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How the US Government Wasted $22 Million on UFO Research

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How the US Government Wasted $22 Million on UFO Research
The occasions that UFOs become an issue that roils official Washington are rare enough. However, a considerable number of eyebrows are being raised at a story in the New York Times (1) of a secret defense department study of unidentified flying objects that cost $22 million starting in late 2008 and continuing through 2011. The story is less about aliens and strange things in the sky than it is about pork-barrel politics.




Bigelow Aerospace

In 2007 then Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada had a meeting with Robert Bigelow, a Los Vegas hotel magnate and CEO of aerospace company Bigelow Aerospace.

Bigelow informed Reid, according to the Senator’s account, that some agents of the Defense Intelligence Agency had met with him and expressed an interest in starting a project to study UFOs. One thing led to another and, with the help of two Senate defense appropriators, Sen Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii and Sen. Ted Stevens, R-Alaska, Reid secured funding for Bigelow Aerospace to conduct the study. The funding was obtained without hearings or a floor debate.

The program, called the Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program, was run by Luis Elizondo, an official in military intelligence, deep inside the Pentagon. The Department of Defense portion consisted of gathering accounts of UFO sightings and investigating them. The investigations continued even after funding ran out in 2012. Elizondo has since resigned from his position but claims that the project is still ongoing.

Bigelow Aerospace’s portion of the program consisted of storing materials claimed to have been recovered from UFOs. People who claimed that they had been physically affected by close encounters were examined. Finally, researchers hired by Bigelow interviewed members of the armed forces who claimed to have encountered UFOs.

A number of questions present themselves concerning the project. Bigelow was not only a constituent of Sen. Reid but was also a generous donor to his political campaigns. The spectacle of a secret earmark that was arranged by a Senator to benefit a campaign contributor has a certain odor about it.

Bigelow’s Bias About UFOs

Moreover, Bigelow is a believer in the idea that UFOs are alien spacecraft and that aliens are visiting the Earth on a regular basis. It may seem odd that a scientific study was funded for a man who is emotionally invested in seeing that it yield a particular outcome.

It should be said that, UFO enthusiasms aside, Bigelow (2) is a serious man. He made his fortune in hotels and owns Budget Suites of America. His other company, Bigelow Aerospace, bought the rights to an inflatable space module technology called Transhab from NASA in the 1990s. Since then, Bigelow has refined the technology to such an extent that he claims to be ready to create privately-run space stations in Earth orbit and on the surface of the moon.

A prototype of an inflatable space module is currently attached to the International Space Station and is undergoing testing.

More interesting was the involvement of Harold E. Puthoff (3), an engineer and a former consultant in ESP for the CIA. Puthoff studied the alleged psychic abilities of a number of people, including Uri Geller. Even though Puthoff was convinced that Geller had genuine abilities, it was later proven that he employed ordinary stage magician sleight-of-hand techniques. Many believe that those techniques fooled scientists.

What Puthoff’s role in the Bigelow UFO project was is unclear. However, Puthoff is often the recipient of such UFO-related funding.

No Revelations Yet

The results of the UFO study, if any, are still classified and therefore cannot be evaluated. However, considering that the more extensive and more scientifically rigorous Project Blue Book was not able to ascertain an alien origin for UFOs, one suspects that the modern project reached the same conclusion, despite claims that unknown technology had been discovered.

However, if it ever did come to light that Bigelow has stored materials retrieved from actual alien spacecraft, the news would be history changing.

Elizondo, Puthoff, and another former Defense Department official named Christopher K. Mellon have formed a private UFO study organization called To the Stars Academy of Arts and Science and are currently raising more money to continue their research.

References & Image Credits:
(1) Pentagon UFO Program
(2) NASA Selects Bigelow for ISS Expansion
(3) Wikipedia – Harold Puthoff
(4) URI Geller Spinning Spy Tales

Originally published on TopSecretWriters.com

  • david alpin

    Your tittle and words are so harsh I can almost tell your the type of person who had steam coming out there ears when you hear people talking about ufos when you honestly don’t know just like you try and pick apart the story but your still wondering what if quietly just btw hal puthoff was on coast to coast the other day and he said that he saw the pieces of the metal from ufos that was spoken about he also says people shouldn judge so quickly just bec its outside there comfort zone he talks about how there’s plenty of sceinctific data that once declassified will more than shut up all the people who say there no scientific proof the world is much bigger than you know and contains much that you haven’t gotten the foggiest clue so loose the arrogance and understand that the same way I can’t tell you it’s definitely alien craft the same way you can’t say it’s definitely not you source project blue book but did you read the data 21% unknown 9 more for not enough information when the news told us that even the remaining 3% of unexplained could be explained if there was more data besides lying about it being 3% the statement it self is not possible how can that be if in 9% of unexplained didn’t have enough data and remained listen at unexplained

  • David – Hal Puthoff earns most if not all of his research income from people who believe in aliens. That may not proof he’s a fraud or that he’s intentionally lying but it should cause any reasonable person to realize that he directly or indirectly benefits financially from people believing his story that he “saw pieces of metal from ufos”. True or not, it makes his words have less authority and less believability.

  • Al Parsons

    Hasn’t anyone actually READ the Air Force Project Blue Book? And if anyone is REALLY interested in UFO’s why hasn’t the US government investigated the object known as The Black Knight that has supposedly been orbiting the Earth for years and has (supposedly) even been sighted by NASA astronauts?? Curioser and curioser, eh?

  • david alpin

    Not arguing that it can seem that way but I mean he has to be relevant enough to the government the fact that he has kept a security clearance and has worked on cia dod projects till just recently says enough he was aware and worked on the aatip program but I mainly just brought him up because the author felt the need mention him and it’s always easy to knock someone based on there beliefs rather than just to listen to what he says and let the data speak for it self the problem is people who talk down on this subject usually don’t do the real research instead it’s research by proclamation instead of investigation most people won’t know the difference and if we can’t attack the data attack the people it’s much easier truth is any subject with as much secrecy and lies which I can literally show you how the government gave us wrong information based of there own data to down play time and time again even happening today it makes you wonder what’s going on now I won’t sit here and tell you it’s aliens or wtvr else people tend to think truth is I don’t know you got to focus on one thing at a time first we find out what is it after all these years it’s safe to say it’s some sort of physical craft with unknown origins people say its foreign but how can that be if the reported maneuverability and performance remain the same for over 70 years and we have yet to see any terrestrial technology display such abilities where are they how many wars have we been in surley such advances in black budget aerospace would have been more than beneficial to us listen anything flying in our airspace that we don’t know what it is should be more than enough of a reason to study it if what people like David fravor are saying turn out to be true it can lead to some of the greatest advances in human history surley something tht people should want but for some reason they can’t take the notion with out laughing why is that there’s more to come a story like this won’t be dropped there’s rumors tht the ny times is having a follow up piece don’t judge so quick is all I’m saying that should go for most things in life if at all interested do some reading watch Ben Mezrich’s ted talk there’s much more to this and people need to get exposed to the right information from credible sources

  • Dorothy M Neddermeyer, PhD

    It wasn’t research that was done, it was covering up the FACTS.

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