Today, Pentagon’s research report on Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAP) or UFO is released. The government’s UAP program has spawned a news cycle of UFO conspiracy theories into the mainstream. Note that despite the hype, the report does not contain proof of aliens.
Last year, the Senate Intelligence Committee asked the Pentagon to come up with classified and unclassified versions of a UAP report within 180 days, or by 25th June 2021. The nine page report is now available online.
Let us first dig into why the name is UAP and not UFO? It seems UAP is a fancier way of saying unidentified flying objects. Moreover, a Pentagon program on UFOs would be far too silly for a serious government intelligence program. Similarly, putting “objects” in the name could be too limiting of a word for a program that deals with the unknown.
The government said it is interested in UAPs / UFOs due to national security concerns. Last August, the Defense Department stated “any incursions by unauthorized aircraft into our training ranges or designated airspace very seriously and examine each report. This includes examinations of incursions that are initially reported as UAP when the observer cannot immediately identify what he or she is observing.”
In 2017, The New York Times and Politico published stories about the existence of the Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program (AATIP). Note that AATIP is a classified Pentagon project that began in 2007 to investigate unidentified phenomena. The project ended in 2012. AATIP gathered studies on wild ideas straight out of science fiction, from nuclear propulsion to invisibility cloaking, warp drives, metallic glasses, programmable matter, etc.
In June 2020, the Senate Intelligence Committee confirmed the existence of the Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force within the Office of Naval Intelligence. A few months later, Pentagon confirmed described the body’s mission is “to detect, analyze and catalog UAPs that could potentially pose a threat to U.S. national security.”