back to article Pentagon confirms footage of three strange craft taken by the Navy are UFOs (no, that doesn't mean they're aliens)

Photos and videos taken by US Navy officers of strange-shaped aircraft streaming across our skies a couple of years ago have been officially labelled as unidentified flying objects by Uncle Sam. The first clip, filmed in night-vision, features a cone-shaped object blinking in the sky across an eerie green sky. In a second …

  1. binaryhermit

    I suspect a lot of "UFOs" are the military testing stuff they can't admit to, like, a lot of em were stealth airplanes in development when that was a thing.

    1. Jurassic_Hermit

      Probably, but not entirely, for example, there’s no apparent human / earthly explanation for the USS Nimitz encounters about 15 years ago when about a dozen objects at 60,000 feet dropped to sea level in 1.5 seconds, according to radar and eyes.

      No shockwave created, no noise. And then they shot back up.

      Regardless of what that was, we’re surely not alone in this vast galaxy of billions of stars let alone the vast universe with billions of galaxies.

      1. Blank Reg Silver badge

        I'm sure we're not alone in the universe, but I'm also sure they've never been here.

        the odds of some other species developing sufficient technology for interstellar travel that also happen to be close enough to get here and also happen to somehow find us and also develop such technology during the same instant in time where we have begun our own technological advancement are just astronomical

        1. DS999 Silver badge

          Sounds like you're assuming all civilizations will destroy themselves

          Why would they have to develop it in the "same instant of time as we begun our own technological advancement"? Do you think there's a time limit on their lifespan, when they will inevitably kill themselves? Even if that's true (and there is zero reason to assume that as a general rule, even if you believe it will be true for humans) they just have to leave their planet (and new planets they go from there) faster than the rate of their civilizations destroying themselves.

          They could have developed interstellar travel a million or even a billion years ago. Imagine if humans developed interstellar travel technology. We don't even need to assume FTL, just "a decent fraction of 'c'". There would be some people who set out to the stars, just like there were people who left Europe and came to America, and the countless earlier migrations of humanity into the unknown.

          Some of the people who settled the new worlds would eventually do the same and continue expanding across the galaxy, just like the descendants of people who came to America went west to new frontiers. Our planet has mostly run out of new frontiers, but it would take a long long long time for our galaxy to run out of new frontiers, especially if we find there are no other spacefaring civilizations who took all the good planets first. If we found any intelligent life that hadn't left their planet yet we'd probably visit and try to learn about them, the same way we study animal life here like meerkats and ants.

          Not saying aliens have definitely been here, but you're stupid if you believe you can conclusively claim they never have.

          1. Schultz
            Boffin

            ...you're stupid if you believe you can conclusively claim they [aliens] never have [been here].

            It may be impossible to prove that something doesn't exist, but that is totally disconnected from the existence of said object/subject. I had those discussion with my kids about dragons, Yeti, and other assorted nonsense. As a grownup and a scientist, my approach is: Don't worry about things that you can't observe (in the strict scientific sense: give me data with 5-sigma confidence). You can talk all you want about aliens, remote sensing, or 5G cancer -- but please don't expect me to care.

            1. DS999 Silver badge

              Re: ...you're stupid if you believe you can conclusively claim they [aliens] never have [been here].

              Aliens are not in remotely the same category as dragons or bigfoot. Neither of those would have advanced technology that could allow them to hide their presence, cannot leave the planet so they have far fewer places to hide, and could not help but leave obvious evidence of their existence like bones and poop.

              Given that it is essentially impossible to imagine we so unique in a universe of nearly infinite size that we are the only beings in the universe to reach space, the question of whether aliens have been here can be simplified to "how long would it take them to get here" and "would they have a reason to come".

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: ...you're stupid if you believe you can conclusively claim they [aliens] never have [been here].

                “Aliens are not in remotely the same category as dragons or bigfoot. Neither of those would have advanced technology that could allow them to hide their presence, cannot leave the planet so they have far fewer places to hide, and could not help but leave obvious evidence of their existence like bones and poop.“

                And how would you know if Bigfoot or dragons possess advanced technology?, maybe the wandering round forests, or burning villages thing is just a hobby? Lmao

        2. Def Silver badge

          ...and also develop such technology during the same instant in time where we have begun our own technological advancement

          Well firstly, if they're here they didn't develop the technology at the same time as us, otherwise we'd also be out there.

          And secondly, if there was another Earth-like planet out there about the same age as ours...

          If their civilisation did arise at around the same time as ours, they'd only need not have organised religion to be 1000 years more advanced than us.

          If their planet didn't waste time messing around with dinosaurs, they could be up to a couple of hundred million years more advanced than us. (And you then get to start asking awkward questions about whether we're just some huge science experiment - in which case you'd expect them to be hanging around to see how things turn out.)

          1. Adair Silver badge

            O dear the old 'organised religion is the bane of progress' trope again.

