What’s Wrong with Crop Circle Reporting Today?
by Eric A. Vasallo
It was a crystal clear summer day in 2014, driving through Germany on our way to Switzerland when we overheard a radio interview about a recently discovered crop circle, just two weeks prior. The mysterious formation was formed near Lake Ammer, Germany, steps away from one of Europe’s largest satellite arrays. The report was discussing how people were flocking to the site from different parts of Europe. Ironically enough, we were on our way to alternative history pioneer- Erich Von Daniken’s Jungfrau Mystery Park in the Swiss Alps. It took us about thirty seconds to agree on a quick detour towards the town of Raisting for a little Hardy Boys-Nancy Drew, mystery fact-finding mission of our own.
There is a tight window to personally visit one of these circles, as farmers usually don’t allow visits and mow them down immediately after they appear to replant the field. This particular circle was temporarily preserved because the farmer decided to charge an entry fee in an effort to recoup the loss caused by the formation to his wheat crop. The woman sitting at the front of the circle at a makeshift table handed me my ticket. She advised the farmer would probably be mowing it down after several days and that I was lucky to get to see it.
After an unforgettable and thought provoking experience inside my first crop circle, I Google’d “crop circle Germany” and was disappointed to find a drastic difference between American and European reporting of these still, unexplained formations. This error in reporting inspired me to delve deeper and report on it myself, as objectively as possible.
USA Today reported it was a crop circle made by students and one condescendingly referred to “little green men” while giggling as if that were a total impossibility.
The Telegraph and BBC served up a theory that the formation was too complex to be done overnight by students and even quotes the farmer saying that it’s a mystery. However, in the American versions, the same farmer blanket states that there was no mystery.
None of the news outlets reported that this crop circle is the second one in the same area within a two-year period. The previous crop circle was detected by balloonists on July 18th, 2012 in the area close to Abbey Andechs (see image) about 12 km away from this formation on a hill also close to Lake Ammer. Coincidentally, the same balloonists discovered both circles.
That 2012 formation was near the abbey, one of Europe’s largest Catholic pilgrimage sites. Another circle found formed near a large satellite dish occurred in 2000 at Chibolton, England and was adjacent Chibolton satellite station for atmospheric and radio research. Is there any significance of crop circles formed near one another? More serious research and fact-finding is needed to see if these circles are part of a larger, coded message spread out over time.
As we drove up to the field, we were awestruck by the too-close-to-be-a-coincidence proximity of four, huge satellite dishes steps from the wheat field where the formation was. The US coverage failed to report this glaring detail.
This satellite array was built in 1964 and their purpose was to improve communications via satellites across the Atlantic. In 1969, the Apollo 11 Moon landing was broadcasted over Europe using these same antennas. The array is called Raisting Erdfunkstelle, which translates to Earth-Radio-Station. It is currently run by EMC.
Notice, there are four circles inside the crop circle, seemingly mirroring the four adjacent satellite dishes. Few reports ever mention that the majority of crop circles reported in England are formed close to ancient megalithic stone sites such as- Silbury Hill, Chalk Horse, Stonehenge and Avebury, leading some theorists to posit that they may have something to do with the Earth’s natural magnetic ley lines ancient sites are built to be aligned with.
Crop circles first began to be documented in grain fields in England in 1975. In 1990, the designs of these circles became increasingly more complex, looking more like pictographs than just simple circle formations. Eighty-five percent of all crop circles appear in England in a concentrated area about twenty miles from Stonehenge.
As I entered the massive circle with a 246 foot diameter (75 meters), I was amazed by not only the overwhelming size of the circle but its proximity to the satellite station with security cameras outside, in full view of the road leading to the unexplained formation.
People from all walks of life, families of all ages, were experiencing the site peacefully with a reverence reserved for a religious site, populated the circle. All the visitors seemed to be calm and unafraid. The only observable common thread was that they were all individuals curious enough to make the extra effort to touch, see, and feel what this mystery was, trying to figure out for themselves what it all might mean.
