Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Intelligence, Chris Mellon, has revealed that he was the source who provided the New York Times with the three UFO videos it famously published in 2017.
Mellon, who served in the senior intelligence role under the Bill Clinton and George W. Bush administrations, made the bombshell admission in a recently released documentary, The Phenomenon, which is directed by James Fox.
The 63-year-old told Fox that he met with an unnamed individual in the parking lot of the Pentagon months earlier and was handed a package containing three videos of ‘unexplained aerial phenomena’ captured by Navy pilots between 2004 and 2015.
‘I received the videos, the now famous videos in the Pentagon parking lot from a Defense Department official. I still have the packaging,’ Mellon is heard telling the filmmakers. ‘This is a case where somebody bent the rules a little bit, and they did so for the larger good and we’re absolutely all better off because of it.’
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Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Intelligence, Chris Mellon, has revealed that he was the source who provided the New York Times with three now-infamous videos of UFOs the outlet published in 2017
The other video shows the notorious 2004 ‘Tic Tac’ incident (pictured) that was recorded over the Pacific Ocean
The three videos went on to form what would become the basis of one of the most significant and revealing articles about UFOs in recent years.
One of journalists who worked on the story, Leslie Kean, also appears in the documentary.
Kean said she ‘knew this was breaking news for the front page of the New York Times,’ as soon as Mellon informed her about the clips’ existence.
In its bombshell December 2017 article, the Times unveiled a classified Pentagon UFO program called the Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program (AATIP), overseen by the likes of former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.
Though at the time the government said the program, secretly commissioned in 2007, was shuttered due to a lack of funding in 2012, the Times later confirmed it continued its existence under a new name, the Unidentified Aerial Phenomenon Task Force, within the Office of Naval Intelligence.
For more than a decade, the Pentagon had been conducting classified briefings for congressional committees, aerospace company executives and other government officials.
The briefings were centered on sightings, video footage, and radar logs by military pilots of ‘unexplained aerial phenomena’ which seemed to transcend existing flight technology – such as an aircraft with no visible engine at 30,000ft, traveling at hypersonic speed.
The Times also released three clips captured by Navy pilots across an 11 year period.
The first of which, known as the ‘Tic Tac’ incident, was captured by F-18 pilot Chad Underwood off the coast of San Diego on November 14, 2004.
The Tic Tac UFO – so-called because of its rounded shape and white color – was spotted by Underwood flying erratically over the Pacific Ocean.
‘It was going from like 50,000 feet to 100 feet in like seconds, which is not possible,’ Underwood said back in December 2019, breaking his 15 year silence over the encounter.
To this day, officials still have no idea what the recorded object was, with weather phenomenon, man-made craft and birds having all since been ruled out.
Mellon, who is now an active member of singer Tom DeLonge’s To The Stars Academy, made the bombshell admission in a recently released UFO documentary, The Phenomenon, which is directed by James Fox. (Tom DeLonge is pictured right with Mellon)
The Tic Tac UFO – so-called because of its rounded shape and white colour – was spotted flying erratically over the pacific ocean
Two other videos recorded on January 21st, 2015, were also released. The first video showed another anomalous aerial vehicle rotating while in flight
Two other videos recorded on January 21st, 2015, were also released.
The first video showed another anomalous aerial vehicle rotating rapidly while in flight. The second featured an object quickly flying over the water below, with a Navy pilot heard remarking ‘what the f**k is that thing?’ as it passes underneath him.
Months earlier before the article was published, the former head of AATIP, Luis Elizondo, worked with the Defense Office of Prepublication and Security Review to have the three videos declassified in late August of 2017, according to VICE.
Chris Mellon served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Intelligence under the Bill Clinton and George W. Bush administrations
Kean then met with Elizondo on October 4 where she was informed about the secret UFO program. Mellon, who was also reportedly present, then showed Kean the videos on his laptop.
The Department of Defense officially released the videos in April this year, nearly two-and-half years after the Times report.
Officials said they finally decided to disclose the footage ‘in order to clear up any misconceptions by the public on whether or not the footage that has been circulating was real, or whether or not there is more to the videos’.
‘The aerial phenomena observed in the videos remain characterized as ‘unidentified,” the department said.
The disclosure of these clips serves as the grounding theme of The Phenomenon.
The 100 minute-long film, in part, analyzes the history of UFO sightings in the US from the 1940s all the way up the footage released by the DOD this spring.
In addition to Mellon, Fox also speaks to a number of other high-ranking government officials, such as former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.
Reid claims in the film that the US government has been hiding key details about UFO encounters from the public for years.
‘Why the federal government all these years has covered up, put brake pads on everything, stopped it, I think it’s very, very bad for our country,’ Reid tells Fox in the film.
