Another UFO Mystery Crashes and Burns
By Luis Burgos (ICOU / FAO)
The Russian space station, Salyut 7, fell from the heavens
on the evening of 7 February 1991 over a vast section of Argentina. Its remains
were scattered over an extensive belt running from Patagonia to the coast. It
was possible to gather up many metal fragments, including one of its fuel
tanks. One of these is displayed, as we can see, by members of the Venado
Tuerto (Santa Fe) C.I.C. group at the time. Another fragment is in the hands of
José Rodríguez, a police officer from Pehuajó (Buenos Aires) and so forth.
On the other hand, the fragment placed at the museum in
Entre Rios became embroiled in controversy for years, as it was
“sold” as an extraordinary item from outer space, together with a
translucent badge that became a source of wonder to visitors. Clearly, the
alleged UFO-ALIEN origin was more attractive to a mystery-loving public than
any earthly provenance. As the story would have it, the object was found
“by sheer coincidence” in 1991 in a location in Entre Rios (Rincón
del Doll), which happened to be – by sheer coincidence – where the Russian
artifact broke up. Therefore, a rift emerged between UFO devotees and those who
questioned the object’s provenance. Add to this the fact that a cosmonaut who
held the object in his hands stated that he could not “identify the piece
as Soviet engineering” (sic), difficult though it may be to believe.
But as I have always said: “Time Favors the
Researchers”. So we have it that ufologists, after three decades of
averting their gaze or whistling softly (as they do when things get hot), had
to yield to the “proof” and “evidence” of a skeptical
analyst, practically a debunker of the subject – the Commodore who leads the
only official body of the Argentinean government that studies UFOs. The steps
taken, whether palatable or not, obeyed all the protocols: In this case, the
translucent metal fragment was sent to LINF (acronym for the Ing. Gregorio
Cusminsky Physical Metallurgy research Laboratory), a branch of the Mechanical
Department of the School of Engineering of the National University of La Plata
(UNLP), which happened to be the same institution that analyzed the metal
fragments found at the site of the Tacuarembó incident in Uruguay.
The result, as can be expected, caused a UFO myth to topple.
According to engineer Carlos Llorente, the fragment was a piece of stainless
steel whose origin was none other than…The Russian Salyut 7 space station!
Thus it was that the myth crashed and burned. Onward!
[Translation (c) 2022 Scott Corrales, IHU with thanks to
Luis Burgos, ICOU / FAO]