The Vietnam War was not well-known for its UFO sightings, but there were stories passed around by servicemen in the combat area and by people back home. Some of these stories are much more believable than others, but all of them show that the human mind is always looking for explanations for odd events.
10. HMAS Hobart
Although the North Vietnamese had helicopters early in the war, they rarely used helicopters by the middle of the war. Thus, a lot of the UFO sightings from the war revolve around bright floating objects because crews knew that they couldn’t be North Vietnamese helicopters.
In June 1968, Australian spotters saw 30 floating lights near the DMZ. Fearing another Tet Offensive–style attack, NATO forces promptly scrambled F-4 fighters and patrol boats to intercept. The lights turned seaward and came under fire from various ships in the area. Unfortunately, a US Navy swift boat got hit by friendly missiles and sank, killing five of the crew.
Amid the confusion, the Australian destroyer HMAS Hobart sat ready to engage the enemy. At 3:30 AM, the commander called “Action Stations” when the radar room detected an airplane coming in fast with no IFF (Identification, Friend or Foe). The plane opened fire on the HMAS Hobart, damaging the ship and killing crew members.
Throughout the confusion, the F-4s tried to make contact with the floating lights. But there were only a few inconclusive engagements. Later that night, the pilots returned to their base.
The next morning, no wreckage of enemy helicopters was found, even though there was a flurry of antiaircraft fire trying to intercept the lights. Eventually, the incident was chalked up to atmospheric disturbances or possible helicopter activity.
General George S. Brown, commander of the 7th US Air Force, went on record after the war with his beliefs. Although the government had grouped all UFO sightings under the heading of enemy helicopter activity, Brown believed that the Hobart incident was a case of UFO interference in military operations.