US must FINALLY take UFO threat seriously after shooting down mystery craft, says ex-Pentagon chief

US officials must finally take seriously the threat posed by UFOs as four objects were shot down, a former Pentagon insider told The Sun Online.

Lue Elizondo – a former US Army intelligence officer who probed UFOs for the US Government – said he believes the downed objects are “conventional technology”.

Lue Elizondo used to work for the Pentagon investigating UFOs


Lue Elizondo used to work for the Pentagon investigating UFOsCredit: Alamy
The Chinese spy balloon that sparked the latest panic across the US


The Chinese spy balloon that sparked the latest panic across the USCredit: EPA

Elizondo said he quit the Pentagon because officials were refusing to take seriously the possible threat posed by unknown objects over the US.

And he said the current chaos – with unknown objects appearing from South Carolina to Alaska – is the consequence of not properly handling airspace threats.

But he praised efforts by US lawmakers to improve Washington’s systems to better report, analyse and identify the mysterious encounters.

UFOs have even been redefined as UAP – Unidentified Aerial Phenomena.

The mystery over the three objects shot down following the popping of the Chinese spy balloon has caused such intense interest that the US even admitted it could be aliens.

US fighter planes have their instruments interfered with, seemingly unknown propulsion systems, and pilots unable to identify the “octagonal” or “cylindrical” objects have stoked the hysteria.

Elizondo however believes the objects were likely deployed by the US’s enemies – but they could potentially be previously unseen technology.

“There should be no surprise that our adversaries are constantly deploying new and old capabilities against us,” Elizondo told The Sun Online.

” In this case, the cause is likely a conventional technology.  We must remain calm and allow our experts at Norad to do their job.”

He went on: “However, it is for this precise reason that the new legislation differentiates between balloons, air clutter, and bonafide UAP. 

“I left DoD five years ago because our Government was not doing enough to take seriously these incursions into controlled and sensitive U.S. airspace. 

“We now see the results of not taking this issue seriously. Fortunately, some are now paying attention.”

UFO Timeline

  • January 28 – Massive Chinese spy balloon the size of three buses is spotted flying over the US
  • February 2 – Another Chinese balloon is detected flying over Costa Rica – it is not believed to have been shot down
  • February 4 – US fighter jets shoot down the first spy balloon off coast of South Carolina
  • February 9 – Unknown object the size of a car seen flying over Alaska
  • February 10 – Fighter jets shoot down Alaska object – some pilots report it interfered with their sensors
  • February 11 – Canada confirms another ‘cylindrical’ object shot down by US planes over Yukon
  • February 11 – ‘Octagonal’ object spotted flying over Montana after first being dismissed as a radar glitch
  • February 12 – US fighter planes shoot down the Montana object over Lake Huron
  • February 12 – China claims it detected an unknown object over the Yellow Sea and near to nuke sub base

The current wave of shootdowns appears to have been triggered by the sighting of a massive China’s spy balloon which lurked over the US for days before being shot down.

Since it was blasted out of the sky on February 4, three more “objects” have since been downed by fighter planes.

The mystery is deepening as limited information has been released on the shootdowns – with China also playing dumb and denying any knowledge.

And to muddy the waters further, Beijing claimed it had detected and was preparing to shoot down its own mystery object on Sunday.

The objects right now can be considered “UFOs” – as they remain in all sense of the term unidentified.

US Air Force General Glen VanHerck gave cryptic responses to reporters questions – refusing to rule out anything, including aliens.

But while his comments on potential extraterrial origins caused a stir, defense officials have since downplayed the possibilities the objects could be alien.

Christopher Mellon, the former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Intelligence for George W. Bush and Bill Clinton, has also been calling for more to be done on UFOs.

“Amazing what you can find when you start looking. This is just the beginning,” Mellon wrote on Twitter.

“I suspect these ones *probably* have been balloons— But with increased situational awareness of our airspace, who knows what else we’ll find.”

And meanwhile, Republican Senator Marco Rubio said: “The last 72 hours revealed to the public what has happening for years,unidentified aircraft routinely operating over restricted US airspace.

“This is why I pushed to take this seriously & created a permanent UAP task force two years ago.”


Ex-intel chief Elizondo headed up the secretive Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program (AATIP) until it was wound up in 2012.

He probed UFOs and spoke to US servicemen who had experienced the unexplained encounters – some of which were captured of video, like the infamous Tic Tac.

When he first came forward in 2017, it triggered a wave of interest in UFOs in Washington – which has culminated in public hearings and a new UFO hunting unit, AARO.

Elizondo has gone on to become one of the leading figures in calling for more disclosure.

“I am not a UFO guy, I am not a UFOlogist, I never have been and never will be,” Mr Elizondo told The Sun Online in May 2022.

“My job was to hunt terrorists and spies – and then use those same skills to hunt UFOs. It’s the same thing.

“I didn’t care if it was supernatural technology, bottom line is there is something over controlled US airspace performing in ways we can’t – we’ve got to figure it out.”

UFOs have traditionally been a fringe topic – often being relegated to the realms of conspiracy theories and being dismissed as “little green men”.

But now former servicemen, officials and even former presidents Barack Obama & Bill Clinton have opened up on the topic – admitting there are objects in the sky that cannot be identified.

During his May 2022 with The Sun Online, Elizondo said: “At the end of the day, the truth can be scary – but ultimately the truth is the truth.

“This is a topic that belongs to everyone – it doesn’t belong under the provenance of any particular government or organisation

“There is nothing classified about the fact there is something in our skies we don’t what it is, we don’t know where its from, and we don’t know how to works.

“But that is okay.”

“The only way we are going to learn is if we ask the question – and if we’ve been for the last 70 years told not to ask the question and made to believe that it’s silly or stupid, then that’s a problem.”

He previously said the failure to properly monitor UFOs could be the US’s biggest intelligence failure since 9/11.

It comes after a Chinese surveillance balloon (pictured) sparked increased airway security after it was shot down


It comes after a Chinese surveillance balloon (pictured) sparked increased airway security after it was shot downCredit: Reuters
The spy balloon was downed on January 4 above Myrtle Beach, South Carolina


The spy balloon was downed on January 4 above Myrtle Beach, South CarolinaCredit: AP
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