(TMU) — After all was said and done, the events surrounding the Storm Area 51 meme—which went viral over the summer, drawing in millions of RSVPs on Facebook—appear to have been little more than hot air and social media buzz, as a few hundred alien enthusiasts and revelers partied near the secretive U.S. military base in a largely uneventful manner.
Yet despite the wholly innocuous nature of the Storm Area 51 phenomenon, the U.S. government doubled down on its menacing posture this past weekend in a bizarre tweet promising deadly force toward “millennials” who might “raid” the site.
In a Friday tweet by the Defense Visual Information Distribution Service (DVIDS), a Pentagon public relations agency, the unit shared a photo of a B-2 stealth bomber accompanied by the ominous caption:
“The last thing #Millennials will see if they attempt the #area51raid today.”
The message has since been deleted, and DVIDS issued a tweet the next day clarifying:
“Last night a DVIDSHUB employee posted a Tweet that in NO WAY supports the stance of the Department of Defense. It was inappropriate and we apologize for this mistake.”
The tweet was clearly tacky, if not bizarre, yet government officials had in fact previously warned potential interlopers via top USAF command staff of the possibility that service members could legally deploy deadly force against those potentially trespassing on U.S. military property.
Area 51 was created amid the Cold War rivalry with the Soviet Union as a top-secret research and development site for aircraft such as the U-2 spy plane and other then-cutting-edge platforms.
Conspiracy theorists and ufologists have claimed that an alien spacecraft crash-landed in Roswell, New Mexico, in 1947. Since then, some claim, the alien spacecraft, extraterrestrial pilots’ corpses, and other technology are being housed and studied at the base—speculation that has been fed by popular culture and the fact that the U.S. government didn’t actually confirm the base’s existence until 2013.
Yet over the past weekend when folks finally did converge on the site, the much-anticipated “storming” of the base failed to materialize and no one managed to unearth the base’s alleged secrets.
Instead, small groups of UFO enthusiasts ranging between “several dozen” and “a couple hundred” people simply loitered near the entrance of the facility where they chatted with heavily-armed guards, according to social media reports.
Several thousand campers and curiosity-seekers were also diverted to the Alienstock festival in Las Vegas, where they were treated to various music performances and concessions such as “$8 Bud Light limited-edition Area 51 beer cans.”
Lol at the Area 51 Celebration which looks like it’s sponsored by $8 Bud Light limited-edition Area 51 beer cans,…
According to a sheriff in neighboring Nye County, about 40 people gathered near the Area 51 Alien Research Center early Friday at 3 a.m. to approach a base gate before “heated warnings” from sheriff’s deputies convinced them to leave, reports KTLA.
In the end, only one arrest occurred, and this wasn’t because some intrepid alien enthusiast sought to break into Area 51 but because the reckless Canadian man was caught urinating near the gate.
Dolphin Swims Through Louisiana Neighborhood in Aftermath of Hurricane Ida
A Louisiana family was shocked to find a dolphin swimming through their neighborhood in the aftermath of Hurricane Ida.
Amanda Huling and her family were assessing the damage to their neighborhood in Slidell, Louisiana, when they noticed the dolphin swimming through the inundated suburban landscape.
In video shot by Huling, the marine mammal’s dorsal fin can be seen emerging from the water.
“The dolphin was still there as of last night but I am in contact with an organization who is going to be rescuing it within the next few days if it is still there,” Huling told FOX 35.
Ida slammed into the coast of Louisiana this past weekend. The Category 4 hurricane ravaged the power grid of the region, plunging residents of New Orleans and upwards of 1 million homes and businesses in Louisiana and Mississippi into the dark for an indefinite period of time.
Officials have warned that the damage has been so extensive that it could take weeks to repair the power grid, reports Associated Press.
Also in Slidell, a 71-year-old man was attacked by an alligator over the weekend while he was in his flooded shed. The man went missing and is assumed dead, reports WDSU.
