Excerpts from The Daily Argus News April 17, 1897

Crawfordsville, Indiana, Saturday Evening, April 17, 1897


Conductor Tom Jarvis and Engineer Sharpe of the Big Four See the Mysterious Aeroplane.
April 17, 1897

The crew of train number 3 on the Big Four which passed through this city last night at 6 o’clock in charge of Engineer Sharpe and conductor T.E Jarvis, with thirty passengers, saw what is supposed to be the much talked of air ship about 8 o’clock a short distance west of Danville, Ills. The aeroplane was in sight about ten minutes and was traveling, at the rate of about 120 miles an hour, according to Engineer Sharpe. Scoffers assert that what the passenger and train men saw was merely a cloud driven with great force across the sky, but Conductor Tommy Jarvis, says it was too compact and moving with too great velocity to be ether a common cloud or a Kansas twister. Conductor Jarvis was seen at the Big Four depot this morning on his run to Indianapolis and he said:

“I have always read these newspaper stories about this air ship with a great deal of incredulity. But now 1am convinced that there is some thing mysterious shooting through the heavens at a tremendous speed. We could detect the faint outlines of the thing and it looked cigar shaped. There was a very bright light in front of It, which seemed to shift from side to side. I also detected a red and blue light, which seemed to be on the side of their ship. I could not discern how the thing was propelled, but I’ll tell you it was going at frightful speed. All these wise people can sit around and scoff at the story and say that we were flighty, but I am as confident that what I saw was a machine of human construction, as I am that I am standing talking to you.”

As printed in the April 17, 1897 Daily Argus News accessible here

Detailed Summary of the UAP Disclosure Act of 2023 (Part II)

This is a continuation of the detailed summary of the relevant sections of S.2226 National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2024 with a focus on the Unidentified Anomalous Phenomena Disclosure Act of 2023 as amended to the FY 2024 military budget. Part I is available here.

In particular, this section focuses on the creation and operation of the Review Board (an independent 9-person board appointed by the President to investigate, with subpoena and hearing powers, UAP records and materials and prepare them for public disclosure), provides a robust legal framework for accessing and archiving information for the ultimate goal of public disclosure, gives funding and other legal necessities, and curiously compels the Secretary of State to advocate for other nations to engage in disclosure as well.

Sec 9007 Establishment and Powers of the Unidentified Anomalous PHenomena Records Review Board

SEC. 9007 constructs an independent Review Board of nine members with an impressive mandate—managing, reviewing, and disclosing records related to UAP. This represents a fundamental acknowledgment of the public’s right to access such information, implicitly accepting the societal importance of these phenomena. The board’s authority and operational independence are substantial, with extensive powers to direct government offices, access records, hold hearings, subpoena witnesses and documents, issue oaths, and more. This capacity is balanced by rigorous accountability measures, ensuring legislative oversight and preserving the board’s integrity.

The board operationalizes a blend of democratic accountability and meritocracy in board appointments. Not only does the President play a role in the appointment process, but leaders from different spheres of society have a voice, too (including the Academy of Sciences, American Historical Association, and an unnamed UAP nonprofit). This democratic element is then counterbalanced by rigorous qualification criteria for board members which requires at least one member to be a scientist or engineer, a professional historian, an economist, and a sociologist among other professionals. Further, enshrined are protections for whistleblowers to have a safe platform to disclose information.

The Act sets a sunset clause (September 30, 2030), meaning the board has a fixed life, pending a potential extension by Congress, at which point Congress will assume the role.


(a) Establishment is the operative clause establishing the Unidentified Anomalous Phenomena Records Review Board as an independent agency. An independent agency typically operates outside the influence of the executive branch, not being part of a federal executive department. This can insulate its operations from political shifts, but also has implications for accountability and oversight.

(b) Appointment outlines the board’s composition. It indicates that the President, with the Senate’s approval, appoints the board’s nine members, who must be U.S. citizens, within 90 days which are then approved by the Senate (replacements nominated within 30 days). The nominations are made with considerations from bipartisan Congressional leadership, Sec of Defense, National Academy of Sciences, an unnamed UAP nonprofit, and the American Historical Association (once again noting the interest in the historical record).

Interestingly, any individual with direct experience (legacy or current) related to collecting or examining “technologies of unknown origin” or examining “biological evidence” of NHI are excluded from consideration. There is a mandate that the members include at least one current or former national security official, foreign service official, scientist or engineer, economist, professional historian, and sociologist. Clearly, the intention is to measure the historical and societal impact of the revelations the legislators believe are contained within these records. Each individual will be reviewed for conflicts of interest and removed on detection.

