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The May 2022 Congressional Hearing on UFOs

May 18, 2022 Jason McClellan

On Tuesday, May 17, the House Intelligence Counterterrorism, Counterintelligence, and Counterproliferation Subcommittee held the first congressional hearing on the topic of UFOs in more than 50 years.

This public hearing was preceded and prompted by a July 2021 U.S. government UFO report from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2022, the establishment of the Pentagon’s Airborne Object Identification and Management Synchronization Group (AOIMSG) as the successor to the U.S. Navy’s Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force, and, of course, considerable lobbying efforts. 

Congressman Andre Carson chaired the hearing, at which Ronald Moultrie, undersecretary of defense for intelligence and security, and Scott Bray, deputy director of naval intelligence, provided information to the subcommittee and the public.

Adam Schiff, chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, said in his opening remarks:

“UAP reports have been around for decades, and yet we haven’t had an orderly way for them to be reported, without stigma and to be investigated, that needs to change. UAP reports need to be understood as a national security matter. And that message needs to go out across DOD, the IC and the whole US government. “

UFO shown in a video during the hearing.
AI enhanced still image from the video released at the hearing. Credit: Department of Defense

Here are some notable nuggets that emerged during the hearing:

  • The government’s current UFO effort apparently has a database now that contains more than 400 incidents.
  • Both members of Congress and the witnesses present emphasized the importance of, and desire to, eliminate the historical stigma associated with UFOs to encourage service members to report UFO incidents.
  • The DoD’s efforts over the past two years has resulted in increased reporting.
  • The DoD wants to bring “an all hands on deck approach to better understand this phenomenon.”
  • A UFO video captured by an aviator (see photo above) was shown to demonstrate the limited data associated with most reports.
  • “Pyramid” UFOs publicized in 2021 (see photo below) were determined to be unmanned aerial systems, and the triangle shape was simply the result of “light passing through the night vision goggles, and then being recorded by an SLR camera.”
  • The witnesses testified that they have no material “that would suggest it’s anything non terrestrial in origin.”
  • Representative Mike Gallagher asked the witnesses if they were familiar with the 1967 Malmstrom UFO incident. They were not. He also asked if they were familiar with the controversial Wilson-Davis memo.  They were not. So Gallagher had the memo added to the Congressional record.

Scott Bray expressed understanding at the public’s frustration when it comes to the DoD and UFO information. He explained, “I want immediate explanations for this as much as anyone else. However, understanding can take significant time and effort. It’s why we’ve endeavored to concentrate on this data driven process to drive fact based results.” He continued, “And, given the nature of our business, national defense, we’ve had to sometimes be less forthcoming with information and open forums than many would hope.” 

The "pyramid" UFO shown in a video during the hearing.
Still image from the “pyramid” UFO video shown at the hearing. Credit: Department of Defense

You can watch the full hearing below, or read a full transcript of the hearing over at The Debrief.

Jason McClellan

Jason McClellan is an author, podcaster, TV personality, veteran UFO researcher & journalist, bourbon enthusiast, ska and punk devotee, vegan, and animal lover. You might have seen him on NatGeo, Syfy, History, Netflix, Amazon Prime, Discovery+, the CW, or at conferences and conventions talking about UFOs.