[Music] my [Music] air force captain e.j rupelt was the guy who coined the term unidentified flying object to replace the popular term at the time of flying saucers and in july of 1955 he wrote the following it is well known that ever since the first flying saucer was reported the air force has officially said that there is no proof that such a thing as an interplanetary spaceship exists but what is not well known is that this conclusion is far from being unanimous among the military and their scientific advisors because of the one word proof
so the ufo investigations continue the hassle over the word proof boils down to one question what constitutes proof does a ufo have to land at the river entrance to the pentagon or is it proof when a ground radar station detects a ufo sends a jet to intercept it the pilot sees it and locks on with his radar only to have the ufo streak away at phenomenal speed is it proof when a jet pilot fires at a ufo and sticks to his story even under the threat of court martial does this constitute proof the hotly debated answer to the question
of what constitutes proof may be the answer to the question do the ufos really exist the u.s air force didn’t even officially exist when it was handed the first report of something unusual in the skies on june 24th 1947 a civilian pilot named kenneth arnold took off from shahalas washington on his way to yakima about 3 p.
m pacific time he arrived in the vicinity of mount rainier there was a marine corps c-46 transport plane lost in that area so he decided to look for it he was scanning the ground when suddenly he noticed a series of bright flashes off to his left he looked in that direction and saw a string of nine very bright disc shaped objects which he estimated to be 45 to 50 feet in length they were traveling from north to south across the nose of his airplane flying in an echelon formation they weaved between the mountain peaks with a skipping motion he described as a saucer
skipping across water arnold marked his position in their position on the map and noted the time when he landed he sketched in the flight path that the objects had flown and computed their speed which turned out to be almost 1700 miles per hour he estimated that they had been 20 to 25 miles away and traveled 47 miles in 102 seconds as captain rupelt would soon learn was nearly always the case with ufo sightings of unknown origins the arnold saw airplanes faction held that if the airplanes were 45 to 50 feet long he
would have had to have been much closer than he estimated or he couldn’t have seen them at all and since he was much closer than he estimated his estimated speed calculation of 1700 miles per hour was more like 400 miles per hour and that was the speed of a jet and those jets appeared to have a skipping motion because arnold was looking at them through waves of hot and cold air like heat waves coming off hot pavement that causes an object to shimmer the arnold saw flying saucer side of the argument based their logic on the fact that
arnold was an old mountain pilot very familiar with the cascades and they had also seen the object pass behind one of the mountain peaks so that object passing behind one of the peaks positively established his range and therefore verified the 1700 miles per hour estimate that he came up with the other thing that this side of the flying saucer argument held was that arnold had actually seen these at 20 to 25 miles away and so they weren’t 45 or 50 feet long they were more like 200 250 feet long a few weeks after that the air
force had its first official report by one of its own pilots about 10 o’clock in the morning a radar near an air force base had picked up an unidentified target it was an odd target in that it came in very fast about 700 miles per hour and then slowed down to about 100 miles per hour the radar showed it was located northeast of the airfield over a sparsely settled area they reported the target and two f-86s were scrambled after a few minutes of fighters searching at high altitude they decided to descend with one going to 20 000 feet
and the other all the way down to 5000 feet as the low altitude pilot leveled off he noticed what he first thought was a weather balloon a few seconds later he realized it couldn’t be a weather balloon because it was staying ahead of him which was impressive because at this point his airspeed was nearly supersonic he was able to close to an estimated 1000 yards and what had looked like a balloon from above was now a flat saucer-shaped object the pilot described it as being like a doughnut without a hole he was down on the deck now and
couldn’t communicate with either his wingman or the controllers as the object started to pull away he decided to try and down it with his nose cannon but as he fired the object pulled up into a climb and disappeared after flying around for a few more seconds trying to figure out what had happened he climbed back to 10 000 feet rejoined with his wingmen and they returned to base as soon as he had landed and parked the f-86 pilot went into operations and reported what he’d seen so there was a personality clash between this pilot and
the commanding officer the commanding officer accused the pilot of cracking up or of just shooting his guns for the hell of it and using the wild story as a cover-up as the investigation went on the intelligence officer of the squadron called in other pilots to testify about the state of mind of this pilot and they said they hadn’t seen anything in him that would lead them to believe he was having a mental breakdown of some sort but the ceo kept pounding home the idea that he was a psycho and he brought up a
