If we ignore the nonsense and go straight to the sources there is an interesting evolution of research available.
My exploration into this topic actually started by looking at the UFO (or UAP) lore through the lens of memes and attempting to trace back the popular term “we are not alone” only to find that it actually can be traced back to a book published in 1964 of the same title written by the most popular science journalist of the time and science editor of The NY Times, Walter Sullivan. I briefly cover We Are Not Alone (the book) in the last half of a previous article. Sullivan also wrote extensively about Antarctica and was present as a reporter during Operation Highjump. I immediately recognized that his work was likely the original source from which many wild Antarctic and UFO lore has sprung so I began reading all of his work only to learn a great deal about how Antarctica actually did play a very real role in the creation of both NASA and the space race. As I dig deeper the situation just gets more interesting especially in light of recent events around the UAP subject.
Diving Into the Historical Record
I found the Navy’s old documentary about Operation High Jump with an intro from James Forrestal as well as an interview with Admiral Byrd about Antartica. The claims are very interesting and so is the context. The documentary is literally entirely made by the Navy, James Forrestal was the current Secretary of Defense and Admiral Byrd was the most accomplished and experienced Antarctic explorer of the time. They were all endorsing claims that there was enough coal alone to supply the world for over 100 years as well as other extraordinary claims.
This 1948 award winning documentary made exclusively by the Navy detailing Operation High Jump is called The Secret Land, which is an interesting choice. It doesn’t exactly clear the air.
It opens with James Forrestal. Forrestal was a Wall Street financier turned Secretary of the Navy turned first ever Secretary of Defense under the National Security Act of 1947 (a few months after the Roswell event.) Forrestal died under suspicious circumstances in 1949. These are notable facts around this true story and are not meant to insinuate anything in particular. Context is important after all.
Around the 7:20 mark in the video is some shenanigans reminiscent of something from a South Park episode. Watch it if you have a sense of humor.
At 43:06 they mention food doesn’t spoil in Antartica. This is a testament to the incredible potential artifacts that should be under the ice there as well as the potential to store reserves on the continent for world catastrophes. The fossil record under that ice is likely more than enough to reveal shattering insights about the history of Earth and life on Earth considering how much land there is and how old the ice above it is.
At 50:15 they show land without snow and compare it to Arizona. This is Bunger’s Oasis. They go on to say that it’s a fact that there is a chain of ‘warm’ water lakes with shores free of ice and snow. One lake measures 38 degrees F and there are vast deposits of coal and minerals on the shore.
The official video says Byrd claims there’s enough coal to provide the world’s coal needs for centuries. That means there’s also a lot of potential fossil records of life before the ice age as well. There could even be in tact preserved DNA.
On December 8, 1954, Byrd appeared on a television show where he presumably discusses Operation Deep Freeze and says, “one reason [the government] is interested is because it’s by far the most valuable and important place left in the world for science…But more important than that it has to do with the future of the nation…Because it happens to be an untouched reservoir of natural resources…The bottom of the world will be important not only to us but to our allies…In the future I can see a time it will become very, very important strategically [militarily.]” He also discusses frozen bread that stayed edible after 4–5 years and proposes using it for food logistics to help prevent shortages.
When asked what resources are down there Byrd replies, “we found enough coal within 180 miles of the South Pole in a great ridge of mountains that’s not covered in snow to supply the whole world for quite a while. That’s the coal. There’s evidence of many other minerals. We are pretty sure there’s oil…it was once tropical so we think there’s oil there and there’s evidence [that] there’s probably uranium there.” Him and the interviewers all seem a little nervous about his comments and he slightly walks back the uranium comments by saying he doesn’t want people to fight over uranium in the Antarctic and that he’s not actually sure about it being there.
One interviewer asks, “is there a competition among other nations to try to get information about Antartica and possibly to secure some of these resources?” and Byrd replies, “Yes,” while shifting very uncomfortably in his chair. “There are several nations very much interested. Russia is interested tremendously. That I am sure of. Australia has an expedition down there…It’s a peaceful place but I don’t think it will be for long.”
Just to be clear, Admiral Byrd is the foremost expert on exploring Antartica at this moment in time and led three expeditions there before the war going back to 1928. He served as a confidential adviser during WW2 and was even present during the Japanese surrender. Quickly following the war James Forrestal appointed him officer in charge of Antarctic Developments Project. This guy knows what he’s talking about as far as what’s going on in Antarctica. He knows who and what is there more than probably anybody. He made these statements before the International Geophysical Year (IGY) which led directly to the Antarctic Treaty, which bans commercial mining of Antartica.
I’ve been researching the Antarctic connections to the UAP subject (or trying to) and the International Geophysical Year that happened in 1958 led to the Soviets launching the first satellite ahead of the US and then the formation of NASA. So there is an interesting connection indeed albeit a story going all the way back to the International Polar Year of 1882 and a long line of characters such as Byrd, Nimitz, and Forrestal. You may recognize the name Nimitz as the most recent UAP news is born from an event that happened in 2004 on a nuclear super carrier named in his honor.
If you are a journalist you should read my work and try to follow up on this. There should be paper trails all over that lead to new connections to discover.
Operation High Jump was classified confidential according to many sources, not secret. I’ve seen claims it was top secret or had top secret elements, but I’m not sure if that’s true or not. I’ve even seen claims that guys from the Bikini Atoll A-bomb tests were a part of Western Group and were dropping leaflets during High Jump that claimed the land US territory. I find this bizarre if true. It’s in contradiction to official US policy to make claims this way and dropping leaflets historically can have other connotations in the military if we want to be conspiratorial. Then again, maybe somebody in the group just thought it was a good idea despite policy.
Further Research That Connects UFO’s
13 cubic feet of papers are archived in Alaska of the work of Franklin Roach (including his UFO work) who studied airglow in Antarctica as well as consulted for NASA (he literally briefed and debriefed astronauts) and was part of the panel for Project Blue Book that disagreed with Condon.
Any researcher willing to plan a trip to the archives could go see for themselves what awaits in these boxes. I will provide a link to the electronic finding aid which provides good overview information of Roach’s life and work as well as how the documents are organized for searching.
I found this link while searching Admiral Thornton Page who is another interesting character that allegedly came up with the idea of the international geophysical year (what allowed Roach to study airglow in Antarctica), also was on the Robertson Panel, and also did work for NASA. He also edited a book written by Roach that’s also edited by Carl Sagan titled “UFO’s A Scientific Debate.” That book as well as Roach’s personal memoirs are all included at the archives. You can find an old website apparently still selling his personal memoirs if you look for it but it looks like it hasn’t been updated since 1999.
Why was I researching Thornton Page? Well, Curt Jaimungal got together with John Greenwald’s The Black Vault to make an AI for searching Greenwald’s FOIA’d documents called The Black TOE Vault. I’ve been searching for UFO connections to Antarctica and queried about the International Geophysical Year (IGY) only to get Admiral Page’s name to pop up and something about an All-Sky Camera used during the IGY which appears to be designed to look at airglow. Unfortunately, the AI tool is a new project and a little dirty at the moment so I haven’t yet been able to identify and read the entire source that the AI is referencing here but it does exist in the Black Vault archives somewhere.