Farmers have good reason to dislike these rings because of the damage it wreaks upon their crops. Add to that, they have to manage hundreds of looky-loos that flock to see them. Some charge entry fees to offset the cost of the damage to the soil from all the human traffic.
Residents I spoke to while at the site, refused to believe their local paper’s claims that this was made by students. This massive, elaborate circle could not possibly have been carved out of the wheat field, overnight without a crane to see above for proper alignment. They would have needed lights and at very least high ladders, risking arrest or being shot because it is, after all trespassing and destruction of private property.
Hesitating to believe in conspiracy theories, the first question that came to mind was why doesn’t the media report both sides of the story and all of the information, readily available?
Is it simply a case of lazy reporting or the reporter’s preconceived notions that these unexplained phenomena are all just a hoax, tainting their reporting? Is it really that difficult to connect the dots as I have done in this preliminary investigation, in a short amount of time with nothing more than a smart phone camera and a notepad?
It takes a special kind of person willing to get up and seek the truth for themselves, no matter where that truth may lead them. Most people unfortunately, don’t bother and prefer to have their information spoon-fed to them. In this case, it seems that the European news sites are significantly better at gathering and reporting the facts than their American counterparts.
BBC’s unbiased report includes the fact that the circle formed near a large satellite array- ww.bbc.com
Telegraph’s objective reporting that includes opinions of locals-Huge-crop-circles-appear-in-field-in-Germany
Most American news outlets failed to mention the satellite array near the formation- crop-circle-germany
Huffington Post reports the mystery by claiming it was “probably made by students” without a shred of evidence to support the claim. Notice how the photo of the formation is cropped to hide satellite array nearby. The article did go a step further than most by including a slideshow outlining some factual data on crop circles.
The Associated Press briefly reports on the formation giving only the opinion of the owner of the farm, editing his statement to show he thought it was created by students when in the European outlets he was seen on video saying that men “doing it in one night, not an easy task”.
NBC is the only news outlet that mentions its proximity to the satellite array
Upon closer inspection, I could easily see wheat stalks with signs of bulging and burning caused by some sort of heat or radiation. We didn’t find just one like this, we documented dozens of wheat stalks with this anomaly throughout the entire formation. This and other anomalies have been reported in other crop circles in England. Higher than normal levels of radiation, have also been recorded by other researchers in the field. Many eyewitnesses of other circles have come forward to report sightings of balls or orbs of lights swirling above crops before formations were discovered. News outlets consistently fail to report these accounts.
Nor do they document that circles have been reported since 1678. To date, 10,000 crop circles have been recorded internationally. Russia, UK, Germany, Israel, the U.S. and Australia, Japan have all had formations created on their soil. If this were the work of man, it would take quite a formidable team of workers to achieve a body of work reaching these numbers. Only three people have ever been arrested and since 2008, not one person has been arrested in the UK. So, in summary, only 3 individuals apprehended out of 10,000 circles completed? That kind of ratio defies logic, especially when factoring in human error.
The stalks folded down to make the pattern display bulging in their stalks, where the ones nearby not flattened, do not. Another fact never mentioned by news sources is that in Linda Moulton Howe’s investigations, Dr. Levengood found over 70 percent of approximately 40 crop formations investigated with magnetic drags turned up iron deposits on the surface of the soil. According to Dr. Levengood these are possible evidence of micro meteoritic particles from the Earth’s upper atmosphere.
Ask yourself if a group of students or a couple of 70 year Old’s with a board and a string can also do this overnight and undetected?
As I walke through the circle, noticing the clean, fan like pattern throughout, I encountered a young woman dowsing, using thin copper rods to test for any electromagnetic anomalies. I witnessed her dowse towards the middle of a circle section and each time the rods crossed indicating a positive read. There were three other women with her that did the same thing and got the same positive reading for electromagnetic energy.
