Whether you are an ardent skeptic or a passionate believer in the unknown, it’s hard to deny, there’s something amok in our skies. Last month the Pentagon confirmed the authenticity of a series of leaked UFO videos from alleged government whistleblower Louis Elizondo, leading many to wonder if the sightings were a hoax, or the first step towards disclosure. So what gives Uncle Sam? Why is the Pentagon making noise about UFOs? What the heck is all this about?!
While it remains a mystery as to what the objects are or why the Pentagon has decided to confirm the authenticity of the leaked UFO videos, these events are only the latest chapter in the long history of the US government’s love affair with UFOs. Indeed, decades of research and millions of dollars have been spent in pursuit of identifying them:
- 1948 – 1969: The US Air Force establishes three consecutive UFO research projects. Project Blue Book was the longest running and most infamous of these projects, having examined over 12,000 UFO reports, concluding that 22% of cases were indeed inexplicable by known scientific or terrestrial means.
- 1966: Congressional hearings are held after several UFO sightings in Massachusetts and New Hampshire.
- 1968: Congress establishes the “Condon Committee,” a board of scientists (including Dr. Hynek) convened to review unsolved cases from Project Blue Book. The committee concludes that further study of UFOs would not be scientifically useful.
- 1989: Bob Lazar announces the existence of Area 51 for the first time. Nearly 20 years later the Obama administration officially confirms that Area 51 exists.
- 2007 – 2012: Former US Senators Harry Reid, Ted Stevens, and Daniel Inouye establish AATIP (Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program). Reid states that his intention was to help “the American public understand what the hell is going on.”
- 2010: The FAA designates “Bigelow Advanced Aerospace Space Studies” as the official outlet for UFO reports from civilian pilots. This has since been changed to more general recommendations.
- 2017: Alleged government whistleblower Louis Elizondo releases the famous “tic-tac” UFO videos from the US Navy.
- April, 2019: The US Navy announces that it will be revising its guidelines for UFO reporting.
- June, 2019: Trump is briefed on UFOs. Three US Senators receive a classified briefing on UFOs from the Pentagon.
- May, 2020: Pentagon confirms authenticity of videos released by Louis Elizondo and To The Stars Academy of Arts and Sciences.
This list is far from exhaustive, but it demonstrates the long history of initiatives by the US Government to better understand UFOs since WW2. It should be noted that they do not prove that the government believes UFOs are real, nor confirms that they are extraterrestrial; but one must wonder, why would the government spend so much time studying UFOs?
The military has argued that it is a matter of safety: a paranoid public is a dangerous public, and therefore debunking UFOs is critical to national security. But could there be something deeper and more profound at work? Until then, the truth is out there…