FBI On UFO Memo: Don’t Believe Everything You Read

Do UFOs exist? According to a 1950 memo, maybe. According to the FBI, no. The Federal Bureau of Investigations finally commented on a memo that seemingly proved the existence of UFOs.

And it only took them 63 years to do it.

On March 22, 1950, Guy Hottel, the head of the FBI field office in Washington D.C., wrote a one page memo about a strange sighting in New Mexico to Director J. Edgar Hoover. Hottel wrote in the subject line of the memo, “Flying Saucers – Information Concerning.”

Hottel then wrote:

“An investigator for the Air Force stated that three so-called flying saucers had been recovered in New Mexico … They were described as being circular in shape with raised centers, approximately 50 feet in diameter. Each one was occupied by three bodies of human shape but only 3 feet tall, dressed in metallic cloth of a very fine texture. Each body was bandaged in a manner similar to the blackout suits used by speed fliers and test pilots.”

Many people speculated that the memo, which was released in 2011 under the Freedom of Information Act, was referencing the infamous crash in Roswell, New Mexico. Hottel’s memo was dated a few years after the crash but many believed that it was proof that UFOs had crashed in Roswell sometime in the 1940s.

The FBI, however, said that the memo does not prove anything about UFOs.

fbi ufo

The government agency writes in a blog post: “When we launched the Vault in April 2011, some media outlets noticed the Hottel memo and erroneously reported that the FBI had posted proof of a UFO crash at Roswell, New Mexico and the recovery of wreckage and alien corpses. The resulting stories went viral, and traffic to the new Vault soared.”

The FBI said that conspiracy theorist should keep a few things in mind when they dissect Hottel’s memo.

  • The memo wasn’t kept a secret. It was first released to the public in the 1970s.
  • Second, Hottel’s memo is dated three years after the Roswell crash. There is no reason to believe that the two incidents are connected. (The FBI also notes that information on Roswell is also available in the online Vault.
  • After Roswell, Director Hoover ordered agents to investigate possible UFO sightings. He ended this practice a few months after the Hottel memo, which probably means that the FBI didn’t find any credible information.
  • The Hottel memo is relaying second or third hand information. Hottel actually never saw anything himself.

The FBI writes: “Finally, the Hottel memo does not prove the existence of UFOs; it is simply a second- or third-hand claim that we never investigated. Some people believe the memo repeats a hoax that was circulating at that time, but the Bureau’s files have no information to verify that theory.”

What do you think about the FBI UFO memo?