(CNN)On Friday evening the US intelligence community released something remarkable: An unclassified report to Congress of unidentified aerial phenomena (UAP) aka UFOs.
Which is a big deal! Especially when you consider that, for decades, the American government totally denied the existence of flying objects that they simply could not identify or, in some situations, explain.
The 9-page report isn’t exactly an exhaustive study of UFOs, nor does it confirm or debunk the existence of alien life. And that it was released on a Friday night in the summer is also not an accident in terms of the government doing everything they can to bury the report.
Despite all of that, there were a number of interesting tidbits in the report. I pulled out some key quotes — and added some context as well. That’s below.
1. “Our analysis of the data supports the construct that if and when individual UAP incidents are resolved they will fall into one of five potential explanatory categories: airborne clutter, natural atmospheric phenomena, USG or U.S. industry developmental programs, foreign adversary systems, and a catchall ‘other’ bin.”
OK, so there are five basic categories for UFOs according to the report: Random airborne, uh, stuff (like birds), weather phenomenons, defense prototypes — either from the US or “foreign adversary systems” and then the “other bin.” And, yes, I (and the rest of the world) am most interested in the “other” bin.
2. “After carefully considering this information, the UAPTF focused on reports that involved UAP largely witnessed firsthand by military aviators and that were collected from systems we considered to be reliable.”
The UAPTF is short for Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force, of course. (There’s nothing that the government likes more than acronyms.) And, what this line says is that the task force decided to give precedence to UFO reports “witnessed firsthand by military aviators.” Which is rightly read to mean that these reports are a) serious and b) credible.
3. “No standardized reporting mechanism existed until the Navy established one in March 2019. The Air Force subsequently adopted that mechanism in November 2020, but it remains limited to USG reporting.”
Amazing! There was no formal way within the government to record UFO sightings until the Navy started one in 2019!!! And the Air Force didn’t follow suit until, roughly, six months ago! Which reveals a) how resistant the government has been to acknowledging UFOs and b) how many sightings were almost certainly missed.
4. “[There were] 144 reports originated from USG sources. Of these, 80 reports involved observation with multiple sensors.”
This line establishes the universe, ahem, that the task force examined. There were incidents
8 takeaways from the government’s big UFO report
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