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Experts React to Pentagon's Task Force on Unidentified Aerial Phenomena

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posted on Aug, 20 2020 @ 01:17 PM
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Most of you probably already heard about the recent announcement of the DoD to formally establish a UAP Task Force (see press release) whose mission will be to "detect, analyze and catalog UAPs [Unidentified Aerial Phenomena] that could potentially pose a threat to U.S. national security". According to this article on space.com, the DoD announcement has triggered a number of reactions by experts in the field. Since this topic will probably keep us busy for some time, at least until a first report has been published (which the task force is obliged to do), I thought this topic might deserve a thread of its own.

Among others, the article includes opinions of Mark Rodeghier (president and scientific director of the J. Allen Hynek Center for UFO Studies in Chicago), Writer and UFO skeptic Robert Sheaffer and Author Sarah Scoles. While most embrace the renewed "official" interest in the subject of UFOs/UAPs, their reactions range from having rather "moderate" expectations to being "cautiously optimistic", while noting that nothing in the official wording points to any "alien craft" roaming our skies.

Interestingly, ATS' very own James Oberg also "chimed in" as an expert with his view on why the Pentagon could be interested in such an investigation:


What does the Pentagon's new UFO task force mean?

"I have no doubt that military intelligence services around the world have always been interested in ‘UFO reports' — whether or not a real 'unexplainable' phenomenon is behind a few of them. There are many non-extraterrestrial reasons why the Defense Department is interested in UFO reports, Oberg said.

    1. To identify and ameliorate instrumental "funnies" in new sensory technology, to make sure we don't accidentally misinterpret or overlook future readings.

    2. To determine how detection "funnies" might be deliberately induced by hackers and real enemies, and what we can do to frustrate such efforts.

    3. To deliberately induce anomalous targets into the range of our own new detection/tracking technology, as a way of testing it.

    4. To test enemy detection systems with deliberate pokes to identify exploitable weaknesses.

    5. To assess which reports from within or near adversary nations are indicators of their classified military testing and operations that we need insight into.

    6. To determine which detections (at home or abroad) accidentally reveal highly classified operations of our own that might be revealed to enemy nations that are also looking for such indications, so as to improve our masking, misdirection and stealth.

    7. In so far as observations of UFO reports from adversary nations are indicators of leaked observable clues to military capabilities, to do nothing to provoke such regimes from curtailing their own news media coverage of the "pseudo-UFOs." Never announce how such innocent (to them) news items can be exploited.

    8. In so far as our own domestic UFO reports may be authentic indicators of classified military activities, to purposefully create camouflage and masking reports to distract, confuse or lull foreign observers and analysts."


SOME FOOD FOR THOUGHT:
Maybe the right question to ask now is: will we have a better understanding of UFOs/UAPs as a result of all this? Or will the waters get even muddier as we go along? Will this be a transparent, scientific endeavour or rather some sort of psychological operation (PsyOp) with the aim of manipulating public opinion, for whatever reason? What are the interests here, for example "financially" or from a military-political perspective, and who is going to benefit from all this? Oh yes, and what's the role of Tom Delonge's TTSA? Are they just exploiting this for money and entertainment (TV series, merchandise) or have they become part of the military-industrial-entertainment-complex?

Some inspiration and potential answers as to why the Pentagon is involved can be found in Oberg's reaction quoted above, and I personally think that much of what he mentions might in fact be what the task force will actually be dealing with. Whatever the real rationale(s) may be, I'm having a hard time believing that any of this is really going to address classic UFO cases that we all know from an era prior to the 2004 Nimitz case.

But that's just my 2 cents (time will tell) and I really look forward to your thoughts and ideas on this. Whatever the outcome of the investigation, I'm curious to see what the UAP task force is going to reveal.



Sources and Links:
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1. Article: What does the Pentagon's new UFO task force mean?
2. DoD: Establishment of Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force
3. Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021
edit on 20-8-2020 by jeep3r because: formatting




posted on Aug, 20 2020 @ 01:29 PM
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From what I understand, the Russians see this as the US using UFOs as another excuse to amp up their surveillance activities. And from Oberg's description, they're probably not wrong. Our entire space program was a very convenient and noble sounding cover to develop complex ballistic missile systems including global surveillance and tracking. Not just to see how ants would build colonies in zero-G.

Taking the war to space. Fighting China for the Moon. The beat goes on.



posted on Aug, 20 2020 @ 01:59 PM
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a reply to: Blue Shift

Interesting to look at this from a Russian perspective, that would of course make perfect sense. In that case, TTSA may simply be a kind of "promotion-agency" for military purposes, a bit like what Hollywood used to be in previous decades ("Top Gun", "Final Countdown", etc.).