            It's amazing what conclusions we human beings will leap to on the back of ignorance and prejudice - inside and outside the label of 'organised religion'.

            Actually, what we find is that 'societies' and 'institutions' created and managed by 'human beings' almost always end up being self-serving, defensive and highly resistant to change. Whether said society/institution has a 'religious' component is largely irrelevant. What really matters is the presence of power and wealth, and even without those two catalysts for poor behaviour, human beings in general don't like change and tend to be anxious about anything 'unknown' or 'new'.

            So, please, we need to work at not allowing ourselves to be led by the nose by ignorance and prejudice - whatever label we happen to attach to ourselves, or to others.

            1. unimaginative
              Angel

              You will only get voted down for saying anything good about region here. Its full of simple minded atheists who think saying "sky fairy" is a powerful argument and know nothing about millennia of theological argument, or what followers of religions believe or why.

              In fact, I would go further than you. Religious belief has been a huge help to progress. In particular theistic religions originated the idea of a universe that followed laws, because it was created by a low giving God. There is a reason why theological principles like Occam's razor have become part of scientific thinking.

              Reality as God's creation was also a great incentive to studying science: it was a religious exercise. That is why so many major scientists were clergy: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Catholic_clergy_scientists

              "These churchmen-scientists include Nicolaus Copernicus, Gregor Mendel, Georges Lemaître, Albertus Magnus, Roger Bacon, Pierre Gassendi, Roger Joseph Boscovich, Marin Mersenne, Bernard Bolzano, Francesco Maria Grimaldi, Nicole Oresme, Jean Buridan, Robert Grosseteste, Christopher Clavius, Nicolas Steno, Athanasius Kircher, Giovanni Battista Riccioli, William of Ockham"

              1. Uncle Slacky Silver badge
                FAIL

                > simple minded atheists who think saying "sky fairy" is a powerful argument and know nothing about millennia of theological argument, or what followers of religions believe or why.

                Sounds a lot like the "Courtier's Reply": https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Courtier's_Reply

                1. Adair Silver badge

                  Except that it isn't. Saying 'Sky fairy' is not a powerful argument, and neither is arguing on the basis of obvious ignorance and prejudice, which all too many critics of 'religion' do. Having said that the same could be said about many people who argue against 'atheism'. It is always beneficial, as well as courteous, to have at least a basic understanding of what one is arguing either for or against, but online forums do tend to favour those who are all too willing to put their ignorance and prejudice on public display.

                  1. Uncle Slacky Silver badge
                    Stop

                    I think the point here is that you don't need to be a tailor to discuss whether the emperor has no clothes.

                    1. Adair Silver badge

                      Which is simply a matter of opinion when the person opining obviously has taken little to no time to understand what they are talking about.

                      That 'the Emperor has no clothes' generally depends on the 'Emperor' being what the spectator wants them/it to be, whether that be a complete fabrication or a carefully chosen subset of facts that suit the argument.

                      The starting point is, all too often, "I want the Emperor to be naked' therefore I will come up with an argument that backs up my wishes. There is no attempt to explore reality with an open mind, the mind is closed and the 'facts' must be made to fit - ignorance and prejudice at work, and we see it on all sides, whatever the label, because that is so often the way we human beings work. We aren't actually interested in building bridges, or understanding that which we do not already think we know.

                      Then there are those who have the humility and the maturity to look beyond themselves and begin to work to understand, and in the case of 'religion' discover that they are meeting with people very like themselves. Ignorance and prejudice never help understanding and truth.

                      1. Uncle Slacky Silver badge
                        Thumb Down

                        > There is no attempt to explore reality with an open mind, the mind is closed and the 'facts' must be made to fit - ignorance and prejudice at work

                        More projection than the Cannes film festival! The onus is on the person making a claim ("there is a god/gods") to prove their argument, not for others to disprove it:

                        https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Burden_of_proof#God

                        "The burden of proof lies with whoever is making the assertion. If there's no evidence, either way, it's a matter of faith, or lack thereof. Expressing a personal belief/disbelief in the existence of a certain god/goddess is sound enough, but claiming their opinion is factual or denouncing the opponent's claim as false without any proof supporting one idea or disproving the other is fallacious. While an unfalsifiable claim/hypothesis can be proven neither right nor wrong, it is reasonable to dismiss it as non-factual if it lacks logical supporting evidence."

                        1. Adair Silver badge

                          There you go - 'proof'. Some people demand proof (in the empirical sense) on a matter that that is fundamentally about 'faith', NOT about 'proof'.

                          So, already they are demonstrating a misunderstanding, or a determination to only engage on their terms.

                          It's like walking into a specialist camera shop to buy a professional night vision system and saying to the assistant, "I'm not buying that rubbish."

                          "Why is it rubbish, it's one of the best systems on the market?"

                          "It's not blue."

