OFFICE OF ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF DEFENSE (PUBLIC AFFAIRS)
WASHINGTON, D.C - 20301
PLEASE NOTE DATE
IMMEDIATE RELEASE December 17, 1969 No. 1077-69
OXford 7-5131 (Info.)
OXford 7-3189 (Copies)
AIR FORCE TO TERMINATE
PROJECT "BLUE BOOK"
In a memorandum to Air Force Chief of Staff General John D. Ryan, Secretary Seamans stated that "the continuation of Project Blue Book cannot be justified either on the ground of national security or in the interest of science," and concluded that the project does not merit future expenditures of resources.
The decision to discontinue UFO investigations was based on:
- An evaluation of a report prepared by the University of Colorado entitled "Scientific Study of Unidentified Flying Objects."
- A review of the University of Colorado's report by the National Academy of Sciences.
- Past UFO studies.
- Air Force experience investigating UFO reports during the past two decades.
Under the direction of Dr. Edward U. Condon, the University of Colorodo completed an 18-month contracted study of UFOs and its report was released to the public in January, 1969. The report concluded that little if anything has come from the study of UFOs in the past 21 years that has added to scientific knowledge, and that further extensive study of UFO sightings is not Justified in the expectation that science will be advanced.
The University of Colorado report also states that, "It seems that only so much attention to the subject (UFOs) should be give as the Department of Defense deems to be necessary strictly from a defense point of view....it is our impression that the defense function could be performed within the Framework established for intelligence and surveillance operations without the continuance of a special unit such as Project Blue Book, but this is a question for defense specialists rather than research scientists."
A panel of the National Academy of Sciences made an independent assessment of the scope, methodology, and findings of the University of
Colorado study. The panel concurred in the University of Colorado's recommendation that "no high priority in UFO investigations is warranted by data of the past two decades." It concluded by stating that, "On the basis of present knowledge, the least likely explanation of UFOs is the hypothesis of extraterrestrial visitations by intelligent beings."
Past UFO studies include one conducted by a Scientific Advisory Panel of UFOs in January, 1953 (Robertson Panel); and, a review of Project Blue Book by the Air Force Scientific Advisory Board Ad Hoc Committee, February-March, 1966 (Dr. Brian O'Brien, Chairman). These studies concluded that no evidence has been found that any of the UFO reports reflect a threat to our national security.
As a result of investigating UFO reports since 1948, the conclusions of Project Blue Book are: (1) no UFO reported, investigated, and evaluated by the Air Force has ever given any indication of threat to our national security; (2) there has been no evidence submitted or discovered by the Air Force that sightings categorized as "unidentified" represent technological developments or principles beyond the range of present-day scientific knowledge; and (3) there has been no evidence indicating that sightings categorized as " unidentified " are extraterrestrial vehicles.
Project Blue Book records will be retired to the USAF Archives, Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama. Requests for information will continue to be handled by the Secretary of the Air Force, Office of Information (SAFO1), Washington, D.C. 20330.