Between the afternoon of February 24, 1942, and the early morning hours of the 25th, 81 years ago, the city of Los Angeles was thrown into a panic upon seeing what was initially believed to be enemy Japanese aircraft over the city.
This alleged Japanese raid, which came shortly after the bombing of Pearl Harbor, and just one day after a confirmed Japanese submarine attack off the coast of Santa Barbara, led to a massive barrage of flak, with thousands of shells fired into the Sky over Los Angeles during the frenetic night. Many people believed the plane they had seen was alien, with one hide witness even describing an object he had seen as a huge “flying diamond” and some accusing the government of a cover-up
Air raid alarms sounded and a total blackout was ordered. Thousands of air raid soldiers were forced to take their position. The 37th Coast Artillery Brigade began firing 12.8 pound anti-aircraft shells at the reported flying object at 3:15 am. Nearly 1,500 shells were fired into the air. The unidentified flying object received one direct hit after another, but there was no damage. The 4th Interceptor Commando was alerted, but its planes remained on the ground. The anti-aircraft continued firing until 4:15 am. At 7:20 in the morning the “end of the alarm” was given and the blackout order was lifted.
The shells fired on the UFO were felt over the entire area, there was no safe place that night. Many were injured and some civilians even died that night. In a newspaper, eyewitnesses said the UFO looked like a “surreal, hanging, magical lantern.” “It was like the 4th of July, but much stronger. The military were shooting like crazy, but they couldn’t inflict any damage.
Conflicting accounts of the incident from the Navy and War departments did not help clear the air. An air raid watchman who witnessed the incident reported the UFO: “The object was huge! It was really huge! I was practically floating over my house. I had never seen anything like this in my life.” “It was floating in the sky, barely moving. She looked a beautiful pale orange and the most beautiful thing I have ever seen. I could see it very well because she was very close. She was huge! »
As if to confirm public fears of alien attack, a famous LA Times photograph emerged of the incident, showing an ominous, saucer-like object looming over the city. This much-debated photograph inspired America’s first major UFO controversy. , a full five years before Roswell. In 1983 the United States Air Force History Office considered, after an analysis of the event, that the incident was a case of “nerves due to the war” and said that the UFO was probably a lost weather balloon. The original photo taken at the time of the incident shows the light from searchlights pointing at the object, while anti-aircraft shells are flying through the air. In the focus area of the searchlights, we can see a massive saucer-shaped flying object. What do you think?