The upcoming Unidentified Aerial Phenomenon Task Force report, due to arrive in Congress on Friday, signals a religious sea change in America. Meanwhile, the media’s campaign to normalize UFOs is seeding our minds with alien life forms.
As such, we are witnessing a fringe mythology rise up from moldy basements to explode across the prestige press.
The psychologist Carl Jung wrote in 1957, at a time when “flying saucers” were being spotted all over the planet, “We have here a golden opportunity of seeing how a legend is formed, and how in a difficult and dark time for humanity a miraculous tale grows up of an attempted intervention by extra-terrestrial ‘heavenly’ powers.” Half a century later, these celestial entities have hit the big time.
On June 8, the former director of the U.S. government’s latest, no-longer-secret UFO program, Luis Elizondo, told the Washington Post he’s convinced these aerial phenomena are “beyond next generation technology…50 to 1,000 years ahead of us.” Naturally, he postulated extraterrestrials. But it only got weirder from there. “This could be something that is extra hyper dimensional,” he speculated, “in a quantum physics sense. We know that the universe is full of shortcuts and loopholes.”
Heavenly beings from the great beyond? Sounds eerily familiar.
This relentless messaging is comparable to CIA operatives going on national television to announce that Catholic relics really do possess spiritual powers, or that Hindu idols are literal windows to the gods. The only difference is that Luis Elizondo, along with numerous former intelligence agents, are bolstering a materialist, tech-obsessed worldview. If there are no deities up in heaven, that means human beings are the smartest entities in the universe—unless we’re not alone.
In recent years, the idea of god-like aliens has taken possession of the American psyche.
A 2019 Gallup poll found that “33% of U.S. adults believe that some UFO sightings [are] alien spacecraft visiting Earth from other planets or galaxies.” To put that in context, Evangelical Protestants are only twenty-five percent of the U.S. population. Catholics make up only twenty percent.
In a nation where a quarter of the population reject organized religion, there’s a huge spiritual vacuum waiting to be filled. That empty vessel is now swarming with gray aliens, Enochian angels, and demonic tricksters, all sloshing around a postmodern punch bowl of cherry-picked deities.
Weaving a Modern Myth.
Following her best-selling book on UFOs, HuffPost writer Leslie Kean unleashed the 2017 hit Surviving Death: A Journalist Investigates Evidence for an Afterlife. In it, she describes various paranormal activities as being real, from séances to psychic powers. In a reverential blurb, New York Times reporter Ralph Blumenthal gushed like a town drunk at a tent revival: “Leslie Kean is our Orpheus, descending into the Netherworld to grapple with the most ancient of mysteries.”
Coincidentally, a dot-connecting Vox article explains that Kean and Blumenthal are the informants behind the current wave of mainstream UFO reporting. It all began with a front-page New York Times exposé, published in December of 2017, which revealed the existence of the Defense Department’s Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program (AATIP), led by Luis Elizondo. Two years later, the Pentagon ended its 70-year policy of UFO denial and confirmed that three recent Navy videos—dubbed TICTAC, GIMBLE, and GOFAST—are authentic and unexplained. A few weeks ago, after hoisting rainbow flags for Pride Month, the Pentagon upped the ante, stating that these purported vehicles are definitely not the product of secret U.S. technology.
If the infrared images are of actual aircraft ripping across the sky at impossible speeds, there can only be two explanations. They’re either piloted by non-human beings or some superior foreign power. If the latter proves to be true, we should all learn Russian or Chinese to curse our new conquerors, because we’re living on borrowed time.
There are good reasons to suspect ETs over the CCP, though. In my recent conversation with physicist Kevin Knuth, professor at the University of Albany and a former NASA scientist, he expressed serious doubts that any foreign government could pull it off. Additionally, he said popular attempts at debunking these videos ignore the wider context.
The most compelling incidents, he explained, have eyewitness accounts from multiple expert fighter pilots, as well as radar, infrared, and gun-camera imaging. Knuth’s 2019 paper “Estimating Flight Characteristics of Anomalous Unidentified Aerial Vehicles” describes maneuvers that would be unthinkable with any known technology. When I asked if his analysis serves as proof of alien starships, Knuth replied:
“At this point, we don’t have enough data to conclusively rule out all the hypotheses. But from the eyewitness reports and radar returns, some of these things appear to be craft. In the case of the USS Nimitz encounter, the objects were well-observed by at least six pilots and they all described the same thing—a TicTac-shaped object with white protrusions on the bottom.”
This is in addition to radar detection and the widely publicized infrared imaging.
“So in some of these cases,” he continued, “we can say pretty reasonably that some of these objects are craft. And some of them have exhibited anomalous accelerations—well over 100g. If you were able to perform that acceleration in space, and maintain it for any period of time, it wouldn’t take you very long to get up to a reasonable fraction of the speed of light. So I think it’s reasonable to consider that they could be spacecraft.”
I’m no rocket scientist, so Knuth’s explanation sounds plausible to my layman ears. But what if they’re not spacecraft at all?
Liberal Fruitcakes from Space.
In his paper, Knuth touches on the possibility that these UFO reports are just a series of elaborate fabrications. If that’s the case, the current wall-to-wall publicity campaign can only be interpreted as a sinister psychological operation. And really, it wouldn’t be out of character.
For over a year the dishonest media has actively covered up the probable lab-origins of COVID-19. This is the same media that refuses to name the perpetrators behind the recent wave of anti-Asian hate crimes, while simultaneously repeating the phrase “deadly insurrection” like it’s a magic spell.
So why wouldn’t they lie about UFOs, too?
Given the media’s routine parroting of federal agencies, they’ve either been lying for the last 70 years by ridiculing the lived experience of UFO spotters, or they’re lying now to disseminate the idea of otherworldly superpowers.
Down here on Earth, the reality of extraterrestrial visitors or inter-dimensional invaders may be irrelevant—especially in terms of religious culture. Until little green men convene with the gray alien currently occupying the Oval Office, what matters most is narrative control.
Are these higher powers depicted as friends or foes? Do they shut down our nuclear sites to avert a planetary holocaust, or to disable our defenses? Is their mission to probe our minds—and if so, why do so many abductees claim they’re approaching the task from the wrong end?
Should we pray to God these aliens aren’t real, or bow down to the aliens as if they were?
Truth or fallacy aside, whoever convinces the public they have the right answers will harness the cultural power of this alien narrative. In what looks like a coordinated effort, John Podesta, Harry Reid, Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Leslie Kean, and Ralph Blumenthal have all stepped into a spotlight beaming down from some distant flying saucer. On the whole, their prophetic message is that we are not alone in the universe, and there is nothing to fear.
While a few voices on the right are questioning all of this, the left is steadily crafting a mythos around UFOs. I’m not particularly afraid of aliens, but I’m plenty worried about where this story is going. It’s like fleet of flying saucers has crashed into the crumbling foundations of our ancient temples, and gender-fluid aliens are emerging from the debris.