few other incidents to justify that position the problems involved in this report are typical there are certain definite facts that can be gleaned from it the pilot did see something he did shoot at something but regardless of how much you investigated ultimately it’s something that can never be positively identified it was a ufo the ufo problem cannot be lightly dismissed there are always ifs in ufo reports this is what led major general john sanford the head of air force intelligence to say that a certain
percentage of all these reports come from credible observers of relatively incredible things as a result the air force kept being concerned about them and the air technical intelligence center created a new organization called project blue book project blue book was established in march of 1952 and was headquartered at wright-patterson air force base in ohio and followed projects of a similar nature called project sign which was established in 1947 in project grudge in 1948 the first director of project blue
book was captain e.j rupault project blue book had two goals one to determine if ufos were a threat to national security remember the cold war was just kicking into high gear as the post-world war ii world order was shaking out and their second mission was to scientifically analyze ufo-related data captain rupelt got to work figuring out a process of identifying ufo reports even though two agencies that existed before charged with that very thing when a report came in from a tick the team’s first order of business was to figure
out if there was a logical explanation some reports could be dismissed out of hand some were stamped insufficient data for evaluation and dropped into the dead file others were put into a file marked cp which meant crackpot into this file when all reports from people who had talked to flying saucer crews who had inspected flying saucers that had landed in the united states who had ridden in flying saucers or were members of flying saucer crews reports that couldn’t be quickly discarded went into the next
level of analysis the project blue book team started with some basic questions had other airplanes been flying in the area of the ufo sightings this was especially tricky when you were dealing with black programs in the mid 50s many ufo sightings by civilian pilots were actually top secret airplanes working out of area 51.
civilian pilots would spot the glint of something at 70 000 feet and think there’s no airplane that can fly that high ignorant of the fact that the u2 or the a12 routinely flew at that altitude the other question they’d ask is were there weather balloons in that area especially untethered ones was there a weather phenomenon that could explain a sighting like an inversion layer or a wind eddy or a sun dog or the trick of a light that often accompanies sunset was the sighting actually an astrological event like a meteor or was
it the misidentification of a planet like venus or mars during the two world wars it was documented that many times gunners shot at venus when it was low on the horizon i also admit that i mistook the planet of mars one time while flying in the mediterranean at night for a ufo it was low on the horizon glowing green and red so after i landed i reported that to our intelligence officer he right away knew what i was talking about because others had made the same report and they discovered that we were actually looking at mars so i can
sympathize with those that believe this might be a ufo but at the end of the day there is a root cause that’s explainable if a report couldn’t be solved after that matrix it was labeled as an unknown here’s an example of a military ufo report that project blue book labeled as unknown on july 24 1952 two air force colonels were flying a b-25 from hamilton air force base near san francisco they were headed for colorado springs colorado the day was clear there wasn’t a cloud in the sky at 3 40 p.m they were over the carson
sink area of nevada where one of the kernels noticed three objects ahead of them and a little to their right the objects look like three f-86s flying in a tight v formation in a matter of seconds the three aircraft were close enough to the b-25 to be clearly seen they were not f-86s they were three bright silver delta wing craft with no tails and no pilot canopies the top of each one of the craft had a ridge that ran from the nose to the tail as they passed the three deltas made a slight left bank and shot by the b-25 at
terrific speed which the colonel’s estimated was probably three times that of what an f-86 could do when they landed at colorado springs the colonels called the intelligence people at air defense command headquarters to make a ufo report the air defense command relayed the report to project blue book and an investigation was started immediately flight services which clears all military aircraft was contacted to see if any airplanes had been in the carson sink area at or about 3 40 pm flight services had no record of any
aircraft in the area at that time since the pilots mentioned delta wing aircraft and the navy and the air force both had airplanes that were delta wing the project blue book team contacted the services to see if they had any airplanes in the area the air force said theirs was grounded the navy said they had some that were silver but they were on the east coast the others were blue and they were on the west coast but not anywhere near carson’s sink at that time and since balloons can sometimes have a weird shape the project blue book team
contacted the cognizant authority that controls balloons especially the big research weather balloons and they said they didn’t have any balloons in the area so these were very senior pilots both had command experiences both had served in the pentagon they’d had several classified assignments that put them in a position to recognize any type of airplane they might have seen both men said they had friends who had seen flying saucers and they originally were skeptics but now after this event they both changed their
