Will truth of UFOs be revealed? June Senate report could explain sightings from Navy pilots’ video, says expert

Will truth of UFOs be revealed? June Senate report could explain sightings from Navy pilots’ video, says expert
Defense expert Nick Pope (SMG2019/Wikimedia Commons) and a UFO allegedly seen by the crew of the USS Omaha (Twitter @jeremycorbell)

At a time when the Joe Biden administration is fighting challenges like the Covid-19 pandemic, an economic downturn and an immigration mess at the southern border, a new question has started making rounds in America’s political circles and it is about the existence of alien life, thanks to the recent reports about a number of UFO sightings. The question of whether the universe has alien life is not new and frequent sightings of UFOs in the sky have always kept the mystery alive but they have mostly been dismissed as hoaxes. Despite Hollywood showing great enthusiasm for the subject over decades, the defense department has always ignored the significance of reports about sightings of mysterious flying objects. 

But when none other than former president Barack Obama fueled the fire of speculation about UFOs on ‘The Late Night Show with James Corden’ on CBS recently, people have started taking things more seriously. In that show, the Democratic leader admitted that “there are footage and records of objects in the skies, that we don’t know exactly what they are”. “We can't explain how they moved, their trajectory. They did not have an easily explainable pattern. And so, you know, I think that people still take seriously trying to investigate and figure out what that is,” Obama added. 


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It was musician Reggie Watts who asked the former president about UFOs (rather UAFs or Unidentified Aerial Phenomena, a government term for UFOs) and aliens. Obama said when he came to the president’s office, he had asked whether there existed a lab somewhere where alien specimens and spaceships were being kept. According to Obama, the answer that he found was “no” but his response at the show was enough to keep the speculation alive. Before his cautious admission, Obama even told Watts that he could not say things on air when it comes to aliens. 


Former President Barack Obama (Getty Images)

Obama refused to speak on UFO details in December

It was not the first time that Obama spoke about UFOs on a late-night show. In December last year, he refused to answer a question from host Stephen Colbert on the subject. He said he couldn’t tell what he came to know after asking whether UFOs and aliens existed. More recently, another former president George W Bush spoke with Jimmy Kimmel about UFOs. When the latter showed the former president the night-vision video that filmmaker Jeremy Corbell published recently apparently showing a moving object in the sky and asked Bush whether he would be surprised if creatures from another planet visited Earth, he said “Yeah!” The night video was published around the time when some US fighter pilots revealed witnessing UFOs off the coast of Virginia daily for two years. 

While an idea like the government secretly probing sightings of UFOs and other mysterious objects has been confined to the realms of Hollywood or television (remember The X-Files), things have changed drastically now with authorities giving the issue serious thought. Video footage and pictures taken by American Navy pilots in 2014-15 that surfaced three years ago could not be ignored easily. 
The footage showed an object, measuring 30-40 feet with no wings or rotors traveling at supersonic speeds through the sky, leaving the Navy pilots in great shock. The footage was leaked to The New York Times whose report also brought to the fore the existence of a shadowy organization in the defense establishment that worked on UFO sightings -- the Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program, which was reportedly dissolved in 2012. The organization’s $22 million budget was buried with the defense department’s annual funding.


US political circles feeling heat over UFOs

Conservative media has also started slamming the current administration over the UFO sightings saying the US military is more concerned with other things like maintaining political purity in the forces than dealing with a potential national security threat. The defense department is reportedly under pressure now to publicize what it knows about UFOs and what their implications are for national security. 


The leaking of the pilots’ footage pushed the defense officials to announce the setting up of an Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force, led by the Navy, last year. The Senate Intelligence Committee, which oversees 18 or more departments that work on intelligence gathering in the US, sought a report on UFOs last year. The report is due in June and will be unclassified but Nick Pope, who worked as a UFO investigator in the British government in the past, suspected that sensitive and secret information will be hidden within a classified annex to the report. 


The US Capitol (Getty Images)

“Although this material too could be leaked. There has already been a great deal of leaking of photographs, official footage and documents relating to these unexplained sightings, notably the Navy pilots’ footage, and of other documents doing the rounds. It is the existence of this information that has made it impossible for the government to deny or debunk such sightings and refuse to investigate them — as they have done since the 1960s,” Pope wrote for the Daily Mail


Is it a US 'black project' to determine Navy's efficacy?

Pope also predicted what the report could contain. He gave three possible theories. “I believe there are three possible theories behind the strange sightings. The first is that these strange aircraft are a US ‘black project’ technology — a secret weapon developed by the US Air Force that it is blind-testing against the Navy, to determine its efficacy. After all, one unanswered question has been: where is the Air Force in all this? They have been strangely quiet, given that it is an issue about aircraft and airspace,” Pope said.


Or is it Russia or China?

“In this scenario, everything about UFOs is just a deception operation. The second theory is that the craft involved are secret prototype aircraft or drones operated by Russia or China — a troubling explanation, given the capabilities observed by the Navy pilots,” he added. 

Or an extraterrestrial hypothesis?

“The third possibility is that we are in unknown territory — this would include the extraterrestrial hypothesis, or even a strange atmospheric plasma phenomenon that looks like an aircraft. The Defense Intelligence Agency seems to want to play down the extraterrestrial theory but it is interesting to note that among the footnotes to the letter to Congress is a reference to a study of the Drake Equation, designed by the astronomer Frank Drake to calculate how many non-human civilizations there might be,” Pope added. 

He hoped that the intelligence community co-operates with the Senate report and gives some idea about what is being dealt with. He said that if nothing is known about it, then one cannot prepare a defense against it, if required. 

Pope, who resides in the UK now, said having studied unexplained sightings over the years and written books on such phenomena, including the UK’s Rendlesham Forest Incident of 1980, warned that the unexplained objects sighted in the skies cannot be ignored. 


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