Thursday, February 16, 2012

The Leah Haley Case: Tom Deuley, The Tampa Trib and MUFON Unaccountability

This is one in a series of posts on the Leah Haley Case.

The following pages entitled The Carpenter Affair are taken from   ED.


In March, 1995, Leah Haley and Marc Davenport had a speaking engagement at the Tampa Unity Church in Tampa, Florida. The couple regularly shared the controversial views they held at the time on such matters as aliens, multiple dimensions and military abductions.


Kurt Loft of The Tampa Tribune-Times wrote a piece on the scheduled event. Loft's article, UFO Enthusiasts to Describe Out-of-This-World Adventures, was published in the March 5, 1995, edition of the newspaper.


Loft summarized the claims and perspectives of Haley and Davenport and sought statements from other applicable sources. Major David Thurston, identified by Loft as a spokesman for the Air Force in Washington, provided comment. He explained the Pentagon did not take such claims seriously.


Fair enough. I would certainly expect Thurston to have accurately represented the policies and stances of his employer.


Loft also sought comment from Tom Deuley of MUFON. Loft wrote:


The Pentagon scoffs at the accusations, said Maj. David Thurston, a spokesman for the Air Force in Washington.

"I don't want to dignify such charges with a comment," he said.  "I will say the Air Force isn't in the business of kidnapping the citizens of this country."

Nor does the Mutual UFO Network, which publishes the UFO Journal in Seguin, Texas, embrace Haley's abduction stories--either by aliens or the military.

"I would advise people to listen very closely to their lecture and apply some common sense to what they hear," said Tom Deuley of the Network, which has more than 5,200 members.  "We feel very embarrassed that UFOs are the vehicle for people making a living. When people tell such ridiculous stories, it doesn't help the serious scientific work being done."

Trouble was, the article and Deuley's statements were simply misrepresentations of actual MUFON actions and apparent policy.

Tom Deuley


Lieutenant Commander Thomas P. Deuley, US Navy, Retired, has an impressive resume and long history in ufology. One of his many bios circulating through the UFO community states he holds an engineering degree from Auburn and a degree in advertising from San Antonio College. He has a diverse background in military affairs including security and intelligence.  A former National Security Agency employee, Deuley has presented information to the UFO community on a variety of topics.


Deuley is a long time member of the MUFON board of directors. He also held key positions within additional UFO organizations and resulting projects, including the Fund for UFO Research, the UFO Research Coalition and the ill fated Ambient Monitoring Project, a program drawing substantial criticism, among other reasons, for its lack of transparency.


At the time, March 5, 1995, Loft suggested in The Tampa Trib, evidently based upon comments provided by Deuley, that neither MUFON nor its Journal embraced such abduction stories, little could have been further from correct. The facts of the matter were if we need any documentation MUFON has a long history of supporting such stories, we need look no farther than the very MUFON Journal suggested to oppose such claims.


In actuality, the 1995 February and April editions of the Journal carried a column written by then MUFON director of abduction research, John Carpenter. The column, Abduction Notes, was regularly published in the Journal and clearly promoted and endorsed claims of abduction, both alien and military.


As a matter of fact, in February, 1995, Carpenter wrote that John Mack brought attention to the “reality of UFO abductions.” Carpenter went on in the same column to endorse Streiber's Communion and Hopkins' Intruders.


The April, 1995, installment of Abduction Notes published in the MUFON Journal saw Carpenter writing about the importance of providing professional support to alien abductees. Combined with Deuley's virtually simultaneous and particularly critical comments on such matters, the situation could reasonably be interpreted as an outrageously ironic contradiction in MUFON policy. Clearly, the MUFON stance was not entirely and accurately represented in The Trib.


Perhaps most insulting of all to Leah Haley, Deuley apparently failed to inform Loft it was Deuley's fellow MUFON director, John Carpenter, who originally personally assisted and encouraged Haley in forming and cultivating her ideas via hypnosis about aliens and military personnel in the first place. The article also failed to accurately portray the role MUFON director Donald Ware played in the situation. Ware participated in the Eglin expedition, a hike in which a US Air Force base was searched for the site of an allegedly downed alien craft Haley was once supposed to have been aboard. What's more, it was Ware who originally suggested they undertake the remarkable hike and search. The very organization in which Leah sought help, hesitantly yet trustfully following their paradigm-shifting concepts and suggestions that included a year of hypnotic regression sessions, threw her under the bus on the pages of The Tampa Tribune-Times.


More facts of the matter include Haley was not “making a living” at sharing her story as Deuley suggested. Far from it, actually.


In her book, Unlocking Alien Closets, pages 181-182, Haley addressed the Loft article. Among other points presented, she detailed her personal finances which clearly demonstrated her activities in the UFO community were severely detrimental - and by no means beneficial - to money matters. Haley further stated that to the best of her recollection, she never so much as met Tom Deuley.


I emailed Deuley to try to learn more. I informed him I write a UFO-related blog and I provided a link. I stated I am writing about the Leah Haley Case and asked if I may ask him some questions.

Two similar requests were sent to the MUFON email address of Robert Swiatek, another long time MUFON board member who has previously posted comment here at The UFO Trail. The emails to Swiatek were not answered.

Multiple emails were also sent to MUFON board member Marie Malzahn at two different email addresses on file here at The 'Trail. I requested permission to ask her some questions about current MUFON policy and no replies were received.


Deuley replied he would be glad to entertain questions but advised he did not recall much about the Haley case. He added maybe the questions would be reminders.