              2. Def Silver badge

                Funny that you mention Copernicus whose book on heliocentrism, De revolutionibus orbium coelestium, was placed on the Index of Forbidden Books by a decree of the Sacred Congregation of March 5, 1616:

                This Holy Congregation has also learned about the spreading and acceptance by many of the false Pythagorean doctrine, altogether contrary to the Holy Scripture, that the earth moves and the sun is motionless, which is also taught by Nicholaus Copernicus' De revolutionibus orbium coelestium... and by Diego de Zúñiga's In Job ... Therefore, in order that this opinion may not creep any further to the prejudice of Catholic truth, the Congregation has decided that the books by Nicolaus Copernicus [De revolutionibus] and Diego de Zúñiga [In Job] be suspended until corrected.

                The book was "corrected", but never reprinted, and therefore remained withdrawn from circulation for 142 *years*. Galileo himself defended Copernicus' work with the church which ultimately ended up with him being found "vehemently suspect of heresy" and held under house arrest for the remaining nine years of his life. In addition all of Galileo's works (present and future) were banned from publication.

                I would argue that it's not religious belief that has been a huge help to progress but more the absolute control exerted over people at the time and the financial gains that came from that control that allowed the church to fund education and scientific research - but only as long as it didn't contradict religious beliefs or texts. I.e., the church still held absolute control over what was or was not published. And if that's not a prime example of holding back science, I don't know what is.

        3. Pascal Monett Silver badge

          Agreed.

          The Hubble Deep Field survey proved that there is not a pixel of our sky that does not have stars and galaxies by the thousands. Life is certainly out there, somewhere.

          But to think that a species advanced enough to span the stars just happens upon us without giving a formal hello and instead lurking around and kidnapping hillbillies for secret rectal experiments is ludicrous.

          Either they would present themselves, or they would stay the hell clear and put some cloaked satellite surveillance in place to find out when we got sufficiently evolved to receive an official alien diplomatic delegation.

        4. FlamingDeath Silver badge

          “The odds of some other species”

          Ahh the hubris of mankind, still so set on the idea that it is they who are at the centre of everything.

          There are things we know we know

          There are things we know we dont know

          There are things we dont know we dont know

          If you were to put a percentage on the last one, what would it be. How sure are you, of your statistical analysis!

          Exactly...

      2. ThatOne Silver badge
        Alien

        > we’re surely not alone in this vast galaxy

        While I agree with you on that, I'm quite skeptical about the chances some extremely evolved alien civilization made the effort to come here, just to play peekaboo and hide & seek with preferably isolated and if possible untrustworthy eyewitnesses...

        If any aliens made the effort and took the time to come here, they must have had a purpose, whatever it might be (contact us, eat us, whatever), and I can't detect any purpose in those random (but almost always isolated!) sightings for now 60-70 years.

        Last but not least, there are not two of those UFOs looking/behaving alike. If a real alien civilization was behind this, there would be a relative uniformity of vessels, or at least of technology. Right now the descriptions of those vessels are completely random and dissimilar, their only common characteristic is being generally "incredible" and "definitely not from here".

        As about "secret government (whichever government) projects", since those UFOs apparently seem to work so well, they would eventually have become public knowledge, like the F117 or the B-2 "Spirit". You can't keep a lid on such a secret for 60 years, there are engineers maintaining it, pilots flying it, airspace controllers guiding it, officers using it for missions, not to mention the people cleaning the hangar or just bystanders seeing it take off/land...

        I don't pretend to know what it is or isn't, but no explanation I've heard so far stands up to just casual scrutiny.

        1. This post has been deleted by its author

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          If you look at the most technically advanced country on the earth, and others, the sheer amount of killing, wars, lying politicians, best healthcare for the wealthy only in general, and behaviour of people - all to be seen as per our TV transmissions, then any advanced civilisation will not engage with the earth.

          Why would they ? We are dangerous and misuse technology so damned well.

          Any contact will be kept secret, purely because we as a society on this planet, just cannot be trusted. Especially the politicians - their contemptuous behaviour and lies excludes them from being the interface with any advanced civilisation.

          1. unimaginative
            Unhappy

            That assume they are morally advanced enough to both be better than us, and to impose that sort of limitation of themselves.

            I do not see any reason to assume more non-technologically advanced would mean morally superior - otherwise we would have improved in just the sort of behaviour you speak of - although wars are rarer, and murder rates are lower than they were, and developed countries are better than poor countries on all those problems (although causation runs both ways).

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              I would not want to engage with people who are prone to be untrustworthy, and socially under-developed. When we study animals in the wild, we do not interfere with them, so as not to expose our existence.

              It is possible that if we obtained their technology capability, then we could become a problem for them. If we examine the internet, a benign technology in its design, it has been misused in many areas (criminality, abuse etc).

              There are too many examples of the lack of self discipline, and some instances of amazing ignorance, in our society. I think we have a long way to go.

          2. very angry man

            Being that in human history, the first people to go somewhere new, have in general been hiding, looking to steal the wealth, to kill and take over, impose your religion/ politics on others, trade (beads for land),

            And you think that ANY countries politicians are not the first people these individuals would contact?

