US Navy rejects requests to release UFO videos due to 'national security' concerns

It cites "national security" as the reason for keeping them so.
Ameya Paleja
Stock image of a UFO and an alien.
Stock image of a UFO and an alien.


In response to a request under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), an office of the U.S. Navy has said that all UFO (Unidentified Flying Objects) videos were classified information and therefore exempt from release, the transparency website The Black Vault reported last week.

The response comes closely on the heels of the U.S. Department of Defense's decision to set up a new office to investigate UFOs or Unidentified Aerial Phenomenons (UAP), as they are now being referred to officially. While this move could have provided UAP enthusiasts a more direct way to deal with their concerns and raise their objections, it also means that the secrecy around the matter will continue to remain.

It is also an indication that the requests under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) are also not sufficient to dig deep into the rabbit hole of information that the U.S. military is keeping away from prying eyes. The transparency website Black Vault faced it firsthand.

Why was information was requested?

In December 2017, two videos of UAP were released into the public domain, which caught the media and the public eye. A few months later, another UFO video was released, which piqued interest further, and the clamor for the U.S. Navy to come clean with more information grew.

In its response, the Pentagon did nothing more than confirm that the videos were indeed captured by the U.S. Navy. which only came in April 2020.

Seeking more information, The Black Vault pursued the U.S. Navy to determine if there more such videos that were tagged UAP and sent a FOIA request for their release.

The U.S. Navy's response

The Black Vault learned that the U.S.Navy wasn't very forthcoming with this information and kept rejecting their requests. A request sent to the Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR), the same office that officially released the three videos, was rejected in March this year, citing there were no additional videos available with the office.

Although it is peculiar that NAVAIR had the exact three videos in its possession that were leaked earlier, The Black Vault persisted and sought similar information from other naval offices while it was waiting for replies from NAVAIR.

A request sent to the Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI), the supposed home for the UAP Task Force, in February of 2021, was responded to after 17 months to state that any videos of the nature would be available with the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations (N2/N6).

So in July 2022, The Black Vault filed another request under the FOIA, which was rejected on the grounds that the "videos contain sensitive information pertaining to Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAP) and are classified and are exempt from disclosure in their entirety."

Further, the response letter added, "The release of this information will harm national security as it may provide adversaries valuable information regarding Department of Defense/Navy operations, vulnerabilities, and/or capabilities. No portions of the videos can be segregated for release."

Sensing that such a response would be challenged, the letter also goes on to explain the circumstances under which the three videos were officially released previously. "While three UAP videos were released in the past, the facts specific to those three videos are unique in that those videos were initially released via unofficial channels before official release." the letter said. "Those events were discussed extensively in the public domain; in fact, major news outlets conducted specials on these events. Given the amount of information in the public domain regarding these encounters, it was possible to release the files without further damage to national security," The Black Vault said in its report.

Since the U.S. military is being tight-lipped about what it has seen and recorded, UAP enthusiasts will have to rely on public organizations like the UAPx to find out more about the sightings and their origins.

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