As long as it's a win-win situation for the involved parties, who cares about misleading people and using UFOs to achieve your goals? Building on the mysteries surrounding the UFO topic may even be intentional. If all that were true, we would indeed be talking about TTSA being part of the military-industrial-entertainment-complex.



posted on Aug, 20 2020 @ 02:24 PM
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originally posted by: jeep3r
Since this topic will probably keep us busy for some time, at least until a first report has been published (which the task force is obliged to do), I thought this topic might deserve a thread of its own.

Don't forget the last paragraph on the Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021 on the Advanced Aerial Threats section:


The report shall be submitted in unclassified form, but may include a classified annex.



posted on Aug, 20 2020 @ 02:38 PM
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a reply to: ArMaP

I guess that's a mandatory requirement given the sensitive information involved.

Let's just hope that the classified annex won't account for 90% of the overall document.



posted on Aug, 20 2020 @ 02:39 PM
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originally posted by: jeep3r

But that's just my 2 cents (time will tell) and I really look forward to your thoughts and ideas on this. Whatever the outcome of the investigation, I'm curious to see what the UAP task force is going to reveal.


Well,

You did fine putting together the OP in a no nonsense, sensible manner, looking at all the different aspects of these sightings, something even UFO webpages don't always deal with themselves, well done!



posted on Aug, 20 2020 @ 02:54 PM
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Here's are two classic Russian missile programs where 'UFO reports' provided outside observers with extremely useful insights into the weapons testing results.

Soviet UFO wave! Ground observations of Soviet FOBS warhead tests in 1967: satobs.org...

17th Flight of ' Defense-Dodging Warhead Tests
satobs.org...



posted on Aug, 20 2020 @ 03:01 PM
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a reply to: smurfy

Thanks for your input, smurfy.

To be honest, I'm really on the fence with all this. On the one hand, I hope this would bring to light something new about UFOs, and with that I'm referring to the many interesting and unresolved cases that most of us have been fascinated with for many years and even decades.

But something tells me that this whole affair might actually turn out to be counterproductive and a huge disappointment for those with a sincere interest in UFO research. I don't know how all this will play out, maybe we're in for a big surprise, who knows. But then I hear my inner voice telling me "come on, don't be so naive!"...



posted on Aug, 20 2020 @ 03:19 PM
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originally posted by: Blue Shift
From what I understand, the Russians see this as the US using UFOs as another excuse to amp up their surveillance activities. And from Oberg's description, they're probably not wrong. Our entire space program was a very convenient and noble sounding cover to develop complex ballistic missile systems including global surveillance and tracking. Not just to see how ants would build colonies in zero-G.

Taking the war to space. Fighting China for the Moon. The beat goes on.


If you really wanted to ramp up surveillance on China and Russia you wouldn't tell them in public, dude. jesus.



posted on Aug, 20 2020 @ 03:28 PM
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originally posted by: jeep3r
a reply to: smurfy

Thanks for your input, smurfy.

To be honest, I'm really on the fence with all this. On the one hand, I hope this would bring to light something new about UFOs, and with that I'm referring to the many interesting and unresolved cases that most of us have been fascinated with for many years and even decades.

But something tells me that this whole affair might actually turn out to be counterproductive and a huge disappointment for those with a sincere interest in UFO research. I don't know how all this will play out, maybe we're in for a big surprise, who knows. But then I hear my inner voice telling me "come on, don't be so naive!"...


There's still a lot we all don't know is the cry, today's thinking could be tomorrow's obsolescence, by alternate ways of looking at things, new discoveries, new energy, whatever.



posted on Aug, 20 2020 @ 03:30 PM
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originally posted by: NightVision
If you really wanted to ramp up surveillance on China and Russia you wouldn't tell them in public, dude. jesus.

You would provide an excuse not only for them, but also taxpayers. "Oh, don't worry about our enhanced equipment constantly monitoring your airspace. It's just for tracking those pesky UFOs. And we'll be testing even more sophisticated UFO tracking systems in the future, so don't worry about them."



posted on Aug, 20 2020 @ 03:42 PM
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originally posted by: JimOberg
Here's are two classic Russian missile programs where 'UFO reports' provided outside observers with extremely useful insights into the weapons testing results.

Soviet UFO wave! Ground observations of Soviet FOBS warhead tests in 1967: satobs.org...

