Has the Pentagon shattered your faith in UFOs?

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Tyrades! by Danny Tyree

Well, THOSE eagerly anticipated revelations certainly crashed and burned.

You may recall last summer a former intelligence officer told Congress that Uncle Sam maintains a covert stockpile of downed alien spacecraft and corpses. (“Doesn’t he look unnatural?”)

But now a wide-ranging report by the Defense Department’s All-domain Anomaly Resolution Office (AARO) declares there is zero reasonable evidence of a secret program to recover dead extraterrestrials and reverse-engineer their technology.

(Pay no attention to that low-level mechanic showing off a set of fifth-dimensional fuzzy dice. Or the decoded message “Tell my wives I’ll miss them. Those &%$# flying reindeer came out of nowhere…”)

Depending on your existing prejudices, you may greet these conclusions with relief, vindication, disappointment or a skeptical outburst of “If they can’t keep up with the defense secretary’s hospital stays, what makes you think they’d know an alien autopsy if it bit them on the keister?”

The report raises as many questions as it answers. First, I realize unexplained sightings didn’t really catch the public imagination until the end of World War II, but why did researchers look at military data only from 1945 to the present?

Perhaps they were afraid of going back further and unearthing deeply embarrassing scientific anachronisms.

Like, for instance, March 21, 1942 when Gen. Douglas MacArthur declared, “I shall return – perhaps five or 10 years before I even LEFT.”

Or even September 23, 1779 when Captain John Paul Jones bellowed, “I have not yet begun to levitate!”

Second, why was there so little pressure applied to corporate executives at companies alleged to have concealed information abut collusion between the government and the private sector? (“Nothing to see here – especially if the invisibility shield finally started to work. We’re innocent. Cross my heart and hope to die – but not by the Death Star. Anything but that!”)

Third, why didn’t the researchers focus more on whether friends and foes abroad have salvaged and adapted off-world technology? Perhaps they were spooked by the rumors that the newest Swiss Army Knife has a corkscrew, bottle opener and Elvis Abductor Ray.

Fourth, are the AARO investigators certain they want to get into a slap-fight with conspiracy theorists? (“Bravo on AARO’s report. But WE studied classified and unclassified archives and reached the unassailable conclusion that conspiracy theorists don’t exist!”)

Fifth, exactly how many “well-intentioned” Defense Department goobers are wandering around speculating about misunderstood hearsay evidence, mistaking surveillance balloons for a Klingon Bird-of-Prey and getting the public all agitated – and is it feasible to bury the pensions of these “essential employees” deep beneath Area 51?

I’ve been fascinated by the possibility of extraterrestrial life at least since the early 1960s when NBC began airing Gerry Anderson’s British marionette puppet series “Fireball XL5,” so the report leaves me wishing for something juicier.
But surely no nefarious weapons makers could have found a way to bamboozle our intrepid investigators or otherwise prevent them from divulging incriminating evidence.

No, it was a grand day for America and mankind when the findings brought closure to this matter of national security.

“There is no reason to believe aliens have been among us or that anyone has surreptitiously made use of alien technology. No cover-up. Case closed. I shall now begin slapping myself for no discernible reason. And, oh yes, flapping my arms and clucking like a chicken. Cluck cluck cluck…”

Copyright 2024 Danny Tyree, distributed by Cagle Cartoons newspaper syndicate.

Danny Tyree welcomes email responses at [email protected] and visits to his Facebook fan page “Tyree’s Tyrades.”

Controversial author Harlan Ellison once described the work of Danny Tyree as "wonkily extrapolative" and said Tyree's mind "works like a demented cuckoo clock."

Ellison was speaking primarily of Tyree’s 1983-2000 stint on the "Dan T’s Inferno" column for “Comics Buyer’s Guide” hobby magazine, but the description would also fit his weekly "Tyree’s Tyrades" column for mainstream newspapers.

Inspired by Dave Barry, Al "Li'l Abner" Capp, Lewis Grizzard, David Letterman, and "Saturday Night Live," "Tyree's Tyrades" has been taking a humorous look at politics and popular culture since 1998.

Tyree has written on topics as varied as Rent-A-Friend.com, the Lincoln bicentennial, "Woodstock At 40," worm ranching, the Vatican conference on extraterrestrials, violent video games, synthetic meat, the decline of soap operas, robotic soldiers, the nation's first marijuana café, Sen. Joe Wilson’s "You lie!" outburst at President Obama, Internet addiction, "Is marriage obsolete?," electronic cigarettes, 8-minute sermons, early puberty, the Civil War sesquicentennial, Arizona's immigration law, the 50th anniversary of the Andy Griffith Show, armed teachers, "Are women smarter than men?," Archie Andrews' proposal to Veronica, 2012 and the Mayan calendar, ACLU school lawsuits, cutbacks at ABC News, and the 30th anniversary of the death of John Lennon.

Tyree generated a particular buzz on the Internet with his column spoofing real-life Christian nudist camps.

Most of the editors carrying "Tyree’s Tyrades" keep it firmly in place on the opinion page, but the column is very versatile. It can also anchor the lifestyles section or float throughout the paper.

Nancy Brewer, assistant editor of the "Lawrence County (TN) Advocate" says she "really appreciates" what Tyree contributes to the paper. Tyree has appeared in Tennesee newspapers continuously since 1998.

Tyree is a lifelong small-town southerner. He graduated from Middle Tennessee State University in 1982 with a bachelor's degree in Mass Communications. In addition to writing the weekly "Tyree’s Tyrades," he writes freelance articles for MegaBucks Marketing of Elkhart, Indiana.

Tyree wears many hats (but still falls back on that lame comb-over). He is a warehousing and communications specialist for his hometown farmers cooperative, a church deacon, a comic book collector, a husband (wife Melissa is a college biology teacher), and a late-in-life father. (Six-year-old son Gideon frequently pops up in the columns.)

Bringing the formerly self-syndicated "Tyree's Tyrades" to Cagle Cartoons is part of Tyree's mid-life crisis master plan. Look for things to get even crazier if you use his columns.