The Doomsday Conspiracy

Chapter Nine


Later that day a press conference was held in Geneva, in the austere offices of the Bundesgasse, the Swiss Ministry of Internal Affairs. There were more than fifty reporters in the room, and an overflow crowd outside in the corridor. There were representatives from television, radio and the press from more than a dozen countries, many loaded with microphones and television gear. They all seemed to be speaking at once.
"We've heard reports that it was not a weather balloon ..."
"Is it true that it was a flying saucer?"
"There are rumours that there were alien bodies aboard the ship ..."
"Was one of the aliens alive?"
"Is the government trying to hide the truth from the people ...?"
The press officer raised his voice to regain control. "Ladies and gentlemen, there has been a simple misunderstanding. We get calls all the time. People see satellites, shooting stars ... Isn't it interesting that reports of UFOs are always made anonymous? Perhaps this caller really believed it was a UFO, but in actuality, it was a weather balloon that fell to the ground. We have arranged transportation to take you to it. If you will follow me, please ..."
Fifteen minutes later, two busloads of reporters and television cameras were on their way to Uetendorf to see the remains of a crashed weather balloon. When they arrived, they stood in the wet grass, surveying the torn metallic envelope. The press officer said, "This is your mysterious flying saucer. It was sent aloft from our air base in Vevey. To the best of our knowledge, ladies and gentlemen, there are no unidentified flying objects that our government has not been satisfactorily able to explain, nor to our knowledge are there any extraterrestrials visiting us. It is our government's firm policy that if we should come across any such evidence, we would immediately make that information available to the public. If there are no further questions ..."