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NASA chief announces committee to address ‘so many suspicions about aliens’

On a visit to Argentina, which has become a signatory to the Artemis Accords for space exploration, agency administrator Bill Nelson said that a group of scientists is preparing a report that will be ready next month

NASA Administrator Bill Nelson
NASA Administrator Bill Nelson, during a talk with students and officials at the University of Buenos Aires, on July 27, 2023.Facultad de Ingeniería de la UBA (EFE)
José Pablo Criales

NASA Administrator Bill Nelson said, during an official visit to Argentina, that a committee of scientists is preparing a report to address what he described as “so many suspicions about aliens.” The report will be ready in August, he said. His remarks, made in response to a reporter’s question on the subject, were part of a news conference at the Casa Rosada, the seat of government, where Nelson met with President Alberto Fernández on the occasion of Argentina becoming a signatory to the Artemis Accords for space exploration.

The reporter’s questioning reflected the fact that on Wednesday, during a session of U.S. Congress, a former intelligence officer accused the Pentagon of concealing spacecraft of extraterrestrial origin and “non-human remains.” “Sightings are not rare or isolated,” said David Grusch, a former Air Force member, achieving a rare rapport between Republicans and Democrats inside the chamber: lawmakers from both parties called for the government to end its secrecy over what is now being termed UAPs or “unidentified aerial phenomena.”

“I decided as the head of NASA, since there are so many suspicions about aliens, that I would appoint a committee of very distinguished scientists,” said Nelson at the Casa Rosada on Thursday, underscoring “the twinkle in my eye” when he heard the question. “That committee is deliberating, and they will make their report publicly next month. Now I can tell you in the meantime, until you hear the report, and they will consider using our scientific sensors in space in trying to determine this phenomenon. So wait until next month and you will have an answer.”

The conversation about unidentified flying objects began to gather pace among some Washington lawmakers in 2020, when the Pentagon released a series of previously classified videos of pilots involved in three separate incidents from 2004 and 2015, in which UAP encounters appeared to be observed. U.S. intelligence said then that while there was no evidence of extraterrestrial activity associated with those objects, they did not categorically rule it out either. Earlier this year, interest in the subject spiked following news that the Pentagon had collected 247 UAP reports in 17 months, almost as many as in the previous 17 years. In April the figure climbed to 650.

At the news conference, Nelson also explained that President Fernández had asked him about his trip to space — in 1986, Nelson was the second congressman in the history of the United States to fly on a NASA mission.

Nelson traveled to Buenos Aires to make official Argentina’s adherence to the international efforts with which the U.S.wants to take astronauts back to the Moon in 2025. Argentina is the 28th country to sign the Artemis Accords, a plan for the “peaceful exploration” of the Milky Way.

Nelson, a former Democratic congressman for Florida and U.S. Army reservist during the Vietnam War, was in Buenos Aires as part of a South American tour that took him to Brazil and will end in Colombia next week.

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