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The Case Of Oscar Linke And Flying Saucers Over Cold War Berlin

Of the many files released by the CIA, the one bearing the title Flying Saucers In East Germany from 9th July 1952 is one of the most interesting. The account would find its way to the CIA from a Greek newspaper after the main witness, Oscar Linke would testify of his claims before a judge.

The fact that such CIA files exist, and have done since as far back as the 1940s and 50s, should show the interest governments around the world had in such matters, despite their insistence to the contrary. Taking such intelligence reports from “open sources” such as foreign or international newspapers is more commonplace than many might think.

Linke craft drawing.
Linke craft drawing.

What perhaps makes Linke’s encounter even more intriguing is that he and his family would escape the oppression of Soviet-controlled East Germany and into the relative freedom of West Germany before the incident became known. In fact, the encounter would largely contribute to Linke’s decision to uproot his family in the first place. The Soviet regime would go out of its way to dismiss even the notion of UFO activity. In fact, in the days of the Cold War, they would squarely lay the blame to its own citizens of any strange aerial sightings as being “the evils of the United States!”


East Germany, Summer 1952

While the CIA account shows the date of July 1952, it is likely that the encounter happened a month or two prior to this. Forty-eight-year-old Oscar Linke was enjoying the countryside as he made his way home on his motorcycle with his eleven-year-old daughter, Gabrielle beside him.

Suddenly, the motorcycle’s tire blew out on the outskirts of Hasselbach, a small town near Berlin. Deciding they would have to walk to Hasselbach, Oscar and Gabriella set off, pushing the motorcycle as they did. Shortly after, with twilight beginning to take hold, Gabriella informed her father of something in the distance in front of them.

Believing it to be a deer, Oscar would lean his crippled motorcycle against a tree so that he could obtain a better look. When he did, he realized it wasn’t a wild animal of any sort. Now, only forty meters from them, two men wearing “shiny metallic clothing” were looking down at something on the ground. On their front, a light would periodically light up at seemingly regular intervals.Linke and translator.

Linke and translator.

Quietly, Oscar approached the two men. By the time he was but ten meters from them, he could see an object “like a huge frying pan!” in front of him. Two “rows of holes” adorned the front of the apparent craft, while a black “conical tower” sat on top.

Oscar would later state he could accept it was a mistake by both himself and his daughter if it wasn’t for the fact that the ground on which the UFO had hovered (examined by Oscar later), had distinct fresh markings of activity of some kind.

Alerted For Take Off!

Breaking the silence, Gabriella would call out in fright to her father. The two men were now alert to their presence and promptly entered the craft through the black tower on the top. At the same time, the holes along the front and sides of the object began to light up. First, a green color that rapidly morphed into red.

A distinct hum was now also noticeable, and as Oscar and Gabrielle watched, the conical tower would “slide down” until it was part of the top of the craft. As it did so, the object would rise from the ground and “rotate like a top!”

From his vantage point, it appeared to Oscar that the conical tower then appeared at the bottom of the craft, before making its way back to the top. All the while, it was rising further and further into the sky, flames seeming to surround it.

A whistling sound pierced the skies as the craft eventually leveled into a horizontal position, facing north. In a second, it vanished. Interestingly, there were many reports of “comets” in and around this area of East Germany around this time – at least that is what the Soviet reports say they were.Linke's daughter being interviewed.

Linke’s daughter being interviewed.

Fear Of “Government Intervention”

Oscar would state that the encounter would leave him feeling terrified. He firmly believed he had witnessed a top-secret Soviet military aircraft, stating he had “never heard the term flying saucer” until he had made it safely from the Soviet Zone and into West Germany.

He, as did many of the residents of East Germany during the Cold War days, heard many stories of “restricted movements” and even arrest for those who “got too close” to such secret activities.

Oscar would admit that he was “seized with fright as the Soviets do not want anyone to see their work. Many persons have been restricted to their movements for many years in East Germany because they know too much!”

Needless to say, if Oscar Linke had not made it to the West when he did, it is highly likely that his encounter would slip through the gaps of history. Not to mention what fate may or may not have awaited him had he chosen to speak of his encounter from Soviet-controlled Germany.

Whether the encounter was an extra-terrestrial one is open to a certain amount of debate, but it has the hallmarks of many others of the time. And given that the information in the CIA documents remained secret until recently, it certainly doesn’t appear to be an act of propaganda against the Soviet Union and the treatment of its citizens.

Check out the video below. It looks at the secrecy with which the old Soviet Union would operate concerning UFOs.

Other Cases in Germany

Of course, there have been many reported and documented sightings of UFOs over German soil since then – particularly after the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 when information began to flow more freely. Sightings of strange crafts and lights in this region of Europe, however, were not unheard of throughout the thirties and forties.

Perhaps the most well-known (and controversial given the lack of concrete proof) is an apparent incident in the Black Forest in 1936, where there are reports of a strange craft crash landing, and of its recovery by Hitler’s SS troops. There are many theories that the Nazi regime would back-engineer this recovered craft. Whether they were successful or not is open to debate, but it is known that they developed many experimental craft during the Second World War – including those of a saucer shape.

Throughout the war itself when the skies over mainland Europe and the United Kingdom were an aerial battleground, numerous pilots, from both sides of the conflict, would report strange lights and orbs. These would be referred to as Foo Fighters. Whether they were a continuation of the Nazi experimental saucer is unknown. Although most of the Nazi scientists and commanders were either divided up between the Soviets and Americans or died in the final days of the war, many were (as they are now) unaccounted for.

While it is unlikely that these apparent Nazi regime inspired crafts have any connection to the sighting of Oscar Linke, one other encounter, that occurred around a month or so after Linke’s, and a (relatively) short distance away over the skies of West Germany may be.

Before we look at that, check out the video below which looks briefly at the Foo Fighter sightings.

The Bizarre Incident Of “Saucer Sam”

While on a training flight over West Germany on 30th July 1952, Flight Sergeant Roland Hughes noticed a “gleaming, silver, metallic disc” approaching his plane at great speed. It would then fly alongside his de Havilland Vampire FB9 for a moment, before speeding away at a pace like which the pilot had never witnessed. Nor had those on the ground monitoring the RAF radars, who also had the mystery object on the screens. They too would report the speeds were “far in excess” of any known aircraft.

The craft itself was so shiny it “resembles a silver light” and had a texture like tin-foil “without a single crease or crinkle in it!” According to his later descriptions, the whole surface was “absolutely seamless”, “highly reflective”, and “metallic looking!” The size of the disc was around one-hundred foot across.

Hughes would report the sighting to his senior officer, Duncan Sandys, who, according to the reports since released to the public, took it extremely seriously.

So much so that, Hughes would receive orders to attend a meeting so as to give his account personally to the aviation minister. By the time it would land on the Defense Secretary’s desk, it would come with a warning of sorts. Essentially that it would be “unwise” to dismiss such sightings without further investigation.

Hughes for his part, didn’t talk about the encounter much, if at all, although he would go by the name of Saucer Sam by his fellow pilots. Given the close proximity of the two encounters (relatively speaking), it would also perhaps be unwise to dismiss that the craft witnessed by Hughes may in all likeliness be the same as that witnessed by Oscar and Gabrielle Linke a matter of weeks earlier.

Check out the video below. It looks a little further at the conspiracies regarding the Nazi regime and UFO technology.


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