Much to the public’s surprise, the vast COVID-19 relief and government funding bill recently signed by President Trump includes a countdown for unclassified UFO disclosure. The request is part of a committee comment connected to the Intelligence Authorization Act; it refers to what the government calls ‘unidentified aerial phenomenon,’ giving relevant authorities 180 days to put together the report.
The COVID-19 relief and government funding bill is massive at more than 5,000 pages. If you’re interested specifically in the UFO/UAP disclosure requirement, you’ll want to check out the Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021 document over on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence’s website. You’ll want to scroll down to the section of the document titled ‘Committee Comments,’ specifically to the topic labeled ‘Advanced Aerial Threats.’
The section establishes the reason for the new requirement, stating:
The Committee supports the efforts of the Unidentified Aerial Phenomenon Task Force at the Office of Naval Intelligence to standardize collection and reporting on unidentified aerial phenomenon, any links they have to adversarial foreign governments, and the threat they pose to U.S. military assets and installations.
However, the Committee remains concerned that there is no unified, comprehensive process within the Federal Government for collecting and analyzing intelligence on unidentified aerial phenomena, despite the potential threat. The Committee understands that the relevant intelligence may be sensitive; nevertheless, the Committee finds that the information sharing and coordination across the Intelligence Community has been inconsistent, and this issue has lacked attention from senior leaders.
For that reason, security officials are asked to submit an unclassified report on the UFO/UAP phenomenon within 180 days, noting that the report must contain a classified annex. The request specifies a list of topics the report should include, such as ‘a detailed analysis’ of data on the phenomena held by the Office of Naval Intelligence and the Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force.
The report will also include an analysis of the data collected across a variety of categories, including signals intelligence, human intelligence, geospatial intelligence, as well as a ‘detailed analysis of data of the FBI,’ at least the data acquired about UFO/UAP ‘intrusions’ over restricted airspace in the US.
It’s important to note that the UFO disclosure report is essentially a request, not a law, and therefore we may end up disappointed when the deadline arrives. In a statement to The Debrief, former Senate Intelligence Committee staff director Christopher Mellon said, in part:
Assuming the Executive Branch honors this important request, the nation will at long last have an objective basis for assessing the validity of the issue and its national security implications. This is an extraordinary and long overdue opportunity.
Once a topic of ridicule, the UFO/UAP phenomena has increasingly drawn interest from public and government officials over its potential national security implications, one notable politician including former Senator Harry Reid. Earlier this year, the Pentagon confirmed that three videos captured by fighter pilots — ones seemingly showing UFOs — were real and categorized as ‘unidentified,’ stoking interest in the topic.
An unclassified report containing information about the phenomena from multiple parts of government and military may mark the first big moment of ‘UFO disclosure,’ paving the way for a better understanding of UAPs, what we already know about them, and where they may originate from.