A former Pentagon intelligence official testified Wednesday that he was “absolutely” certain the government had possession of nonhuman craft.
David Grusch, a former Air Force officer, said during a House Oversight Committee hearing that his information was based on interviews with 40 witnesses and that he knew where the material was being held. Grusch added that nonhuman “biologics” were recovered along with the craft.
Who is David Grusch?
Grusch initially made the claims last month before adding the information about pilots in a NewsNation interview. He was an intelligence officer for the Air Force and eventually joined the task force looking into unidentified anomalous phenomena, or UAP, the military’s preferred term for UFOs. He said he became a whistleblower in May 2022 after he received a number of concerning reports that the government was acting with secrecy and without congressional oversight with regard to UAP.
A Pentagon spokesperson strenuously denied Grusch’s initial claims, saying they have “not discovered any verifiable information to substantiate claims that any programs regarding the possession or reverse-engineering of extraterrestrial materials have existed in the past or exist currently.”
Grusch said he feared for his life and had faced professional and personal consequences from the government for speaking out, noting there was an ongoing whistleblower retaliation investigation into his treatment. He said he believed that the government first became aware of nonhuman technology in the 1930s and that there had been a “multi-decade campaign to disenfranchise public interest.”
The former intelligence officer said he had not seen any nonhuman bodies personally and responded to many questions by stating that he could not discuss details in an open forum but could brief legislators in private.
The hearing was the second public congressional panel this year on UAP. Rep. Tim Burchett, R-Tenn., was a major proponent of the hearing and said that other members of Congress had told him privately about their own UFO experiences.
'We're saying that there's something our pilots are seeing'
Other witnesses at the hearing were Ryan Graves, a former Navy pilot who said he encountered numerous unexplained flying objects while flying near Virginia Beach, Va., and David Fravor, another retired Navy pilot who says he encountered UAP near the coast of San Diego.
“As we convene here, UAP are in our airspace, but they are grossly underreported,” Graves said. “Sightings are not rare or isolated.”
The pilots said the movements taken by the observed craft would be impossible with the current known technological limitations. They added that humans would not be able to survive the level of acceleration that occurred and that if the crafts had attacked, they would not have been able to defend themselves or their crew.
Graves said that since his initial reporting, he’d learned that pilots had similar encounters everywhere the Navy was operating. Fravor, asked about how he rationalized what he’d seen, said he wasn’t a “UFO fanatic,” but “I will tell you that what we saw with four sets of eyes over a five-minute period, still there's nothing we have nothing close to it. It was amazing to see. I told my buddy I wanted to fly it, but it's just an incredible technology.”
Graves said that commercial airlines are not taking the threat seriously at all and that pilots are worried their careers will be negatively affected by reporting them, as well as noting the lack of a system for reporting through the Federal Aviation Administration.
The pilots added that the military reporting process needs to be streamlined, with Graves saying that, in his personal estimate, only 5% of UAP sightings were reported.
Last week at a White House briefing, John Kirby, a retired Navy admiral and the current Pentagon spokesperson, said that UAP “have already had an impact on our training ranges.”
“Now, we’re not saying what they are or what they’re not,” Kirby said. “We’re saying that there’s something our pilots are seeing. We’re saying it has had an effect on some of our training operations. And so we want to get to the bottom of it. We want to understand it better.”
Long history of UFO investigations
At a Senate Armed Services hearing in April, the head of the office formed by the Pentagon last year to investigate unexplained phenomena said it had “found no credible evidence thus far of extraterrestrial activity, off-world technology or objects that defy the known laws of physics.”
The interest in UFOs has been bipartisan and active in both chambers of Congress. A group of senators led by Majority Leader Chuck Schumer are attempting to include an amendment in the annual defense appropriations bill that would require UFO records to be made public. Last year, Democrats in the House held the first public hearing on the topic in more than 50 years.
The military has had an interest in UFOs since at least the 1940s. In 1952, the Air Force set up Project Blue Book, a classified program that counted more than 12,000 UFO sightings over its 17-year existence, with hundreds still unexplained.
Then-Rep. Gerald Ford wrote to two fellow congressmen in 1966 to “strongly recommend that there be a committee investigation of the UFO phenomena.” In 2017, the New York Times published a story about how Democratic former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid had pushed for funding to investigate unexplained aerial sightings from 2007 to 2012.