These days, it is not rare to find UFO enthusiasts getting mocked for their beliefs in extraterrestrials. While the voices of critics drown out the voices of those who assert the existence of legitimate UFOs, however, some events simply beguile any rational explanation. One of these is Brazil’s Night of UFOs, which is probably the most legitimate UFO-related incident in decades. Interestingly, however, the event has mostly been forgotten today, despite the extensive national coverage of the incident in the days that followed.
Brazil’s Night of UFOs happened on May 19, 1986, and it involved 21 unidentified objects that were spotted by the country’s Air Force radars. According to a Redditor who shared an account of the incident in the online community, the mysterious objects were observed by many witnesses in different areas of the country, including Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo. What was rather interesting about the Night of UFOs was not just the number of unidentified objects that were spotted that night, however. The reaction and transparency of the Brazilian military and government during the immediate aftermath of the incident was also very notable. Apart from these, the alleged involvement of the U.S. government has also managed to catch the attention of avid UFO enthusiasts.
During Brazil’s Night of UFOs, the country’s Air Force was deployed in order to investigate and, if necessary, engage the mysterious objects. The Air Force scrambled military aircraft for the mission, including Northrop F-5E Tiger II aircraft and Dassault Mirages III fighters. Both these aircraft were quite capable of flying at high speeds, but according to later reports by the Air Force, the UFOs simply outran the military fighters. The unidentified objects reportedly flew as fast as 2500 mph, making them disappear from radars. The entire cat-and-mouse game between the Air Force and the mysterious flying objects lasted around three hours.
Mysterious UFO Caught Above Houston Texas.. pic.twitter.com/kyd6sgMjoh
— UFO Sightings (@UFOsightingss) December 18, 2016
On the day following the Night of UFOs, Brazilian Air Force Secretary Octávio Julio Moreira Lima held a press conference about the incident. Authorities spoke about the Night of UFOs, including government officials and several top military officers. Interestingly, the authorities promised the public that an investigation would be launched into the incident and that its findings would be shared with the public.
According to later reports, however, the U.S. government allegedly got involved, and the full disclosure was never released. What followed was the usual skeptical explanations about what might have happened during the Night of UFOs, such as the sightings being caused by meteor showers, ball lightning, a reflection of the full moon, or a problem with the Air Force’s radar system. Eventually, interest in the incident died down over the years.
The mysterious event does come up in interviews and features every so often. Brigadier Jose Carlos Pereira, one of Brazil’s most vocal, rational voices in the country’s ongoing UFO debate, took particular notice of the Night of UFOs in an interview with the UFO Chronicles, stating that something otherworldly might have really happened on that fateful evening. After all, those who witnessed it firsthand are highly skilled, intensively trained Air Force pilots.
Glowing orbs, a common UFO seen by many people across the world.. pic.twitter.com/i7A14tNRhM
— UFO Sightings (@UFOsightingss) December 18, 2016
“Look, radars may present a false echo, they may be affected by many different factors, but when we have more than one radar spotting the same target, then we have something serious enough to be ignored. This equipment operates in different frequencies.
“Here we have the sum of different facts. Someone has seen something and radar spotted it. Such equipment has nothing to do with human eyes, it’s an electronic device. Another pair of eyes also saw that same thing and so on. Then you start to give credits to the occurrence and the situation becomes more concrete.”
The official report about the incident might have become extremely elusive in the years after the incident, but in 2009, UFOlogists in Brazil have managed to get a copy of the 1986 investigation and its results through the country’s variation of the Freedom of Information Act. Needless to say, the conclusion of the report was extremely compelling.
“In face of the observed facts in almost all sightings, the Command poses that the phenomena are solid and reflect some sort of intelligence, due to the capacity of tracking and keeping some distance from the observators, and also flying in formation, while not necessarily tripulated.”
Brazil’s Night of UFOs is probably the most intensive, officially-documented UFO-related incident that has transpired over the past few decades. Recently, information about the event has started appearing online, such as the original audio recordings of the air traffic controllers during the Night of UFOs, as well as videos of the 1986 press conference immediately following the incident. A subtitled version of the 1986 feature can be viewed below.
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