The United States Pentagon is a secretive place by nature, but every once in a while, the public gets a little peek behind closed doors.
After years of speculation, defence officials have now declassified and released three grainy videos from the Navy that have been circulating online for a while now, causing all sorts of speculation.
The mysterious footage was captured using infrared cameras in November 2004 and January 2015, and leaked to the public a few years ago.
To this day, even with a flurry of internet speculation, no one can say for sure what these videos actually depict. In one, a pilot can be heard saying, “What the f–k is that?” as a strange object whizzes over the ocean.
In another, a spindle-shaped thingamabob can be seen rotating.
“It’s a f—ing drone, bro,” the pilot says to his colleague.
“My gosh! They’re all going against the wind,” another comments.
As far as the Pentagon is concerned, these fast-flying mysterious objects are “unidentified aerial phenomena”, more popularly known as UFOs.
Of course, as surely we shouldn’t have to repeat by now, seeing a UFO doesn’t point to the existence of alien vehicles operated by another life form. That’s just a technical way of saying: we don’t know what that was ¯_(ツ)_/¯
Last September, after fielding many, many questions from the public, the US Navy admitted these videos were real, although for some that still wasn’t enough.
Now, after a thorough review, defence officials have decided to share the original videos after deeming that they held no classified information.
“DOD is releasing the videos in order to clear up any misconceptions by the public on whether or not the footage that has been circulating was real, or whether or not there is more to the videos,” the US Department of Defence said in a statement.
“The aerial phenomena observed in the videos remain characterised as ‘unidentified’.”
But that characterisation is not for a lack of trying. For five years, from 2008 through 2011, the Pentagon had a top-secret program investigating UFOs and the potential threats they could pose to aircraft and other aerial activities.
The former head of this program actually resigned because of opposition to funding and government secrecy.
Since then, he’s made it very clear he personally believes there’s “compelling evidence” we may not be alone, joining the company To the Stars Academy of Arts and Sciences, which was co-founded by former Blink-182 musician Tom DeLonge and which first released these videos.
What a small, strange world we live in.