17th Flight of ' Defense-Dodging Warhead Tests
satobs.org...


Those are quite comprehensive PDF documents, can't read all of it now but I did have a brief look at both of them. Seems logical that such sightings would be of great interest to intelligence services and defense agencies wanting to learn more about foreign military systems.

Do you happen to know for how long these sightings remained "unsolved"? Both cases are somewhat reminiscent of the infamous "Norwegian Spiral" (caused by a rocket), which IIRC went viral as a UFO on the web but was debunked shortly afterwards.

Anyhow, I think all the points you mentioned in the article are pretty much "spot-on" and if those are indeed the major objectives and rationales of the DoD, then there's not much room for speculating about "otherworldly" origins of UAPs, at least those that the Pentagon is interested in.
edit on 20-8-2020 by jeep3r because: spelling



posted on Aug, 20 2020 @ 03:53 PM
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originally posted by: Blue Shift

originally posted by: NightVision
If you really wanted to ramp up surveillance on China and Russia you wouldn't tell them in public, dude. jesus.

You would provide an excuse not only for them, but also taxpayers. "Oh, don't worry about our enhanced equipment constantly monitoring your airspace. It's just for tracking those pesky UFOs. And we'll be testing even more sophisticated UFO tracking systems in the future, so don't worry about them."


You wouldn't need UFOs as an excuse to ramp up funding. For all we know these objects very well could be Russian or Chinese, although it I personally believe it unlikely.

In addition, Congress would have to be briefed on all of this with no leaks. Do you really think they are that tight lipped?



posted on Aug, 22 2020 @ 10:42 AM
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a reply to: jeep3r

Your article explains the primary reason for the task force...


The military is investigating out of an abundance of caution, and a sensitivity to criticism."


Obviously, the main concern is...


Most of the recent Pentagon comments about "unidentified objects" mention "range incursions," Sheaffer added — i.e., unknown objects that seem to be entering one of these MOAs (military operation areas).


and from someone else...


"The 'Unidentified Aerial Phenomena' terminology is used because it provides the basic descriptor for the sightings/observations of unauthorized/unidentified aircraft/objects entering/operating in the airspace of various military-controlled training ranges."


We'll hear and see the usual. If it's something that can't be explained, but appears harmless, we'll probably hear about it. If they see signs of a known foreign entity entering our military operating areas, we might not.



posted on Aug, 22 2020 @ 10:59 AM
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a reply to: Blue Shift


Our entire space program was a very convenient and noble sounding cover to develop complex ballistic missile systems including global surveillance and tracking. Not just to see how ants would build colonies in zero-G.

Taking the war to space. Fighting China for the Moon. The beat goes on.


Are you talking about our space program in general or the newly created "Space Force"?

I always figured the "Space Force" was created to test and use Non-Nuclear Electronic Magnetic Pulses (NNEMP) as an advancement to warfare. Well, that and a way to spy and enforce international laws against Nuclear EMPs. I have no doubt that some rogue countries are still testing nuclear EMPs in the upper atmosphere. It's kind of hard to take international bitching about climate change seriously when they're all probably the biggest contributors based on this kind of secret activity. That's the only way climate change can truly be considered "man made".



posted on Aug, 22 2020 @ 01:09 PM
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originally posted by: NightVision
In addition, Congress would have to be briefed on all of this with no leaks. Do you really think they are that tight lipped?

Congress doesn't care about the details. They just want to know why the money is being spent. To see if UFOs are a threat to national or global security? Sign that check!



posted on Aug, 22 2020 @ 01:19 PM
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originally posted by: Deetermined
Are you talking about our space program in general or the newly created "Space Force"?

The original space program started in the 50s. Taxpayers were tired of spending so much on the military during the War they wanted to defund everything. But the Russians were still a huge threat. So how do you justify spending billions to develop a global atomic weapons system? Science! Glorious exploration of space to show how great the US is. Never mind that the research will also allow us to drop a nuke on Lenin's tomb at any time. That's just a byproduct, like Tang or that pen that can write in zero-G.



posted on Aug, 24 2020 @ 10:46 AM
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originally posted by: Blue Shift

originally posted by: NightVision
In addition, Congress would have to be briefed on all of this with no leaks. Do you really think they are that tight lipped?

Congress doesn't care about the details. They just want to know why the money is being spent. To see if UFOs are a threat to national or global security? Sign that check!


You're speaking for all of Congress now? I think Senator Harry Reid would disagree with you that all of Congress doesn't care about the details.



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