"Countdown to Danger"
UFO Annual 1970
General Henderson confronts Straker with
the fact that five or more UFOs have penetrated SHADO's
detection systems in the recent past.
Read the story at the SHADO: UK website
This is a 9-page short story that appeared in
UFO Annual 1970.
NOTES FROM THE UFO CHRONOLOGY
In this story, Straker meets once again with General
Henderson, described here as an official of the IAC,
suggesting this story may take place some time before
"Conflict", in which Henderson is depicted as the
President of the IAC, not just an official.
The photo of the launch pad on page 68 is taken from
Here, it's revealed that Henderson had expected to be placed
in charge of SHADO when the organization was formed. This
may explain his rivalry and generally uncooperative attitude
towards Straker in
"Conflict" and later episodes. The story
describes the two men as having a grudging respect for each
other, but have crossed swords too many times to develop a
friendship. The later episode
"Confetti Check A-O.K."
reveals the circumstances of the offer to Straker to make
him head of SHADO.
It is revealed that the IAC believes that other inhabited
worlds may be trying to contact Earth. A series of rockets
have been dispatched to act as a series of communications
posts with these conjectured civilizations. Henderson remarks
that the chain of transmitters is meant to reach to "the
furthest reaches of the universe." This is unlikely, at best,
considering Earth doesn't even have faster-than-light
propulsion capability yet! Presumably, Henderson was just
engaging in a bit of hyperbole with that description.
On page 71, Straker remarks that the five amateur
photographers who snapped photos of alleged UFOs have been
fed a story that it was just a film company making a "flying
saucer" picture. Would that film company be
Harlington-Straker Studios, by chance, hmm?
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