opinions so most of these sightings occurred among single individuals or small groups but in several cases there were mass sightings in places like lubbock or los angeles these demanded quick answers to avoid the mass hysteria that the government feared would break out as the space race heated up and the conspiracies associated with emerging technologies proliferated among a paranoid populace these are also the cases that project blue book found itself being pressured for substantive findings by the chain of command after
the team originally categorized them as unknown for instance the reason for a mass ufo sighting in lubbock was ultimately blamed on street lights reflecting off a flock of birds and a flying wedge in the skies over los angeles was explained away as a military refueling exercise although the speed of the wedge and the timing of the sightings didn’t line up with that explanation just over a year after project blue book was established the number of unknowns had begun to frustrate the higher echelons of the air
force on the organization’s work under captain rupel additionally the caa also felt that the effort was a distraction and an unnecessary draw on the finite number of resources that needed to be focused on the tangible threat of the soviet union and its proxies famous names started being quoted in major newspapers general hoyt s vandenberg then the chief of staff of the air force had claimed to have seen a flying saucer during world war ii but later said it was just the reflection on the windshield of his b-17 and general
curtis lemay found out that one out of six ufos was a balloon in other words nobody who was anybody in the air force believed in flying saucers so as a result of this increased pressure the caa established a panel headed by dr h.p robertson the robertson panel first met on july 14 1953 in order to formulate a response to the overwhelming public interest in ufos the results of project blue books statistical analysis at that point were about 69 of the cases were judged known or identified 38 percent were considered conclusively identified
while 31 were still doubtfully explained about nine percent fell into insufficient information about 22 were deemed unknown down from the earlier 28 value of the air force studies in the known category 86 percent of the knowns were aircraft balloons or had astronomical explanations only 1.
5 percent of all cases were judged to be psychological or crackpot cases a miscellaneous category comprised eight percent of all cases and included possible hoaxes after spending 12 hours reviewing six years of data the robertson panel concluded that most ufo reports had simple explanations and that all could be explained with further investigation which they deemed not worth the effort in their final report they stressed that low-grade unverifiable ufo reports were overloading intelligence channel with the risk of missing a genuine conventional threat to the u.s
therefore they recommended the air force de-emphasize the subject of ufos and embark on a debunking campaign to lessen public interest captain rupert resigned his commission and his position as head of project blue book in protest as a side note he died seven years later of a heart attack at age 37.
after rupert left project blue book the organization went from being a fact-finding problem-solving body to more or less a body that generated official explanations written by air force public affairs officers as the next 16 years were on the air force’s hopes that sightings would go away by themselves faded and they decided to kill the organization once and for all the decision to discontinue ufo investigations was based on an evaluation of a report prepared by the university of colorado entitled scientific study of unidentified flying
objects the report basically came up with three conclusions one no ufo reported investigated and evaluated by the air force has ever given any indication of threat to our national security two there has been no evidence submitted to or discovered by the air force that sightings categorized as unidentified represent technological developments or principles beyond the range of present day scientific knowledge and three there has been no evidence indicating the sightings categorized as unidentified are extraterrestrial vehicles this
report was informally known as the condon report because the panel was headed by nuclear physicist edward condon project blue book was officially terminated on december 17 1969 with the termination of project blue book the air force regulation establishing and controlling the program for investigating and analyzing ufos was rescinded ultimately the air force explained that the project blue book findings were a result of three things a mild form of mass hysteria individuals who fabricate such reports to perpetuate
a hoax or who seek publicity psychopathological persons and misidentification of various conventional objects but while there had been five different air force officers assigned as the director of project blue book as with many government agencies the corporate knowledge was a civilian in this case an astrophysicist named j allen heineck he started his association with project blue book as an associate member of the robertson panel fully supportive of the panel’s findings but over time he became a harsh critic of
the air force’s approach to the data associated with ufos specifically with respect to project blue book he claimed that neither of the two missions of blue book determining if ufos are a threat to national security and using scientific data gathered by blue book were adequately executed he said the staff of blue book both in numbers and scientific training was grossly inadequate in fact on captain rupert’s watch alone the staff was necked down from 10 to 3.
