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Your Paracast Newsletter — February 16, 2020

Gene Steinberg

Forum Super Hero
Staff member
February 16, 2020

Explore the Possibility of UFO Disclosure and Alternate Histories with Bryce Zabel

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This Week's Episode: Gene and Randall present author/screenwriter/producer for Bryce Zabel for a wide-ranging discussion that includes super heroes and his alternative history about what many regard as the best rock group of all time, "Once There Was a Way: What if The Beatles Stayed Together?" But the main topic is about the possibility of UFO disclosure. Nearly 10 years after the speculative fiction story he and Richard M. Dolan wrote about the subject, "A.D. After Disclosure: When the Government Finally Reveals the Truth About Alien Contact," Zabel talks about what he regards as the improved prospects for the secret of the UFOs — or UAPs — finally being revealed. But what about theories about demonic UFOs, or whether other countries might be poised to reveal the truth as to what they are before the U.S. finally gets around to it? Note: This interview continues on the February 16, 2020 episode of After The Paracast.

J. Randall Murphy's Ufology Society International: Ufology Society International (USI) - Explore the UFO Phenomenon

Bryce Zabel's Site: Bryce Zabel

William Puckett's Blog: UFO Reporting Center, Latest UFO Sightings & News.

After The Paracast -- Available exclusively for Paracast+ subscribers on February 16: Author/screenwriter/producer Bryce Zabel returns to continue a discussion that started on the February 16 episode of The Paracast. With a main focus on pop culture, Bryce talks about a forthcoming project of his, a World War II film in the early stages of production entitled "The Last Battle." But the major focus is on Bryce's alternate history novel, "Once There Was a Way," which creates an alternate reality in which the fab four were able to work out their differences and find a way to stay together. The story presents a fictional "break point," an incident that diverged from the real Beatles story and changed history.

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So What If?
By Gene Steinberg

There are times in one’s life where a decision, even one involving what appears to be a relatively unimportant matter, can change your life for better or worse.

In times such as this, you may sometimes wonder what would have happened if you could alter that decision, hoping that things might work out better for you and those around you.

Without getting into the boring details, I do recall a few choices I made that didn’t work out so well, and that’s an understatement. For me, though, it may have been the result of the fact that I often rely on my gut to make a snap decision.

I don’t think about it very often, but when I do, I might wish that I had a time machine and could go back and find a way to make my younger self go in a different direction. Some of those decisions are obvious, dumb choices that I should have taken a moment to consider before acting.

Then again, what may seem to be a bad direction in your life may, in the end, deliver a positive result, even if it’s not obvious at the time.

So if I had access to that mythical time machine, I’d like to somehow look at alternate futures, the better to see which choice I should make. Whatever I do, though, even if it may seem to be a positive action at first, but the end result isn’t so positive for others.

Rather than seriously consider what is a clearly impossible situation, I prefer to visit the world of fiction for some notable examples of what might have been.

There is, for example, a TV show, offered by the new Apple TV+ streaming service, entitled “For All Mankind.” This alternate history sci-fi drama is based on what might have occurred if the space race didn’t end. The story diverges from history by depicting the Soviet Union as being responsible for the first manned Moon landing.

All right, I have not yet had a chance to see the show — that’s not the point. But if you’re interested in checking it out — as if one needs to sign up with yet another streaming service — you might like to know that one of the creators, Ronald D. Moore, is best known for his reimagining of “Battlestar Galactica.” He’s also a veteran of three Star Trek series as a producer and screenwriter.

An offbeat TV show about the consequences of changing history, “Legends of Tomorrow,” depicts a band of hapless Grade-C superheroes traveling back through time to attempt to right wrongs. But it seems as if they are almost always a little careless, so what they fix is invariably broken in some other way.

And so it goes…

Yet another alternate history might appeal to most any fan of the Beatles. As we all know, the fab four broke up in 1969, but that decision wasn’t announced until the following year when Paul McCartney had a new album, “McCartney,” to promote.

You don’t have to read much about John, Paul, George and Ringo to see where the seeds of a breakup might have been planted. It is, after all, not uncommon for musical groups to break apart with rancor and shattered egos. There are loads of other examples.

Even though the former Beatles all had varying degrees of success as solo acts, it’s fun to wonder what might have happened if they found a way to overcome, or at least tolerate, their differences and stay together.

That’s the possibility raised by author/screenwriter/producer Bryce Zabel in his alternative history novel, “Once There Was a Way: What if The Beatles Stayed Together?”

Now regular listeners to The Paracast know Bryce as the creator and producer of a sci-fi series from the 1990s, “Dark Skies,” and his long-time interest in UFOs.

In 2010, Bryce teamed up with UFO researcher and historian Richard M. Dolan to create “A.D. After Disclosure: When the Government Finally Reveals the Truth About Alien Contact.”

The focus of this speculative fiction novel is on how the world might change after governments announce that UFOs — or UAPs — are really piloted by extraterrestrials.

To be sure, the very idea has been a dream of lots of people who are fascinated by the subject. Wishes for disclosure can be traced back to the 1950s, when Major Donald E. Keyhoe became famous for a series of books about the flying saucers.

Almost from the beginning, Keyhoe came to believe in UFOs from outer space. To him, it was obvious; no other conclusion was possible.

In “The Flying Saucer Conspiracy,” Keyhoe speculated that the secret of the saucers was closely held by a Silence Group within the government. He thus became a lobbyist calling for the authorities to admit the truth.

He even, naively it turned out, believed that the U.S. Congress could dig out the truth with public hearings. When he became Director of a then-failing UFO group, NICAP, he announced early on that he was working to put it out of business once disclosure occurred.

Keyhoe got his hearings in the 1960s, but not due to NICAP’s efforts. Worse, they resulted in the establishment of a committee that delivered the Condon Report, regarded as a whitewash of the UFO mystery. After the report was released, the Air Force used it as an excuse to shutter Project Blue Book.

For various reasons, Keyhoe soon found himself ousted from NICAP, which mostly faded away over the next few years.

But just about everyone who clamors for UFO disclosure is, whether they know it or not, influenced by Keyhoe.

In his February 16, 2020 appearance on The Paracast, Zabel explains how the book he coauthored with Dolan about disclosure came to be. There have been countless books theorizing about the UFO mystery, but not much is said about what might happen if the truth, whatever it is, was finally revealed.

Since there wasn’t a book out there that dealt with that possibility in any detail, Zabel and Dolan decided to write one.

Such a choice, of course, also fueled Zabel’s decision to write an alternate history of the Beatles, or speculate on what might have occurred if President John F. Kennedy wasn’t murdered on November 22, 1963.

So Zabel’s 2013 book, “Surrounded by Enemies: A Breakpoint Novel,” envisions a world in which JFK survived the ambush. What would have been the impact on the U.S.? Would he succeed on getting civil rights laws enacted? What about the Vietnam war? What about the opposition that still wanted to do him in?

Indeed, all this makes the possibility of time travel seem all the more interesting. Some even suggest that the UFOnauts themselves are, in fact, humans from our far future.

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