For decades, those seeking to uncover the truth behind Unidentified Flying Objects (UFOs), now also referred to as Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAP), have faced considerable hurdles. One such significant barrier has been the government’s historical and seemingly increasing lack of transparency in this area.
Veteran UFO researcher John Greenewald initiated his exploration into the unidentified nearly 27 years ago, employing the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) as his primary tool. His first request unearthed a Defense Intelligence Agency report detailing a peculiar 1976 incident where multiple UFOs caused unprecedented interference with the instrumentation panels of two separate Iranian F-4 Phantom jets.
Driven by curiosity and the advanced capabilities these UFOs exhibited, Greenewald pressed on. His endeavors led him to establish The Black Vault, a website dedicated to exhibiting thousands of government-released UFO documents. These records, dating back to the 1940s, suggest a long-standing and yet unresolved struggle within the U.S. military and government to appropriately identify and communicate about this mysterious phenomenon.
Encouragingly, in December 2017, the veil of secrecy began to lift. Luis Elizondo, a former government intelligence officer, revealed his role in a covert Pentagon UFO study. This revelation, combined with rising political interest and subsequent legislative mandates for UFO research offices and congressional hearings, sparked hopes of greater transparency and public awareness.
However, such hopes for transparency seem to be dwindling. A disappointing development occurred in April 2020 when the Department of the Navy’s “Security Classification Guide” effectively formalized the clandestine nature of UAP investigations. Although some aspects of UAP were categorized as “unclassified,” much of the UAP-related data were marked as classified. The public’s access to this information is now significantly hindered due to considerable redactions in the guide.
Furthermore, the Department of Defense has begun citing exemption (b)(7), known as the “law enforcement” exemption, to deny recent FOIA requests. This move effectively groups all of the Department of Defense’s latest UAP research initiative, the All-domain Anomaly Resolution Office (AARO), under a “law enforcement” categorization. The claim is that releasing the requested UAP/AARO information could potentially “interfere with enforcement proceedings” and reveal law enforcement techniques and procedures.
Despite repeated attempts for clarification, the Pentagon has yet to provide clear responses. This leaves us wondering – why is the veil of secrecy around UAP matters not only enduring but apparently intensifying? While there are no concrete answers to this question today, the quest for truth in this realm is far from over.
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