Nick Redfern's book on Roswell, Body Snatchers in the Desert, did a couple of things that I didn't think were possible. First, it made Roswell the topic of discussion within ufology again, something that I though was impossible. Second, whatever else might be said about Nick's theories (and I don't buy them, and have told Nick so, in many very pleasant conversations), they created a ufological "hell has frozen over" moment. In response to Nick's "cover up of dastardly government experiments" theory, the Big Three of Roswellism - Stan Friedman, Kevin Randle, and Karl Pflock, all of whom have promoted, for years now, alternative theories as to what happened (or did not happen) in 1947 - came together in a "perfect storm" of criticism (most of it well founded, in my opinion). Of course, Stan still thinks Karl and Kevin are wrong, and Karl still thinks that Stan and Kevin are wrong, and Kevin still thinks that Karl and Stan are wrong - but the one thing they can all agree on is that Nick is definitely wrong.
The fact that Nick was probably wrong is almost irrelevant. The alacrity and vehemence with which the "Roswell establishment" jumped on his claims was stunning (some people actually did so without having read the book - I critiqued Nick's book too, but at least I had read it first). Most amusing was the criticism of his anonymous sources, and the claims that he had been the subject of a disinformation campaign. With respect, there should be a rule when it comes to Roswellism, namely that someone who has ever used "anonymous sources" - Stan with the MJ-12 documents, Karl with his mysterious Aztec witness, and Kevin with "The Colonel" found in Case: MJ-12, all pop to mind - should be very careful about criticizing someone else who has made use of anonymous sources, as Nick did (unlike with the MJ-12 documents, Nick actually knows who his sources were, but chose to keep them anonymous).
Still, Nick's book demonstrated that the Roswell case is far from dead. It was the topic of discussion amongst UFO cognoscenti for several weeks, and continues to be debated by die-hards as the year winds down. People generally seemed to respond to it according to their pre-disposed beliefs. If you believe Roswell was an ET crash, or another, less dastardly, government project (i.e., Mogul), then you were almost guaranteed to be against Nick's theories. After all, the people who buy either the ET or Mogul explanations have invested a lot of time, effort, emotion, and, in some cases, money, in their pet theory. It would take a herculean effort for most of them to shift their position. On the other side of the ledger are those (many of them from "across the Pond") who are willing to believe just about anything about Roswell, so long as it has nothing to do with aliens, and so long as it casts the United States government in an even worse light. For them, Nick's theory was made to order, regardless of its merits. It is a weird (and sad) world where folks not only find it easier to believe that the U.S. government would conduct the kind of experiments described in Body Snatchers in the Desert, but actually prefer that this would be the case, as it would confirm their pre-existing belief that the United States is an Evil Empire, and always has been.
Many others saw in Body Snatchers in the Desert a new theory that might solve the Roswell case once and for all. They are fed up with Roswell, and just want to put it in the past.
Alas, no such luck. Rather than providing a unifiying answer, Nick has simply put forward another flawed theory. It has been added to the mix, and has found its own small group of die-heard adherents. But it didn't tell us what really happened in New Mexico all those years ago. I don't think anything ever will - at least not to the satisfaction of everyone in that dwindling group of people who still care.