New Delhi: The Pentagon on Monday declassified three videos that show US Navy pilots encountering what appear to be unidentified flying objects (UFOs).
One of the videos was taken in November 2004 and the other two in January 2015, the US Department of Defense (DOD) stated on its website.
However, refraining from using the term UFOs, the Pentagon has named these “unidentified aerial phenomena.”
“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 statement added.
The three grainy videos, recorded by infrared cameras, show what the pilots saw during training flights in 2004 and 2015.
All the three videos were previously leaked and have been circulating in the public domain after unauthorised releases in 2007 and 2017. While the Pentagon had last September acknowledged that the videos were indeed Navy videos, the defence department was largely silent on the objects seen.
The Pentagon reasoned that the authorised release of “the unclassified videos does not reveal any sensitive capabilities or systems, and does not impinge on any subsequent investigations of military air space incursions by unidentified aerial phenomena.” However, some believe that the videos show alien UFOs.
Hence, the declassification of the videos has inevitably given rise to more speculations about extra-terrestrial visits to Earth. Former Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid tweets that the release only “scratches the surface of research and materials available”, has only added more fodder for speculations on the internet.
“I’m glad the Pentagon is finally releasing this footage, but it only scratches the surface of research and materials available. The U.S. needs to take a serious, scientific look at this and any potential national security implications. The American people deserve to be informed,” Reid tweeted.
Interestingly, the Pentagon had ran a classified programme, launched at the behest of Reid, to study recordings of aerial encounters with unknown objects. The programme was launched in 2007 and ended in 2012, according to the Pentagon, because they assessed that there were higher priorities that needed funding.
The Pentagon’s move to declassify the videos has got the internet talking and speculating about ‘alien theories’.