Chapter 11

Breaking Down the Men in Black

Things need to be said, regarding the so-called men-in-black. Don’t let the hyphens fool you–just good grammar.
What you really want to know is this: are men-in-black “real”?
Of course. As absurd as 99% of UFO reports, our (usually) well-dressed operatives represent a system of denial as old as written history. Even the Bible warns us to be careful of how we treat unexpected guests, for we may be taking in “angels.”
How can we know?
We can’t.
But the too-knowing men-in-black seem to have our number, often without our even reporting a UFO sighting. How can this be?
Nearly anyone going to the trouble of reading this has read accounts–bizarre, menacing, even helpful–of strange men (and women) showing up when least expected (but who would expect such visits?).
I’m not here to reinforce anyone’s belief in a myth, rumor, or dream. People have been threatened, to this day, by scary, even outright threatening, official-looking individuals who “know too much.”
In fact, what really sucks is that these very same agents are well aware of the substantial men-in-black lore built over decades. I have spent probably more time than necessary reading the extant accounts, and theorizing based on the work of brave souls such as John Keel and Jim Keith (both “late,” Keith dying at 50 in what most–myself included–view as suspicious circumstances). After all, Keith wrote the book to end all books on the MIB: CASEBOOK ON THE MEN IN BLACK. Two years later, he took a fall at the annual Burning Man festival and broke a knee.
In the hospital for minor surgery, Keith confided to a friend that he feared–if put under–he might not emerge alive. He was right.
Within three years of his death, Keith’s publisher, Ron Bonds, choked to death in a favorite restaurant. Not long after, one of Keith’s ex-girlfriends was found dead, half-naked beside railroad tracks.
I don’t know about you, but Keel died a natural–however painful–death. Jim Keith did not. The official cause of death was “blunt-force trauma”–impossible. Is this possible? Of course. Probable any surgeon would fail to notice this? (Where’s House when we need him?) Not really–shit happens.
Here’s what you don’t know about Jim Keith.
We owe much of THE X-FILES and the MEN IN BLACK entertainment to his beyond-brave inquiries. Jim was the best pain in the ass ever, willing to confront anyone. And he did. A writer’s writer, unafraid to question the endless bullshitters of so-called ufology.
My opinion: he died for it.
This was a man who did the nearly unthinkable in seeking out and questioning the official report of the “suicide” of journalist Danny Casolaro, found dead in a West Virginia hotel room. In a nut, Casolaro was tracking solid data that told him advanced software was being used in a “back-door” manner by the U.S. government to spy on foreign financial transactions. Keith somehow managed to use recovered notes from Casolaro to write (with friend Kenn Thomas) THE OCTOPUS: SECRET GOVERNMENT AND THE DEATH OF DANNY CASOLARO–which may have been his undoing.
Some, well before Keith’s untimely end, labeled him paranoid and reactionary. I do not agree.
There are those who think U.S. government used this software to collapse foreign economies. Here is where I part ways with UFO buffs. Keith might have been on to something genuinely serious. His self-funded research might have ended him. Keith, among many other suppositions, was one of the first to theorize that men in black acted so weird in order to shatter the credibility of UFO witnesses.
If true, a disturbing fact.
Why do most men (and women) in black behave as if they can’t breathe, ask moronic questions (“What is your time?”), and otherwise harass those wintesses to “the unknown”?
Answer: anyone reporting black-dressed, menacing yet ridiculous “agents” is bound to be viewed as nuts, and/or lying, by local police or even government investigators. So it has been since at least 1945.
Presently, of course, thanks to old-school hoaxers like West Virginia’s Gray Barker, whose THEY KNEW TOO MUCH ABOUT FLYING SAUCERS (1956) possibly started the whole MIB mythos, we are left with chaos. Men in black were reported in Dallas threatening those who stood near the JFK hit. Sounds like a lot of money spent simply to discredit honest witnesses, right?
MIB are reported even today.
In 2010, an Ohio man reported seeing a triangular vehicle hovering over his home. However, before the actual report, our witness said that “two black-suited men, like a fashion commercial, knocked on my door and told me it was in my best interests to let them in…they asked to see my driver’s license, and wanted to know if I was on any medication, ‘that might cause hallucinations.'”
Our man was smart. He pulled a handgun, and summoned local police.
One MIB, gun in his face, said: “They’ll think you’re a nut. Forget it.”
Apparently stupid, or fearless, the two fashion-plates climbed into their black SUV and drove off.
Whatever game has been played since WWII is still alive and unwell.
The message?
Close your eyes and shut your mouth. We’re real.


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