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Pentagon Issues New Report on UFOs — But It's Classified
Why I'm still a UFO skeptic
I’m a UFO skeptic to put it mildly — which you already know if you’ve seen this story I did for The Intercept.
Here’s what the UFO community would have you believe: an alien civilization so advanced it discovered faster-than-light travel somehow can’t get the hang of self-driving and keeps crash landing into Roswell and the like. Is there an extraterrestrial Elon Musk selling them bad driverless AI spaceships? Or are the laws of physics just easier to defy than it is to develop a halfway decent driver assist?
Oh, and they’re also behind us on stealth technology (how else are we detecting them so often?) Makes sense!
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To the extent that I sympathize with the UFO community, it’s over the ludicrous secrecy with which the U.S. intelligence community guards information on UFOs — or UAPs [Unidentified Anomalous Phenomena], as they’re called these days. (Like how X will always be Twitter to me and Ye still Kanye, I’ll always call them UFOs.)
In August, for example, in a largely unnoticed move, the Pentagon inspector general completed an evaluation of the Defense Department’s actions regarding UFOs. But since the report is classified, we can’t know what’s in it until the unclassified summary is released — on some unspecified future date, of course.
“At a later date, the DoD OIG [Department of Defense Office of Inspector General] will release an unclassified overview on how the DoD, military services, defense agencies, and military department counterintelligence organizations took intelligence, counterintelligence, and force protection actions to detect, report, collect, analyze, and identify UAP,” the Defense Department report says.
If sunlight is the best disinfectant, the intelligence community’s reflexive secrecy provides the ideal environment for conspiracy theories to fester.
Any national security reporter worth their salt can tell you that, yes, there’s a highly classified crash retrieval program to recover and even reverse engineer unknown aircraft. But rather than space aliens, these are Russian and Chinese spy drones and other craft like the Chinese spy balloon that drifted across the continental U.S. earlier this year.
Every UFO story that draws attention away from our multibillion dollar defense industry’s stunning failures — like their inability to secure our airspace against adversary spy drones — is a gift to Pentagon contractors. Small wonder that the recipients of their campaign contributions in Congress were more than happy to grant an audience to the UFO whistleblowers this summer.
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