Pentagon program investigated reports of UFOs

Remigio Civitarese
Dicembre 16, 2017

The Department of Defense's Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program had investigated reports of unidentified flying objects for years, The New York Times reports, citing Defense Department officials and interviews with participants in the program, as well as records the newspaper obtained.

Most of the $22 million spent on the program went to an aerospace research company run by Reid's friend and fellow Nevadan, Robert Bigelow, the Times said.

In May, Bigelow told "60 Minutes" that he's "absolutely convinced" that aliens exist and he doesn't care if it makes him sound insane. But its backers say that, while the Pentagon ended funding for the effort at that time, the program remains in existence.

Defense officials told the Times that the program, which investigated reports of UFOs, ended in 2012.

Reid, for his part, expressed pride in the program, stating that he's "not embarrassed or ashamed or sorry I got this thing going" and he thinks "it's one of the good things I did in my congressional service".

Politico said that the program is getting attention in 2017 because of the October retirement of Luis Elizondo, a career intelligence official who ran the program and reportedly told Defense Secretary James Mattis in his resignation letter that the Department needed to take the program's research more seriously. "I've done something that no one has done before". However, others explained that while the funding had ceased, the program still exists, and that officials associated with it have continued to "investigate episodes brought to them by service members".

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