(c) Security Clearances are granted to all nominees in an expedited manner. Specifically, these include access to “any and all relevant Presidential, departmental, and agency special access programs.”

(d) Consideration by the Senate simply establishes that senate nominations will be made by the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs of the Senate.

(e) Vacancy outlines the procedure to fill a board vacancy, which should be done within 30 days. Prompt filling of vacancies helps maintain the board’s operational efficiency and effectiveness.

(f) Removal of Review Board Member establishes the terms for removing a board member. There are protections against arbitrary removal, enhancing the board’s independence. Any removal must be duly justified and performed either by impeachment or conviction, direct action of the President, or via Judicial Review from civil action. Should the President remove a member, a report documenting the reasons must be submitted to Congress, further enhancing the board’s accountability.

(g) Compensation of Members at a rate equivalent to the daily rate for level IV of the Executive Schedule (approximately $690 per work day as of writing), and they will be allowed reasonable travel expenses. This allows the board to attract and retain qualified individuals by offering competitive compensation.

(h) Duties of the Review Board The Review Board’s main responsibility is to consider and render decisions on the postponement of disclosure of unidentified anomalous phenomena records. This critical duty allows the board to control the pace and extent of public disclosures, balancing transparency with national security and other considerations.

(i) Powers granted are extensive and essential for carrying out its duties. The board can direct government offices, have access to records, hold hearings, subpoena witnesses and documents, hold hearings, administer oaths, and even use the Federal Acquisition Service and United States mails like other executive agencies. These powers underscore the board’s authority to efficiently access and process information related to anomalous phenomena.

(j) Witness Immunity allows the board to grant protections encouraging witnesses to provide information without fear of legal repercussions. It further emphasizes the act’s commitment to uncovering truth and providing a safe platform for whistleblowers.

(k) Oversight is maintained by the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs of the Senate and the Committee on Oversight and Accountability of the House of Representatives which will take over when the Review Board is terminated. Notably, the Act grants “all security clearances and accesses held by the Review Board, including to relevant Presidential and department or agency special access and compartmented access programs” to members and staff of those committees.

(m) Interpretive Regulations gives the board flexibility and control in defining how it fulfills its mission and implements this legislation.

(n) Termination and Winding Down provides for the board’s termination on September 30, 2030, unless extended by Congress. It ensures that the board’s records are preserved for historical and analytical purposes, and maintains accountability through a final report to the President and Congress.

In sum, this act creates a powerful and independent board charged with the complex task of managing, reviewing, and disclosing records related to unidentified anomalous phenomena. The board’s powers and responsibilities are thoughtfully balanced with measures to ensure accountability, impartiality, and integrity. The underlying philosophical implication is an acknowledgment of the public’s right to be informed about matters of potential national significance, while carefully considering national security and operational concerns.

Section 9008 Unidentified Anomalous Phenomena Records Review Board Personnel

SEC. 9008 of the Unidentified Anomalous Phenomena Records Review Board Personnel Act outlines the details surrounding the establishment and operations of the Review Board’s personnel.


Under subsection (a) concerning the Executive Director, the Act sets out the appointment procedure and qualifications for this role. A key point is the requirement for the Executive Director to be a private citizen (not a current Federal Government employee) of integrity and impartiality. The Act emphasizes that this individual should not have any current or previous engagement with programs or authorities related to the collection, examination, or exploitation of unidentified anomalous phenomena. It enforces mandatory conflict-of-interest reviews for the Executive Director, ensuring this position remains free of any personal biases or conflicting interests that could potentially compromise the mission of the Review Board. The Director shall be awarded all necessary clearance and access “including to relevant Presidential and department or agency special access and compartmented access programs.”

The Executive Director serves as the principal liaison to the Executive Office of the President (which they can make appeals to) and Congress in addition to the administration and coordination of all activities of the Review Board and their review of records.

The Executive Director’s removal is safeguarded by the Act, ensuring that it can only occur under specific circumstances, such as inefficiency, neglect of duty, malfeasance, physical disability, mental incapacity, or any other condition that substantially impairs their performance. This provision is pivotal, as it ensures that the Executive Director can only be removed for substantial cause, reinforcing the role’s independence and protecting it from undue external influences including from the Executive Office itself.

