This is fairly typical of the way the British media reported this story, so I’m in no way blaming Unfairly Balanced for posting a hopelessly garbled version of the facts which, while not quite completely untrue, is so distorted that it might as well be. Basically this was a total non-story turned into a thrilling tale of secret freaky stuff through a combination of twisting trivial things so that they sounded exciting and couldn’t-care-less research.
The claim that Winston Churchill colluded with the Americans to cover up a dramatic UFO sighting during WWII was not reported, or even hinted at by anyone, ever, until 1999, when a “scientist” (he didn’t say in what field) sent the Ministry of Defense an anonymous letter making this claim on behalf of his deceased grandfather. This, you will note, was when UFO cover-ups by the US government were a very hot topic indeed, thanks to a certain massively popular and entirely fictitious TV show. It’s a transparent attempt at a hoax, and 11 years later it has finally succeeded - somebody, somewhere must be over the Moon! And it’s only an “official document” in the sense that it was sent to the MoD who put it in their files because that’s what they do with absolutely everything.
Some media sources attempted to link this with another declassified document which is the ONLY bit of paper in the archives concerning UFOs that’s actually signed by Winston Churchill. It’s a handwritten memo to one of his senior advisors reading: “What does all this stuff about flying saucers amount to? What can it mean? What is the truth? Let me have a report at your convenience.” That’s the entire text. And since I remember seeing a photo of it in a book published at least 20 years ago, I don’t think it’s all that newly declassified. The point is that a man who covered up a dramatic WWII close encounter wouldn’t have written that in 1952, would he? By the way, the brief report he got in reply summarized the results of a study done the previous year concluding that all UFO reports were either honest mistakes or deliberate hoaxes, and certainly nothing the British government needed to worry about.
The attempt to make the destruction of old files seem sinister is absurd. In the days before electronic information storage, every government-run agency in the UK regularly destroyed huge amounts of paperwork which had been lying around for ages not serving any purpose, because otherwise the entire building would have been stuffed with useless rubbish. And as Winston Churchill was told in 1952, the British government didn’t consider well-meaning UFO reports from the general public to be terribly important.
They still don’t! Nick Pope is pretty much a joke. During the 1990s, the MoD were for some reason (possibly connected with that popular TV show I mentioned earlier) getting so many UFO reports that a lot of time was being wasted as people passed these things from department to department trying to figure out whose job it was to do anything whatsoever about them. So they appointed one bloke to the ridiculous dead-end job of being the man at the desk to which all this stuff was directed. His job consisted almost entirely of sending out form-letter acknowledgments and stuffing the reports in a filing-cabinet forever. He did it for only 3 years, and since the volume of UFO-related material sent to the MoD dropped considerably once a certain TV show stopped being cool, the job no longer exists at all. I’ve never met Nick Pope, but I have met several of the people he cites as “experts” in his absurd book “Open Skies, Closed Minds”, and all I can say is that this guy will obviously believe absolutely anything you tell him so long as you’re not actually laughing.
So there you have it - the Churchill UFO Cover-Up Conspiracy is a blatant hoax, and with a bit of luck somebody will gleefully admit it and it’ll end up where it belongs - on this site.
Incidentally, the only official long-term investigation into UFOs by the British government was the House of Lords UFO Study Group in the late 1970s, which achieved absolutely nothing, and existed only because Brinsley Le Poer Trench, the Earl of Clancarty was crazier than a tree full of fish.