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In late 2017 major media outlets including the New York Times and Washington Post broke a headline story regarding a secret U.S. government research office devoted to UFOs, along with two separate pieces of military footage of UFOs that were investigated by that office.

These revelations appear to have come from, of all things, the ‘To the Stars Academy’ created by former Blink-182 member Tom DeLonge. In previous stories, we have urged caution in both accepting what DeLonge has uncovered (as he seems to be ‘fed’ information from government sources), and in his organisation’s analysis of the UFO videos – though we certainly appreciate seeing this topic get more serious coverage.

Two recent videos posted to YouTube by independent researcher Ian Goddard give further reason to be cautious of at least one of these UFO videos. In the first video, posted in January 2018, Goddard explains that the so-called ‘Gimbal UFO’ footage that was posted to the New York Times website (often confused with the more widely reported ‘Nimitz’ sighting provided by pilot David Fravor) appears to be easily explainable as a (human-made) jet.

He points out that imagery matches infrared footage of figher jets, and also that the gimbal system is known to produce rotating lens flares that match the strange movement of the UFO. Goddard also reveals that the ‘glowing aura’ the NYT story reports the UFO as having – described by DeLonge’s organisation as a “possible energy or resonance field of unknown nature” – is actually a standard artefact of infrared imagery.

The rotating Gimbal UFO promoted by The New York Times is here shown to be a nearly perfect match to the rotating hot-engine exhaust of a jet recorded on the very same ATFLIR gimbal-camera system. Minor differences are shown to be attributable to circumstantial differences such as distance.

If the contents seen in grainy footage alleged to be extraterrestrial (ET) technology are even fairly similar to human technology albeit not perfectly discernible, they are not evidence of ET technology. In other words, if we cannot rule out the ordinary we have no grounds to propose the extraordinary. Yet the similarity to human technology in the Gimbal Video exceeds a ‘fairly similar’ criterion. The Gimbal Video therefore presents no evidence of ET technology, it’s just ordinary evidence of an ordinary phenomenon, jets.

In a second video, posted in February 2018, Goddard goes into further detail on how the infrared camera view of the UFO, and its movement, in many ways match infrared footage of the rear-view of a fighter jet.

Goddard’s explanation of course does not discount the possibility that the ‘Gimbal UFO’ was an anomalous craft, emitting heat in a similar way to a fighter jet – but it does show that the video can be explained as something more mundane in nature, and so there is no need to jump to conclusions about a bizarre craft, without any further evidence pointing in that direction.

Which is the case with the other sighting reported by media outlets in December, the ‘Nimitz’ UFO, which had both footage and a first-hand report by pilot David Fravor who described the anomalous object he saw first-hand. So that part of the story remains a mystery (although as I have said previously, there are some elements of that report that concern me).