Subsection (b) of the Act focuses on the staff of the Review Board, with the Board given the power to appoint and terminate additional personnel without regard to civil service laws. This autonomy reflects the Board’s independence, allowing it to create its team based on the unique requirements of its mission. The Act reinforces the need for staff to be citizens of integrity and impartiality, and institutes consultation with the Director of the Office of Government Ethics to ensure no potential conflicts of interest. It further stresses the staff will possess all necessary security clearances and access (those that cannot pass the checks necessary for this clearance are immediately terminated).

The Act additionally designates that one representative from the National Declassification Center within the National Archives will advise and support the Review Board’s disclosure postponement review process, bolstering the Board’s resources and knowledge base.

Subsection (c) outlines the compensation process for the Executive Director (~$212,100 annually) and additional personnel, offering them competitive pay rates that are independent of standard federal pay scales. This provision reflects the importance of attracting highly qualified individuals to serve on the Review Board.

Subsection (d) provides the Review Board with the authority to create advisory committees, subject to certain statutory provisions. These committees can enhance the Board’s expertise and contribute to its decision-making processes.

Lastly, subsection (e) underscores the need for all Review Board personnel, including the Executive Director, to qualify for any necessary security clearances before assuming their roles. It allows for conditional employment in accordance with subsection (b)(3)(B), though if failure to obtain clearance occurs, the individual will be terminated from their position.

Section 9009 Review of Records by the Unidentified Anomalous Phenomena Records Review Board

SEC. 9009 focuses on identifying the powers, rights, and obligations of the Review Board, as well as the effects of these powers in the broader context of governance, transparency, and democratic accountability.


(a) Custody of Records Reviewed by Review Board stipulates that while under review, the records of unidentified anomalous phenomena will stay within the custody of the government office from which they originated. This is designed to ensure that the records are securely maintained and managed efficiently. However, the law also provides two exceptions to this rule:

  1. If the Review Board needs to physically transfer the records to conduct an independent and impartial review, it can do so. This provision could be interpreted as an oversight mechanism, allowing the Review Board to ensure transparency and thorough scrutiny of the records.
  2. The records may also be transferred if such a transfer becomes necessary for an administrative hearing or other official Review Board function.

(b) Startup Requirements outlines a timeline and a set of obligations for the Review Board once it is appointed. It appears there is desire to ensure the Review Board takes swift action after its establishment as they have 90 days to publish a review schedule and no more than 180 days to begin the review process. They must periodically (no less than twice a year) publish a revised schedule containing any new records discovered.

(c) Determinations of the Review Board delineates the standards for the Review Board’s decisions regarding the disclosure of records. Here, the legislator appears to be balancing the principles of open government and national security. The Review Board is directed to transmit all unidentified anomalous phenomena records to the Archivist for public disclosure, unless there is clear and convincing evidence that either the record isn’t an UAP record, or the record or information within it qualifies for postponement of disclosure.

In cases where the public disclosure of a record is postponed, the Review Board is to ensure that as much information as possible (segregable parts, substitutes, or summaries, for example) is made available to the public in a form that doesn’t compromise the reasons for the postponement.

Further, for postponed records, it must create a “Controlled Disclosure Campaign Plan” to be sent to key political figures and bodies (President, Archivist, relevant Senate and House Committees). This plan needs to include both a description of the actions taken to postpone the disclosure and a benchmark-driven plan for eventual declassification and public disclosure, including an exact time or specified occurrence at which point disclosure will be allowed.

The Review Board is required to notify the head of the originating body of the record about its determination and to publish a copy of the determination in the Federal Register within 14 days.

(d) Presidential Authority Over Review Board Determination establishes that the President retains ultimate authority over the Review Board’s determinations about public disclosure or postponement thereof when the record concerns the executive branch. In such an event, the President must abide by the standards set forth in section 9006. They must provide both an unclassified and classified written certification specifying the decision and its justification. The Review Board is tasked with publishing a copy of any unclassified written certification provided by the President regarding the postponement of records, and it must amend the Controlled Disclosure Campaign Plan as required.

The mechanism is interesting as the board cannot directly overrule the President, but it provides a form of accountability to their actions where they must 1) acknowledge the existence of records and 2) justify their decision to the public (along with whatever electoral response that may engender).

(e) Notice to Public requires the Review Board to publish a summary of approved postponements every 30 days. This mechanism for public notification ensures that the Review Board is held accountable and allows for the public to stay informed of the Board’s activities. The notice must contain a description of the subject, the originating agency, length or other physical description, and each ground for postponement.

(f) Reports by the Review Board provides detailed requirements for the Review Board to report its activities. This obligation encompasses financial reports, progress updates, special problems encountered, and future recommendations. The reporting requirements extend to the President, Archivist, Congress, and all government offices whose records have been reviewed.

