The existence of aliens is something often discussed by rural farmers on low-budget Netflix specials and by chemically altered people at four in the morning. It’s not typically the subject of the US House of Representatives. On Wednesday, local time, that all changed.
Over two and a half hours, a subcommittee made up of Democratic and Republican representatives heard from and questioned three top-ranking military officials. Two of the officials have claimed to have first-hand experience with extraterrestrial technology. The third, David Grusch, sparked the recent interest in aliens through whistleblower claims of a secret, “multi-decade, UAP crash retrieval and reverse engineering programme.”
“This is huge; this is worldwide”, Representative Tim Burchett said in his opening remarks. Burchett is one of the main lawmakers spearheading the probe into unidentified aerial phenomena or UAPs and government transparency.
“This is an issue of government transparency. We can’t trust a government that does not trust its people,” Burchett continued.
“We’re not bringing little green men or flying saucers into the hearing,” he joked, explaining that the purpose of the hearing was to “get to the facts” and “uncover the coverup.”
Republican Rep. Glenn Grothman, who chaired the hearing, noted that interest in UFOs in the US and across the world has been ongoing for more than 50 years. He even cited the fact the two former US Presidents, Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter, have claimed to have seen them. Although, that’s not technically correct.
Over the following two hours, Grusch, a former UAP officer at the National Reconnaissance Office, Ryan Graves, the Executive Director of Americans for Safe Aerospace, and Retired Commander David Fravor, a Former Commanding Officer in the US Navy, made claim after claim that would, individually, have been jaw-dropping.
Here’s what we learned from the US Congressional hearing on the existence of aliens and what happens next.
The UFO Hearing
The hearing was primarily around the issue of classification of UAP sightings and aimed at understanding how greater transparency can be brought to this issue.
In an almost unheard-of fashion, members from both sides of the House dealt in a bipartisan way with an issue of potentially huge national significance. If the war in Ukraine or the COVID pandemic couldn’t bring Democrats and Republicans together, apparently, aliens can.
What the Committee heard was that encounters with UAPs demonstrating technological advancements, the kinds of which we can’t even begin to comprehend, have been routinely witnessed by credible, highly trained military personnel.
“These sightings are not rare or isolated; they are routine,” said Graves, who has over a decade of military flight experience.
“Military air crew and commercial pilots, trained observers whose lives depend on accurate identification, are frequently witnessing these phenomena”.
Graves said the issue is so common that pilots would discuss the threat of UAP encounters before takeoff. However, with all UAP incidents classified since 2021, and no way to report the incidents without stigma or proper recourse, many events go unmentioned. Graves argues that this is a major national security threat, and the Sub-Committee members seemed to agree.
Grusch is kind of the star of the show. It’s his whistleblowing that has brought all of this to the fore. Under oath, Grusch testified that the US Government is currently in possession of UFOs and that he has passed information on their location to the Inspector General and intelligence committees over an 11-hour debriefing session.
Grusch alleges that the US and sub-contracted agencies of the US Government not only have alien spacecraft but alien beings as well. In an effort to keep these things secret, US agencies and people working on their behalf have intimidated, injured, and possibly killed people.
However, many of the more exacting pieces of information about alien encounters Grush refused to reveal. That information is highly-classified, he said multiple times, and by breaching confidentiality, he could be subject to lengthy jail time. He did state that he and multiple people involved in the reverse engineering of alien spacecraft would be willing got testify in a classified capacity.
In one telling exchange, Fravor was questioned by Representative Nick Langworthy about his experience in seeing a UAP. Fravor is the one in the infamous ‘Tic Tac’ UFO video, declassified in 2020, showing US Navy pilots engaging a fast-moving, Tic Tac-shaped craft of unknown origin in 2004.
“In your belief, is this flying Tic Tac capable of being the product of any other nation on Earth?,” Langowrhty asked Fravor.
“No. Like I said earlier, I think it defies current material science and the ability to develop that much propulsion – I know there’s been some physicists who have done calculations – is beyond anything that we have,” Fravor replied.
“Well, either the United States has an adversary here in this world that we don’t know about, or we really have some serious investigations to do,” Langworthy said.
Apart from a debrief, Fravor said that there was no follow-up on the incident and no interest from his higher-ups.
While there was some scepticism from the associated representatives, most seemed impressed with the credentials and the sincerity of the high-ranking military witnesses.
“The world needs to know that it’s not a joke,” Fravour said.
The Holman Rule
This is the first, but it won’t be the last hearing on UAPs. During the hearing, Grusch promised to provide Representatives with a list of witnesses with first-hand experience who the Committee will look to call during its next hearing.
The hearing comes amidst a flurry of interest in UFOs at the top level of US government. A bipartisan group of Senators, led by House Majority Leader, Chuck Schumer, have already introduced an amendment to a defence bill that would compel US Government agencies to hand over any records of UAP encounters, technology, or other items they might have relating to aliens. “Immediate disclosure” to the public is the expectation.
The above bill signifies that a number of the top political figures in the country are serious enough about the idea that American agencies have UFO-related material that they are willing to write it into law.
Over the past few years, we have seen reports emerge from executive-branch defence departments of the US confirming that there are things in the sky we don’t understand and don’t believe are of human origin. In 2022, another Congressional hearing of top Pentagon officials reported that UAPs “are real” and “need to be investigated.”
In a move that appears to have upped the ante on how seriously the US Government is taking this issue, Representative Andy Ogles said that he would “personally volunteer to initiate the Holman rule against any personnel or any program or any agency that denies access to Congress”.
The Holman Rule gives Congress the power to strip funding from or fire individuals or government agencies that do not comply with their wishes.
This is significant because Grusch claims his whistleblower campaign was sparked after he was denied access to information regarding UFO crash retrieval and reverse engineering, despite holding the requisite security clearance. He has since said that Congress is “being lied to” about the existence of these programmes.
If Ogles does follow through on his threat to use the Holman Rule, it’s expected that whatever evidence or information is out there would be rapidly forthcoming.