Former Government UFO Investigator Recalls Cases That ‘Disturbed’ Him
A former Ministry of Defence UFO investigator spoke to us about cases he found ‘extremely troubling’ during his career.
To mark the start of UFO Week on BLAZE, we sat down for a chat with Nick Pope, a leading authority on UFOs. While he worked in the UK government for 21 years, three of those ‘changed his life’.
Between 1991-94, Pope was tasked with investigating UFO – or as he would say, UAP, as in unidentified aerial phenomena – sightings to see if they had any defence significance. While some reports amounted to smoke and mirrors, others left him feeling disturbed.
Explaining a bit about his position when he started, Pope told UNILAD, ‘It was more to do with Russians than Martians. It was born out of the understandable desire from the government and the military to make sure that if there was anything in British airspace, we knew what it was.’
Over the course of the years, Pope said ‘it evolved somewhat and I guess the whole UFO phenomenon became something separate; pop culture kicked in, sci-fi movies, people’s perceptions changed. Even the MoD ended up saying… well, we don’t take a position on the likelihood or not of alien life. We keep an open mind on that, we’ll just investigate the sightings to see if there’s any evidence of threat or not’.
When asked about incidents he found more alarming than others, he said, ‘All of the near-misses between UFOs and commercial aircraft are extremely troubling.’
Pope continued, ‘There was a case from April 1991, where there was a near-miss over Kent. The pilot thought the object was so in danger of hitting the aircraft, he and the rest of the people in the cockpit instinctively flinched.’
The pilot even shouted ‘Look out, look out!’ as the ‘thing came past, and it was definitely on the radar… the [Ministry of Defence] investigated, the Civil Aviation Authority investigated – no definitive explanation was ever found’.
Pope then cited another case from 1995, saying, ‘There was an aircraft coming in on its intermediate approach to Manchester airport, I think, over the Pennines. The pilot or first officer was so of the mind that this was going to be a hit, that he flinched. Then the thing passed rapidly down one side of the aircraft.’
He continued, ‘Again, the Civil Aviation Authority and MoD looked at this – no explanation. So those sorts of cases – and I’ve just mentioned two, there’s dozens in the UK, US and I suspect all over the world, although there’s still chronic underreporting of this– so those cases disturbed me.’
Pope also spoke briefly about the Cosford UFO mystery in 1993, when there was a wave of sightings regarding a triangular-shaped object flying across the sky. Reports were heard from Devon, Cornwall and the West Midlands, with military personnel also giving credence to the claims.
Pope said, ‘When it’s pilots, military personnel, police officers, when you’ve got things simultaneously tracked on radar, that gets my attention.’
He added, ‘That makes me think, wait a minute, it’s not just Chinese lanterns here people, there’s something going on and I don’t care whether people are sceptics or believers. To me, this is a defence and national security issue, and sometimes an air safety issue too.’
UFO Week returns to Blaze tonight, March 22, with dedicated content starting from 8pm until 2am every single evening. Blaze is available on Freeview channel 63, Freesat 162, Sky 164, Virgin Media 216, My5 and on demand.
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