Wartime Paranormal Sightings that Shocked Soldiers

August 9, 2019 0 By William Hollis


They say war proves mankind doesn’t need to
invent monsters, as the monsters were inside us all along. Yet sometimes soldiers report sightings of
what can only be described as actual monsters, or in other cases, otherworldly beings. Are these battlefield stresses, or are men
whose lives literally depend on remaining alert and aware, seeing things that the rest
of us might miss? Do mythological beasts stalk our battlefields? Do curious aliens observe from a distance,
making notes on our primal, savage nature? That’s what we’ll try and figure out today,
in this special episode of The Infographics Show’s Greatest Mysteries- Famous Wartime
Paranormal Sightings. The first paranormal event on our list comes
from World War I, and has become a staple of sea monster stories. At the outbreak of the war, the British steamer
Iberian was cruising just off the coast of Ireland when it was attacked and sunk by the
German submarine U-28. As the U-28’s captain, Baron Von Forstner,
and seven other crew members watched the ship sink from the sub’s conning tower, there was
a sudden large underwater explosion- likely from the ship’s boiler detonating. The blast flung debris and men clear out of
the water, but as the Captain and his men watched incredulously, an animal, about 65
feet (20m) long, was flung into the air as well by the force of the explosion. Described as “crocodile-like in shape, with
pairs of strong front and hind legs adapted for swimming, and a long head that tapered
towards the nose,” the monster was visible for about 10-15 seconds as it was blown out
of the water before sinking back into the depths. Skeptics suggest that the story was fabricated
by Baron Von Forstner, and sadly six of the alleged eyewitnesses were all killed during
the war. Only the ship’s cook survived the war, though
he would refuse to comment on the story. The 61 survivors of the Iberian also made
no mention of the creature, though with their ship sinking and then exploding in the waves
beneath them, they were probably a little busy with the matter of survival at the time
of the brief sighting. Outright fabrication by a Baron and naval
officer? Or confirmed sighting of a surviving ancient
seafaring sauropod? We might never know, but the resemblance to
other sea monsters around the world is uncanny. Our next paranormal sighting comes from the
jungles of Africa. Colonel Remy Van Lierde was a decorated Belgian
pilot who became an ace during World War II after escaping from a German prison camp. In 1959, flying a mission on behalf of the
UN during the crisis in the Congo, Lierde spotted a monstrous snake slithering through
a clearing in the jungle. Amazed at the size of the snake below him,
Lierde brought his chopper low and began a series of passes so he could get a picture
of the beast. Successfully snapping one photo, Lierde went
on to claim that the snake reared up as the chopper flew low, raising a head the size
of a donkey’s over 10 feet into the air. Lierde’s photograph is unfortunately slightly
blurry, though it does show what seems to be an incredibly large snake. Given Lierde’s background, it seems unlikely
he would go through the trouble of making up a story and then fabricating a fake photo
to go along with it; and if that’s not enough, in 2016 workers
building a dam in Brazil discovered a whopping 33 foot (10 meter), 882 lbs (400 kg) anaconda
lurking in caves near the construction site. The discovery of snakes that regularly exceed
26 feet (8 meters) in length lends further credence to Lierde’s story and photograph. Form wartorn jungle to wartorn jungle, we
now move to the skies above Vietnam, where in 1968, C-130 loadmaster Robert L. Pollock
and his flight crew experienced a truly perplexing and troubling event. Flying just off the coast of Vietnam, and
exhausted after a 20 hour day of back and forth flights ferrying troops and cargo, Pollock
was seated in the empty cargo compartment when he noticed movement at the rear of the
aircraft. Looking up from the paperwork he was completing,
Pollock was stunned to see a whirling grey cloudy mass forming at the rear right troop
door, spinning clockwise and filling the rear of the aircraft within seconds. Fearing a high-pressure fluid leak that was
atomizing the fluid and filling the compartment, Pollock used the interphone system to ask
the pilot if there were any indications of trouble of any kind, to which the pilot responded
“no”. As the misty fog filled the cargo compartment,
Pollock was joined by the engineer, navigator, co-pilot, and pilot, as the mist continued
to creep forwards towards them. In an interview, Pollock recalls that when
the navigator said “this is spooky”, he felt anger, as up to that point, he was sure
that what they were witnessing was some sort of aircraft malfunction and not anything paranormal. Double checking their instruments, the crew
still found no problems with the aircraft. Finally, placing his hand in the mass, Pollock
recalls that the strange fog was so thick and opaque that his hand disappeared from
sight. Holding onto each other, Pollock and the engineer
walked into the mass, still thinking that there was some kind of mechanical failure
of the aircraft, and that if they did not find the source soon, it would fill the cockpit
and put them in serious jeopardy. Plunging into the mass, the lights in the
aircraft disappeared and the two were forced to feel their way around the cargo bay by
touch, keeping in contact with the rest of the flight crew who called out constantly,
inquiring about their well being. According to Pollock, the strange mist did
not burn or sting his eyes, nor make breathing difficult. He also felt no threat from the mass, though
as he made his way out of it, he was still fearful of it filling the cockpit and blinding
the crew as they tried to land their plane. As if on cue, the fog/mist slowly began to
recede, moving straight back to the same door it had apparently entered through, whirling
counter-clockwise this time before disappearing into nothingness. Upon landing, Pollock and the rest of his
crew never mentioned the incident between each other ever again, Pollock owing the silence
on the matter to the fact that they were a veteran combat crew and in the midst of war,
surviving anything that did not kill them outright was enough to not worry about it. Our next wartime paranormal entry comes from
post-Revolution Russia in 1925, and was reported by one of the most credible eyewitnesses one
could ask for. General Mikhail Stepanovich Topilski was on
a mission hunting anti-Soviet guerillas hiding out in the western segment of the Pamir mountains
when his troop came upon a small village that regaled them with stories of ape-like creatures
that lived in the mountains. Dismissing the stories as local superstition,
the General ordered his men into the mountains where they soon discovered several sets of
distinctly human-like tracks in the fresh snow. Making notes of the tracks in his personal
journal, General Topilski and his men pressed on in their mission to find the guerillas,
finally tracking them to a large cave high in the mountains. After the resulting firefight, the General’s
men took prisoners, and amongst them, a man who told Topilski of weird ape-man-like creatures
that had attacked them with clubs. According to the prisoner, his band had managed
to kill one of them, which plummeted down an ice fall. The General ordered his men to dig for the
creature’s corpse, finding it in short order. Per the General’s notes: “The body belonged
to a male creature about 5’5” (165-170 cm) tall, elderly or old judging by the grayish
color of the hair in several places”. Though the General did not skin the corpse
as he had originally planned to, and instead ordered his men to give it a proper burial,
he made detailed notes of the body, noting that the creature was covered in hair, not
fur, with large, hairless feet covered in hard, brown skin. One may be forgiven for thinking a bunch of
bored soldiers on patrol may make up an exciting story to impress their peers- but would a
General in the young Soviet army risk his reputation to fabricate a tall tale? Unfortunately with no physical evidence, it’s
up to you to decide. Monsters haunt our dreams, and seemingly too
our battlefields. But are soldiers around the world really encountering
monsters, or simply unknown biological specimens and strange but perfectly natural phenomenon? Without hard proof, we may never know. So, have you ever seen a monster or otherworldly
being? Let us know in the comments. Also, be sure to watch our other video called
This man spent 43 years in isolation! Thanks for watching, and as always, don’t
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