The first report will be issued 1 year after the enactment of this Act and will be updated every year until the termination of the board. Within this report will be a financial report of all expenses, progress reports on review, transmission, and public disclosure, estimated time and volume of UAP records remaining, any special problems (including level of cooperation), a record of review activities (including postponement decisions), suggestions to Congress for additional legislative needs.

The board must provide notice of the completion of their work 90 days before such an event. Finally, the all-domain anomaly resolution office (AARO) must be briefed.

Section 9010 Disclosure of Recovered Technologies of Unkown Origin and Biological Evidence of Non-Human Intelligence

This is the big guns of the piece. On enactment of this Act, all UAP related material (including “recovered technologies of unknown origin and biological evidence of non-human intelligence”) become property of the federal government regardless of current possession. These materials must be made available to the Review Board “in a timely manner.” For investigatory purposes, the Review Board is given access to all testimony from UAP “witnesses, close observers and legacy program personnel and whistleblowers.” Further, the Review Board is mandated to solicit additional UAP witness and whistleblower testimony (along with accompanying legal protections which will be granted).


(a) Exercise of Eminent Domain exerts the Federal Government’s power of eminent domain over “recovered technologies of unknown origin and biological evidence of non-human intelligence,” which may currently be in private hands. This provision grants the government a right—primarily a public right—over any such evidence, to take ownership away from private entities (such as the military industrial complex) or individuals. This measure is a crucial first step in ensuring that these materials fall under the purview of a public review board, facilitating transparency and equitable access to information.

(b) Availability to Review Board obligates private entities or individuals to surrender such materials to the Review Board in a timely manner (location permitting).

(c) Actions of Review Board establishes the Review Board’s responsibilities in examining these materials. They are mandated to confirm whether the materials truly constitute evidence of non-human intelligence or unknown technologies. It is noteworthy that the standard of proof demanded is “beyond a reasonable doubt,” reminiscent of the high evidentiary threshold applied in criminal cases. Secondly, they need to determine whether such materials should be postponed from public disclosure in line with the guidelines of this division. Lastly, they need to provide recommendations on any changes that should be made to the current disposition of such materials, ostensibly to facilitate full disclosure to the public.

(d) Review Board Access to Testimony and Witnesses This clause gives the Review Board the right to access any related testimony from witnesses, observers, and whistleblowers within the Federal Government’s possession as of and after the date of the enactment of this Act.

(e) Solicitation of Additional Witnesses empowers the Review Board to seek additional testimonies and provides a level of protection for whistleblowers under section 1673(b) of the James M. Inhofe National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2023 (50 U.S.C. 3373b(b)). This clause seeks to ensure that the board has the freedom to gather as much information as possible, while simultaneously safeguarding the rights of those who may have critical but sensitive information about these unexplained phenomena.

Section 9011 Disclosure of Other Materials and Additional Study

SEC. 9011 extends the principles and processes detailed in the previous section (SEC. 9010) to other materials that may be pertinent to understanding UAP and related subject, but which may be protected by court seals or grand jury secrecy. The section allows the Review Board to request the Attorney General to petition any court in the United States as well as abroad to release pertinent information. Further, the Attorney General can be asked to unseal information held under the secrecy of a grand jury (including particularized need by default).

Most interesting though is the following passage:

“the Secretary of State should contact any foreign government that may hold material relevant to unidentified anomalous phenomena, technologies of unknown origin, or non- human intelligence and seek disclosure of such material”

Including this in speculative legislation would be an insane choice, compelling one of the highest ranking members of Government to bring this up with adversarial states. It speaks to the conviction they have about the phenomena and that other major powers are aware and engaging in active retrieval and engineering projects (as Grusch has alleged).


(a) Materials Under Seal of Court authorizes the Review Board to request the Attorney General to petition a court, either in the United States or abroad, to unseal any information relevant to the subject matter. This provision expands the mandate of the Review Board beyond merely examining physical evidence, allowing it to delve into legally protected information that might shed light on unidentified anomalous phenomena. Notably, this authority extends to courts abroad, potentially giving the Review Board an international reach.

The statute further enables the Review Board to call upon the Attorney General to request the unsealing of information related to the subject matter, held under grand jury secrecy. Like the previous provision, this clause seeks to ensure that all relevant information, regardless of the level of legal protection, is accessible to the Review Board for a comprehensive review.

Importantly, the act provides that a request for the disclosure of such materials will automatically be considered a demonstration of “particularized need” under Rule 6 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure. This specification simplifies the legal process of unsealing grand jury records, which typically requires a showing of particularized need. By declaring that such requests inherently meet this standard, the act expedites the unsealing process, reducing potential bureaucratic hurdles.