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              I would say that they are avoiding us, because our politicians are corrupt etc, and they will have seen our behaviour as per our TV transmissions.

              We would not invade other peoples countries now (the west, in general) so we have evolved. Why would they behave as such ?

              If it is land and resources they want, then there is surely many other planets who do not have civilisations on them, so are so much easier for them to take what they want without conflict.

        3. jvf

          Glad to learn that I'm not 'alone' in wondering why there seems to be no similarity in craft descriptions. Either 'Men in Black' is true and we have several different visitors or something else is afoot. Possibility of actual intelligent life in the universe (sadly, not us)? Absolutely! Possibility that they've been here? Iffy.

          1. Def Silver badge
            Facepalm

            Why would there be any similarity in craft descriptions?

            We have thousands of different plane/car/boat/rocket designs. Why would you assume an alien species only has one spaceship design?

            1. Peter2 Silver badge

              All human engineered craft have certain characteristics.

              Cars, vans and HGV's have wheels and are generally vaguely aerodynamic. Boats are pretty much always long and thin to maximise the speed obtained for the energy put into propulsion. Aircraft are pretty much always long and pointy with wings for lift.

              You would reasonably expect to be able to at least identify some common design elements from accounts.

              The problem with UFO sightings is that they are just that; Unidentified Flying Objects and not actually alien spacecraft. They will run the gamut from Chinese lanterns to experimental military aircraft (a flying saucer could plausibly have been somebody making a reasonable description of a frontal or side view of a B2, for instance) to deliberate pranks, and possibly a few actual alien craft in the reports somewhere. The problem is that the latter (if any do actually exist) are going to be so buried under a mass of false positives that you'd never figure it out, especially given that there is some benefit to being able to rubbish people who have spotted a B2 or something more secret by making out that they are fruitcakes.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                A couple of decades ago, on a sunny day halfway up a hill in Devon, I became aware of dazzling objects in the sky, in the far distance. They were moving extremely fast; suddenly stopping; shooting off at impossible (for, say, a fighter jet) angles; stopping again.

                I got my bins, and saw that they were in fact black and white birds, in the middle distance, reflecting the sunlight.

                Ha!

                1. This post has been deleted by its author

            2. ThatOne Silver badge

              > Why would there be any similarity in craft descriptions?

              Because:

              a) As others said, there is a technology underlying which dictates some common characteristics. A truck, a sports car and a golf cart look quite different, but they all move in a similar way, and they all have a number of wheels they roll on.

              b) Those are aliens supposed to have come a long distance to [do something]. They wouldn't have bothered carrying trucks, sports cars and golf carts just to show off, they would only have brought a very limited amount of specialized/optimized vessels/vehicles.

              Think of any martians up there: What have they seen so far? Increasingly big vehicles, all on wheels, all extremely slow, all quite complicated in shape. There definitely is a similarity in technology and behavior from the Roomba™-sized Sojourner to the SUV-sized Perseverance.

              1. FlamingDeath Silver badge

                You do know that time is a dimension?

                You’re like a goldfish buddy

                1. ThatOne Silver badge
                  WTF?

                  > You do know that time is a dimension?

                  > You’re like a goldfish buddy

                  Erm, I'm sure your scathing remark was very scathing, but since you forgot to quote what you're referring to, it just lies there like a non sequitur...

                  *scratches head*

      3. A Non e-mouse Silver badge

        Regardless of what that was, we’re surely not alone in this vast galaxy of billions of stars let alone the vast universe with billions of galaxies.

        The chances of there being other, intelligent life, out there across the cosmos: Very high.

        Chance of us encountering these other civilisations: Zero. (Untill our knowledge of the fundamental laws of physics changes to allow practical interstellar travel)

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Maybe it's just intelligent life looking at the Earth to see if there's any here ...

          Alien1: "I heard that there was evidence but I don't see any"

          Alien2: "No problem, we'll come back and look again later"

          Alien3: "Nothing here, let's just have a little fun and play spacerobatics with the drone again"

          Alien1: "Hmmm, maybe we should check in the first three little dimensions..."

        2. onemark03 Bronze badge

          Chance of us encountering these other civilisations: Zero.

          Or until they simply come and visit us.

      4. Version 1.0 Silver badge

        It might just be Elon Musk testing a beta version of something.

      5. NoneSuch Silver badge
        Thumb Down

        Bloody Russians.

        First there was an airplane gap. Then a missile gap. Then a race to the moon. Then a warhead gap. Now a Russian UFO gap.

        Won't anyone think of the multi-billion dollar aeronautics divisions scraping by on mere billions?

    2. JimboSmith Silver badge

      I suspect a lot of "UFOs" are the military testing stuff they can't admit to, like, a lot of em were stealth airplanes in development when that was a thing.

