White House Acknowledges UFOs Having An ‘Impact’ On Pilots
John Kirby, coordinator for strategic communications at the National Security Council, speaks at the daily White House briefing on July 17, 2023 in Washington, DC.
(Photo by Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images)

The White House acknowledged that UFOs flying around training ranges have made an “impact” on pilots, fueling a desire to “get to the bottom of it.”

John Kirby, the coordinator for Strategic Communications at the National Security Council, made the comments on Monday in response to a reporter who asked about UAP (unidentified anomalous phenomena) transparency.

“Some of these phenomena, we know, have already had an impact on our training ranges for — you know, when pilots are out trying to do training in the air and they see these things, they’re not sure what they are, and it can have an impact on their ability to perfect their skills,” Kirby said.

“Now, we’re not saying what they are or what they’re not,” Kirby also said. “We’re saying that there’s something our pilots are seeing. We’re saying it has had an effect on some of our training operations. And so, we want to get to the bottom of it. We want to understand it better.”

Indeed, Navy pilots have come forward in recent years with claims that they witnessed mysterious flying objects that appear to defy the laws of physics while participating in training exercises, which led to the release of videos of some encounters and the drafting of new guidelines for reporting UFOs.

The Department of Defense (DoD) later set up the All-domain Anomaly Resolution Office (AARO), which has been tasked with investigating UFOs, and there has been a push by lawmakers for legislation to encourage more disclosures.

The level of interest in UFOs on Capitol Hill has risen following the public emergence of David Grusch, a U.S. military and intelligence veteran who shared allegations about crafts of non-human origin being retrieved and kept from Congress.


In response to the claims, the DoD said the AARO team has “not discovered any verifiable information to substantiate claims that any programs regarding the possession or reverse-engineering of any extraterrestrial materials have existed in the past or exist currently.”

The House Oversight Committee is set to hold a hearing on UAPs on Wednesday, July 26, according to Rep. Tim Burchett (R-TN). “We’re done with the cover-ups,” he said in a tweet on Monday.

Kirby, a retired Navy rear admiral, would not comment directly on the reliability of individual whistleblowers, but he did stress that setting up AARO shows the government is taking the matter “seriously.” He also said, “We will always want to be as transparent with members of Congress and with the American people as we can, considering national security concerns.”

Journalist Ross Coulthart, who interviewed Grusch for NewsNation, took Kirby’s comments about UAPs as a sign of growing urgency in Washington.

“So finally, [the president’s]’ National Security Council spokesman John Kirby makes it clear to the White House press Corp that they are indeed now taking the #UAP mystery very seriously,” Coulthart said in a tweet. “No more ridicule or giggling. Big Q: will legacy media now investigate the new acknowledged reality?”

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