Surrounded by considerable hype and a lackluster leak, the Pentagon's much anticipated UFO report will be delivered to Congress in June, possibly as early as this week. The report likely will resolve little, but will fuel additional speculation about "what's out there," one Pentagon official told Just the News. The official has not read the report, but has been briefed on some of its contents.
The report was compiled as part of a provision in the $2.3 spending bill signed last year by then-President Donald Trump. The provision required that multiple agencies _ the Office of Naval Intelligence, the Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force, and the FBI _ deliver to Congress a "detailed analysis of unidentified aerial phenomena data and intelligence."
A leaked summary last week in The New York Times reported that U.S. officials found no evidence of alien spacecraft; but also no explanation for the seemingly physics-defying sightings reported over the years by Navy pilots and others. The summary provided scant information besides those sweeping conclusions.
The pending report has brought attention from around the world, prompting both scrutiny and dismissal.
"There is stuff flying in our airspace," Republican Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, one of the senators who pressed for the probe, recently told Fox News. “We don’t know what it is. We need to find out.”
A former Director of National Intelligence, John Ratcliffe, said the report would include information that cannot easily be explained.
"There have been sightings all over the world," he said March 19 on Fox. "And when we talk about sightings, the other thing I will tell you, it’s not just a pilot or just a satellite or some intelligence collection. Usually, we have multiple sensors that are picking up these things."
A Canadian astronaut addressed the topic with skepticism when speaking last month on Canadian Broadcast Corporation Radio.
"Obviously, I've seen countless things in the sky that I don't understand," said Chris Hadfield, who commanded the International Space Station. "But to see something in the sky that you don't understand and then to immediately conclude that it's intelligent life from another solar system is the height of foolishness and lack of logic."
Hadfield remained open to the notion that life exists somewhere else in the universe.
"But definitively up to this point, we have found no evidence of life anywhere except Earth," he said, "and we're looking."
Speculation about intelligent life on other planets has ebbed and peaked over the decades. An object that crashed near Roswell, New Mexico In June, 1947, alternately has been described as a crashed alien spaceship and as a fallen weather balloon. The "Roswell incident" remains controversial to this day, and has brought a steady stream of visitors to the area.
Elsewhere, Swiss author Erich von Daniken in 1968 published a book aiming to prove that ancient astronauts had visited Earth from other planets. That and other books have sold more than 63 million copies, the author has claimed.
The Pentagon's report is expected to be delivered to Congress by June 25. The unclassified document will include a classified annex, officials have said.