      I think that was actually a confidential policy in the USA. They hid development and test flights of things like U2, SR71 to Stealth aircraft in this way. If somebody had seen something flying that was in development/top secret they encouraged and occaisionally promoted the idea it was actually a UFO.

    3. StargateSg7

      With regards to the USS Nimitz-based Navy Pilot photos (i.e. the Japan and California ones), since I happen to know a LOT about the specs of the FLIR camera system used (i.e. it was low resolution SDTV quality) i was STILL able to see the pitot tubes and the remote aerial control antennae jutting out the side of the tic-tac ufos. AND based upon the screen information they were only going around 350 knots so it wasn't actually that fast and the quick maneuvers are technically a "false" viewpoint because the motion is RELATIVE to the moving chase aircraft. These are NOT true alien ufos.

      Plus on ONE of them, you can see a still hot fuel door emitting IR and the usually light-red stripes that outline areas where repair and maintenance personnel are NOT supposed to walk on the craft. That grippy sand-paper-like surface changes the infra-red signature slightly so when I ENHANCE the video, I can see those obvious strips and the typical large warning lettering which is NOT Cyrillic or Chinese lettering --- it's blurry but I can tell its block lettering! DEFINITELY NOT an alien craft!

      I am assuming they are cooling the exhaust in some way, so I am guessing the engines are INTERNAL turbofans that jet cooled air to the outside via hidden ports allowing the jetted air to be cool enough that the FLIR camera doesn't see too much -- I still see a small HEAT SHIMMER but its quite reduced compared to a normal turbojet!

      These craft DO NOT HAVE the fancy plasma sheaths, directed EM-based jetting or GWASER-based gravity well creation/evaporation anti-grav propulsion systems! Ergo, NOT ALIEN CRAFT but rather secret drones probably designed at AUTEC which is the Area-51 research facility version created for the US Navy.

      v

      1. Dabooka Silver badge
        Alien

        Well I'm convinced

        I mean how can someone using so many block capitals NOT know what they're talking about.

  2. Winkypop Silver badge
    Alien

    They cross the vastness of interstellar space in technology far beyond our own

    Just to buzz us.

    1. Jurassic_Hermit

      Re: They cross the vastness of interstellar space in technology far beyond our own

      Not just to buzz us, but actually to switch off a nuclear missile silo in the US as verified and reported by the military.

      Watch the recent excellent documentary called The Phenomenon and you’ll learn more beyond just buzzing by these objects, whatever they are, wherever they originate from.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: They cross the vastness of interstellar space in technology far beyond our own

        Are you sure you aren't thinking of John Travolta? ;-)

    2. John Miles

      Re: They cross the vastness of interstellar space in technology far beyond our own

      Probably just some rich kids with nothing to do. Who cruise around looking for planets that haven't made interstellar contact yet and buzz them - Teaser

      1. Mullah Bob

        Bloody Teasers

        I hitched a ride with one once. I wasn't thrilled with the probe but the drinks were amazing. Love those Dentrassis too!

    3. JimboSmith Silver badge

      Re: They cross the vastness of interstellar space in technology far beyond our own

      Not just to buzz us, you've missed the anal probing that people frequently report. Oh Matron!

      1. Winkypop Silver badge
        Coat

        Re: They cross the vastness of interstellar space in technology far beyond our own

        Missed the anal probing?

        Not at all.

        I hear some might even get a "buzz" from that kind of thing....

        1. Marcelo Rodrigues
          Trollface

          Re: They cross the vastness of interstellar space in technology far beyond our own

          "Missed the anal probing?

          Not at all."

          Did You get it, then?

    4. mjmhogg

      Re: They cross the vastness of interstellar space in technology far beyond our own

      Yep ! Buzzing the Military to test our defenses ;)

    5. FlamingDeath Silver badge

      Re: They cross the vastness of interstellar space in technology far beyond our own

      And what do you know of space time, is it really vast?

      I mean, you’re quoting a work of fiction.

      Its humerus, but hardly a valid argument

  3. Conundrum1885

    Something strange

    I once saw an "odd" sparkling object off centre during a very intense thunderstorm.

    From the clear footage it seemed to have a cloaking device that was being affected by the lightning, as it was clearly visible with a plasma "tether"

    Unfortunately its long gone now but it got submitted for analysis with something called "The Nexus Project" thats all I know.

    Might have been regular BL but either the lightning flashes messed with my brain or something strange happened that evening.

    Now what is intriguing, upon recollection of the events of that evening my clock in the car didn't line up with actual time

    but thought nothing of it as the battery wasn't exactly great anyway and had problems with that car if memory serves.

    1. Steve K Silver badge

      Re: Something strange

      Great Scott!! Is that you Marty?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Something strange

      > I once saw

      Me too, when I was 13-14 years old, I saw an inexplicable light in the night sky, and then I saw it again a year later, same day, same place. It was out in the boonies, but the same date made me think it must have been some kind of fireworks display - although it looked like a strange, huge, very bright white flare, it was apparently many miles away, in a direction where there was no settlement or even roads. (Even at the place I was there was no electricity, no phone, no running water, the next human settlement was 1 hour of dirt track in the other direction.)

