The unidentified flying objects shot down over the past week are most likely not from outer space, officials assured America. It had to be said.
‘I don’t think the American people need to worry about aliens with respect to these craft. Period,’ National Security Council spokesman John Kirby declared at the White House podium Monday.
‘There is no indication of aliens or extraterrestrial activity with these recent takedowns,’ said White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre. ‘We wanted to make sure that the American people knew that. All of you knew it. And it was important for us to say that from here because we’ve been hearing a lot about it.’
Why wouldn’t there be conjecture — some serious and some completely out of the ‘X-Files’ — after a series of air incursions and shootdowns by the U.S. and Canadian military over the past two weeks? That’s to say nothing of the mysteriously circumspect approach taken by President Biden and other officials.
‘I don’t see the justification for that secrecy,’ complained Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., the top GOPer on the Senate Intelligence Committee.
However, the military opened the hatch to the possibility that flights might not be from the Russians or Chinese, but something intergalactic.
‘It’s amazing what the human mind can imagine when confronted with the unknown,’ said Sen. John Cornyn, R-Tex. ‘I think people were conjuring up all sorts of imaginary and horrifying scenarios that a little transparency would dispel.’
A reporter pulled no punches when asking Northern Command Gen. Glen VanHerck about the spate of aerial objects recently picked up in U.S. airspace.
‘Have you ruled out aliens or extraterrestrials?’ the reporter inquired.
‘I haven’t ruled out anything at this point,’ replied VanHerck.
And we were off to the (space) races.
After all, what the military detected was unidentified. It was flying. And they were objects.
Modern society was raised on episodes of ‘The Twilight Zone,’ which speculated about space visitors, alien invasions and Martians. ‘Star Trek’ and ‘Star Wars’ sharpened those pop culture views. We’ve already discussed the paranoia of ‘The X-Files.’ And then came movies like ‘Independence Day’ and ‘Mars Attacks.’
It’s no wonder people might begin wondering if these vessels emanate from the great unknown.
‘It’s not new,’ said Rubio. ‘The fact that it’s now coming to light is the only difference.’
But something else changed.
‘For 65 years, NORAD never shot anything. And, all of a sudden, in an eight-day period, it’s shot down four things,’ observed Rubio.
That’s why people ask if there’s now a risk from something from outer space.
Are they probes? What are they observing? What information and transmissions are they soaking up?
‘If you’re confused, you understand the situation perfectly,’ Sen. John Kennedy, R-La., said after a classified briefing on the objects.
‘The Empire Strikes Back’ influenced current thinking. In that film, the Empire dispatches a battery of Viper probe droids across the galaxy, searching for the rebels. One crashes into the snow-covered surface of the ice planet Hoth. The rebels detect a garbled sinister-sounding signal from the probe.
‘It isn’t friendly whatever it is,’ says Han Solo.
He and Chewbacca head out in the snow to determine what just landed.
Solo shoots the droid. It immediately blows up.
‘I didn’t hit it that hard. It must have had a self-destruct,’ says Solo.
And here we are as the U.S. and Canada try to yank objects out of the waters of the Atlantic Ocean and Lake Huron. The Canadians are after the device in the Yukon.
‘The remnants are in very difficult terrain. Low temperature. Lots of inclement weather,’ said Kennedy.
‘My understanding is the weather is basically 55 degrees below zero,’ said Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Mark Warner, D-Va.
That does sound like Hoth in Star Wars.
This is why the White House confronted the flying saucer theories.
While the administration isn’t convinced the objects are from a galaxy far, far away, Congress now takes UFO’s seriously.
For the first time in five decades, the House Intelligence Committee held its first hearing on UFO’s last year. Only now, they’re called ‘UAP’s.
‘What are UAP’s? Put simply, UAP’s are airborne objects that, when encountered, cannot be immediately identified,’ Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence and Security Ronald Moultrie testified.
UAP stands for ‘unidentified aerial phenomena.’
The issue was taboo in the military for years.
‘For too long, the stigma associated with UAP’s has gotten in the way of good intelligence analysis,’ said Rep. Andre Carson, D-Ind. ‘Pilots avoided reporting or were laughed at when they did. (Department of Defense) officials relegated the issue to the back room or swept it under the rug entirely, fearful of a skeptical national security community.’
‘I think there was a feeling of, ‘Oh, God, if I report this thing, you know, what am I going to get myself tangled up in?’’ said CIA Officer Ron Marks.
But, in legislation, Congress mandated the Pentagon track and document the unexplained.
‘It’s worth working with the Pentagon and pushing them to go back and look at what other odd signatures that may have kind of fallen on the cutting room floor, so to speak,’ said Rep. Mike Waltz, R-Fla.
The intelligence community documented more than 500 incidents in last year’s report. But there’s still a dearth of information about what hovers above.
‘The second report did not include the many technical details or did not reveal what all of the objects might be. We only learned that perhaps a significant fraction of them might be related to espionage,’ said Harvard University astrophysicist Avi Loeb.
So while we don’t know exactly what they’re shooting down, most lawmakers find suggestions of voyages from strange new worlds highly illogical.
‘I’m not ready to go ‘X-Files’ on this kind of thing. I’m much more concerned about the Chinese than the Martians at this point,’ Rep. Glenn Ivey, D-Md., said on Fox.
Science fiction writer Isaac Asimov made the following observation when speaking about UFO’s.
‘The wilder and more ridiculous something is, the firmer and more solid the evidence will have to be,’ said Asimov.
We don’t have great evidence right now that these ‘UAPs’ could come from the stars. But we do know that China and Russia shoot stuff across the skies on a periodic basis.
In science fiction, invaders from space often threaten to conquer or destroy Earth. However, lawmakers contend that the bigger threat is closer to home. And it’s posed by the same adversaries the U.S. had all along.