Mystery remains as UFO report concludes no evidence Navy sightings were aliens and rules out secret US tech

A public version of the report will be released this month

Josh Marcus
San Francisco
Friday 04 June 2021 10:38
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Former US Navy pilots recount day that they encountered a UFO
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UFOs seen in recent years by US Navy pilots were not secret pieces of government technology, according to a forthcoming federal intelligence review, but there’s no evidence these sightings were of alien spaceships either.

Last year, the Trump administration’s final budget included a request from lawmakers that the secretary of defence and director of national intelligence compile a report on what the US knows about UFOs, which Navy pilots have admitted to seeing frequently in recent years.

According to unnamed intelligence officials who’ve been briefed on the review, most the 120 incidents from the past decades that were analysed did not involve the presence of a secret US technology mistaken for a UFO, The New York Times reported on Thursday.

That leaves the question, as always, what the heck were these things? The public may find out more, when an unclassified version of the UFO inquiry is expected to be released on 25 June.

In the last few years, Navy pilots have reported seeing UFOs frequently during training exercises and missions.

In one set of sightings, an object spinning like a top appeared almost every day between summer 2014 and spring 2015.

“These things would be out there all day,” lieutenant Ryan Graves, a fighter pilot, has said of the encounters.

Though the report doesn’t attribute the sightings to little green men or the American government, intelligence officials briefed on the inquiry said some of the incidents may be explained by Russian or Chinese weapons program, which have invested heavily in “hypersonic” aviation.

Recent reporting from the Times revealed the existence of the Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program, a Pentagon initiative that began in 2007 and tracked UFO reports. The programme was officially shuttered in 2012, but restarted in 2020 under a new name: the Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force.

During this same span, there has been a cultural shift, with leaders in the US talking more openly about the mysteries surrounding UFOs, compared to past decades where these discussions happened more on the fringe.

For example, former president Barack Obama recently spoke openly with late-night host James Corden about the enduring questions surrounding unidentified aerial phenomena.

While the US government may slowly be lifting the veil of secrecy surrounding its knowledge of UFOs, the public has long been fascinated with them. Recent Gallup polling suggests a third of Americans believe some UFOs could be explained by alien spacecraft.

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