      What I'm trying to say is there are lots of things out there we can't explain, but the simplest explanation is usually the best. In my case "annual celebration of some kind" is way more likely than "Invasion of the Space Squids"...

      1. Tom 7 Silver badge

        Re: Something strange

        Sounds exactly like the places I used to set of my chemistry experiments which involved vast amounts of ammonium nitrate and diesel fuel amongst other things. What I tend to find about UFOs is the pictures/videos are features you get when you film lights in an out of focus way. Curved cockpits are also brilliant for making things move really quickly across the sky when its merely a reflection of some light on your wrist watch. The thing on the cockpit screen is obviously some overload feature of the system and not outside the plane. Lights in the sky are weird - but that's because we have an atmosphere that laminates and different temperatures means light can be reflected from mile away to give the illusion of things in the sky when its normally a town or traffic mirage or something in peoples heads - you often hear people say they've seen a green flash at sunset and it lit up the whole sky. I've seen one and it dawned on me that the impression you got that the whole sky lit up was because its one of those colours that bounces around inside your eye - you get red eye from a camera flash but peoples eyes seem to reflect green when out and about at night.

    3. Pascal Monett Silver badge

      "regular" ball lightning ?

      I'm not sure there is such a thing.

      Every instance I have read about, the little buggers did something different and unique.

      1. Conundrum1885

        Re: "regular" ball lightning ?

        The term for the type that tend to go into aircraft and houses is the "Navigator"

        Its said that when they go through a keyhole BL can explode with little or no warning, or appear to fizzle out then reappear somewhere else.

        The current consensus is that it may well be a Rydberg cloud or some sort of electromagnetic knot or torus though this shouldn't be possible according to the virial theorem this may need to be revised.

        Also https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S136468262030331X

  4. Jonjonz

    This has been the Pentagons SOP since the 50s to gloss over inadvertent exposure of various secret test craft. Anyone who does not think they are heavily into developing drones now is naïve. Green men is is excuse number 1 when some dolt manages to get a secret test craft observed or recorded publicly, or some idiot officer allows a guncam footage to be seen and duplicated by anyone without a need to know.

  5. Paul Herber Silver badge

    I saw a UFO once, I was walking across a cornfield on a hot bright summer's day and saw a bright dot of light travelling quickly across the sky in front of me, so much faster than any aircraft could fly, and certainly not a satellite, but as I was watching it changed course and the dot of light changed into a bumble bee. Aaaah (no, that's not the sound of the anal probing).

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      "I was walking across a cornfield on a hot bright summer's day"

      Is that you Theresa May?

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Alien

    Simpler Times

    Remember when the only conspiracy nuts we had to deal with were over enthusiastic X-Files fans?

  7. A Non e-mouse Silver badge

    Just because we can't currently explain something, it doesn't mean it's aliens, magic, etc.

    1. Blank Reg Silver badge

      Exactly, that's how we ended up with religion, and we certainly don't need any more of those

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        But when you see the rise of online cults and "belief systems" like QAnon, Flat Earthers and even to some extent the Church of the FSM then maybe there is a deep dark need for the nonsensical in the human psyche ?

        1. First Light Silver badge

          Called "the God-shaped hole in human consciousness."

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Working at it, AC, (-:

      2. Adair Silver badge

        Ignorance & Prejudice 101 in evidence again.

        'Religion' comes in many varieties - rather like human beings. A few 'religions' are plain bonkers, most are means of providing some kind of workable framework for understanding 'life' and enabling people to live together.

        Like most/all human institutions 'religions' are prone to being exploited by people who have selfish agendas. Power over others and wealth are the two most common. You don't need a 'religion' to see these kinds of people in action - they will gravitate towards whatever vehicle is available that serves their selfishness.

        So, 'religion' per se is not a problem to human beings - human beings are the problem. Religion, at its best, works to mitigate the problem, and maybe helps place ourselves in a less self-centred and more constructive world (universe) view.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          "'religion' per se is not a problem to human beings - human beings are the problem"

          True, but religion is especially easy to exploit, being all dogmatic and subjective: When the head honcho says something, it's sacred law and above all questioning.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Quite right, but there are phenomena that can be explained by the use (intentional or otherwise) of magic.

      We've all turned up at someones desk and the problem disappeared for reasons we cannot fathom. Just because we can't control or explain this obviously awesome power, doesn't mean it doesn't exist and that it isn't some form of nerdy magic.

  8. xyz Silver badge

    Look....

    Given that e-world plus e-dog wants my (our) data for no apparent reason other than to be creepy, I for one would welcome an atmospheric leg up to parts distant.

    This super secret, "foreigner" aviation, twaddle has been done to death and between Bigalow, Musk et al, I'd be more than happy to nail my colours to the first saucer outa here.

