"Over 30 years’ worth of UFO data, documents, information, files, and reports were recently released to the public by the CIA. What can we confirm, connect, or conspire from the thousands of pages that were previously kept from the public? There are many opinions on the matter, but the real question is: Do you believe in Aliens? -- Isabella Schainker, 7th Grade
Over 30 years worth of UFO reports, sightings, files, and documents were declassified by the CIA (Central Intelligence Agency) due to the demand of the public, and a claim against the “Freedom of Information Act.” The information was originally posted onto “The Black Vault”, which calls itself a truth-seeking website, where people sent and compiled hundreds of requests to the CIA. The Black Vault first collected the files and posted them publicly to their website where they can be viewed and downloaded. The files are significantly redacted with black sharpie covering any and all names and locations of the reports. This makes the files difficult to fully understand, but many think that this might be on purpose.
A simple way to get your hands on thousands of informational pages of text is through NSA-CSS, where they have many, if not all, of the files organized by category. The pages are heavily redacted, covering several parts of each page, but the text that is available is still quite interesting for believers of the supernatural or otherwise. The pages reveal incidents ranging from high-speed movement and pulsating lights, to disappearing from sight. Many abnormalities are all written down in pdfs, then split into groups alphabetically.
Why were the files released?
Due to the Freedom of Information Act, enacted in 1966, the CIA was no longer permitted to keep public, demanded documents, such as UFO information, under wraps. Although the act was nearly 60 years ago, the question still remains: Why were the files only recently released? According to The Guardian, information on UFOs, or as the US government calls them, Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAP), seems to have recaught the attention of lawmakers in Congress. The government funding bill, which was passed at the end of December by Congress, including the $900 billion coronavirus stimulus, instructed the director of National Intelligence and secretary of defense to release a report on UAPs in six months’ time. Somehow, the UFO info had slipped past The Freedom of Information Act without fully being publicized. Once finally declassified, the files were labeled as the “UFO Document Index.”
Can we connect anything from the files to Area 51?
Although the massive data dump holds many valuable pieces of UFO-related information, there aren’t many connections that link the reports to Area 51. The idea that Area 51 or even UFOs are connected to aliens is hypothetical on its own. With that in mind, the secret base of Area 51 has only directly been connected to aliens through conspiracies and theories of the supernatural. It is hard to deny that the delayed release of the UFO documents is strange and the theory of aliens themselves is completely possible. Nevertheless, the documents couldn’t be tied to Area 51 in any significant way, based on minimal research. Still, that doesn’t mean they are not in any way connected to one another.
Why are the files so significantly redacted?
The files were released due to orders of law, according to NSA-CSS, so it’s unclear for right now. It was mandated that this information was cleared to the public, but I can assume that they covered specific locations, titles, and names to protect the privacy and security of the reports and incidents. Under or near each listed incident, there is a repetitive parenthesized quote that states (probably a balloon) or (probably balloons). This could be a disclaimer for the believers of the supernatural that this occurrence of unidentified objects in the air is not out of the ordinary. But, that brings up the question of why they did not share these wanted documents sooner rather than wait three decades. That is, if they really had nothing to hide.
Other Articles and Opinions
There have been over 2,700 pages worth of UFO-related documents that have been kept with the government rather than available to the peering eyes of the public. Although it may be biased, unreasonable, and opinionated, the file of “UFO Hypothesis” shares procedures, ideas, and contradictory beliefs from 1968 that could have been used to steer people from jumping to unwanted conclusions. A 1988 newspaper article has opinions of believers and underlined information linked to specific importance to governmental agencies. The newspaper pages are titled “The Government and UFOs” compiled by the Airforce and written by multiple sources from different backgrounds and biases. These documents can let us peer into the thoughts and minds of people directly or indirectly involved with the UAP and or UFO files.