Pentagon to launch task force to investigate UFO sightings - August 14, 2020 CNN Article

TEEJ

Senior Member.
Washington (CNN)The Pentagon is forming a new task force to investigate UFOs that have been observed by US military aircraft, according to two defense officials.
Deputy Secretary of Defense David Norquist will help oversee the task force, which is expected to be officially unveiled in the next few days, according to the officials. Previous efforts to look into what the Pentagon dubs unidentified aerial phenomena were led by the US Navy as many of the documented encounters involved their aircraft.

The Department of Defense did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Members of Congress and Pentagon officials have long expressed concerns about the appearance of the unidentified aircraft that have flown over US military bases, posing a risk to military jets. There is no consensus on their origin with some believing they may be drones potentially operated by earthly adversaries seeking to gather intelligence rather than extraterrestrials.

https://edition.cnn.com/2020/08/13/politics/pentagon-ufo-task-force/index.html
 

TEEJ

Senior Member.
IMMEDIATE RELEASE Establishment of Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force AUG. 14, 2020

On Aug. 4, 2020, Deputy Secretary of Defense David L. Norquist approved the establishment of an Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAP) Task Force (UAPTF). The Department of the Navy, under the cognizance of the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence and Security, will lead the UAPTF.

The Department of Defense established the UAPTF to improve its understanding of, and gain insight into, the nature and origins of UAPs. The mission of the task force is to detect, analyze and catalog UAPs that could potentially pose a threat to U.S. national security.

As DOD has stated previously, the safety of our personnel and the security of our operations are of paramount concern. The Department of Defense and the military departments take any incursions by unauthorized aircraft into our training ranges or designated airspace very seriously and examine each report. This includes examinations of incursions that are initially reported as UAP when the observer cannot immediately identify what he or she is observing.

From

https://www.defense.gov/Newsroom/Re...-of-unidentified-aerial-phenomena-task-force/
 

deirdre

Senior Member.
does anyone have the pentagon document in which the headers mention drones and balloons?
are you talking about Elizondo's clearance request for the 3 videos? but that one doesnt say drones, it says UAV, balloons, and other UAS.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
are you talking about Elizondo's clearance request for the 3 videos? but that one doesnt say drones, it says UAV, balloons, and other UAS.
Drones were mentioned by the navy spokesman,
https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-new...-capture-ufo-sightings-it-calls-them-n1056201
 

deirdre

Senior Member.
uav=uas=drone

that doesnt really answer my question. if it is the elizondo release document you are looking for, i am seeing 2 threads on it. just type "clearance" into the MB search and scroll down like 7 comments. (ill attach the redacted doc here, although there is an unredacted one somewhere in those threads that i don't want to look for- mostly since i dont know if that is what you are asking about anyway.)
 

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gtoffo

Member
Let's assume the Navy/DoD knows exactly what the videos depict but they don't tell us because of some kind of secrecy reason (top secret tech used/depicted, black project etc.).

Why would they be going through this whole charade 15 years later?

The most reasonable explanation seems to be: "to cover a black project from 2004" but it doesn't seem that plausible to me. is there some other reason that someone can think of?

Occam's razor would suggest: "they really don't know what this is and they are just trying to figure it out".
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
Occam's razor would suggest: "they really don't know what this is and they are just trying to figure it out".
You need to define "this" and "it" here.

They are studying unidentified airspace incursions. What's so complicated about that? Sometimes pilots see things and can't figure out what they are. It's not all the same thing. It's lots of different things.
 

gtoffo

Member
You need to define "this" and "it" here.

They are studying unidentified airspace incursions. What's so complicated about that? Sometimes pilots see things and can't figure out what they are. It's not all the same thing. It's lots of different things.

This=US Department of Defense
It=The videos and pilot reports of UAPs

Then why are they saying the reason the task force came to be is the fact that during congressional hearings the DoD was unable to provide satisfactory answers to questions regarding pilot reported intrusions and videos? Sen. Marco Rubio and others said explicitly "we have things flying over our military bases [...] and we don't know what it is and it isn't ours". Why?

Why didn't they say directly: "We know exactly what caused those videos and reports. We just want to better investigate future incursions"?

I am assuming they know exactly what was reported in the videos etc. here. If one removes that assumption the most simple answer to me is that they just don't know what was behind those incursions despite the complete radar tracks etc. at their disposal and it poses a concrete security risk.

Source: Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DhtRYqqK04E&feature=emb_title
).
 
Why would they be going through this whole charade 15 years later?

....

Occam's razor would suggest: "they really don't know what this is and they are just trying to figure it out".

