The Inspector General Brief

Number 26, Volume XI, 24 December 1959

View Image of Brief Cover


     Unidentified flying objects - sometimes treated lightly by the press and referred to as "flying saucers" - must be rapidly and accurately identified as serious USAF business in the ZI As AFR 200-2 points out, the Air Force concern with these sightings is threefold: First of all, is the object a threat to the defense of the U,S.? Secondly, does it contribute to technical or scientific knowledge? And then there’s the inherent USAF responsibility to explain to the American people through public-information media what is going on in their skies.

     The phenomena or actual objects comprising UFO's will tend to increase, with the public more aware of goings on in space but still inclined to some apprehension. Technical and defense considerations will continue to exist in this era.

     Published about three months ago, AFR 200-2 outlines necessary orderly, qualified reporting as well as public-information procedures. This is where the base should stand today, with practices judged at least satisfactory by commander and inspector:

  - Responsibility for handling UFO's should rest with either intelligence, operations, the
   Provost Marshal or the Information Officer - in that order of preference, dictated by
   limits of the base organization;


- A specific officer should be designated as responsible;


- He should have experience in investigative techniques and also, if possible, scientific
   or technical background;


- He should have authority to obtain the assistance of specialists on the base;


- He should be equipped with binoculars, camera, Geiger counter, magnifying glass and
   have a source for containers in which to store samples.

What is required is that every UFO sighting be investigated and reported to the Air Technical Intelligence Center at Wright-Patterson AFB and that explanation to the public be realistic and knowledgeable. Normally that explanation will be made only by the OSAF Information Office. It all adds up to part of the job of being experts in our own domain.


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