Winston Churchill’s interest in strange phenomena and UFOs makes the cover story in the November 2018 issue of Fortean Times magazine.
Top Secret War chronicles the British Prime Minister’s curiosity about a range of unexplained phenomena during his long career as army officer, politician, wartime leader and writer/journalist.
Richard Nixon is said to have described him as the only political leader in history ‘who has his own crystal ball’.
Many people are familiar with Churchill’s famous 1952 memo to the Air Ministry demanding to know ‘the truth’ about flying saucers.
But fewer know that he ordered the very earliest British government inquiry into a UFO sighting in 1912, when he was First Lord of the Admiralty.
Or that in 1939, as the world stood on the brink of WW2, he took time out to write a lengthy essay on the possibility that ET life existed outside our solar system – and came out to say he believed this was a distinct probability.
Or that he took a personal interest in the controversial prosecution of spiritualist medium Helen Duncan during World War 2, that has been described (wrongly) as the ‘last Witchcraft Trial’.
Is there a common thread linking these disparate expressions of interest? Did Churchill ever learn ‘the truth’ about UFOs? And did he really believe in the existence of supernatural forces, as Major Wellesley Tudor Pole told a friend in 1964?
My research into Churchill’s papers at the University of Cambridge and at The National Archives have thrown up some intriguing clues. Read my article and make up your own mind.
Fortean Times 372 (November 2018) is available from newsagents or via subscription.