We received a tip on our Open Minds Twitter that the United Kingdom’s Ministry of Defence (MOD) had stopped taking UFO reports. The tip included a link to their site. Sure enough, this statement was posted:
“How to report a UFO sighting
The MOD has no opinion on the existence or otherwise of extra-terrestrial life. However, in over fifty years, no UFO report has revealed any evidence of a potential threat to the United Kingdom.
The MOD has no specific capability for identifying the nature of such sightings. There is no Defence benefit in such investigation and it would be an inappropriate use of defence resources. Furthermore, responding to reported UFO sightings diverts MOD resources from tasks that are relevant to Defence.
Accordingly, and in order to make best use of Defence resources, we have decided that from the 1 December 2009 the dedicated UFO hotline answer-phone service and e-mail address will be withdrawn. MOD will no longer respond to reported UFO sightings or investigate them. The ongoing programme to release Departmental files on UFO matters to the National Archive will continue.”
I immediately contacted the internationally known expert, Nick Pope, who served with the MOD as the official point of contact and investigator of UFO reports as part of a government project between 1991 and 1994. He has been on American TV often recently regarding British files that have been released regarding UFOs. He wrote me back this note:
“With effect from December 1, 2009, the UK Ministry of Defense terminated its UFO project, ending over 50 years of research and investigation into the phenomenon.
The news was slipped out in a way designed not to attract attention, by making an amendment to an existing document in the Freedom of Information section of the MoD website, entitled “How to report a UFO sighting”. The announcement states that “in over fifty years, no UFO report has revealed any evidence of a potential threat to the United Kingdom” and goes on to say that “MoD will no longer respond to reported UFO sightings or investigate them”:
Having worked on the UFO project from 1991 to 1994 I am sorry to see MoD disengage in this way. I believe that where evidence suggests that UK airspace has been penetrated by an unidentified object, this must automatically be of defense interest and should be investigated properly. Indeed, I am sure that as is almost certainly the case in the US, sightings from pilots and uncorrelated targets tracked on radar will continue to be looked at by someone, albeit outside of a formally constituted UFO project.
From the Fifties to the present day, MoD received around 12,000 UFO reports. While most were misidentifications of ordinary objects and phenomena, around 5% remained unexplained.”
It is certainly peculiar that the Ministry of Defence began releasing UFO documents en masse last year, which have included reports from credible witnesses, such as military personnel, police officers, radar operators, University professors, and others, and then subtly cancel their investigations into a subject that should obviously be of concern.