The US government may want you to believe extraterrestrials are visiting Earth

On the heels of former national security professional David Grusch's mindblowing claims that the US government has retrieved multiple "intact and partially intact vehicles" of "non-human origins," and even the pilots of such craft, quite a bit of smart skepticism is bubbling up in the UFO community and also the mainstream media. (If you want to go deep into the debate, scroll down at the Anomalist for links to some fascinating reading material.) Writing in the New York Times, Ross Douthat asks, "Does the US government want you to believe in UFOs?":

The possibility of literal spacecraft stashed in U.S. government hangars, meanwhile, piles up two immense-seeming improbabilities. First, that inhuman species cross oceans of space or leap interdimensional barriers using unfathomable technology and yet somehow keep crashing and leaving souvenirs behind. Second, that human governments have been collecting evidence for generations without the truth ever being leaked or uncovered or just blurted out by Donald Trump.

But this whistle-blower's mere existence is evidence of a fascinating shift in public U.F.O. discourse. There may not be alien spacecraft, but there is clearly now a faction within the national security complex that wants Americans to think there might be alien spacecraft, to give these stories credence rather than dismissal.

The evidence for this shift includes the military's newfound willingness to disclose weird atmospheric encounters. It includes the establishment of the task force that Grusch was assigned to. It includes the government's bizarre behavior, secretive in an attention-grabbing way, around the military shootdowns of what were presumably balloons earlier this year.