These aren't mutually exclusive. If the left hand (the security entities interested in investigation) doesn't know what the right hand is doing (black ops tech development), then "they really don't know" still holds. It isn't a charade if the investigation really doesn't know and that the black ops people are actively trying to obfuscate. 15 years isn't really that long, especially while the United States has been actively involved in military action that predates that window and has adversaries that have been adversaries longer than 15 years.

It isn't without precedent: Have Blue first flew in 1977, the F-117 wasn't public knowledge until 1988, and wasn't seen in public until 1990. That's 13 years and was only unveiled because it was used in military action. If the US military possessed an aircraft with performance that outstripped anything in the US arsenal, there is a valid reason for keeping it under wraps until it must be revealed because it is used in observable military action. In that line of thinking, the black ops arm has no interest in tacitly revealing that there is some sort of asset by saying "oh yeah, those UFO sightings are our hypersonic drone that the Russians and Chinese are going to panic over, because that can't possibly backfire on us."
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
Why didn't they say directly: "We know exactly what caused those videos and reports. We just want to better investigate future incursions"?

Because they don't know exactly. They probably have a reasonable idea, but if they see a drone, and they can't identify that drone then that is a UAP!

The same goes for distant specks, brief radar blips, lights in the sky, and visual illusions.

I am assuming they know exactly what was reported in the videos etc. here. If one removes that assumption the most simple answer to me is that they just don't know what was behind those incursions despite the complete radar tracks etc. at their disposal and it poses a concrete security risk.
How do you know there's any real connection with the three videos? Does Rubio mention them?
 

gtoffo

Member
These aren't mutually exclusive. If the left hand (the security entities interested in investigation) doesn't know what the right hand is doing (black ops tech development), then "they really don't know" still holds. It isn't a charade if the investigation really doesn't know and that the black ops people are actively trying to obfuscate. 15 years isn't really that long, especially while the United States has been actively involved in military action that predates that window and has adversaries that have been adversaries longer than 15 years.

It isn't without precedent: Have Blue first flew in 1977, the F-117 wasn't public knowledge until 1988, and wasn't seen in public until 1990. That's 13 years and was only unveiled because it was used in military action. If the US military possessed an aircraft with performance that outstripped anything in the US arsenal, there is a valid reason for keeping it under wraps until it must be revealed because it is used in observable military action. In that line of thinking, the black ops arm has no interest in tacitly revealing that there is some sort of asset by saying "oh yeah, those UFO sightings are our hypersonic drone that the Russians and Chinese are going to panic over, because that can't possibly backfire on us."

But this is not what is happening. Marco Rubio is Chair of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence. That committee "is dedicated to overseeing the United States Intelligence Community—the agencies and bureaus of the federal government of the United States which provide information and analysis for leaders of the executive and legislative branches." (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Senate_Select_Committee_on_Intelligence) and should know and oversee any black project. They oversee both the "right" and the "left" hand. So unless you are suggesting one hand is moving without the brain knowing... and that would be quite some thing...


Because they don't know exactly. They probably have a reasonable idea, but if they see a drone, and they can't identify that drone then that is a UAP!

The same goes for distant specks, brief radar blips, lights in the sky, and visual illusions.
What makes you say they "probably have a reasonable idea"? They have never suggested this as far as I know.

How do you know there's any real connection with the three videos? Does Rubio mention them?
We don't know directly. But given the timing of congressional hearings and interviews with the pilots involved in those incidents it is the most probable conclusion. Or do you have any evidence to the contrary?
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
What makes you say they "probably have a reasonable idea"? They have never suggested this as far as I know.
They have a vast amount of relevant experience, equipment, highly skilled personnel, money, and other resources available to them.

They are limited as to what they can "suggest" by the blanket secret classification regulations and practices.
 
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But this is not what is happening. Marco Rubio is Chair of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence. That committee "is dedicated to overseeing the United States Intelligence Community—the agencies and bureaus of the federal government of the United States which provide information and analysis for leaders of the executive and legislative branches." (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Senate_Select_Committee_on_Intelligence) and should know and oversee any black project. They oversee both the "right" and the "left" hand. So unless you are suggesting one hand is moving without the brain knowing... and that would be quite some thing...

I'm obviously not an expert, but that doesn't seem to make sense. Access to knowledge is siloed based on the nature of the information and then to the agencies and committees that are relevant.

Appropriations and the Arms Services committees of the two houses of Congress are the legislative entities that would be aware of any DoD Special Access Program. If the UAP was an intelligence platform, then it would follow that the intelligence committees would be made aware of the nature of the vehicle in question. But, if it is, as an example, an autonomous air superiority system, then that is not in the "need to know" scope for intelligence. Curiosity about the nature of an unknown aircraft is not a reason to disclose an asset, even to an entity that has access to other projects of equal secrecy.
 

gtoffo

Member
I'm obviously not an expert, but that doesn't seem to make sense. Access to knowledge is siloed based on the nature of the information and then to the agencies and committees that are relevant.

