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Possible Explanations for the U.S. Navy UFO Videos

Updated on May 12, 2020
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Mamerto Adan is a feature writer back in college for a school paper. Science is one of his many interests, and his favorite topic.

By the time I wrote this article, it is the year 2020. And what a year this had been! It had a fiery start, literally, when Australia nearly got incinerated thanks to their wildfires. If that’s not bad enough, Iran and the U.S. almost started World War Three when they thought it was wise to bomb each other. And did I mentioned the pissed-off Iran won the blunder of the year when it shot down its own plane? But how about in Southeast Asia when volcano in a tourist spot blew? It destroyed a lot of properties and good thing that few people died. And then there is the world-wide pandemic that basically sent the world into a stand still. It started somewhere in China, and now it is sickening scores of lives in this planet.

The year 2020 is now earning its reputation. It maybe the year of the Apocalyptic plague, but I’m still hoping for the best. Maybe the rest of the year got better surprises, like alien invasions perhaps?

Hopefully, it won’t end up like that, as recently the U.S. Navy declassified a video recording showing strange flying objects. And in case you are wondering, the U.S. Navy admitted it was a UFO.

The Videos

One of the videos being declassified by the  U.S. Navy.
One of the videos being declassified by the U.S. Navy.

Let’s face it, most of the UFO photos and videos circulating around are not that convincing. Many are of poor quality, fuzzy or faked. In one case, an alleged photo of a flying Black Triangle turned out to be a home-made Styrofoam prop with lights.

But things take a different turn last April when the U.S. Navy got a surprise to the world.

April 27, 2020 is the date when the US Department of Defense officially release the video of the so-called UFO taken by Navy Pilots. There are three of them, all showing a grainy image of an airborne something with no fuselage, wings, or exhaust. It emits heat and maneuvers unlike any man-made flying machine. The term Unidentified Flying Object was never used here, instead it was called an “Unidentified Aerial Phenomena.” Whatever it was called, one thing is clear here. We might be looking at an unknown object flying in the air.

But even before it was officially acknowledged, the videos were already circulating online in 2007 and 2017. In fact, it was already published in New York Times, also in the year 2017, and according to Pentagon, it released the video to clear up public misconceptions if the footage is real or not.

A UFO video released by a legitimate source, like the U.S. Military played well with the people’s fantasies of their government having secret knowledge of extraterrestrial life. It’s a page taken from a popular conspiracy series. Is the truth still out there? Are there more of it that the public is not being made aware of?


The USS Theodore Roosevelt.
The USS Theodore Roosevelt.

Firstly, we need to check how everything happened here. Again, we have three videos coming from a different decade. One came from 2004, the other from 2015.

The 2004 video happened 100 miles over the Pacific. It was a radar-visual encounter by two US F/A-18 pilots of the USS Nimitz. Hovering somewhere in the ocean, they spotted a mysterious oblong shaped object that looked no-where like an aircraft. It then quickly zoomed away, accelerating like nothing they ever seen, as one of the pilots Cmdr David Fravor said.

The other video occurred more than ten years later, this time reported by the USS Theodore Roosevelt pilots. The two videos are known as the “Go Fast” and the “Gimbal”. The unknown object was described as capable of unimaginable maneuvers. It could accelerate, slow down and blast at hypersonic speed. The object was also said to be rotating.

Possible Explanations

ATFLIR Targeting pod on an F-18.
ATFLIR Targeting pod on an F-18.

Officially, the videos are real. But what the U.S. DoD never acknowledge is that the object is alien in nature. They simply state that the thing is just an unknown flying object, and to some, it could be anything.

The problem here is that there isn’t much to explain what actually the objects are, and skeptics opted for more down to earth explanations. Kyle Mizokami, a defense, and security writer suggested three possible explanations for the 2004 sightings. One is equipment malfunction both on the radars and the electo-optical sensors. Raytheon confirmed that the 2004 images was captured by ATFLIR targeting pods mounted under the wings of the fighter jets, and possible bugs could have caused those images. The second is a classified government technology, which will be discussed later. And the third, is a real and actual extraterrestrial airborne vehicle.

As for the visual sightings, skeptics pointed out that visual accounts could be unreliable at certain point. It could easily be fooled, and optical illusions could mess one’s judgement. Joe Nickell of Skeptical Inquirer and former Air Force pilot James E. McGaha pointed out that what could be strange hovering objects disturbing the water could be a submerging submarine, or a drone. At the same time, the fighter jet’s movements, like banking could make an object appear to travel faster than it really is.

The same reasoning could be applied on the 2017 footage.

Again, bugs in the system could have affected the equipment, as well as atmospheric affects and reflections.

But then, more raw data were needed here to really verify what they saw.

Classified Technology?

This was once mistaken for a star ship,
This was once mistaken for a star ship,

As what Mizokami said, the pilots could have spotted some form of classified government technology. This could make sense, considering that the US government tends to let the UFO rumor spread when they let loose their new and top-secret weapons.

Recalling the black triangle incidents and UFO sightings. Those turns out to be black project aircrafts. The stealth bomber looks alien enough, and being a top-secret asset, making the public believe that they saw a UFO is a good way to prevent some premature revelation.

And what if the U.S. government is declassifying its UFO videos, so the public won’t know it got a new weapon? In today’s world, the U.S. got a lot of rivals. And now there is a brewing cold war between the U.S. and China. Do the videos show a new asset being tested?


Again, with few data to work with, we could only make guesses on what those pilots saw. There is little proof to conclude that those things are alien, or non-alien in nature. There are far out explanations, like how those objects zoom around in impossible speed. Then, there are more down to earth explanations that it was the product of equipment bugs or simply an accidental disclosure of classified technologies. In the end we could only wait until we could uncover more. The truth is still out there, and it could shock or underwhelm all the same.


1. Strauss, Daniel (28 April 2020). "Pentagon releases three UFO videos by the US navy pilots". The Guardian.

2. Dodd, Adam (8 May 2020). "The US military has officially published three UFO videos. Why doesn't anybody seem to care?" The Conversation.

3. Mizokami, Kyle (18 December 2017). "That time the U.S. Navy had a close encounter with a UFO." Popular Mechanics.


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    • profile image

      sam mole 

      2 weeks ago

      Its true we get visits from other places look at some of the signs left behind O and out of the blue the new inventions and help But now have the visiters and do not want to help seen enough


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