1. More than a year after the establishment of the All-domain Anomaly Resolution Office (AARO) there are still no official channels for civilian UAP witnesses to report their sightings, leaving many who could potentially provide high-quality reports to government investigators with little other option than to divulge their experiences to civilian organizations—a state of affairs that could have serious national security implications if key sightings are overlooked.

    Last May, the military services and geographic combatant commands instituted a standardized UAP reporting system for service members to report their own encounters, with the reports to be transferred to the AARO for analysis; Pentagon spokesperson Susan Gough said they are also working to expand that system to include members of the Coast Guard, the Department of Energy, the FAA and NOAA.

    “One of AARO’s first efforts has been to establish a streamlined reporting system for all service members,” according to Gough. According to the FAA, UAP reports from pilots are currently documented by the agency, and if the report “is corroborated with supporting information, such as radar data,” the FAA sends a copy to AARO.

    But access to the reporting system has not yet been extended to civilian witnesses, despite being a requirement laid out by the National Defense Authorization Act FY2023 where AARO is directed to “stand up a secure public-facing website, or communication mechanism, to outline the secure process for witnesses to come forward with relevant information,” according to a letter sent to Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin and National Intelligence Director Avril Haines by Senators Mark Warner (D-VA) and Marco Rubio (R-FL), who were looking for more accountability in the application of the Act’s orders.

    “To date, we have seen no efforts to communicate the existence of the secure process to the public,” the Senators stated. “We request that you provide us an update on the plan to publicize the secure process for witnesses to come forward.”

    Existing reporting systems receive only a handful of reports each month, according to Lieutenant Ryan Graves, a former F/A-18 pilot that was involved in the extended series of UAP encounters off of the coast of Virginia that took place over the course of 2014-2015. Graves has since founded Americans for Safe Aerospace, a non-profit group dedicated to supporting pilots that have encountered UAP.

    Graves says that many pilots aren’t using the existing reporting channels due to either a lack of support for how to go about the reporting process, or fear of reprisal from authorities if they do manage to complete a report.

    Graves said that his organization is working with lawmakers to get a proper reporting portal established; in the meantime, ASA is introducing individual witness to select senators, and plans to facilitate meetings between them and AARO.

    “We are hand-walking people in to do that, because AARO is negligent on having the proper public-facing procedures to have people do it themselves,” Graves remarked.




In to missing out on data regarding genuine unknowns, the lack of a public reporting system could also potentially result in undetected incursions into U.S. airspace by foreign adversaries, such as the Chinese surveillance balloon that was shot down off of the South Carolina coast on February 4.

Steven Aftergood, a secrecy specialist with the Federation of American Scientists, says that “if and when” such incursions happen, “the government and the military need to know it instantly, not days or weeks later. Any reluctance by military pilots to report sightings, or by authorities to receive such reports, would be a dereliction of duty. It’s not clear that new procedures are required. People just have to do their jobs.”

Many witnesses are also wary of reporting their sightings to begin with, suspicious of a government that might meet what they have to say with hostility. “The problem when they do [report] is these very brave pilots are criticized or pulled off the flightline and they’re not debriefed; they’re interrogated, sometimes for up to eight hours,” explained Tennessee Representative Tim Burchett.

“And then they get a blemish on their record.” Burchett was instrumental in getting a hearing before the House Committee on Oversight and Accountability held on July 26, where high-profile government witnesses David Fravor, Ryan Graves and David Grusch provided testimony regarding the current state of government policy regarding UAP.


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