Appropriations and the Arms Services committees of the two houses of Congress are the legislative entities that would be aware of any DoD Special Access Program. If the UAP was an intelligence platform, then it would follow that the intelligence committees would be made aware of the nature of the vehicle in question. But, if it is, as an example, an autonomous air superiority system, then that is not in the "need to know" scope for intelligence. Curiosity about the nature of an unknown aircraft is not a reason to disclose an asset, even to an entity that has access to other projects of equal secrecy.

My understanding of this committee is based on this https://www.intelligence.senate.gov/about

"By resolution, the 15 SSCI members include two members (one per side) from the Appropriations, Armed Services, Foreign Relations, and Judiciary Committees in order to ensure appropriate coordination with those Committees. The Senate Majority and Minority Leaders and the Chairman and Ranking Member of the Armed Services Committee serve as ex officio SSCI members."

I don't see how they could be left in the dark regarding any Armed forces black project. They may not know the full details but the system is clearly built to ensure coordination between those committees and allow the committee to function effectively as an oversight entity. If they say "it's not us" it means "it's not us" as in "the whole US Government". Or they would just stay quiet.


They have a vast amount of relevant experience, equipment, highly skilled personnel, money, and other resources available to them.

They are limited as to what they can "suggest" by the blanket secret classification regulations and practices.

I agree with the first point. If somebody knows what the reports/videos depict: it's the DoD.

Yet they publicly declared they don't know what this was. What "blanket secret classification regulation and practice" are you referring to? Are you basically saying this must be a black project by the US?
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
Yet they publicly declared they don't know what this was.
They publicly say: 'The aerial phenomena observed in the videos remain characterized as "unidentified."'

That does not mean they have no idea what it might be. There's no conflict between what they say and what I say.

What "blanket secret classification regulation and practice" are you referring to? Are you basically saying this must be a black project by the US?
Not at all. I'm referring to military practice where everything is assumed classified unless it's specifically declassified. The default classification for various things varies. But details of operations involving equipment, events, or intelligence that is classified will often stat out assuming the classification level of the most classified thing there.

https://apps.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a440897.pdf
Metabunk 2020-08-28 08-05-44.jpg

Results of investigations can be classified if the investigation uses classified methods or information.
 

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My understanding of this committee is based on this https://www.intelligence.senate.gov/about

"By resolution, the 15 SSCI members include two members (one per side) from the Appropriations, Armed Services, Foreign Relations, and Judiciary Committees in order to ensure appropriate coordination with those Committees. The Senate Majority and Minority Leaders and the Chairman and Ranking Member of the Armed Services Committee serve as ex officio SSCI members."

I've bolded a very important phrase. Divulging a classified asset may not be appropriate coordination.
 

gtoffo

Member
I've bolded a very important phrase. Divulging a classified asset may not be appropriate coordination.
Interesting that I've read that phrase exactly the opposite as you :)

I think the most probable scenario here is that if this was indeed a black project they wouldn't allow the committee to require the DoD to publish a public report on the subject (https://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zo...ushes-for-unprecedented-public-report-on-ufos) and compel the navy to establish a task force. I think that would fit the definition of "very costly coordination failure" and attract much undue attention. Unless we are pushing for a quite elaborate government conspiracy here... and all of it just to hide a new drone?

They publicly say: 'The aerial phenomena observed in the videos remain characterized as "unidentified."'

That does not mean they have no idea what it might be. There's no conflict between what they say and what I say.

No but why would you assume they must know what it is when they are telling you they don't know? In addition to the release you linked I'll quote Rubio again: "we have things flying over our military bases [...] and we don't know what it is and it isn't ours".

Your interpretation could be true but it does not pass the law of parsimony and requires a lot of mental gymastics:
H1: they say they don't know what it is because they don't know what it is and they are trying to find out
vs.
H2: they say they don't know what it is but they actually do know and can't tell us because something is classified
+ OPTION A: and to protect that secret they pretend they don't know what this is even among themselves prompting the Congress to establish a new task force and request a public report for no reason
+ OPTION B: and by the way there are other range incursions that coincidentally prompted Congress to establish a new task force to research into range incursions and publish a new report

Both could be true but per Occam's razor I would clearly lean towards the first hypothesis.
 

deirdre

Senior Member.
No but why would you assume they must know what it is

he didnt assume that. he said "probably have a reasonable idea".

i think you are misunderstanding what 'unidentified' and 'identified' means. (or i am).