Internet users began growing weary last year about the steady stream of stories belonging to a “nature is healing” genre, as people stayed indoors and stories emerged about animals taking back their environs be it in the sea or in our suburbs.
However, these latest events are the surreal realities of a world in which extreme weather events are fast becoming the new normal – disrupting our lives in sometimes predictable, and occasionally shocking and surreal, ways.
Mom in LA Suburbs Fights Off Mountain Lion With Bare Hands, Rescues 5-Year-Old Son
A mother in Southern California is being hailed as a hero after rescuing her five-year-old son from an attacking mountain lion.
The little boy was playing outside his home in Calabasas, a city lying west of Los Angeles in the Santa Monica Mountains, when the large cat pounced on him.
The 65-pound (30 kg) mountain lion dragged the boy about 45 yards across the front lawn before the mother acted fast, running out and striking the creature with her bare hands and forcing it to free her son.
“The true hero of this story is his mom because she absolutely saved her son’s life,” California Department of Fish and Wildlife spokesman Captain Patrick Foy told Associated Press on Saturday.
“She ran out of the house and started punching and striking the mountain lion with her bare hands and got him off her son,” Foy added.
The boy sustained significant injuries to his head, neck and upper torso, but is now in stable condition at a hospital in Los Angeles, according to authorities.
The mountain lion was later located and killed by an officer with the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, who found the big cat crouching in the bushes with its “ears back and hissing” at the officer shortly after he arrived at the property.
“Due to its behavior and proximity to the attack, the warden believed it was likely the attacking lion and to protect public safety shot and killed it on sight,” the wildlife department noted in its statement.
The mountain lion attack is the first such attack on a human in Los Angeles County since 1995, according to Fish and Wildlife.
The Santa Monica Mountains is a biodiverse region teeming with wildlife such as large raptors, mountain lions, bears, coyote, deer, lizards, and snakes. However, their numbers have rapidly faded in recent years, causing local wildlife authorities to find new ways to manage the region’s endemic species.
Video Shows Taliban Taking Joyride in Captured US Blackhawk Helicopter
The rapid fall of Kabul to the Taliban has resulted in a number of surreal sights – from footage of the Islamist group’s fighters exercising at a presidential gym to clips of combatants having a great time on bumper cars at the local fun park.
However, a new video of Taliban members seemingly testing their skills in the cockpit of a commandeered UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter shows the chilling extent to which U.S. wares have fallen into the hands of a group it spent trillions of dollars, and exhaustive resources, to stamp out.
In the new video, shared on Twitter, the front-line utility helicopter can be seen taxiing on the ground at Kandahar Airport in southeastern Afghanistan, moving along the tarmac. It is unclear who exactly was sitting in the cockpit, and the Black Hawk cannot be seen taking off or flying.
It is unlikely that the Taliban have any combatants who are sufficiently trained to fly a UH-60 Black Hawk.
The helicopter, which carries a $6 million price tag, is just a small part of the massive haul that fell into the militant group’s hands after the country’s central government seemingly evaporated on Aug. 14 amid the withdrawal of U.S. and coalition troops.
Some 200,000 firearms, 20,000 Humvees and hundreds of aircraft financed by Washington for the now-defunct Afghan Army are believed to be in the possession of the Taliban.
The firearms include M24 sniper rifles, M18 assault weapons, anti-tank missiles, automatic grenade launchers, rocket-propelled grenades and mortars.
Taliban fighters in the elite Badri 313 Brigade have been seen in propaganda images showing off in uniforms and wielding weaponry meant for the special forces units of the Afghan Army.
The U.S. is known to have purchased 42,000 light tactical vehicles, 9,000 medium tactical vehicles and over 22,000 Humvees between 2003 and 2016.
The White House remains unclear on how much weaponry has fallen into Taliban hands, with National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan admitting last week that the U.S. lacks a “clear picture of just how much missing $83 billion of military inventory” the group has.