NASA’s new chief isn’t satisfied with the Pentagon’s inconclusive UFO report.
The newly installed NASA administrator Bill Nelson has said their probe into unidentified aerial phenomena is just beginning: His team intends to set up their own research effort into footage of high-speed flying objects spotted by Navy officers over the years, he told CNN Business.
Nelson added that he does not think there’s evidence to assume that extraterrestrials are involved, saying, “I think I would know” — but conceded it’s too early into their study to rule out the possibility.
“We don’t know if it’s extraterrestrial. We don’t know if it’s an enemy. We don’t know if it’s an optical phenomenon,” Nelson told CNN Business. “We don’t think [it’s an optical illusion] because of the characteristics that those Navy jet pilots described … So the bottom line is, we want to know.”
Nelson’s statement comes as insiders close to the Pentagon’s much-anticipated UFO report inform the public that US intelligence has found no credible evidence that extraterrestrials were behind any of the sightings. The former Florida senator and spaceflight veteran also said that NASA would plan to share any new information not seen by national security officials.
The shocking footage which became key evidence in the upcoming report was first leaked to the public in 2017, at which time the New York Times revealed numerous incidents of UFO sightings by US military, along with hints that the government had long held a file on such bizarre aerial occurrences.
Since then, the former national security official who blew the whistle on these reports has accused the government of engaging in a smear campaign against him.
Luis Elizondo, former head of the Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program, told The Post in April, “There are some people in the Pentagon that still don’t like me very much. I think they’re pissed at me for the way I left,” referring to the 2017 Times leak.
NASA press secretary Jackie McGuinness confirmed to CNN Business that Nelson had not yet formally established a task force, though Nelson appears to be laying the groundwork for scientific study.
“There’s not really a lot of data and … scientists should be free to follow these leads, and it shouldn’t be stigmatized,” McGuinness added. “This is a really interesting phenomenon and Americans are clearly interested in it [so if] the scientists want to investigate, they should.”
During a press conference on Wednesday, according to CNN, NASA’s associate administrator for science Thomas Zurbuchen clarified that he’s also skeptical that the Navy footage would indicate alien technology.
“People tend to underestimate nature,” he said, acknowledging that scientists can’t rule out as yet discovered natural phenomena. “Nature is an amazing place where a lot of miracles happen.”