eli5: What’s with the UFO hearings at Congress and all these military sightings of UFOs popping up??

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eli5: What’s with the UFO hearings at Congress and all these military sightings of UFOs popping up??

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The US military does log and investigate UFO reports from military servicemen.

While it may or may not be aliens, it’s definitely something of interest to national defense. It could be an unknown Chinese spy aircraft. Some sort of Russian prototype missile. Who knows – but we’d like to know, and UFO reports from military test pilots are considered much more concerning than some nobody because those people are familiar with aircraft and not so easily bamboozled by a weather balloon.

During the last administration the Pentagon was asked to compile a report on these incidents and provide it to Congress, so many things have just recently been declassified and discussed.

Many reports are filed about UFOs by many people, but many of those observers aren’t super credible. It’s particularly intriguing to see military reports, because those military pilots aren’t “Crazy conspiracy theory nutcases with old broken cameras.” They were “at work” in a modern sophisticated airplane full of sensors in contact with other established military systems.

Sure, sometimes they didn’t understand what they were seeing, particularly the out-of-focus bokeh images. But at least they are not people trying to fake images in their back yard to get more TicToc views.

Publicity for congress people.

The military released a lot of records and videos on various UFO investigations (they call them UAPs “Unidentified Aerial Phenomenon”) they have done over the years, and basically, its totally uninteresting, no aliens, no green men, nothing particularly special, and most are “we don’t know” or “its probably a mistake or atmospheric issue, etc.”. But it sure sounds cool and no one is going to let a good chance at publicity go away.

Unidentified Flying Objects are just that airborne object which can’t be attributed to a known phenomenon, while one unlikely possibility is aliens, the more likely one is high tech aircraft that the intelligence services don’t know of.

There’s something you need to understand right off the bat: UFO does not equal “alien spacecraft.” It literally means “unidentified flying object.” It means something in the air that hasn’t been identified. Could be a drone, could be a hypersonic missile, could be an aircraft prototype that someone slapped together in their garage and is testing it out without telling the FAA, could be a new stealth aircraft, etc.

If there’s something flying through US controlled airspace and nobody can tell what it is, that’s a pretty big deal. Of course Congress is going to want to know what the military is doing about it.