WASHINGTON - The U.S. government released a long-awaited report Friday on unidentified aerial phenomena, more commonly referred to as UFOs. The bottom line: national intelligence does not believe the objects are extraterrestrial, but they are not exactly sure what they all are.
The report from the Director of National Intelligence looked at 144 reports of mysterious flying objects that had accompanying evidence like readings from the plane or other data about the object's movements or presence. There was only one report that the investigators could explain by the end of the study.
"With the exception of the one instance where we determined with high confidence that the reported UAP was airborne clutter, specifically a deflating balloon, we currently lack sufficient information in our dataset to attribute incidents to specific explanations," the report states.
Although the report shines very little light on these mysterious objects in the skies, it marks one of the first times the government has acknowledged pilots and others had reported strange aerial sightings and they were worthy of investigation.
"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 industry developmental programs, foreign adversary systems, and a catchall “other” bin," the report reads.
The report was released as part of a provision included in the $2.3 billion pandemic relief package signed at the end of December. The Department of Defense and Office of the Director of National Intelligence were given six months to deliver the UAP Task Force's report.
The task force was announced in 2020 and it had a mission “to detect, analyze and catalog UAPs that could potentially pose a threat to U.S. national security.”
The majority of the reports the group investigated came from U.S. Navy pilots, and they are hoping to standardize incident reporting across other government agencies and service branches to collect more information.