On Saturday, The New York Times and Politico independently published stories confirming that the US government had quietly funded a program to study UFOs for years. The Advanced Aviation Threat Identification Program “collected video and audio recordings of reported U.F.O. incidents,” including one of an undated encounter with “an aircraft surrounded by some kind of glowing aura traveling at high speed and rotating as it moves,” the Times wrote. AATIP reportedly started in 2007 to study potential unknown military threats, and was funded by nearly $22 million of Department of Defense “black money”. DoD officials told The Times and Politico that it shut down the program in 2012. But Luis Elizondo, a military intelligence official who ran the research effort, allegedly continued its efforts after that. Elizondo reportedly resigned in protest of the secrecy surrounding the program in October, and he now helps run a startup to research UFOs called the Stars Academy of Arts and Science. “These aircraft … are displaying characteristics that are not currently within the US inventory, nor in any foreign inventory that we’re aware of,” Elizondo told CNN on Monday. “My personal belief is that there’s very compelling evidence that we may nto be alone. Whatever that means.” But Seth Shostak, a senior astronomer at the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) Institute, is not convinced – despite making a bet that we’ll detect aliens within 20 years. “If you see something in the air that you don’t understand, and you’re the guy in charge of the Air Force, you want to know what that is. It doesn’t have much to do with aliens, necessarily,” Shostak told Business Insider of AATIP’s purpose. “But despite more than a half-century of this, the really good evidence that we’re being visited still has failed to surface.” Read More: Business Insider Singapore
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