The Pentagon Established An Office To Track UFOs. What Could We Learn? : 1A In May, Congress held its first hearing on UFOs in over 50 years.

Now, the Pentagon has created an office to track what they call UAPs, or unidentified aerial phenomena. And NASA has begun its own investigation.

We discuss what's behind Americans' obsession with UFOs and what role can — and should — the government play in tracking them.

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The Pentagon Established An Office To Track UFOs. What Could We Learn?

The Pentagon Established An Office To Track UFOs. What Could We Learn?

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U.S. Deputy Director of Naval Intelligence Scott Bray explains a video of an unidentified aerial phenomena, as he testifies before a House Intelligence Committee subcommittee hearing at the U.S. Capitol on May 17, 2022. Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images hide caption

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Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images

U.S. Deputy Director of Naval Intelligence Scott Bray explains a video of an unidentified aerial phenomena, as he testifies before a House Intelligence Committee subcommittee hearing at the U.S. Capitol on May 17, 2022.

Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images

In May, Congress held its first hearing on UFOs in over 50 years.

Now, the Pentagon has created an office to track what they call UAPs, or unidentified aerial phenomena. And NASA has begun its own investigation.

VICE reports:

The new office is the result of various disclosures of unidentified aerial phenomenon (UAP) by the DoD after lobbying and leaks from groups like Tom Delonge's To the Stars Academy. Credible witnesses, including Navy pilots, have come forward and described their experiences with UFOs. One recent Navy video leaked by a UFO enthusiast and confirmed by the Pentagon showed a UFO apparently disappearing into the water, which may explain the new office's focus on "transmedium" objects—objects that flit between space, the air, and under the water.

Under pressure from Congress and the public, the Pentagon's Director of National Intelligence released a nine-page report on the phenomenon in June of 2021. The report looked at more than 100 sightings and came to few conclusions. "Explaining UAP will require analytic, collection, and resource investment," the DNI said in the report. A year later, it seems Congress has agreed to make that resource investment.

What's behind Americans' obsession with UFOs? And what role can — and should — the government play in tracking them?

Astronomer Seth Shostak, the University of Pennsylvania's Kate Dorsch, and The Washington Post's Shane Harris join us for the conversation.

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