Sean Kirkpatrick, who heads the Defense Department’s All-Domain Anomaly Office, briefed the Senate Wednesday.
The Pentagon’s chief UFO expert told Senate lawmakers Wednesday that his new office—stood up last year to track a growing number of unidentified aerial phenomena—has not yet seen irrefutable evidence of alien activity or technology.
“In our research, the [Defense Department’s All-Domain Anomaly Resolution Office] has found no credible evidence thus far of extraterrestrial activity, off-world technology or objects that defy the known laws of physics,” Kirkpatrick told the Senate Subcommittee on Emerging Threats and Capabilities.
Kirkpatrick went on to say that if his office found irrefutable evidence of extraterrestrial life or technology, his office would notify NASA and quickly inform government leadership.
“In the event sufficient scientific data were ever obtained that a UAP encountered can only be explained by extraterrestrial origin, we are committed to working with our interagency partners at NASA to appropriately inform government leadership of its findings,” Kirkpatrick said.
Kirkpatrick has a Ph.D. in physics and is a longtime intelligence professional with decades of experience across numerous intelligence agencies. He recently generated headlines by co-authoring a draft paper with Harvard professor Avi Loeb that posited that some of the UAPs the Pentagon is currently studying could be “extraterrestrial technological probes” sent from a parent mothership.
In several exchanges with lawmakers, Kirkpatrick carefully chose his words, rarely offering unequivocal answers and emphasizing the importance placed on the AARO office to scientifically study these unknown events. One certainty, however, is the growing number of UAP-related incidents the AARO office is tracking—an issue raised by subcommittee chairwoman, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y.
“As of this week, we are tracking a total of over 650 cases,” said Kirkpatrick, up from approximately 366 studied during the last report issued to Congress. “We prioritize about half of them to be anomalous.”
Commenting on particularly unique cases reviewed by AARO, Kirkpatrick said “single percentages” of all unexplained cases “are showing some short of advanced technical signature.”
“I am concerned about what that nexus is,” Kirkpatrick said. “I have indicators that some are related to foreign intelligence capabilities, but we have to investigate that with our [intelligence community] partners.”
Kirkpatrick told senators that China—and to a lesser extent, Russia—”are on par or ahead of us in some areas” of technological development, suggesting those countries are “less risk averse” at technical advancement than the United States.
“They are willing to try things and see if they work,” Kirkpatrick said.
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