Status: Parody OperationEMU.com
offers up "Statements, theories and artifacts related to the alleged 1974 NASA experiment during which an entire Hollywood film crew, contracted by the government, disappeared in a remote section of Nevada." This seems to be the jist of what the site alleges happened: The Hollywood film crew was there to help stage a training exercise for the NASA-led Operation EMU (which stands for Operation Experimental Mitigated Universe). Operation EMU itself was some kind of NASA project to prepare for alien contact. And somehow a group of Meemaw Indians performing a solstice ritual were involved in this.
Sound a little bizarre? I think that's the intention. The site was created by B. Brandon Barker to promote his novel, for which he's shopping for a publisher. (The article about him in the Baltimore Sun
should definitely help his chances with that.) Barker says that he designed his novel to be a parody of "pretentious sci-fi films like 2001: A Space Odyssey and the cult of alien-life true believers" (Hey, I like 2001: A Space Odyssey!). The strange thing is that although Barker's plot is pure fiction, some people now believe elements of it to be real. At least, according to the Baltimore Sun:
Some apparently think Operation EMU is for real. "It seems only logical that there are cover ups of major proportions that aren't discovered," forum member Robyn Zimmerman of Michigan writes in response to an e-mail query. Forum member John Nesbit, a 52-year-old crawfish farmer in Martinsville, La., used to be an Air Force mechanic and was stationed at Nellis in the early 1970s. He claims to have first-hand knowledge of Operation EMU. "I get less dubious the older I get," says Nesbit. "I did know about Operation EMU, but it was a NASA training thing. That's what we were told. Only much later did it come out that it was broader than that, that they were training the military to fight aliens. ... The film crew thing, that's documented."
Shades of Alternative Three
there. If you create a hoax about a government cover-up, some people will inevitably insist that revealing it as a hoax is part of the cover-up.