Now granted, dowsing is still considered a pseudoscience by mainstream science but ask any farmer if they have ever used dowsers to successfully find water sources. For them, the proof is in the pudding or in their case, the water the dowsers historically have found for them. It’s actually a trade that is booming with members growing higher than ever before. Many dowsers are several generations old and maintain households helping farmers find water at a low cost. Average dowser charges range from $75–200. In the latest study paid for by the German government was published in the peer reviewed Journal of Scientific Exploration found dowsers had a 96 percent success rate at finding water with 691 drillings in Sri Lanka. Truth is, science doesn’t yet know how dowsing works any more than it knows how crop circles are formed. Both phenomena seem to involve the subtle electromagnetic Earth energies that science is only beginning to understand. It is evident that the scientific community has a bad habit of calling things fake, pseudo or hoaxes when they can’t or don’t want to dig deeper for answers. Wouldn’t it be a more scientific approach to delve further instead of dismissing and walking away?
The Telegraph and BBC in the UK reported the Lake Ammer circle correctly as a mystery. However, neither outlets reported the anomalies that were easily attained from interviews with locals or having a specialist in agriculture or botany, analyze the wheat stalks as I did. Is it reporter’s bias or the fear that if they delve too deeply their editors would perceive them, as leaning towards believing the circles may be and unexplained authentic phenomena?
After digging a bit deeper, I found that this crop circle’s symbology is almost an exact match to a universal symbol for the Banner of Peace signed in 1935. This was the first international treaty to be signed in the White House’s Oval Office. The pact’s author was Russian painter and philosopher, Nicholas Roerich and it was the first international treaty dedicated to the protection of artistic and scientific institutions and historical monuments. Two Russian cosmonauts took the same banner of peace on board their space flight to the Mir space station in 1990 where it made 144 loops around the Earth while they were on board for 9 days.
The 3 circles were designed to represent the 3 primary elements of humanity; arts, science and spirituality, all surrounded by the greater circle of culture. The red colour was chosen to represent the colour of the blood that we all share, regardless of race, religion or sex.
It is within reason to hypothesize that this crop circle formation may have been intended to be a premonitory flashcard to the attacks to our heritage happening today, months later in the Middle East. With ISIL’s pillaging and destruction of ancient sites and museums, the message to inspire an international effort to protect our heritage is more needed now than ever before. The extremist group has already bombed the ancient Assyrian city of Nimrud last march and recently captured the UNESCO heritage site of ancient Palmyra, planting mines around the city to prevent access.
This crop circle formation seems to be representing an updated version of this international symbol with a fourth circle inside its center, overlapping the third.
Perhaps the fourth, negative space circle was added to mirror the four parabolic antennae adjacent to the circle?
Wikipedia claims “There is a scientific consensus that nearly all cases of crop circles are man-made. However there has been almost no serious scientific study of the phenomenon.” Yet, the article admits there is more research needed, stating that only three peer-reviewed papers have been published on the matter.
Wikipedia has a clear lack of objectivity on the matter where their entry repeatedly gives more of a voice to skeptics, leaning towards the formations being manmade for commercial reasons. The entry cites a Discovery Channel special where a team of graduates and students from MIT recreate a crop circle. The resulting product, not mentioned by Wikipedia, is that even with a team of the best and brightest minds, weeks of preparation, flashlights and custom made equipment, they were unable to replicate even a fraction of the dimension or complexity of the huge crop circles in the allotted four hours. Their circle was two simple circular symbols connected by a long path about 300 wide and 100 feet long. They also failed to correctly replicate plant and soil changes in their test circle that Nancy Talbott clearly set as criteria for a successful experiment. This failure came even after they used an explosive charge to spread the iron particulate, something that would guarantee arrest if done by any prankster crop circle makers.
The cameras in the special also failed to show any close-up photos of the plant stalks with bulges or the iron particles spread linearly as found in crop circles, and there was no demonstration at all to indicate that the iron particles, at least, had become magnetized. The one image they did show is from a distance, making it difficult to see any details of the expulsion cavity. In the end, it was a sensationalized and biased made-for-TV experiment that according to them, was successful. According to Nancy Talbott, it was not. What it did do was indirectly prove that skeptics cannot prove all crop circles are man made. One of the research students even state in the video, that given the complexity to execute and with a fairly high level of scientific knowledge needed to replicate the anomalies, “it’s pretty incredible that someone would take the time to do this,” Another student is recorded saying, “It’s pretty clear with the evidence they have given me, and samples that I’ve looked at, that this isn’t just a couple of old guys with a board wandering around in a field. Someone put a lot more effort into it than that.”
