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SITUation Report 4/97

The newsletter of the Society for the Investigation of the UNEXPLAINED, UK branch

Operative Word

This issue we get 'down and dirty' and talk with a few of SITU's field operatives.

Dr Michael Logan is a softly-spoken folklorist, who was previously employed by the University of Sheffield. How did he lose his job?

'I was conducting some field research in Devon, and stumbled across an active coven. Much to my horror, while investigating them I witnessed a human sacrifice – the victim was a young child – taking place. But when I reported the incident to the local police, they just didn't want to know – they laughed at me! And then on my return to Sheffield, I couldn't get the paper published, and when I tried to press the issue my contract was terminated!'

SITU believes this experience far from isolated. A number of formerly prominent academics among our members have been discredited thanks to their dedication to uncovering inexplicable or conspiratorial events. Can it be true that British academia – the so-called 'ivory towers' – is controlled by agents of the forces of darkness?

Another recent SITU recruit is Dimitri 'Red' Redchenko, Russian by birth but now living here in England, who sports-minded members will recall as the leading decathlete of the last decade. And who can forget the tragic way in which his international career ended when, as he defended his gold medal at the Seoul Olympics of 1990, his javelin flew straight and true to fatally impale one of the judges? At the time this excess of aggression was put down to abuse of steroids, so common among athletes of the former Eastern Bloc, and he was banned from the sport for ten years. Now, although Red smilingly asserts that he is 'over the hill' as far as international competition goes, your editor can tell you that his physique still resembles the proverbial brick outbuilding, and his handshake could crush walnuts!

So where has Red been all these years, and how did he pop up in Britain? He tells a grim tale in his strongly-accented tones, one of a pressured childhood and a steroid-filled adulthood, all masterminded by the dreaded KGB: and even now he cannot talk of the brainwashing he suffered at their hands after his disgrace, nor of how he escaped from their clutches – although the flame-haired aristocratic beauty I saw lurking in the background at Red's secret safe-house in the Shropshire countryside may know something about it!

  • The Macclesfield branch are having fortnightly coffee mornings on Tuesdays to raise funds, attract new members and ponder the mysteries of the infinite.
  • Biologist Dr Phillip Smart spoke to the Altrincham branch on his theory that Jupiter's Great Red Spot may represent a broadcasting aerial for he lifeforms that inhabit the planet's surface.
  • Was AIDS started by the CIA? Come to the Oxford branch on 27 May at 8 pm to find out.


  • On 23 December, journalist Susan Walsh needed to make a phone call. She left her son in her car, strode round the corner and hasn't been seen or heard since. Her disappearance has prompted a series of increasingly sensationalistic press stories of blood-drinking S/M cults. Walsh had been tracking a story about blood going missing from New York hospitals, which she blamed on vampires, just before she vanished. (With thanks to Operative Matt Culver.)
  • On 4 February, at precisely 10 pm in New York at the west edge of Central Park and 3 am in London not far from Tower Bridge, two people simultaneously spontaneously combusted. What link was there?
  • In Cwm Ddansing, Wales, five two-headed lambs were born on 1 January, but sadly none survived their first night.
  • What was the truth behind the killings of François and Chantal Rochelon, of Le Brise, near Marseilles, in 1975? Their daughter Maria was charged with the murders and committed to a mental institution, where she died a few years later. But persistent rumours suggested that Maria was a member of a cult of some sort, and locals insist that shortly before the tragic event she was seen to be heavily pregnant.
  • Vampires on the rise? The fanged beasts of legend seem to be everywhere this year, with reports coming in from Eastern Europe as well as London and New York. Anthropologist Dr Marta Kovacs suspects that economic pressures may be to blame: 'Poor people, particularly Hungary's disenfranchised Zgany population, need some romance in their lives. In these troubled times, so revive these grim legends.'

SITU – Out in the Fields

Operative Chris Tynes was sent to investigate the giant shrimp in Portland, Oregon, mentioned in last issue of SITUation Report. Alas, the woman who had reported the colossal crustacean proved to be an LSD user. Tynes was able to refer her to a useful drug withdrawal program, but professed himself not yet satisfied: 'I'm sure that shrimp is out there somewhere!'

Operatives Liz Foster, Claude Hackett, Kris MacDowell, Grace Ndofir, John Simmons and Terence Slater were recently promoted to the rank of Agent – the first field operatives to achieve this distinction. Bully for Britain!

A Note from the Editor

Dear friends,

Hello! Welcome to the first Spring issue of SITUation Report. We're pleased to report a huge growth in active membership so far in 1997, thanks to publicity SITU has received in the press – keep on writing to those magazine editors!

Also, of course, we greatly welcome contributions from all of you – the more the merrier, and the stranger the better! Whether it's a personal experience, a theory you've developed, or just a snippet you've come across, I'm sure we'd all be interested to hear about it.

Until next time,

Paula Derrow

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