Congress to Hold First Open Hearing About UFOs in 50 Years

Two Pentagon officials will testify at a hearing about UFOs next week.
Image: Getty Images
Motherboard explores UFOs, UFO culture, and the paranormal.

A House subcommittee will hold a hearing next week about UFOs, the first open congressional hearing about UFOs in more than 50 years. 

“Congress hasn’t held a public hearing on unidentified aerial phenomena (UFO’s) in over 50 years,” Andre Carson, a Democrat from Indiana, tweeted Tuesday morning. “That will change next week when I lead a hearing in @HouseIntel on this topic & the national security risk it poses. Americans need to know more about these unexplained occurrences.”

The hearing will be held Tuesday, May 17 in front of a subcommittee of the House Intelligence Committee, which is chaired by California Rep. Adam Schiff. Schiff told the New York Times that the committee is holding the series to explore “one of the great mysteries of our time and to break the cycle of excessive secrecy and speculation with truth and transparency.” Two current Pentagon officials will testify at the hearing.

After the New York Times published an article about the existence of a Pentagon UFO project called the Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program (AATIP) in 2017, government disclosures about UFOs have come repeatedly. Last year, the Pentagon released a report about its UFO program that detailed 143 sightings of aerial objects that could not be explained between the years of 2004 and 2021. That report was considered to be pretty underwhelming because much of the information had previously been disclosed, and a lot of the report simply sought additional funding for the Pentagon. But a classified version of that report was obtained earlier this year by government transparency organization The Black Vault, which appears to have far more interesting details about the potential nature of UFOs.

Since then, Motherboard and other outlets have obtained hundreds of pages of reports and research on futuristic technology funded by the government under the AATIP and a related program called the Advanced Aerospace Weapons System Application Program. The Barack Obama Presidential Library has also said it has thousands of pages of UFO documents.