Pentagon Releases UFO Report: That’s Inside



Photo Illustration: Joe McBride / Getty Images

One of the many curiosities packed into the $ 2.3 trillion dollar bulk spending and coronavirus package passed by Congress in December was a provision that the Department of Defense and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence committed to Congress Compile an unclassified report on unidentified objects in flight within six months of what the government knows about UFOs flying over American airspace. The long-awaited first report was finally released on Friday, and although it was only nine pages long, it represents the most direct and substantive account by the U.S. government of what officials call unidentified aerial phenomena (UAP) ever released. Below is a guide to what the report contains for those who want to believe – or at least understand what there is to be learned from this unprecedented act of transparency by the Pentagon.

The Pentagon Task Force’s preliminary assessment is based on a review of 144 UAP reports of military aviation observations between 2004 and 2021, but mostly from the past two years. The task force also considered, but chose not to focus on “a range of information about UAP described in US military and intelligence community reporting” because of “lack of specificity “.

Of the 144 reports, the task force was only able to explain one (a deflated balloon). The rest remains unexplained.

In a total of 18 events, witnesses reported “unusual UAP movement patterns or flight characteristics” – possibly demonstrating advanced, previously unknown technological capabilities. According to the report, this unusual behavior included UAP / EFOs that “appeared to remain stationary in high-altitude winds, moving upwind, maneuvering abruptly, or moving at significant speeds with no apparent propulsion means”. The report also notes that “in a small number of cases, military aircraft systems processed radio frequency (RF) energy associated with UAP sightings”.

In eleven cases, US airmen reported dangerous “near misses” with UAP.

Not much, at least what these objects were or where they could have come from. The assessment found that the lack of “good quality coverage” of events “hampers our ability to draw firm conclusions about the nature or intent of EAP”. In other words, they still do not know what the EAP was, although the report suggests a number of possible explanations.

While the assessment indicates that the available coverage of UAP is “largely inconclusive”, it nonetheless concludes:

  • There is currently no evidence that any of the objects is linked to a secret US weapons program or was developed by foreign opponents.
  • The accumulation of sightings near U.S. military bases can only be the result of various types of collection distortions.
  • Most UAPs were likely to be physical objects as most were discovered in a variety of ways, including “radar, infrared, electro-optical, weapon tracers and visual observation”. In addition, there are likely to be several types of UAP.
  • Objects with unusual flight characteristics (such as those that appeared to demonstrate advanced technological capabilities) could also “be the result of sensor errors, spoofing or observer misperceptions” and “require additional rigorous analysis”.
  • Regarding whether or not these objects pose a threat, the report states that UAP “clearly” poses a risk to aviation safety in increasingly crowded skies and may pose “a challenge” to national security, especially if the UAP was developed by foreign adversaries, indicating that “a potential adversary has either developed a breakthrough or disruptive technology”.
  • The US needs to collect and analyze more information, consolidate reporting, and develop a more efficient way of reviewing and processing reports.

Nothing. The report makes no mention of extraterrestrial life and doesn’t even imply that any of the reported UAPs could be of extraterrestrial origin. However, that does not mean that the Task Force has ruled out this possibility.

While the report doesn’t offer much in explaining the objects, it offers five categories of possible explanations:

  • Clutter in the airincluding birds, balloons, drones, or debris in the air.
  • Natural atmospheric phenomenaincluding “ice crystals, moisture and thermal fluctuations that can be detected by some infrared and radar systems”.
  • Technology developed in the USA, that is, classified technology developed by the United States or its industrial partners.
  • Technology developed by foreign opponents (on earth), such as Russia, China, or other governmental or non-governmental entities.
  • Other, a collective term for encounters where there is insufficient information to determine the categorization (including UAP of extraterrestrial origin).

Americans have long been intrigued by questions about what their government knows about UFOs, of course, but several recent developments have led lawmakers to push for more transparency. The issue gained momentum in December 2017 when the New York Times reported on a $ 22 million Department of Defense program set up in 2007 and sponsored by Harry Reid, the former majority leader in the Democratic Senate. Known as the Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program, it was designed to investigate military encounters with UAPs. (The story would have rocked the American public to the core in the UFO-obsessed 1990s, but barely risen above the noise of daily reporting in the Trump administration’s first chaotic year.)

Over the next several years lawmakers and defense officials began to show interest as more Navy pilots shared their reports of frequent UFO collisions and several videos of the encounters were released. In June 2019, senators reportedly “came out of the woods” to learn about the phenomena, leading to a June 2020 vote by the Senate Intelligence Committee that gave the idea for a UFO report the go-ahead for the first time. A provision – that set the six-month timeline and added additional funding for the project – was included in the Fiscal Year 2021 Intelligence Authorization Act, which was passed as part of the December stimulus package.

As the Senators of the Senate Intelligence Committee wrote last year, they were “concerned that there is no single, comprehensive process within the federal government for the collection and analysis of information about unidentified aerial phenomena, despite the potential threat.”

Science writer Mick West is widely recognized as the leading voice in the group claiming that the UFOs discovered by the military are likely a technology we already understand. In an appearance on CNN last month, he summed up his argument: The images we see in the UAP military videos could easily be the result of incorrectly calibrated instruments or various camera distortions. While West believes that the videos published so far “can all be explained”, he supports further research on the subject.

“When pilots report things they can’t identify, we need to find out what’s wrong,” he said. “Is it something new or is it a system failure. Is it a personal or technical failure? Let’s find out. “

In a new and extraordinarily long story in the New Yorker A former Pentagon official described the history of the movement to take UFOs seriously and dismissed West’s skepticism, saying he “didn’t have the full story. There is data he will never see – there is a lot more that I would include in a secret environment. ”(Of course, this argument is not very satisfactory for those of us who will never have access to secret UFO data .)

On the left, a non-scientific reason for the UAP skepticism has emerged: Perhaps after the Pentagon wasted over $ 1.6 trillion on the disastrous F-35, over $ 2.26 trillion on the war in Afghanistan has spent and faces a flat budget for 2021, the Pentagon simply wants a flashy reason to ask for more money.

President Joe Biden has successfully dodged recent attempts to get him to grapple with unidentified aerial phenomena. “President Obama says there is footage and recordings of objects in the sky … and he says we don’t know exactly what they are – what do you think?” A reporter asked the president at a news conference on May 21st. Biden distracted and said, “I would ask him one more time,” before smiling and leaving the podium.

Since leaving office, Obama has been more open about his interest in the subject. Days before the question to Biden, the ex-president appeared The Late Late Show with James Cordenwhere the show’s music director, Reggie Watts, asked him about his theories about the paranormal. “When it comes to aliens, there are some things I just can’t tell you on the show,” joked Obama.

“Look, the truth is, when I came into office, I asked, ‘Is there the laboratory where we keep the alien specimens and the spaceship?’ They did a little research and the answer was no, ”Obama continued. “But what is true – and I’m serious – is that there is footage and recordings of objects in the sky that we don’t know exactly what they are. We can’t explain how they moved, their trajectory, they didn’t have an easy-to-explain pattern. I think people are still serious about doing some research and finding out what that is. But I have nothing to report to you today. “

For his part, Donald Trump never took UFOs that seriously during his tenure. On the few occasions he did comment on the matter, he usually distracted, promising to “look very closely” and telling George Stephanopoulos that if there were any indications of extraterrestrials, “you will be the first to who “knows.”



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