    Happy weekend tots!

  9. Jan 0 Silver badge
    Black Helicopters

    The most amazing incident, from a UK perspective.

    > They may be linked to an incident where a strange fleet of drones were spotted whizzing near Navy warships around the Channel Islands off the coast of California.

    Were any of the islanders able to comment on how they were transported? Did this have anything to do with mysterious dolmens, or the German underground "fortifications"*?

    * Let me tell you, that's not really a hospital:)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The most amazing incident, from a UK perspective.

      The post is required, and must contain letters.

      must contain letters...

      :))

  10. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

    Can't it be both?

    Obvious explanation: the Russians are Aliens.

    That's why their leader's human suit isn't very convincing

    Have you seen their writing - totally alien

    And their language? You only need 50 different case endings if you have 17 different sexes and a larval stage

    1. TheFifth

      Re: Can't it be both?

      - And their language? You only need 50 different case endings if you have 17 different sexes and a larval stage

      As someone who has been trying to learn Russian for almost 10 years, I completely agree with this statement.

    2. Tail Up

      Re: Can't it be both?

      Nineteen Russians keep their thumbs up for your comment, Yet Another AC. Nineteen is not nine teen, so the expression of the feeling is quite massive and mature.

      (-:

  11. Jonjonz

    SOP pentagon action when some bit of secret kit gets it's photo/video out in the public eye, feign ignorance, and hint that it was little green men.

    As for the real aliens "I want to believe" crowd. In nature the the most advanced species always dominates the less advanced species. In the entirety of history how often does an advanced civilization treat the natives well of land it "discovers" and wants to exploit.

  12. razorfishsl

    and in some small office in the USSR. there are 3 guys laughing thier tits off....

    That their China made drone with LED lighting fucked up a billion $ organization....

  13. Adair Silver badge

    Have you ever noticed

    ... that UFOs occupy the same category of 'outcomes' as 'talking with the dead', i.e. totally nonsensical and banal.

    UFO sightings generally involve 'objects' engaged in random movement, with no logical purpose. They go up, they go down, they zip from side to side, etc. but nothing ever comes of it.

    Now it could be that the 'aliens' have objectives and means that are completely (ahem) alien to our own.

    OTOH, it could be that we are simply misidentifying perfectly natural phenomena.

    Until substantive evidence presents itself I reckon we need to stick with the most simple and obvious answer: we're being scoped out for acquisition by their protein processing factory ships.

  14. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    Thinking of Heavenly Treats and Devilish Delights/ACTive APT Threats in Current Colossal Troubles

    If you look at the most technically advanced country on the earth, and others, the sheer amount of killing, wars, lying politicians, best healthcare for the wealthy only in general, and behaviour of people - all to be seen as per our TV transmissions, then any advanced civilisation will not engage with the earth.

    Why would they ? We are dangerous and misuse technology so damned well.

    Any contact will be kept secret, purely because we as a society on this planet, just cannot be trusted. Especially the politicians - their contemptuous behaviour and lies excludes them from being the interface with any advanced civilisation. .... Anonymous Coward

    Quite so, AC, and the SMARTR Alien Visitor would/could release a series of virulent invisible and intangible plagues with mutable bugs that both destroy and expose to further creative manipulation and remote virtual machine 0day vulnerability exploitation, valuable life and worthless paper tiger assets, should they appear in an AI Solution and prove themselves to be a Primitive Sub-Prime Master Pilot Key for Successful Alienation of Species with Sublime Intervention Services. A Gift of/from/for/to Advanced IntelAIgent Source with Alien Provenance to Exercise?

    And too terrifying for Primitive Prime Time Universal Space MainStreamMedia to contemplate carrying and presenting to the masses, and in so doing, and not so doing, exacerbating and hastening and reinforcing the cataclysmic condition with the convenient bonus delivered with the Perfect Supply of Immaculate Stealth that Vassals and Vessels and Vehicles covered in Ignorance and kept in the Dark provide preternaturally.

    Between a Rock and a Hard Place, Damned if they do, and certainly Right Royally FCUKed if they don't.

    If you had to decide, what would you choose ‽ . To know what is going on all around you, directly effecting you and the future .... or to be left blissfully unaware to remain pig ignorant in the dark whilst everything collapses and/or is crashed and crushed before you, leaving you with nothing but rags of sorrow and grief and threads of anger and resentment for cold comfort?

    Welcome to Planet Earth 2021.

  15. sabroni Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    Nowadays a better name is UAPs

    Unidentified Aerial Phenomena. Most of these incidents do not involve an "object". Say UFO and people think alien space craft.

    1. Mog_X
      Alien

      Re: Nowadays a better name is UAPs

      The flash of light you saw in the sky was not a UFO.

      Swamp gas from a weather balloon was trapped in a thermal pocket and reflected the light from Venus.

