japan’s second largest city.

In November 1995, news reached me from family and former schoolmates halfway around the globe that St. Joseph’s will cease to exist.

The combination of a dwindling religious faculty and an insufficient number of new students seems to have contributed to the impending demise.  A flurry of phone calls and e-mail and letters containing news clippings arrived.

Before I could fathom the implications of the closing, a movement led by parents and alumni to save the school emerged. A familiar story?  Perhaps. But I’d like to believe there is something odd and unique about my school.

What distinguished St. Joe’s in Yokohama from the other schools in Japan was that during my 12 years there, it was truly catholic: teachers and students came from all over the world.  My first-grade teacher, Brother Leo Kraft, was Swiss; my senior homeroom teacher, Brother Robert Wood, was from St. Louis. In between, I had Brother Jose Arnaiz from Spain, who mesmerized us with episodes from Don Quixote; and Brother Germain, Alsatian and a former French Foreign Legionaire.  This beekeeper, gardener and stamp collector extraordinaire told us how he survived the trek across the Sahara by drinking his own urine.

I confessed my sins to Father Pila, an Italian, who once tore up a photograph of Kim Novak in clinging cardigan that my friend Wataru Ogawa passed during lunchtime.  Ouch!  The punishment was harsh, but after school we had our sweet revenge: We saw Kim clap and sway to the soft jazz of “Moonglow” and walk down the steps toward William Holden who waited for her under Japanese lanterns on a floating dance floor on the lake and the moon did glow in the movie, which was “PICNIC”

That was in eighth grade when our hormones began to bubble.  And speaking of picnics and lunches: We had a spontaneous ritual of exchanging lunches with our classmates.  There was Ravil, the Muslim cleric’s son from Turkey, with his egg and vegetables sandwiched in homemade pita; Nicholas, whose mother had fled Communist Russia to bring us the finest piroshki; Dick Tilley, the U.S. Army brat, whose peanut butter and jelly sandwiches tasted oh so exotic.  He didn’t like my Japanese rice balls with plums and seaweed, but he devoured the rolls with chocolate fillings from Kimuraya that I purchased on the way to school.

After class, we wandered about Chinatown where some of my classmates lived and munched on steamed dumplings and sweet-and-sour pickled plums.  We drank Viennese coffee at Motomachi’s German Bakery and ate apple strudel while we ogled the girls from St. Maur’s, Ferris and Futaba high schools.

I joined the Boy Scouts, not just any troop but International Troop Number One, founded and chartered by Sir Robert Baden-Powell himself when he visited St. Joseph College in 1918.  I was told by the current principal that it is still the only international Boy Scout troop in the world.  I remember the national jamboree in Karuizawa when we marched in front of the Crown Prince of Japan, the current Emperor Akihito.  Our magnificently motley troop made it onto the pages of a famous newsmagazine.  While others ate atrociously cooked scout food, we were the only troop that was invited by a prominent Japanese politician to a fancy lunch — all because we were different.

In high school I was a singer for the Blue Saints, a rock ‘n’ roll band that played a lot of hit music — from Elvis to Little Richard.  Our bandleader, Yankee Soo, was Chinese; Jose de Cossio was Peruvian, and Seyoum Yohannes, the Ethiopian ambassador’s son, played base guitar.  Our female vocalist, Amy Eyton from St. Maur’s, was partly British. We had a couple of older students from Keio University and several Japanese including myself from St. Joe’s.  But what united us all was our love of American music, which had a hold on us long before we heard the phrase “cultural hegemony.”


Then there was soccer.  It’s wildly popular in Japan now, but back in the ’50s and ’60s, it was still an exotic game.  At St. Joe’s it dominated all other sports.  Brother Enrique Zabala, the Basque from Vitoria with a grace that rivaled the finest Spanish matador, was our esteemed coach.  Our international team was so good we had to play against college teams, and we still won the city championship.  Word got around the globe that sailors who arrived in Yokohama were eagerly anticipating a soccer game against us — high school kids! To even the matches, our teachers joined in. And they were ferocious.

Last summer I returned to my alma mater with my Belgian wife to give a talk on journalism and literature, a role reversal that I found quite satisfying.  I had been back perhaps a dozen times since my graduation in 1961, and each visit uplifted me with an exhilarating rush of memories.  The experience is somewhat akin to what Wordsworth wrote, “of splendour in the grass, of glory in the flower,” in his ode “Intimations of Immortality from Recollections of Early Childhood.” It was the closest thing to coming home, a place where I grew up and came of age.  My childhood home down the hill from St. Joseph in front of Honmoku Beach was torn down years ago.  Which is just as well since the politicians and big businesses that colluded to produce Japan’s economic miracle decided to bulldoze the romance of the seashores and build oil refineries and loading docks for cargo ships.  There is such irony to the destruction since the name of the city, Yokohama, means “horizontal beach”: There are no beaches left in the city.

