MYSTERY WIRE — As the world waits to see if Congress gets a requested report on UFOs from its intelligence agencies, we’re looking back at another time the government has released data about UFOs.

In 1960 the government was releasing public statements on UFO sightings. This was while the government was still conducting Project Blue Book, the code name for the Air Force study of unidentified flying objects. Blue Book officially ran from March 1952 to December 17, 1969.

In one release dated July 21, 1960 titled “Fact Sheet / Air Force UFO Report” it describes more than 170 documented UFO sightings between Jan. 1 to June 30, 1960.

At the time of this release 139 of the sightings had been analyzed. Of those 139 reports, 37 were categorized “Insufficient Evidence” mainly because there was only one witness.

The document explains away some of the sightings due to “excessive meteor activity” and that Venus was brighter than normal in the night sky.

The document then continues to lay out some numerical statistics before dedicating three pages to explaining why many of the sightings can be easily explained. It does, however, credit Dr. J. Allen Hynek with improving the investigation, analysis, and evaluation of the reports.

As far as explaining the sightings, the government writes about more than 4,000 scientific balloons being released each day in the United States. It states these balloons can be anywhere from 4 feet in diameter to 200 feet in diameter and can look even larger when seen near sunrise and sunset because of “the slant rays of the sun upon the balloon surfaces.”

It also describes how planes often fly in V-shaped formations leading to people seeing what appears to be a larger craft in the sky.

At the end of the fourth page is where it states that “Air Force conclusions for the thirteen years of UFO sightings involving over 6,500 reports” show no evidence that any of the unidentified sightings “are a threat to the security of the country.” This is opposite of the current sentiment being given by Senator Marco Rubio who has repeatedly said that unidentified craft being seen do present a threat to national security.

Finally, the government lays out its case against anyone or any group claiming to have physical debris from a UFO crash. It says when asked to provide the proof, the groups provide nothing.

Just over the last week, former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said to the New Yorker magazine, “I was told for decades that Lockheed had some of these retrieved materials.” “And I tried to get, as I recall, a classified approval by the Pentagon to have me go look at the stuff. They would not approve that. I don’t know what all the numbers were, what kind of classification it was, but they would not give that to me.”

Since Project Blue Book ended there have been three confirmed government-funded programs and studies including:

  • AAWSAP — Advanced Aerospace Weapons Special Application Program
  • AATIP — Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program
  • UAPTF  — Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force

Recently the man at the center of the UFO disclosure discussion has been Lue Elizondo. Elizondo is a primary reason we know about AATIP and Harry Reid’s role in funding the program which was exposed by the New York Times in December 2017. He’s also the man who got former U.S. Navy Cmdr. David Fravor to tell his story about a UFO sighted by Navy crews in 2004 off the coast of Southern California. That UFO is now known as the “Tic Tac” UFO.

There were almost 13,000 UFO reports in Project Blue Book that were archived by the government. You can read more about Project Blue Book right now on the Mystery Wire document page.

Project Blue Book and related documents