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Template:Infobox person Eduard Albert Meier (born February 3, 1937) is a Swiss citizen who is the source of many photographs of alleged unidentified flying objects (UFOs), which he presents in support of his claim that he is in contact with extraterrestrial beings. He also presented other material during the 1970s such as metal samples, sound recordings and film footage. Meier reports regular contacts with extraterrestrials he calls the Plejaren.[1]

Meier has been widely characterized as a fraud by skeptics and ufologists, who suggest that he used models to hoax photos claimed to show alien spacecraft.[2][3][4][5][6]

Background

Born in the town of Bülach in the Zürcher Unterland, Meier joined the French Foreign Legion in his teens, but says he soon left and returned home. In 1965, he lost his left arm in a bus accident in Turkey. In 1966,Template:Verify source he met and married a Greek woman, Kalliope Zafiriou, with whom he has three children. The nickname "Billy" came by way of an American friend who thought Meier's cowboy style of dress reminded her of "Billy the Kid." This anecdote was told by Meier himself in an interview with Bob Zanotti of Swiss Radio International in June, 1982.[7]

Meier has accumulated a large collection of photographs[8] showing alleged spaceships that he calls "beamships" as well as alleged Plejaren. Meier says that the Plejaren gave him permission to photograph and film their beamships so that he could produce some evidence for their extraterrestrial visitations. Meier's claims are believed by some UFO enthusiasts and disputed by skeptics and scientists.[9][10]

Alleged extraterrestrial contacts

Meier said his extraterrestrial encounters began in 1942, at the age of five, when he met an elderly Plejaren man named "Sfath".[11] After Sfath's death in 1953, Meier said, he began communicating with an extraterrestrial woman (though not a Plejaren) called "Asket". All contacts ceased in 1964, he said, then resumed on January 28, 1975, when he met "Semjase",[11] the granddaughter of Sfath, and shortly thereafter another Plejaren man called "Ptaah". Other Plejarens, including a woman named "Nera", have since allegedly joined the dialog as well. Photographs of these two women were later proved to have been faked.[12][13]

Photographs and films

File:Billy Meier UFO 66.jpg
One of Meier's photographs of "a beamship floating beside a tree".

Some of the most important alleged evidence for Meier's claims comes from his large collection of photographs and a few films. These claim to include images of metallic discs floating above the Swiss countryside, pictures of celestial objects from an alleged non-Earthly vantage point, pictures of apparent extraterrestrials, prehistoric Earth scenes, photos of the controversial "Wedding Cake UFO" (WCUFO), and photos of "Energy Ships" changing shape. His films purport to show UFOs disappearing in front of the camera, dancing around a tree and moving its treetop without touching it, and a UFO emitting flashes of light.

UFO researchers such as Stanton T. Friedman and Jacques Vallée dismiss the Meier case.[14] Some critics have provided examples of faked photos similar to those that Meier produced[15] and have pointed out that some of his photos correspond to scenes that were subsequently found in science fiction books, paintings and television programs.[16] Meier claims that some of his photos were altered by intelligence agencies and slipped into his collection in order to discredit his UFO testimony.[17] Kal K. Korff has been particularly active in dismissing the Meier case, pointing to evidence of fakery in his photos, including light-direction and focal discrepancies consistent with cut-and-paste and model techniques.[18]

Recreations of Meier's images were created by photographic effects specialist and stop-motion animator Alan Friswell for the June 2005 issue of Fortean Times magazine.[19]Template:Dead link Friswell had employed techniques used in the pre-digital age of film special effects, as modern processes would, in Friswell's opinion, have been "unsporting." Using "old fashioned" tricks, such as foreground miniatures and photographic cutouts, Friswell crafted copies of Meier's UFO pictures, but claimed that his pictures did not in any way confirm that Meier was a hoaxer, as without personal experience of the events, he had no right to draw conclusive opinions one way or the other.Template:Cn

Meier's relationship with his wife Kalliope ended acrimoniously, and in 1997 Kalliope stated in an interview that the UFO in the photos looked like models that Meier had made himself with items like trash can lids, carpet tacks and other household objects,[20] and that the stories he told of his adventures with the aliens were similarly fictitious. She also said that photos of purported extraterrestrial women "Asket" and "Nera" were really photos of Michelle DellaFave and Susan Lund, members of the singing and dancing troupe The Golddiggers; it was later confirmed that Meier's claims were faked and that DellaFave and Lund were in fact the women in the photographs.[12][13]

Metal samples

The Independent Investigations Group (IIG) analyzed data from Marcel Vogel presented in the 1985 video Beamship: The Metal Analysis.[21] The IIG concluded the following: the element found was aluminum and not thulium, the evidence for the presence of all elements in the sample is in fact Bremsstrahlung radiation with no bearing on element composition, the structure that suggests exotic micro-manipulation can be found on the surface of metals machined by ordinary cutting tools in a machine shop, and the evidence of crystal birefringence detected using Nomarski and Cross-Polarized microscopy can be reproduced by the topography of a simple metal structure with no birefringence associated to it.[21] The IIG said it did not find data supporting the presence of rhenium or any other rare earth element.Template:Cn

See also

Notes

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References

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External links

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