  16. Ecoguy

    ALIENS HAVE BEEN ON THIS PLANET AS LONG AS WE HAVE! TECHNOLOGY TAKEN FROM THEM IS UNVEILING THEM NOW!

    1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      Amen to that shaking of the hand that feeds IT, Ecoguy :-)

      ALIENS HAVE BEEN ON THIS PLANET AS LONG AS WE HAVE! TECHNOLOGY TAKEN FROM THEM IS UNVEILING THEM NOW! .... Ecoguy

      To penetrate and dissipate these clouds of darkness, the general mind must be strengthened by education. ..... Thomas Jefferson

      And constant and consistent radically fundamental and revolutionary edutainment doesn't do any lasting harm and is of great help too ....... should you ever find it conveniently made easily available and on offer to switched on situation publications.

  17. ukgnome
    Alien

    Clearly a flock of seagulls

    A flock of alien seagulls that is.

    1. a pressbutton

      Re: Clearly a flock of seagulls

      Weren't they on top of the pops in the 80s?

    2. theloop

      Re: Clearly a flock of seagulls

      singing a Space Age Love Song

  18. tonyyaman

    a lot of them are from the inner earth cos there is loads of them

    1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      The Pharaohs of Yore Sure Knew How to Protect Ancient Secrets from Rogue Use/Primitive Abuse

      a lot of them are from the inner earth cos there is loads of them .... tonyyaman

      Ah Yes, those Secret Chambers. In Quantum Communications, those Spaces in Places Edified by a Monumental Construction to the Powers of Creation and Energy of Realisation ...... Remote ACTive Virtualisation for AudiTeleVisualisation.

      An AWEsome AIdDevelopment Enjoying and Employing Engagements with UKMODified Cyber Sources and Forces Fielding Almighty Special Forces and Immaculate Virgin Source to Mine and Refine ........ Enrich to an Overwhelmingly Accommodative Degree ....... which is pretty close to nothing less than Total Absolute Control in Command and Control of Systems Controllers as to be easily taken with it, and equally easily also, as has surely been the case in the past, so oft been mistaken for it ‽

      One of those new fangled and entangling COSMIC* Top Secret Chambered Weapons you definitely do not want to be Loaded with Devastating Ammunition for AIMing and Firing Directly at You ‽

      Two novel questions to seek official verification on/or discover panicking denial of the fact in those facts from any authority able to speak as reflective of interested officialdom on the matter.

      And one could question which Program does one prefer to see first ..... The Exotic Erotic Eastern Confection or the Wild Wacky Western Delight ‽ That's All the Guidance Needed for Now to be Known.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: The Pharaohs of Yore Sure Knew How to Protect Ancient Secrets from Rogue Use/Primitive Abuse

        well said, amanfromMars, and questioned in due time. choose wisely, as in all times it was, 'cos -

        the road to Astra is aspered heavily, the server is ordering the commanded flesh to rip through it, skin ragged, next will come muscles, then bones.

        be sure that the brain or who is sitting in the Chamber, will be the last fort to hold.

        desperation is the hook of the ray of their weapon, so narrow-beamed, pretty damn well-modulated, with the tao carrier in full power. such wow.

        God bless. the only who cares, as it appears to be.

        every day is like the last one.

        AC, because...

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Longer power...

    The Russian scuba divers holding onto the poles keeping the drones in air must have been knackered keeping them in the air that long.

    1. FlamingDeath Silver badge

      Re: Longer power...

      I’d stay anonymous too if I was that sad at shoehorning

  20. First Light Silver badge

    Time travel

    Bored snotty teenagers from the future breaking the time laws . . .

  21. Francis Boyle Silver badge

    I'll wait

    Those videos from last year have been thoroughly debunked. Turns out, when you're looking at the output of a long-focal-length stabilised tracking camera what you see quite unlike what you would with a naked eye. The correct question in this case is not "what am I seeing" but "how am seeing it". When someone works that out I'll be interested in what they have to say.

  22. steelpillow Silver badge
    Coat

    Disinformation

    Trouble is, almost everybody in the UFO game peddles massive disinformation for their own ends:

    * Fools who believe unreservedly what their eyes and dreams appear to tell them.

    * Pranksters who fake up encounters for the fun of it.

    * Con artists who make a rich living as a professional ufologist.

    * War/spy plane developers who want a distracting cover story to give plausible deniability for their own airspace.

    * Spy plane operators who want a distracting cover story to give plausible deniability for enemy airspace.

    * Paranoid and/or gullible nutters who believe all that shit, just because they can.

    I have met all but the operators.

    The one thing clear to me is that the aliens are past masters at distracting cover stories and created all of the above. But don't think they actually get off their arses and fly here, they just beam it all into our heads for the lulz. Uh, wait, those last two sentences...

    1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      Re: Disinformation

      Strangely enough, steel pillow, is virtually and practically none of all of that, in any form, disinformation.

      Bravo. It is indeed rare to hear such clarity.

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