On January 9, 2012, I emailed Deuley a summary of the Loft article and situation as described above, as well as reference to the Carpenter Affair. I thanked him for his willingness to entertain questions and stated I would appreciate comments at his convenience.


I asked what he would say to people who might question the hypocrisy of him speaking on behalf of MUFON and criticizing Haley, when it was his very MUFON peer, Carpenter, who originally encouraged and promoted her then-beliefs. I asked, most importantly, how might he expect Leah Haley to feel about it.


I also requested Deuley state his stance on MUFON chapters continuing to promote and
conduct regressive hypnosis as a memory retrieval tool.


I requested Deuley explain, as a long time MUFON board member and considering the mission of the organization to conduct scientific research, how he feels about the MUFON tendencies to provide public platforms to such self-described researchers as the late Budd Hopkins and others who use hypnosis as a primary tool of investigation. I asked Deuley to clarify his stance on David Jacobs being recently provided a public platform at MUFON LA. I also requested Deuley state his stance on MUFON chapters continuing to promote and conduct regressive hypnosis as a memory retrieval tool.


I asked if he would please comment on his recollections of how the MUFON board of directors handled the Carpenter Affair. I inquired whether Deuley was pleased or dissatisfied with MUFON actions, and what he thought was most important about the entire series of events.


I referenced how former MUFON international director James Carrion was quite outspoken about his interpretations the intelligence community plays a significant role in ufology, including the manipulation of MUFON. I further referenced how Clifford Clift made comments to a similar effect, even if the two men imply one another were more part of the problem than not. I then asked Deuley if he thinks MUFON was ever, at any time either formerly or currently, covertly infiltrated by the intelligence community.


As of this post, I have received no further emails or responses from Tom Deuley.


To clarify, I do not oppose Deuley's implications ufology could use more critical thinking. Of course it could.

I take issue with MUFON board members holding conflicting perspectives while each claiming and/or implying to be acting on behalf of the organization, especially when it results in an individual, Haley, publicly criticized who was assured help and did as she was suggested. I also take issue with said board members being unaccountable for the behavior. I further take issue with members of the MUFON board of directors continuing to refuse to commit to a stance or even so much as address the issues, particularly concerning the use of hypnosis as a memory retrieval tool.

The latest MUFON international director, David "The Captain" MacDonald, cooperatively fielded some questions here at The UFO Trail. While I appreciate his willingness to address issues, I find his comments concerning hypnosis unacceptable and indicative of a poorly informed UFO community.

Concerning MUFON providing platforms to individuals who use hypnosis as a primary investigative tool, Mr. MacDonald stated he has "no problem" with chapters hosting speakers making presentations on any "investigative procedure," including hypnosis. The problem with that, Mr. MacDonald, is the professional research community does not recognize hypnosis as an investigative procedure. This includes the academic/scientific community. The medical industry, which includes mental health professionals, does not recognize hypnosis as an investigative procedure, either. That is because, to overstate what should be the obvious yet remains chronically elusive, it is not an investigative procedure. 

None of that would be particularly significant if it were not for the facts the Mutual UFO Network is a nonprofit public charity and claims to be dedicated to the scientific study of UFOs for the benefit of humanity. It is not a private corporation or a hypnosis society. Neither is it dedicated to promoting inaccurate information subject to the best ticket draw and at the emotional sacrifice of those who approach it for advertised investigative and support services - even though it may appear that way much more often than not.

As we proceed with the exploration of the Leah Haley Case, let us please remember the key issues. Let us not be swayed by those who try to distract our attention from the most significant facts.

Leah Haley was hypnotized repeatedly throughout 1991 by a MUFON director, John Carpenter, inducing emotional upheaval and beliefs she was traumatically abducted again and again by a variety of alien and human perpetrators. She was guided by another MUFON director, Lieutenant Colonel Donald Ware, through an expedition of a US Air Force Base, supposedly searching for a site an alien craft was downed with her aboard and as suggested during one of the many hypnosis sessions. Her case file and the files of 139 other alleged abductees were released by Carpenter to Robert Bigelow and his military intelligence associates, as reportedly confirmed by Colonel John Alexander and cited in the previous post.

Those are facts. What the facts may indicate is open to interpretation and justifies further research. As I have stated all along, I do not claim to have conclusions.

Haley believes she somehow became involved in covert research operations. As I have written, Haley's case may, at worst, be indicative of covert psychological operations in which any number of people were manipulated and deceived. At best, Haley's story is the saga of a woman who sought the services of organizations and individuals claiming to provide quality, scientific investigation and healthy emotional support - and those organizations and individuals simply lied, be it out of ignorance, incompetence, deception or combinations thereof.

I would hope the UFO community would take note of such occurrences and be interested in improving its performance. Unfortunately, I have little reason to currently believe that is the case.

Haley's situation, extraordinary as it may seem, is actually not as unique as it may initially appear. It just happens to be relatively high profile. Think about it. 

There is the Emma Woods situation. There is the Carol Rainey films and information. Let us not forget there are no less than 139 others directly involved in the Carpenter Affair. I am personally and directly aware of individuals who contacted MUFON, a public nonprofit corporation purportedly dedicated to scientific research, for assistance in understanding their strange experiences and were abruptly referred to hypnotists. Some of these individuals have since decided the hypnosis sessions were unhelpful in identifying actuality, traumatic and quite harmful to their emotional well being and mental health.

I invite you to ask yourself if you will support and enable those who rationalize such circumstances, trying to dilute the significance of damage being inflicted. Accountability is in order - not excuses.

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