The deep fascination for all things Unidentified Aerial Phenomenon (UAP) in the United States has roots in the speed of technological advancement the country experienced in the 20th century.
Author Richard Dolan posits that idea while seated in the restaurant of the Toronto Airport Marriott, Sept. 22. It’s his offering to the question, why is the American appetite for UFOs so voracious?
“There is something about American culture where there’s always been this much deeper fascination,” Dolan says while sitting beside his wife Tracey Garbutt. They were in Toronto for his lecture at the Alien Cosmic Expo. “I think partly it’s because the United States has been dominating the world militarily, in terms of its intelligence.”
That intelligence, where the United States was one of the frontrunners of scientific advancement, is something that has accumulated over the years through the work of engineers. But in some circles, reverse engineering of recovered crashes has also come into play.
One of the prevailing theories is that the invention of the transistor came from acquired technology collected from a UFO that crashed in Cape Girardeau, Mo. in 1941.
The unfortunate side of that is most of the information pointing to Cape Girardeau, as well as Roswell, N.M., has been buried.
But Dolan pointed to Dr. Robert M. Wood who has studied the technology harvested from the aforementioned two crashes and argued for the transistor theory.
“The Western world had developed a really amazing science network that given enough time, would have gone along the same path,” the 57-year-old from Rochester, N.Y. says. “Crash retrievals have accelerated it.”
Present Day Mindset
Fast forward to today, with recent validation by the U.S. navy on the three videos released in December 2017 by To the Stars Academy of Arts and Sciences (TTSA), and it’s not a far stretch that society has become more accepting of the extraterrestrial phenomenon.
That, Dolan credits, is because of the work done by To the Stars Academy of Arts and Sciences.
“We’re in an era where it’s easier and easier for us to communicate and get information, and for someone who is TTSA, all of these guys are getting old,” Dolan admits. “They’ve had long-standing in the classified world — they don’t know everything, but they know a lot — and they’re making their play to get this information out, for their own purposes.”
Tom DeLonge, formerly of the band Blink-182, co-founded the organization with former CIA officer, Jim Semivan.
TTSA released three videos over the period of December 2017 and early 2018 revealing the U.S. Navy had several encounters with UAPs. During that same time, a New York Times article revealed that the Pentagon had a secret UFO project called Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program (AATIP).
DeLonge and his team published the aforementioned videos, “FLIR1”, “Gimbal” and “GoFast” and other members have worked with TTSA to provide disclosure to their fullest abilities.
“They are using their means within the media and congress, the world of politics to get their message out,” Dolan says. “I don’t know if that’s a government disclosure effort. I think they have government allies and they have government enemies.”
It is similar to what Bob Lazar, a technician who worked at S-4, a secret base south of the infamous Area-51, had done with his disclosure of his reverse-engineering work:
“In the sense that Lazar is someone that intersected with this covert reality and started talking about it,” Dolan adds. “I think the guys from TTSA are being more circumspect about what they’re willing to say.”
That said, there is always opposition. A lot of the reverse engineering experiments and the very hush-hush experiments are being performed by a “deeply embedded privatized system”, which makes it hard for public citizens or cleared classified personnel from the government to get access.
Mick West, of Metabunk, has been the most vocal, going as far as to say the black shape around the UAP in the “GoFast” video is a “very bright IR flare.”
“The strangeness of the footage is largely a function of the ability of the ATFLIR camera to lock on to a white spot and track it,” West wrote on Metabunk. “This accents the visual illusion that the object is moving because of the parallax effect.”
Others commented that the audio was hoaxed, but the Navy said otherwise, sheepishly, admitting that they no longer wanted to use the acronym UFO. The replacement was UAP.
Conspiracies Shouldn’t Be Ignored
Conspiracy theories and UFO culture are not mutually exclusive items.
For years, people have been sitting in their living rooms saying that there’s something in that base in the Nevada desert.
Dolan is no fan, though, of those that pooh-pooh on conspiracy theorists — those who challenge the grain within means.
“There are conspiracies. They happen all of the time. Those on the left don’t tend to look at that. It’s almost a cliché if you believe conspiracies, you’re some right-wing idiot,” he says. “That’s bullshit. People on the left, through my observation, have a bias of taking some conspiracies seriously — and it’s a real blind spot.”
With the American left, Dolan adds, and Canadian intellectuals, there is a collectivist tendency to look at the world in big forces.
“This is the legacy of Marxism,” he says, with indifference. “There’s a bias against voluntarism — that is to say, the individual making a difference.”
By no means does the discussion turn into a polemic, but when dealing with government officials withholding information, or denying previous claims, it’s the nuanced observations that make Dolan so knowledgeable.
A Cultural Matter
UFOs, or more delicately, UAPs have become a part of American culture. Not so much in Canada, and even less in Europe.
Dolan suspects it’s removed from the European consciousness.
“I’m only speculating here, but is it because these nations don’t feel that they are really in control? Not running it?” he posits. “Maybe it’s easy to lose interest in something where you don’t feel that you have any agency. I’m not sure if that’s true or not.”
Still, he jokes with his wife about the passion Americans have when it comes to the unknown or just life in general.
And perhaps the adverse effects that said passions have.
“There is a certain truth about American culture and psyche — we joke about it all the time — Americans really think they’re great,” Dolan said, pointing to Garbutt, who grew up in Mississauga, Ont. “And they’re not all that great. They think they’re smarter than they are. They think they’re cooler than they are. This is, unfortunately, a true thing.
“It’s that way because Americans have several centuries of history of where they were, by far, the most active, do-it people in the world.”