In addition to Mellon, Fox also speaks to a number of other high-ranking government officials, such as former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. Reid claims in the film that the US government has been hiding key details about UFO encounters from the public for years
When asked if he’s saying there’s still some evidence that hasn’t yet been publicly disclosed, Reid replies: ‘I’m saying most of it hasn’t seen the light of day.’
Since leaving office in 2017, Reid has become increasingly outspoken about UFOs. He has, however, stopped short of confirming evidence of other-worldly activity, tweeting in August that he wants the issue studied and that ‘we must stick to science, not fairy tales about little green men.’
Reid stands firm on that point of view in The Phenomenon, telling Fox: ‘Nobody has to agree why it’s there. But should we at least be spending some money to study all these phenomenon? The answer is yes.’
The film traces the relatively recent history of UFO fixation, which began around eight decades ago.
The US Military began repeatedly investigating UFOs in the late 1940s, as sightings of unidentified discs and other strange incidents began frequently cropping up in the mainstream news reports.
From 1947 until 1969, the air force investigated more than 12,000 UFO claims. However, a study code-named Project Blue Book later concluded that most of the sightings could be explained by stars, clouds, conventional aircraft or spy planes. 701 of the sightings, though, remained unexplained.
One such incident was a 1967 report in which an object appeared over Malmstrom Air Force Base in Montana at the same time as 10 ICMB missiles suddenly become inoperative.
Robert Jamison, a retired USAF nuclear missile targeting officer, told of several occasions having to go out and ‘re-start’ missiles that had been deactivated, after UFOs – mysterious glowing red objects in the sky – were sighted nearby.
‘If they had been called upon by the president to launch, they couldn’t have done it,’ Reid says in The Phenomenon.
Similar sightings were also reported at nuclear sites in the former Soviet Union and again in Great Britain in 1980.
The documentary also goes on to cover the incidents at nuclear weapons facilities in Russia, with Russian military officials giving testimony about UFO incursions at one of their bases and taking control of their weapons.
The Phenomenon was released on October 6 and is now available for digital download.
‘Tic Tac’ UFO: US Navy pilot made visual contact with the object on November 14, 2004
At least six Super Hornet pilots made visual or instrument contact with the UFO on November 14, 2004.
The encounters, which are documented in numerous interviews with first-hand witnesses, remain a mystery, and the object’s incredible speed and movements have led to speculation that it was extraterrestrial in origin.
The original FLIR video from the USS Nimitz encounters leaked online as early as 2007.
Witnesses say that clips of the video had been circulated widely on the Navy’s intranet – used to communicate between ships in the carrier group – and an unknown sailor in the group likely first leaked it.
The clip became one of the most-touted pieces of evidence in the UFO community when the Pentagon confirmed its authenticity in 2017.
In January, Chad Underwood, the former Navy aviator who shot the famous leaked video clip, broke his silence in an interview with New York Magazine.
Chad Underwood, the former Navy aviator who shot the famous leaked video clip, broke his silence in an interview with New York Magazine in January
He said the oblong, wingless ‘Tic Tac’ shaped object was spotted off the coast of Mexico over the Pacific.
He also revealed that for about two weeks, the Ticonderoga-class guided missile cruiser USS Princeton, part of Carrier Strike Group 11, had been tracking mysterious aircraft intermittently on an advanced AN/SPY-1B passive radar.
The radar contacts were so inexplicable that the system was even shut down and restarted to to check for bugs – but operators continued to track the unknown aircraft.
Then on November 14, Commander David Fravor says he was flying in an F/A-18F Super Hornet when he made visual contact with the object, which seemed to dive below the water, resurface, and speed out of sight when he tried to approach it.
As Fravor landed on the deck of the Nimitz, Underwood was just gearing up to take off on his own training run.
Fravor told Underwood about the bizarre encounter, and urged Underwood to keep his eyes open.
He recalls how he suddenly saw a blip on his radar before tracking it on his FLIR camera.
Underwood was flying in an F/A-18F Super Hornet as part of the USS Nimitz (above) carrier group when he encountered an ‘unidentified aerial phenomena’
‘The thing that stood out to me the most was how erratic it was behaving,’ Underwood told the magazine.
‘And what I mean by ‘erratic’ is that its changes in altitude, air speed, and aspect were just unlike things that I’ve ever encountered before flying against other air targets.’
Underwood said the object wasn’t obeying the laws of physics and dropped from 50,000 feet altitude to 100 feet in seconds, which he says, ‘isn’t possible’. He added that he saw no signs of an engine heat plume or any sign of propulsion.
The pilot refuses to speculate as to whether the object is an alien spacecraft or not, however.
‘That’s not my job. But I saw something. And it was also seen, via eyeballs, by both my commanding officer, Dave Fravor, and the Marine Corps Hornet squadron commanding officer who was out there as well.’