To celebrate the return of The X-Files, the CIA has released a list of once-classified UFO docs which date from the 1940s and 1950s and are among hundreds that were declassified in 1978. In a blog post, the agency notes that these documents aren’t newly released, but fans of FBI agents Scully and Mulder are encouraged to review the curious findings to further explore if the truth really is out there.
“To help navigate the vast amount of data contained in our FOIA UFO collection, we’ve decided to highlight a few documents both skeptics and believers will find interesting,” explained the agency in the blog post.
The agency also highlights “five documents we think X-Files character Agent Fox Mulder would love to use to try and persuade others of the existence of extraterrestrial activity.” The post also highlights five docs that Scully would use to debunk Mulder’s extraterrestrial theories.
“We also pulled five documents we think his skeptical partner, Agent Dana Scully, could use to prove there is a scientific explanation for UFO sightings,” the blog added.
— Washingtonian (@washingtonian) January 28, 2016
As Fox news notes, the “Mulder” documents include an office memo from 1949 and 1952 detailing reports of flying saucers, including a report from East Germany about “an object ‘resembling a huge frying pan’ and having a diameter of about 15 meters [49 feet]” that landed in a forest clearing in Germany’s Soviet Zone, according to the report. The agency also posted a 1952 report of “two fiery disks” flying over a uranium mine in the then-Belgian Congo, as well as the minutes from a CIA meeting discussing UFOs.
The 1952 “Flying Saucers” report recommends the CIA continue to monitor all but 100 credible UFO sightings.
“Less than 100 reasonably credible reports remain ‘unexplainable’ at this time. It is recommended that CIA surveillance be continued. It is strongly urged, however, that no reports of CIA interest or concern reach the press or public.”
Another report about Spain and North Africa describes a “smoke-trailing object over Barcelona” and an unusual object “emitting a pale green light” over the Tunisian city of Sousse.
Photos posted on the CIA website include unexplained sighting above Minneapolis in 1960, above Sheffield, U.K. two years later, and an image of a UFO investigation in Socorro, New Mexico, per the New York Daily News.
— FOX 32 News (@fox32news) January 29, 2016
Of course, there are many who find the agency’s timely highlighting of these documents quite curious. The U.K. Independent notes that Stephen Bassett, the executive director of the Paradigm Research Group, is “campaigning to get the US government to ‘admit’ aliens are real. He believes the CIA is “face-saving” to prepare the public for the inevitable encounter with extraterrestrials.”
Bassett told the Mirror, “The recent postings to the CIA website could well be strategic on the part of the agency. It appears the CIA used the revival of the X-Files franchise as a convenient time to remind the public the agency has, in fact, engaged the extraterrestrial presence issue in the past.”
“Post-disclosure the CIA will have substantial public relations issues as it has played a significant role in maintaining the truth embargo over six decades. These recent postings could have an inoculative effect in service to the agency’s future PR strategy.”
— The X-Files (@thexfiles) January 29, 2016
UFO watchers and fans of the series can now see “where X-Files episodes took place along with UFO sightings between 1993 and 2002,” via an engaging new interactive map made on CartoDB. The show is one of the longest-running science fiction series in network TV history, in which FBI special agents investigate unexplained phenomena via cases known as “X-Files.”
Created by Chris Carter, the program originally aired from September 10, 1993, to May 19, 2002, on Fox. It returned as a mini-series January 24 with original cast David Duchovny, Gillian Anderson, Mitch Pileggi, and William B. Davis. Variety notes that in Nielsen’s “live plus-3” estimates, The X-Files averaged an impressive 20.3 million viewers.
“By comparison, the peak season of ‘The X-Files’ in 1997-98 averaged 19.8 million, and its series finale in 2002 drew 13.2 million.”
You can analyze the CIA’s gallery of X-Files-inspired UFO documents here, and let us know if you are a skeptic or a believer in extraterrestrials.
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