Perhaps it’s a quixotic endeavor to join the movement to keep St. Joseph International School from closing but it’s truly in the spirit of what our teachers taught us — the nobility of pursuing our dreams.  Many of our graduates pursued seemingly quixotic dreams, I am sure.

I was informed by a teacher at St. Joseph that in 1987, one of our graduates, a 1922 valedictorian named Charles J. Pedersen, was awarded the Nobel Prize for chemistry.  Pedersen was born in Korea to a Japanese mother and a Norwegian father, studied in the United States and became an American. Such an exotic blend isn’t all that unique at St. Joseph.

Another successful dreamer who attended our school was Isamu Noguchi, whose mother was American, his father Japanese.  And what an adventurous life he led.  He was briefly married to one of the most glamorous actresses in Japan, was almost shot by Diego Rivera when he was with the Mexican artist’s wife, Frida Kahlo.  Isamu was a close friend of Buckminster Fuller and Martha Graham and designed stage settings for the avant-garde Martha Graham Dance Company. He studied with Brancusi in Paris, became a sculptor, and had a delightfully eclectic career, from designing lamps to public parks.  Perhaps the Catholic teachers would not have approved of his lifestyle, but he was certainly an intriguing artist.

At St. Joseph I learned the importance of perspective.  As with the globe that can be viewed from different angles to give new meaning to our understanding (try looking at the United States and Russia from the North Pole, for example), I have come to appreciate points of view in learning — politics and history, art and literature, whatever the subject might be.

I remember our history class in our senior year when my Ethiopian classmate stood up to protest the U.S. policy in Africa, specifically the events in the Congo (now Zaire), a few months after Patrice Lumumba was assassinated in 1960.  Seyoum talked about Lumumba as a great man and patriot who fought against colonialism, and said that the CIA was involved in undermining his efforts.  None of us could fully comprehend what he was talking about.  But in 1975, after the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee hearings led by Sen. Frank Church revealed the extent of the CIA’s dirty tricks, I finally began to fathom the meaning of Seyoum’s outrage.

Times have changed.  The neighborhood, on a hill overlooking the city and known as the Bluff for over a century, is dotted with fancy new restaurants on grounds where some of my schoolmates’ homes once stood.

For now, St. Joseph still stands at 85 Yamate-cho, near the city’s landmark, the Foreign Cemetery where many of my teachers are buried.  At a recent school reunion near Washington, D.C., with Brother Daniel Calvo, a teacher I had known since third grade, we reminisced about old times and talked about saving our school.  While listening to the Spanish teacher talk longingly of returning to Japan, some of us realized that the movement to save the school was not just for the current students and for the alumni.  It was also for those dedicated teachers who left their faraway homes across the oceans to teach at St. Joseph’s.  For some it was their only home.  And, come to think of it, they were ours for life.


Kunio Francis Tanabe is an assistant editor and art director of Book World.



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U.S. Navy wiped camera footage at China Lake

contributed by Ty (dreamlandresort) and Eammon Jacobs, INSIDER:


Top Gun:  Maverick” director, Joseph Kosinski, says the Navy wiped one of his cameras because he might have filmed something he wasn’t supposed to see at Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake in California.   

(China Lake is the nation’s leading edge Naval weapons testing center, and is located right next to Ridgecrest, California)

This seems to be in line with a previous interview in which he claims they had to relocate a secret test article to allow them to use the hangar for the opening “Darkstar” rollout scene.

The 2022 movie “Top Gun:  Maverick” has been hugely successful, raking in $1.48 billion worldwide, according to Box Office Mojo, thanks to its emotional story and gripping aerial action sequences.

Part of the success is attributable to Kosinski putting the audience in the jets with the pilots, and he recently told DEADLINE that he worked closely with the U.S. Navy to make sure it was an authentic representation of the military.

The director also said that after one of his visits to the base, the US Navy confiscated his camera.

Kosinski said: “So, I got to live that dream of being in the Navy for a couple years.  I got to go to places that civilians don’t get to go to.  I got to see things that no civilian would get to see.  I had my camera confiscated at one point.  Wiped clean.”

The “Tron: Legacy” and “Oblivion” director added that in his “quest for authenticity”,  he thought he took a photograph of something he wasn’t supposed to see.

Kosinski added: “I took some pictures and maybe captured something I wasn’t supposed to capture, and my camera was quickly returned to me without any photos on it.”

The director went on to say that it was a “dream” to collaborate with the US Navy on “Top Gun”.



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‘We have nothing’ showing UFOs are of alien origin, Defense official says

(I totally agree with this, if the definition of alien is strictly limited to physical, extraterrestrial biological entities“……however, this discussion will remain meaningless if we do not include such as “extradimensionality” and even “paraphysicality” which the government will never touch as a legitimate subject matter – – Norio Hayakawa)

by Kirsten Errick, NEXT GOV – – January 5, 2023:



So far, data has not shown unidentified anomalous phenomena to be from an alien source, according to defense officials.

