If you've been following the news over the past week, you might have heard about the uncovering of a certain government program, one seemingly straight out of a Hollywood script.
Politico and The New York Times simultaneously published extensive reports detailing the Advanced Aviation Threat Identification Program, a secret Pentagon project with the stated purpose of looking into the national security implications of reports of unidentified flying objects, known popularly as UFOs.
The program—which was begun by former Nevada Senator Harry Reid and given bi-partisan blessing by former Hawaii Senator Daniel Inouye and former Alaska Senator Ted Stevens—was confirmed by the Pentagon to have existed between 2007 and "in the 2012 time frame."
The initiative was run by a career intelligence officer by the name of Luis Elizondo, who raised a few eyebrows when he resigned from the government in October, claiming that the project was not being taken seriously. Upon his return to the private sector, Elizondo took up employment with a company called To The Stars Academy of Arts & Sciences. The co-founder of this company? Former Blink-182 frontman Tom DeLonge.
DeLonge, who left Blink-182 in 2015, has long been noted for his interest in all things extraterrestrial. An interview—from sometime in the early oughts, and recently uncovered by Billboard—shows DeLonge passionately discussing a friend who supposedly spent years talking to government employees who had UFO encounters. He also shows the (unidentified) interviewer his personal collection of videotaped UFO testimonies.
In a February 2015 interview with Papermag, DeLonge seemed to imply that he had made contact with aliens himself.
Now, the connection between him and the Pentagon isn't merely a case of "Six Degrees of former Blink-182 frontman Tom DeLonge." To The Stars says it has "mobilized a team of the most experienced, connected and passionately curious minds from the US intelligence community, including the CIA and Department of Defense, that have been operating under the shadows of top-secrecy for decades."
These team members, the mission statement posits, "All share a common thread of frustration and determination to disrupt the status quo, wanting to use their expertise and credibility to bring transformative science and engineering out of the shadows and collaborate with global citizens to apply that knowledge in a way that benefits humanity."
A bit of a step up from asking "is it cool if I hold your hand?," eh?
Both the Politico and New York Times reports went on to cite To The Stars' analysis of one of the report's most attention-grabbing finds, a video—released by the Department of Defense and taken from the cockpit of a Navy F/A-18 Super Hornet—that shows an unidentified flying object.
DeLonge, for his part, remained focused on the future upon the publication of the reports and the video.
“All the things (people have) heard about and seen are the first step of 20," DeLonge told The New York Daily News. “There's a lot more shit coming.”