Documentary proves crop circles are not hoaxes

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By Hal McKenzie

Hal McKenzie

May 6, 2003

The Sci-Fi Channel’s April 29 “Tuesday Declassified” segment aired the two-hour feature documentary Crop Circles, Quest for Truth, produced and directed by William Gazecki. After seeing this film, no one could maintain the position that the phenomenon is only created by humans using string, tape measures and footboards.

Gazecki's first documentary, Waco: The Rules of Engagement, about the disastrous federal siege of the Branch Davidian compound in Texas, was nominated for an Academy Award in 1998. His success allowed him to focus on crop circles, with which he had become fascinated after hearing a lecture in 1991.

Experts interviewed on the film conclude that intelligences beyond our world are communicating with us using the non-threatening medium of art. Using the symbols and conventions of “divine geometry” and mathematics, they appear to be instructing and subtly raising our consciousness in “homeopathic amounts” that will not upset our civilization. As one author pointed out in the film, this is a far wiser and less intrusive method of communication than the proverbial “alien invasion” or “flying saucer landing on the White House lawn.”

The method by which the complex formations are formed remains a mystery, except for the “balls of light” that often appear in connection with the circles. The documentary includes footage of such an object, about the size of a basketball, moving purposely across a field, following a road and then taking a sharp angle past a man driving a tractor. The tractor driver also saw and described the object as it passed about 30 feet above his head.

One man who came face to face with one of these objects said it was simply a luminous ball, not very bright, that hovered for a few moments then vanished. Some speculate that these are the legendary “will o’ the wisps” described throughout the ages.

While the specific meaning or “code” behind the formations, if any, remains a mystery, some aficionados interviewed in the film claim the phenomenon is interactive, responding to psychic messages that they sent. They would get together in a group and concentrate on a certain shape, which would appear in a field nearby the next day.

The film includes interviews with scientists who describe effects on the crops that cannot be explained by any known mechanical method. An American scientist who investigated a crop formation in the United States described how the joints or “boles” of the crops expanded or burst, as if heated by microwave radiation. The effect diminished in a linear progression away from the formation.

The scientist also described the presence of microscopic spherules of vaporized metal, as if minerals in the soil had been vaporized and then descended to the ground, again in amounts that diminished steadily away from the crop. Hoaxers would have had to spread such spherules around by hand, but could never have done so with such precision.

Many of the crops were bent at a 90 degree angle, sometimes up to a foot above the ground, but not broken, which would be impossible by any mechanical means. The plants are also woven or plaited in complex patterns as they are laid to the ground, again beyond the ability of hoaxers.

Another factor that rules out hoaxes is the speed with which they appear, mostly overnight, but some even faster. A commercial pilot said on the film that he flew his small plane around Stonehenge in broad daylight, then landed to refuel. Flying the same route again, he noticed and filmed a beautiful “Julia set,” dozens of perfect circles joined like pearls in a necklace in a pinwheel pattern, in a field next to Stonehenge. He knew that the formation was not there when he flew over the same field only a half-hour earlier.

Most of the interviews take place in Britain, which is considered ground zero for crop circle studies, although they have appeared in countries around the world, including, India, Japan, Russia, Canada and the United States. Crop circles in England have been recorded as early as 1600, when they were considered the work of the devil or witchcraft.

They began to appear in earnest about 30 years ago, according to one expert. They started out as simple circles, but over time mutated into more and more complex shapes. First the circles were joined by shafts and mysterious markings like keys on their rims. Then an explosion of geometric shapes, complex fractals, representations of electric and magnetic phenomena, and even insect forms like scorpions and bees appeared.

It is known that some people have tried with some success to reproduce the phenomenon mechanically, but one lady pointed out that the known hoaxers would have been children in the ’70s when the current explosion began. Besides, she asked, who in the world could maintain such an obsession over so many years in so many parts of the world?

Gazecki does not give time to hoaxers or skeptics, preferring to present the views of people who have studied the phenomenon. The many “talking heads” in the film speculate on the possible religious significance of the patterns as well as whether they are the work of extraterrestrial or even interdimensional beings, or somehow connected to the human subconscious.

Interspersed among these discussions are aerial shots of many formations, which show how grossly inaccurate the term "crop circle" has become. The complexity, size, the mathematical precision, the speed with which they appear and the inexplicable effects on the crops are all powerful proof that they are not made by people with boards and rope.

Hal McKenzie, (, is a veteran journalist and a contributing editor of World and

May 6, 2003

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