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Gillibrand calls for more information on UFOs following whistleblower testimony

Gillibrand said the defense department hasn’t responded to her requests for more information on UAP's and she doesn’t know why.
Vaughn Golden
Senator Kirsten Gillibrand of New York said the Department of Defense hasn’t responded to her requests for more information on unidentified aerial phenomena and she doesn’t know why.

Following testimony by three military veterans before a House committee on allegations about secret government programs involving UFOs last week, U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) said she’s taking the issue seriously and is pressing the Department of Defense for more information.

Unidentified aerial phenomena or UAPs is the term the U.S. military uses to describe UFOs or other similar objects. Whistleblowers testified last week that the government programs extend beyond strange reports of things in the sky, going as far to suggest that the Department of Defense is trying to reverse engineer recovered vessels.

"They're very serious allegations that we have to get to the bottom of,” Gillibrand said Friday.

Gillibrand spearheaded the formation of an office, called the All-domain Anomaly Resolution Office or AARO. The office is charged with investigating over 600 UAP reports, including some of those mentioned by the whistleblowers last week. Some of these investigations, Gillibrand said, resulted in non-extraterrestrial explanations like weather balloons and spy drones. But those still raise significant concerns.

Gillibrand said the Defense Department hasn’t responded to her requests for more information and she doesn’t know why.

"I don't know,’ Gillibrand said. “I don't know why. I don't know if it doesn't exist. I don't know if we're not asking the right questions. I don't know. I just know I have no, I have nothing to confirm those allegations."

Gillibrand said one of her foremost concerns over UAPs is the safety of pilots and other service members.

She made the comments after speaking to reporters in Binghamton about the passage of legislation meant to combat fentanyl trafficking. The legislation was included as an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act, which passed the Senate last week. It declares fentanyl trafficking a national emergency and gives the president more powers to financially sanction international organizations.

"This amendment will help agencies disrupt illicit opioid supply chains and penalize those trafficking the drug,” Gillibrand said. “More specifically, it would declare that the international trafficking of fentanyl is a national emergency and requires President Biden to sanction key members of transnational criminal organizations."

Vaughn Golden has been reporting across New York since 2016. Working as a freelancer while studying journalism and economics at Ithaca College, Vaughn has reported for a number of outlets including the Albany Times Union, New York Post, and NPR among others. Prior to coming to WSKG full-time, Vaughn was a reporter for the Watertown Daily Times. Vaughn now covers government and politics for WSKG.