Area 51, more correctly the Groom Lake area of Edwards Air Force Base in Nevada, was first established during World War 2.
During the Cold War it was a base for the super-secret U2 spy planes and became the USAF’s prime site for testing experimental aircraft and captured Soviet warplanes.
It’s long been shrouded in secrecy for that reason. The CIA only publicly acknowledged the existence of the base for the first time in 2013.
“We would discourage anyone from trying to come into the area where we train American armed forces”
In the belief that the Groom Lake base has actual captive aliens, or at least one of their spacecraft, online video game personality SmyleeKun has proposed a ‘strength in numbers’ flashmob assault on the facility in the early hours of September 20 this year.
The event, which is being co-ordinated on Facebook, is described thus: “We will all meet up at the Area 51 Alien Center tourist attraction and coordinate our entry.” Referring to popular Japanese cartoon character Naruto, the plan continues: “If we naruto run, we can move faster than their bullets.”
Naruto has a signature sprinting style that involve leaning steeply forward with his arms extended behind him.
The plan concludes “Lets see them aliens.”
While much of the language around the original Facebook event suggested that it was intended as a joke, one half a million people have conformed that they will be attending and a further half-million have indicated that they are ‘interested.’
While no-one believes that all of the signatories on the Facebook page will attend, it seems likely that at least a percentage will be tempted to show up.
Most of the social media traffic relating to the Storm Area 51, They Can’t Stop All of Us page centres around funny memes and UFO-themed jokes but some people do at least appear to be making definite plans.
The organisers are already backing away from any responsibility for what happens. One Facebook user, named as Jackson Barnes, wrote: “P.S. Hello U.S. government, this is a joke, and I do not actually intend to go ahead with this plan
“I just thought it would be funny and get me some thumbsy-uppies on the Internet. I’m not responsible if people decide to actually storm Area 51.”
Speaking with The Washington Post on Friday, Air Force spokeswoman Laura McAndrews warned potential ‘naruto runners’ that the base “is an open training range for the U.S. Air Force, and we would discourage anyone from trying to come into the area where we train American armed forces…
“The U.S. Air Force always stands ready to protect America and its assets.”