Tapping into the hype surrounding the return of The X-Files (albeit in limited form for now) to television, the CIA has publicized a number of declassified UFO documents on its website.
In a post with the title ‘Take a Peek Into Our “X-Files”’, ten documents are listed, divided into ‘Top 5 CIA Documents Mulder Would Love To Get His Hands On’ and ‘Top 5 CIA Documents Scully Would Love To Get His Hands On’.
It feels a little odd when an organisation like the CIA decides to mark the hype around something like The X-Files, particularly as the classic series was hardly flattering towards the CIA during its original run. The CIA had declassified hundreds of documents in 1978, detailing some of the Central Intelligence Agency’s investigations into UFOs. Most of these documents have in fact been available for almost forty years and were available to anyone willing to write a Freedom of Information Act request; these therefore aren’t new revelations or disclosures, but presumably a series of cherry-picked items from a long-gone period in the UFO phenomena.
The documents date primarily from the late forties and fifties during the height of what was the ‘Flying Saucer’ craze in America at that time. That era is, in fairness, the most interesting in modern Ufology, beginning with Kenneth Arnold’s famous flying-saucer sightings in 1947, the same year of the Roswell Incident, and quickly growing into a cult or sub-cultural fascination with unidentified flying objects and the ‘Coming of the Saucer-Men’ that lasted years and later included the Contactee phenomenon and cult figures like George Adamski and J. Allen Hyneck.
As minor an offering as these documents are (compared to what we can assume is being held back and remains classified), perhaps these documents can nevertheless shed a little more light (or at least add a little further colour) to the phenomenon that compelled America in the late forties and early fifties at the beginning of the Cold War.
Says the website, ‘To help navigate the vast amount of data contained in our FOIA UFO collection, we’ve decided to highlight a few documents both skeptics and believers will find interesting. Below you will find five documents we think X-Files character Agent Fox Mulder would love to use to try and persuade others of the existence of extraterrestrial activity. We also pulled five documents we think his skeptical partner, Agent Dana Scully, could use to prove there is a scientific explanation for UFO sightings’. Below are the documents;
Top 5 CIA Documents Mulder Would Love To Get His Hands On:
Flying Saucers Reported Over East Germany, 1952
Minutes of Branch Chief’s Meeting on UFOs, 11 August 1952
Flying Saucers Reported Over Spain and North Africa, 1952
Survey of Flying Saucer Reports, 1 August 1952
Flying Saucers Reported Over Belgian Congo Uranium Mines, 1952
Top 5 CIA Documents Scully Would Love To Get Her Hands On:
Scientific Advisory Panel on Unidentified Flying Objects, 14-17 January 1953
Office Memorandum on Flying Saucers, 15 March 1949
Memorandum to the CIA Director on Flying Saucers, 2 October 1952
Meeting of the OSI Advisory Group on UFOs, 21 January 1953
Memorandum for the Record on Flying Saucers, 3 December 1952
While these offerings are unlikely to reveal anything revelatory or groundbreaking, some of them at least provide some additional insight into a fascinating era and phenomenon. However, it has to be said there are books and other resources that detail far richer UFO cases than this – not to mention more up-to-date ones.