Unlike what is portrayed in television and movies, the government has not found evidence of UFOs – – or unidentified flying objects – – that are extraterrestrial in nature.  However, the government is expanding efforts to collect data on objects it still can’t explain.

According to a media roundtable held last month, the Defense Department’s All-domain Anomaly Resolution Office is tracking and analyzing unidentified anomalous phenomena, or UAP – – the term is an updated version of UFO and the previous version of UAP, or unidentified aerial phenomena, to reflect unidentified phenomena not just in the air, but also on the ground and in sea and space – – that pose a threat.

“Unidentified objects in the skies, sea and space pose potential threats to safety and security, particularly for operational personnel,” AARO Director Sean Kirkpatrick said.  “AARO is leading a focused effort to better characterize, understand and attribute these objects and is employing the highest scientific and analytic standards.”

As noted at the roundtable, AARO – – which was provided for in the 2022 National Defense Authorization Act, established in July and replaced the former Navy-led Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force – – is working with other agencies to improve its data collection on UAPs. Agency partners include military services, the intelligence community, the Energy Department, NASA, the Federal Aviation Administration, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and others.

In May 2022, the U.S. held its first open hearing about UAPs in 50 years.  The hearing primarily discussed a 2021 report from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence about 144 incidents studied by the Pentagon’s Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force that are currently unexplainable. During the hearing, speakers noted a lack of and need for data to better address these incidents.

While the sources of the UAPs are unknown, defense officials noted there has been no affirmative evidence that these anomalies came from aliens, although some appear to use advanced or interesting technologies, according to Kirkpatrick.

“At this time, the answer’s no, we have nothing,” Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence and Security Ronald Moultrie said.  “We have not seen anything that would – – but we’re certainly very early on – – that would lead us to believe that any of the objects that we have seen are of alien origin, if you will.  If we find something like that, we will look at it and analyze it and take the appropriate actions.”

Instead, officials emphasized the need to better collect and analyze data, including standardizing data collected across the DOD and the rest of government to better understand and resolve the UAPs.  Congress has echoed this sentiment, as the 2023 NDAA requires the defense secretary and the director of national intelligence to create a secure way to report on anything relating to UAPs and related government or contractor efforts.

AARO is currently looking at several hundred UAPs, in addition to the 144 from the 2021 report, and prioritizing UAP reports near military operations or other areas important to national security, according to Kirkpatrick.

The officials noted that there is currently no evidence of unidentified trans-medium phenomenon – – meaning a UAP that, for example, went from under water to flying in the air.

According to Moultrie, the DOD is concerned about anything that is near its bases, installations and assets, no matter the location.  He added that the government is tracking and characterizing phenomena mainly into adversarial activities, amateur activities and anomalous activities.

Without discussing details about the UAPs, Moultrie noted that “there are a lot more civilian drones that are being flown today and other things that have been put up in the skies … I think it would be safe to say that there will be probably a number of these activities that can be characterized as non-adversarial systems – – things like balloons and things like [unmanned aerial vehicles] – – that are operated for purposes other than surveillance or intelligence collection.”

However, Kirkpatrick noted that there is “not a single answer for all of this.”  He indicated that there is reason to believe that some of these UAPs pose a threat to American national security.  But, Moultrie added that they are still working to resolve some of the cases, and “some of them probably could not be characterized as civilian balloons or [unmanned aircraft systems] or UAVs or whatever.  So, in the absence of being able to resolve what something is, we assume that it may be hostile. And so, we have to take that seriously.”

Moultrie did not want to comment about the government’s ability to resolve UAPs in space at the roundtable because of the sensitive nature of the topic.

And though there is no direct evidence of extraterrestrial technology, Kirkpatrick stated that there are UAPs using unusual or interesting technologies.

“There are things that appear to demonstrate interesting flight dynamics that we are fully investigating and researching right now,” he said, adding that this could be sensor phenomenology – – or how sensors register an occurrence – – the flight dynamics of the platform or an illusion.

When asked if there is previous evidence of alien visitation to Earth – – whether from crashed craft or living or deceased extraterrestrial beings, if discounting meteorites with microbes and only talking about intelligent life visiting or crashing on Earth – – Moultrie stated current information does not suggest this has occurred.

In the holdings that the office has gone through – – which Moultrie defined as “documentation, things that people may have said, interviews that people may have had, or memos that somebody may have written” – – he affirmed that “I have not seen anything in those holdings to date that would suggest that there has been an alien visitation, an alien crash or anything like that.”  He noted that AARO is still retrospectively analyzing data.

In the research I’ve been doing, I’ve not heard, seen or heard of anything at this time that would support that,” Kirkpatrick added.




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