The Pentagon is committed to understanding the origins of UFOs, according to a US intelligence official

A senior U.S. Department of Defense intelligence official said on Tuesday that the Pentagon had pledged to determine the origins of what the government calls “unidentified aerial phenomena,” in the first congressional public hearing in more than 50 years on what are commonly called UFOs.

Two senior US defense intelligence officials appeared before a US House of Representatives intelligence subcommittee 11 months after a report documented more than 140 cases of unidentified aerial phenomena, or UAPs, that US military pilots reported sightings since 2004.

“We know that our service members have encountered unidentified aerial phenomena, and because UAP poses potential risks to flight safety and general safety, we are committing to a focused effort to determine their origins,” Ronald said. Moultrie, who oversees the new group as US Undersecretary of Defense. for Intelligence and Security, told the hearing.

The other official to testify was Scott Bray, Deputy Director of Naval Intelligence.

Safety and security implications

The more popular term UFO, for Unidentified Flying Object, has long been widely associated with the notion of an alien spacecraft, which received no mention in last June’s UAP presentation. Instead, the focus has been on possible implications for US national security and aviation safety.

The report did, however, include some UAPs previously revealed in video footage released by the Pentagon of enigmatic aerial objects exhibiting speed and maneuverability exceeding known aeronautical technology and lacking any visible means of propulsion or flight control surfaces.

That report was a nine-page “preliminary assessment” compiled by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and a Navy-led task force the Pentagon formed in 2020.

In his opening remarks, subcommittee chairman Andre Carson said it was important for the Pentagon to remove the stigma surrounding sightings of unidentified aerial objects, which he said had long discouraged military pilots to report them so they can be analyzed.

“UPAs are unexplained, that’s true. But they are real,” Carson said.

The defense and intelligence analysts who prepared the assessment provided no findings on the origins of any of the 144 sightings included, except for one attributed to a large deflated balloon.

Closed session

The Navy task force behind the document was replaced in November by a new Department of Defense agency named the Airborne Object Identification and Management Synchronization Group.

Moultrie and Bray were due to testify behind closed doors after the public hearing.

Although it reached no conclusions, last year’s report said the UAP sightings likely lacked a single explanation.

Further data and analysis were needed to determine whether they represent an exotic air system developed by a secret US government or commercial entity, or by a foreign power such as China or Russia, according to the report.

Similarly, defense and intelligence analysts have yet to rule out an extraterrestrial origin for any UAP cases, senior US officials told reporters ahead of the report’s release last year, though the document -even avoided any explicit reference to such possibilities.

Yet the report marked a turning point for the US government after decades of deflecting, debunking and discrediting sightings of unidentified flying objects and “flying saucers” dating back to the 1940s.

The session will mark the first congressional public hearing on the subject since the US Air Force shut down an inconclusive UFO program named Project Blue Book in 1969.

Over its 17-year history, Blue Book has compiled a list of 12,618 total UFO sightings, 701 of which were of objects that remained officially “unidentified.” But the Air Force later said it found no indication of a national security threat or evidence of extraterrestrial vehicles.

In 1966, nearly a decade before he became president, then-U.S. Representative Gerald Ford of Michigan, who was then the House Republican leader, held a hearing in response to dozens of testimonies strange glowing lights and large football shapes at low altitude. around Dexter, Michigan, which an Air Force official had called “swamp gas.”