if they are reasonably sure it is a plane, and they are reasonably sure it is/is not an enemy plane ..due to supporting evidence or lack of evidence... that doesnt mean the radar blob is identified. it means they are reasonably sure it is a plane (because it looks like a plane and moves like a plane) and they are reasonably sure it isnt russia etc because it doesnt jive with what russia spy planes typically do OR they are reasonably sure it is a russia spy plane because of x,y, z supporting evidence but they cannot prove it is a russia spy plane. ergo it remains unidentified.
 

gtoffo

Member
he didnt assume that. he said "probably have a reasonable idea".

i think you are misunderstanding what 'unidentified' and 'identified' means. (or i am).

if they are reasonably sure it is a plane, and they are reasonably sure it is/is not an enemy plane ..due to supporting evidence or lack of evidence... that doesnt mean the radar blob is identified. it means they are reasonably sure it is a plane (because it looks like a plane and moves like a plane) and they are reasonably sure it isnt russia etc because it doesnt jive with what russia spy planes typically do OR they are reasonably sure it is a russia spy plane because of x,y, z supporting evidence but they cannot prove it is a russia spy plane. ergo it remains unidentified.

It isn't probable that this was any kind of ordinary plane. Or it would have been easily identified. The whole point of a Carrier Strike Force is to project air domination wherever it goes.

If it fails to achieve such a basic task (aircraft identification and intercept) with a conventional aircraft it would mean the entire US military hegemony has collapsed. It would mean the Navy is incompetent and cannot carry out its mission.

Given the budgets and assets employed by the US DoD this hypothesis is almost impossible.

If those reports looked like a plane and moved like a plane it would have been identified with extreme ease.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
It isn't probable that this was any kind of ordinary plane. Or it would have been easily identified.
If a plane is detected as a plane, and it's unidentified, but it not considered a threat, then they just let it go on its way. Like, normal air traffic just outside a restricted volume.
 

gtoffo

Member
If a plane is detected as a plane, and it's unidentified, but it not considered a threat, then they just let it go on its way. Like, normal air traffic just outside a restricted volume.
Yes, but this was restricted airspace during active carrier operations, and they were deemed a threat and directed to intercept (but couldn't).
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
New statements from Navy spokesperson Susan Gough:

https://www.blueblurrylines.com/2020/09/uap-task-force-pentagon-responds-to.html
Interesting that she uses the language: "incursions initially designated as UAP" which was also used by the Pentagon, with a bit of an expansion.

https://www.defense.gov/Newsroom/Re...-of-unidentified-aerial-phenomena-task-force/
So theoretically that would include things where the observer could not figure out what they are looking at for a few minutes, or even seconds. That could well include things like the GIMBAL video.

However, that might seem like it's ruled out by Gought saying that if "the observation cannot later be explained after an analysis " it would be classed as "Unidentifed." combined with the Pentagon saying:
https://www.defense.gov/Newsroom/Re...nse-on-the-release-of-historical-navy-videos/
Of course, the question here is what else "unidentified" encompasses in this context.

And, they also say:
So it's all a bit unclear, stuck behind the wall of secrecy.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
hmmm this may be irrelevant but... found it interesting ...no ufo type terms are listed in the DOD terms dictionary (june 2020). i was wondering if they had IAP listed since Project Blue Book i thought used IFO if identified.
https://www.jcs.mil/Portals/36/Documents/Doctrine/pubs/dictionary.pdf

I think it's interesting they have a term "unknown", but not "unidentified"

and

"assumed friend" is not an entry.

That's a lot of need for uncertainty implied there.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
(Some thoughts from a twitter thread)

There being two areas of concern for any UAP task force: A) incursions that are initially reported as UAP when the observer cannot immediately identify what he or she is observing. B) incursions by unauthorized aircraft into designated ranges or restricted airspace

Both of these issues are serious. We don't want unauthorized incursions, and we want pilots (and the system in general) to identify things as quickly as possible. Neither of these issues is 100% solvable.

The videos certainly represent good examples of problem A. The pilot observers were unable to immediately identify what they were observing. This might be because they were amazing objects, or it might be a simple failure of training. They can study them and learn from them

GIMBAL, for example, shows the pilots, at that time, could not identify what looks like a camera artifact. The video would be a great thing to train pilots with now, so if it happens again they will recognize what they are seeing. However this all is classified.

GOFAST, likewise, seems to show that the pilots misinterpreted what they were seeing in the case of slow moving cool object being thought of as a fast moving object. Again, a great example video for training. A great "initial report" example for the UAP task force to study.

FLIR1 (Nimitz) shows something the pilot did not identify. It's also part of a larger set of events involving incursions that were initially reported (by some observers) as UAP. So these events are worth studying, regardless of what they actually were.

So I'd say resources are well spent in studying such things. Of course there's some odd pro-alien lobbying going on. TTSA's Mellon wrote the language for Rubio. But the military was doing this anyway, and they have to work with the sometimes silly civilians, so here we are.
 
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