U.S. military pilots have encountered unidentified flying objects (UFOs) on dozens of occasions and have nearly run into them on at least 11 different occasions, according to a military official who testified before Congress on Tuesday.
On Tuesday, the House Intelligence Committee held the first congressional hearing on UFOs — or Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAPs) as the U.S. military now refers to them — in five decades. The hearing included testimony from Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence Robert Moultrie and Deputy Director of Naval Intelligence Scott Bray. During the hearing, Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi asked Deputy Director of Naval Intelligence Scott Bray if there have ever been any collisions between U.S. military pilots and these UFOs.
“They have not had a collision,” Bray said. “We’ve had at least 11 near misses though.”
Bray further testified that there have been no discernable attempts by these UFOs to communicate with U.S. military pilots or by those pilots to communicate with the UFOs.
“So we don’t even put out an alert saying, you know ‘U.S. – identify yourself, you are within our flight path’ or something like that, we haven’t said anything like that?” Krishnamoorthi asked.
“We have not put out anything like that,” Bray said. “Generally speaking . . . it appears to be something that is unmanned, appears to be something that may or may not be in controlled flight, and so we have not attempted any communication with that.”
Prompted by Krishnamoorthi, Bray also confirmed no U.S. military pilots have discharged any weapons against these UFOs.
When asked if the U.S. military has recovered any UFO parts or wreckage, Bray testified that the Pentagon’s UAP Task Force “doesn’t have any wreckage that isn’t explainable, that isn’t consistent with being of terrestrial origin.”
Bray said “most” UFO encounters are with physical objects but others may be a meteorological phenomenon or some other type of phenomenon that isn’t necessarily tangible to its observers.
“I can say with certainty that a number of these are physical objects,” Bray said.
Other UFO sightings, Bray said, could be a sensor anomaly.
Tuesday’s UFO hearing comes nearly a year after the U.S. Office of the Director of National Intelligence released a UAP report, which provided few answers about these strange aerial phenomena. The report listed 144 documented encounters, with all but one remaining unexplained. The single instance in which a UAP was later explained involved a “large, deflating balloon.” The report established no evidence of any alien spacecraft, but could not rule out that possibility either.
The inability to explain many of these strange sightings has become an issue of increased national security concern. During Tuesday’s hearing, Rep. Andre Carson (D-IN) said, “Unidentified Aerial Phenomena are a potential national security threat and they need to be treated that way.”
“UAPs are unexplained, it’s true. But they are real,” Carson added. “They need to be investigated. And any threats they pose need to be mitigated.”
Moultrie also agreed that these objects “pose potential flight safety and general security risks.”