the blue book had no scientific dialogue between blue book and the outside scientific world that the statistical methods employed by blue book were nothing less than what dr heineck called a travesty that there was a lack of attention to significant ufo cases and too much time was spent on routine cases and on peripheral public relations tasks finally dr heineck said that an impossible load was placed on blue book by the almost consistent failure of ufo officers at local air bases to transmit adequate information so the other thing
that dr heineck did was look at the percentage of unknowns something the air force had used to cancel the program as a reason to continue the program he said as a scientist when you say 20 of something is unsolved that’s a large percentage that is a significant number that requires more investigation in some of his writings he also outlined how a large number of blue book findings were changed from unknown to some definitive ruling in a huge leap of logic like an unknown would be turned into an unrelated
weather phenomenon or the misidentification of a planet dr heineck also came up with the ufo close encounters matrix close encounters the first kind are a sighting close encounters of the second kind the kind that result in some kind of physical outcome like charred ground broken glass or as in the case of the sighting in roswell new mexico alleged pieces of a spacecraft which the government claimed was part of a meteorological balloon but that remains the stuff of ufo conspiracy theories and the last of the close
encounter types is a close encounter of the third kind which is the kind that actually results in interaction between the human species and the aliens if that label sounds familiar it’s because none other than steven spielberg was a huge fan of dr heineck’s work and he made the movie close encounters of the third kind as a result in fact dr heineck has a cameo in the movie dr heineck died of a malignant brain tumor on april 27 1986.
he was 75 years old so fast forward a few decades in april of 2003 the air force came up with a fact sheet called identified flying objects and air force project blue book they review the findings of the common report that i talked about previously including some of the stats versus total reports and number of unknowns and they go on to say since the termination of project blue book nothing has occurred that would support a resumption of ufo investigations by the air force given the current environment of steadily decreasing defense budgets it
is unlikely the air force would become involved in such a costly project in the foreseeable future however in december of 2017 it was disclosed that a new secret ufo study titled the advanced aviation threat identification program atip was funded at over 20 million dollars a year from 2007 2 and then in august of 2021 the existence of atip was hammered into the public consciousness after 60 minutes aired an episode featuring the organization’s director luis elizondo and several super hornet pilots including the skipper of a
squadron who claimed to have encountered ufos during training exercises off of both coasts years earlier super hornet pilots coming forward with ufo reports starts to feel a lot like the characterization that general sanford made almost 60 years prior credible observers of relatively incredible things the public outcry caused congress to distribute two constituents a report from the director of national intelligence that had actually come out a few months earlier the report’s findings have a lot of blue book-esque takeaways like the fact that
the persistent presence of what are now known as uaps for unidentified aerial phenomenon instead of ufos require the existence of a task force with the long-term goal to widen the scope of its work to include additional uap events documented by a broader swath of government personnel and technical systems in its analysis as captain rupaul put it in the final part of his book titled the report on unidentified flying objects regardless of what i say or what the air force says or what anyone says we are stuck with flying saucers no responsible
scientist will argue with the fact that other solar systems may be inhabited and that someday we may meet those people but until that day comes we’re stuck with our space age myth the ufo with that reality in mind let’s take the guidance from the end of the 1951 sci-fi thriller the thing from another world for action i bring you a warning every one of you listening to my voice tell the world tell this to everybody wherever they are watch the skies everywhere keep looking keep watching the sky [Music] all right that’s going to do it for this
episode if you’re a first time viewer please ring the bell and become a subscriber so you don’t miss anything give me the likes and comment check the links below for merch including where to get the punks trilogy my first three novels about life in an f-14 squadron just republished by the naval institute press if you go to usni.
org when you buy the book which i recommend use the discount code punk yt at checkout for 25 percent off if you’d like to help support the channel please consider using the super thanks the heart icon below or become a patron at patreon.com wardcarroll and in the meantime i look forward to talking to you again soon [Music] [Applause] [Music] you