Defense IG to "evaluate" Pentagon's handling of UFO questions

(AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, File)

There was a strange twist in the story of the Pentagon’s UAP Task Force yesterday. Many of us have been awaiting the release of a report from the Task Force that was requested by the Senate Select Intelligence Committee and is due by June 25. But seemingly out of nowhere, a new player entered the field this week. The Department of Defense Inspector General’s office announced the beginning of an evaluation of most of the branches of the military in terms of what actions they have taken regarding the Unidentified Aerial Phenomena, or what we used to call UFOs. You can read the full announcement at the IG’s website. Here are a couple of the key portions of the instructions they are giving.

SUBJECT: Evaluation of the DoD’s Actions Regarding the Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (Project No. D2021-DEV0SN-0116.000)
We plan to begin the subject evaluation in May 2021. The objective of this evaluation is to determine the extent to which the DoD has taken actions regarding Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAP). We may revise the objective as the evaluation proceeds, and we will consider suggestions from management for additional or revised objectives…

Please provide us with a point of contact for the evaluation within 5 days of the date of this memorandum. The point of contact should be a Government employee or Military Service Member—a GS-15, pay band equivalent, or the military equivalent. Send the contact’s name, title, grade/pay band, phone number, and e-mail address to [REDACTED]

There’s something definitely odd going on here. If you look at page two of the linked memo you will see the list of all of the offices that are expected to supply a point of contact. It is beyond extensive, touching on nearly every major component of the American military and our military research and intelligence organizations, reaching up to the highest levels. One of the first questions to address is why this is happening and how the IG became involved in the first place. One of the first people to break the story was Tim McMillan at the Debrief and he managed to get a few answers out of the key players. It seems that this evaluation may have been kicked off at the request of some members of the Senate Armed Forces Committee.

Two sources familiar with the matter tell The Debrief the IG Office’s decision to launch the evaluation was prompted by complaints from congressional leadership regarding the DoD’s handling of the UAP topic.

While the Senate Select Intelligence Committee is responsible for directing June’s highly anticipated Advanced Aerial Threats Report, sources say it was representatives of the Senate Armed Services Committee who prodded the Inspector General Office’s recent involvement. The IG office did not immediately respond to questions by The Debrief regarding the inspiration behind the evaluation.

The IG Office says the current probe of the DoD’s handling of encounters with unidentified aerial phenomena is not an investigation into alleged criminal or administrative violations. Instead, the mission of the evaluation is to “promote the economy, efficiency, and effectiveness of DoD programs and operations.”

Well, it’s definitely not a criminal investigation, a fact that was made clear in the memo. They’re conducting a massive evaluation. The thing is that the IG doesn’t generally look into questions of mysteries that many of us would like to solve or battering down the doors of government secrecy. They investigate and help prosecute (when appropriate) cases of waste, fraud, and abuse of taxpayer dollars. In other cases, they may just evaluate various offices to determine their level of efficiency. Are we to believe that the IG is responding to complaints from members of the Armed Forces Committee that the Pentagon is spending too much money looking for UFOs or doing so inefficiently?

Steven Greenstreet at the New York Post interviewed Nick Pope, also known as “the real Fox Mulder,” who brought another possibility to the table. Somebody is unhappy with how the investigation into UAP is being handled and unleashed the IG on them.

“In my experience of such internal reviews, they arise when there’s high-level dissatisfaction with the way an issue is being handled, and/or internal disagreement over the best way forward. There’ll be blood on the carpet at the DoD right now, and maybe a dogfight between DoD and ODNI over how to handle the report on UFOs due to be sent to Congress next month,” he said, referring to the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.

“I hope this evaluation shakes things up,” he said.

There seem to be more questions than answers here. We’ve seen previous reports indicating that some of the military offices asked by the task force for information on their investigations into UAP have been stonewalling and remaining uncooperative. But that doesn’t seem like the sort of thing that the IG would be looking into. We’ve also heard Senator Rand Paul say that the money being spent looking into UAP was “wasted.” Might that have been a reason for launching this evaluation? Either way, it doesn’t sound like an issue that would result in a report answering some of the fundamental questions as to what the military’s best current assessment of the phenomena might be.

We have some questions in with the IG’s office and the Pentagon regarding this which were not answered in time for publication. We’ll update this article if and when more information becomes available.