You probably thought this was cleared up after the bombshell New York Times report in December of 2017, but there have been a lot of lingering questions. Has the military been investigating UFO’s? Well… sort of. But they don’t like to use that acronym anymore. They’re now referred to as UAPs, or “unidentified aerial phenomena.” And even in those terms, there has been confusion as to what the A stands for. But now a Pentagon official has gone on the record with the New York Post and confirmed that the AATIP program did exist and to this day the military is still investigating such reports.

The Pentagon has finally uttered the words it always avoided when discussing the possible existence of UFOs — “unidentified aerial phenomena” — and admits that it still investigates reports of them.

In a statement provided exclusively to The Post, a Department of Defense spokesman said a secret government initiative called the Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program “did pursue research and investigation into unidentified aerial phenomena.”

And while the DOD says it shut down the AATIP in 2012, spokesman Christopher Sherwood acknowledged that the department still investigates claimed sightings of alien spacecraft.

“The Department of Defense is always concerned about maintaining positive identification of all aircraft in our operating environment, as well as identifying any foreign capability that may be a threat to the homeland,” Sherwood said.

This admission, while still a bit vague, was probably the result of exhaustion on the part of the Pentagon. There have been too many leaks since the 2017 revelations, including the confirmation a few weeks ago that the Navy is allowing pilots to report UFOs or UAPs without fear of losing their commission. (They still aren’t going to be telling the public what they find, however.)

The reason their statement isn’t entirely satisfying is the confusion still surrounding some of the acronyms being used. Is it “unidentified aerial phenomena” or “unidentified aerospace phenomena?” After all, AATIP was identified as Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program. Saying “aerial” makes it sound like you could just talking about secret programs run by the Chinese or the Russians, while “aerospace” opens up the discussion to, well… you know.

If you read further down in the Post article you’ll find they have a short interview with John Greenewald Jr. For those not familiar, Greenewald runs a website called The Black Vault. He’s been submitting FOIA requests to the government for decades, ferreting out documents covering all manner of topics, but most particularly things of interest to the paranormal community. He’s built an archive of more than two million declassified documents and made them available for the public to search.

I’ve heard plenty of interviews with Greenewald on various podcasts, and the guy has been delving into government reports for a very long time. He finds this revelation from the Pentagon to be significant.

John Greenewald Jr. — whose website The Black Vault archives declassified government documents on UFO reports, “Bigfoot” sightings and other subjects — also called the Pentagon’s use of the term “unidentified aerial phenomena” unprecedented in its frankness.

“I’m shocked they said it that way, and the reason is, is they’ve seemingly worked very hard not to say that,” he said.

“So I think that’s a pretty powerful statement because now we have actual evidence — official evidence — that said, ‘Yes, AATIP did deal with UAP cases, phenomena, videos, photos, whatever.’”

So is this some sort of confirmation of extraterrestrial life visiting the Earth? Nope. Not even close. If they have any proof of that, they’re not willing to share it yet. But after the release of the white Tic Tac video, it seems pointless to pretend that they aren’t at least exploring the question. It may still turn out that these bizarre crafts are part of some black budget project of our own government, or possibly the Russians or the Chinese (which would probably be more frightening than learning it was aliens if we don’t have the same technology). But whatever it is, a little more transparency from the government wouldn’t hurt.