Congress is considering setting up a permanent UFO investigation office primarily focused on terrestrial threats.
Section 1652 of House Bill HR. 4350, referring to the “Establishment of [an] Office to Address Unidentified Aerial Phenomena,” states: “Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Defense, in coordination with the Director of National Intelligence, shall establish an office within the Office of the Secretary of Defense to carry out, on a Department-wide basis, the mission currently performed by the Unidentified Aerial Phenomenon Task Force as of the date of the enactment of this Act.”
Consumed by more pressing budgetary matters, the House on Wednesday postponed further proceedings on the bill, delaying a final decision.
The House bill and its Senate companion make it clear that the federal government’s interest in UAPs — the official Department of Defense term for UFOs — strictly concerns possible foreign espionage activities rather than extraterrestrials.
On June 25, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence published an unclassified preliminary assessment of UAPs, evaluating a growing number of sightings in recent years as a potential security threat.
Prepared for the congressional intelligence and armed services committees, the document noted that it came in response to a Senate request in the Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021 “to submit an intelligence assessment of the threat posed by unidentified aerial phenomena (UAP) and the progress the Department of Defense Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force (UAPTF) has made in understanding this threat.”
Out of 144 reported incidents of UFOs, the report explained away only one as a weather balloon, leaving the remainder of the sightings unresolved.