Newly declassified footage released by the U.S. Government, and then posted online by private UFO research group To The Stars Academy of Arts & Science, appears to show an Unidentified Flying Object tracked by the targeting pod of a U.S. Navy F/A-18 Hornet off the eastern seaboard of the United States in 2015.

The brief shootage, shot using a Raytheon AN/ASQ- 228 Advanced Targeting Forward-Looking Infrared (ATFLIR) Pod mounted beneath the supersonic capable fighter jet, appears to show a saucer shaped craft moving at an extremely high rate of speed. The pilot and weapons officer can be heard discussing and reacting to the fast moving craft as they make two failed attempts to lock onto the fast moving object before successfully tracking it, however briefly, on the third attempt.

“Whoa! Got it!” One voice on the footage shouts.

“What the f— is that thing?!” the other asks.

The two crewman are audibly excited as they track the craft traveling at a high rate of speed, and although the footage is brief, there are a number of interesting details to take note of. First, there appears to be no sign of visible rotors, wings, or a tail on the object as it travels, despite the laser range finder citing its distance from the aircraft as only approximately 4.4 nautical miles. There is also no visible exhaust plume coming from the craft, which should be visible in the mid-wave infrared frequency used by the ATFLIR.

The oval shaped object can be seen traveling at a high rate of speed from the top right corner of the video moving toward the lower left, until the Weapons Officer is able to attain tracking capture and match the rate of the camera to the unidentified object.

According to the analysis released in conjunction with the video by To The Stars Academy, the F/A-18 was traveling at approximately 25,000 feet and moving at 259 knots (approximately Mach 0.61) at the time of the intercept.

This footage was released in conjunction with an OpEd about UFO phenomena penned by former deputy assistant secretary of defense for intelligence for the Clinton and George W. Bush administrations, Chris Mellon in the Washington Post. Now an advisor to To the Stars Academy, Mellon was critical of the Department of Defense for not taking concerns about Unidentified Flying Objects more seriously.

The videos, along with observations by pilots and radar operators, appear to provide evidence of the existence of aircraft far superior to anything possessed by the United States or its allies. Defense Department officials who analyze the relevant intelligence confirm more than a dozen such incidents off the East Coast alone since 2015. In another recent case, the Air Force launched F-15 fighters last October in a failed attempt to intercept an unidentified high-speed aircraft looping over the Pacific Northwest.” He wrote.

You can read SOFREP’s coverage of that incident here.

Perhaps Russian President Vladi­mir Putin’s recent chest-thumping claims about propulsion breakthroughs are not pure braggadocio. Or, if these craft really aren’t from Earth, then the need to figure out what they are is even more urgent.” He continued.

This image from footage released by the Department of Defense in December shows another incident in which a UFO was caught on FLIR by a U.S. Navy F/A-18 Hornet. (DoD)

Mellon isn’t the only former high ranking government official to set up show in the To the Stars Academy officers. Luis Elizondo, former head of the Pentagon’s secret initiative tasked with studying the UFO phenomenon, the Advanced Aviation Threat Identification Program, also migrated to the company after resigning from his position “in protest” last October. Elizondo claimed Pentagon officials were not devoting the necessary resources, or concern, to the the issue in a letter he wrote to Defense Secretary Mattis regarding his resignation.

Despite overwhelming evidence at both the classified and unclassified levels, certain individuals in the [Defense] Department remain staunchly opposed to further research on what could be a tactical threat to our pilots, sailors and soldiers, and perhaps even an existential threat to our national security,” Elizondo wrote at the time.

Thus far, To the Stars Academy has privately raised over $2.5 million to support their effort, which seems somewhat nebulous. According to their website, investments (which must be a minimum of $200) offers “the world’s greatest opportunity to break free of bureaucracy and unlock revolutionary innovation.”

To The Stars Academy of Arts & Science 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.” Their site explains.  ”

“The team members 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.”

Image courtesy of YouTube