Few, if any reports published on the Internet mention the many accounts documented of power failures of helicopters hovering over newly formed circles or camera failures of people walking through them. They also fail to mention the large amount of evidence of growth anomalies and expulsion cavities with the flattened stalks that the late biophysicist W.C. Levengood and Nancy Talbott documented in thousands of samples of plants from crop formations in the U.S., England and other countries. These researchers reported in their published botany journal that a “swirling plasma vortex” seems to have interacted with many plants and soils he studied that were collected from inside crop circle formations. However, Wikipedia quickly dismisses Talbott’s and Levengood’s extensive studies based upon the opinion of one skeptic scientist, Joe Nickell in order to effectively cast a shadow on Levengood’s findings and support the whole “hoax” argument. Wikipedia mentions another researcher named, Dr. Eltjo Haselhoff, PhD who furthered the research on the topic, but fails to include any citations to his published reanalysis of Levengood and Talbott’s previously published paper. In his paper, he compares samples from man-made circles to others made from an unknown source. He found that the man made circles did not display the same anomalies within the wheat stalks.
Another article Wikipedia fails to cite was recently published in Time, where historian and archaeologist Craig Jeffreys studied hundreds of aerial images of crop circles since 1945 and concluded that a number of crop circles in the UK have been appearing consistently each summer for at least 33 years before Chorley and Bower claimed to have begun their work of creating circles.
-Are you starting to smell something funny yet?
The truth is, the jury is still out on this 300-year-old mystery. It remains one of humanity’s top 10 unsolved mysteries. This unexplained phenomena has the potential to represent a new field of science previously unknown. It’s 2016 and we have all learned well the damaging effects of denialism. What if solving the crop circles phenomena could open the door to harnessing unlimited, free and sustainable Earth energies a la Tesla?
Talk about a missed opportunity.
One thing is certain, it will take more journalists, scientists and researchers or anyone brave enough to dig deeper with the latest technologies available, to possibly unlock the mystery in deciphering the language of these crop circles or at least figure out what they are, once and for all.
One thing is certain, ignoring the facts isn’t helping.
1. Published scientific study of effects on actual wheat shafts found in crop formations worldwide. Published by Nancy Talbott and W.C. Levengood, 2002- onlinelibrary.wiley.com
2. Nancy Talbott debunks Discovery Channel crop circle experiment claims.
3. Only person successfully charged in UK for damaging crops in an attempt to make crop circles. Lewis Cohen (25 February 2008). “Mystery surrounds emergency landing”. thisiswiltshire.co.uk
4. Investigative reporter, Linda Moulton Howe’s published book, compiling years of research in the field. Mysterious Lights and Crop Circles
5. Dr. Eltjo’s research on anomalies within wheat stalks.
6. Greg Jefferys study — Are Crop Circles More Than Just Modern Pranks?
1. Erich Von Daniken’s lifelong dream made reality - Jungfrau Mystery Park in Interlaken, Switzerland.
2. A Crop Circle binary reply to a message sent 21 years earlier by Carl Sagan. — http://www.collective-evolution.com
6. An excellent, thorough review of the phenomena-http://www.thrivemovement.com/crop-circles-messages-fields.blog
7. Research leader in the field, Nancy Talbott. Nancy is head of BLT research, the only scientific organization seriously studying the crop circle phenomena.
8. The best documentary out there covering the mystery objectively. Crop Circles: Quest for Truth won best documentary in the 2002 Thomas Edison Film Festival.
10. Popular Mechanics article- Dowsing may not be a hoax after all.
11. Dowsing experiment funded by German Government published in peer review journal.