The Pentagon says 'UFO sightings are either Chinese or Russian spying or airborne trash'

We haven't been visited by aliens, at least not yet.
Ameya Paleja
UFO flying in formation over the sea
UFO flying in formation over the sea

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Analysts at the Pentagon and other intelligence agencies have looked through unexplained sightings, popularly known as Unidentified Flying Objects (UFOs), between 2004 and 2021 and concluded that these were either surveillance attempts by either China or Russia or simply airborne trash. A classified document to this effect was submitted to the U.S. Congress recently, The New York Times reported.

UFOs have always enjoyed a special place among conspiracy theorists who have used sightings as proof of governments hiding information from the public. Scientifically speaking, the possibility of advanced civilizations existing in another part of the galaxy does exist, and they may well be capable of traveling to our planet.

However, no such instances have occurred, and what has been reported so far are largely surveillance measures such as drones and balloons deployed by adversaries, the report claims.

Why doesn't the government clarify immediately then?

Sue Gough, a spokesperson for the Department of Defense (DoD) told the NYT that her department tried to balance "its obligation to protect sensitive information, methods, and sources" with openness, and officials tried to collect as much data as they could before sharing their findings with the public.

The submitted report remains classified, and it is not certain how much of its contents will actually be released to the public. However, Gough, justified the secrecy because the UFO sighting largely consisted of surveillance technology deployed by China, Russia and other adversaries, and admitting to having identified the same would mean that these countries would put more effort into hiding their hardware.

By not offering explanations for certain sightings, the U.S. government fuels the speculation for alien visitation theories. However, these are allowed to spread to hide secret developments of the U.S. military. For instance, the developmental runs of spy planes like the SR-71 Blackbird remained hidden under alien spaceship rumors.

Intelligence officials have also accepted that such rumors sow distrust and paranoia among people and therefore, NASA has also been tasked to handle the unidentified aerial phenomena (UAP), as the government now prefers to call them.

What about GOFAST and Gimbal?

From time to time, the Pentagon does appear to explain some phenomena. For instance, the department reported in May that the green triangles reported as alien ships were actually drone images captured using night vision lenses, making them appear that way.

Similarly, the video, known as GOFAST, which was captured by U.S. military equipment and showed an object moving at very speeds, has been analyzed as an illusion. According to Pentagon officials, the object was moving merely at a speed of 30 miles (48 km) an hour; however, it was the angle of observation against the water that made it appear to move much faster.

The image of Gimbal, an unknown object spinning is the result of the optics of a classified image sensor that is designed to help detect weapons but made this certain object appear strange, NYT reported.

In some situations, the officials analyzing the alleged "alien" content do not have sufficient information to make a reliable estimate of what might be the cause, and the lack of an explanation is also construed as proof of the existence of aliens, even though officials have said under oath that they have no material that could possibly conclude that aliens have landed on Earth.

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