(b) Sense of Congress serves as a directive from the legislature, indicating its perspective on the roles of various government bodies in assisting the Review Board. The Act calls upon the Attorney General to assist the Review Board in unsealing any relevant records, adding an expectation of “good faith” effort, underscoring the Congress’ intention that there should be active, sincere collaboration from the Attorney General’s office.

The Secretary of State is directed to engage foreign governments that might hold material relevant to the topics at hand, further highlighting the international implications and reach of this effort. This engagement is not confined to merely requesting information, but encompasses seeking active disclosure of such material. All heads of Executive agencies should fully cooperate with the Review Board to facilitate the disclosure of all relevant material.

Section 9012 Rules of Construction

SEC. 9012 articulates the legal and procedural principles that will govern the application of this legislative division, and details the division’s interaction with other laws, rules, and forms of legal authority. This section provides vital clarifications to prevent conflicts and ambiguities in interpretation and implementation. It underscores the commitment to transparency, while preserving existing legal mechanisms and powers.

(a) Precedence Over Other Law a clear statement of dominance: when the division requires the transmission of a record to the Archivist or public disclosure, it shall supersede any conflicting provision of law (except for section 6103 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 concerning tax return confidentiality). This includes not just other statutes, but also judicial decisions interpreting those statutes and common law doctrines that might otherwise prohibit disclosure or transmission. The only exception is for deeds governing gifts and donations of records to the US Government. In effect, the provision asserts the primacy of the law at hand, ensuring that its requirements for transparency are not frustrated by other legal principles, such as Department of Energy shenanigans, with limited exceptions.

(b) Freedom of Information Act section does not limit or eliminate the right to file requests under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). This maintains the status quo, allowing the public to continue accessing government-held information through FOIA. It serves as a reassurance that the law does not constrain existing rights of public access to information.

(c) Judicial Review makes clear that nothing in this division precludes judicial review of final actions taken or required under it. This provision safeguards the checks and balances inherent in the system, ensuring that the courts can still review and potentially overturn decisions made under this division. It upholds the important principle of legal accountability.

(d) Existing Authority ensures that the division does not revoke or limit the existing authority of the President, executive agencies, the Senate, the House of Representatives, or any other federal entity to publicly disclose records in their possession. This not only preserves current powers but also reiterates the central purpose of the law—to promote transparency.

(e) Rules of the Senate and House of Representatives relates specifically to legislative procedure within the Senate and the House of Representatives. It establishes that any provision of this division that sets a procedural rule in the Senate or the House is to be regarded as an exercise of each body’s rulemaking power and will become part of the rules of that body. However, this only applies to the extent that the provision is inconsistent with existing rules, and it is acknowledged that either House may change these rules as they see fit.

Section 9013, 9014, and 9015

The remainder of the sections are housekeeping. SEC. 9013 dissolves provisions pertaining to the review board once the review board is terminated. All other provisions are to remain in effect until the Archivist certifies to the President and Congress all records are available to the public. AARO, or any successor, is tasked with developing a standardized declassification guidance for any future records.

SEC. 9014 authorizes $20,000,000 for FY 2024 to carry out the provisions of this division.

SEC. 9015 serves as a standard clause in legal documents, stipulating that if any provision of this division, or its application to any person or circumstance, is deemed invalid, the remainder of the division and the application of that provision to other individuals or situations will not be affected by the invalidation. This crucial legal principle ensures that if a court finds a particular aspect of the law unconstitutional or invalid for any reason, the rest of the law remains intact. This maintains the law’s overall integrity and intention, even if individual provisions are contested.

Detailed Summary of the UAP Disclosure Act of 2023 (Part I)

by Pepper Domina

This is not legal advice, please engage counsel if you have specific legal questions or needs.

The following is a detailed breakdown of the relevant sections of S.2226 National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2024 with a focus on the Unidentified Anomalous Phenomena Disclosure Act of 2023 as amended to the FY 2024 military budget. This paper will examine each relevant section and summarize important points and offer analysis where prudent. The bill contains two sections specifically concerning UAP phenomenon, a funding limitation and reporting section (Section 1546) and the later Schumer introduced UAP Disclosure Act of 2023 (Sections 9001-9015).

The purpose of this is not to be entertaining, but to provide a human-readable reference of the significant components of the Act.

Extremely briefly, this legislation stops all funding for projects regarding UAP unless expressly approved by public officials, seizes all UAP related records and materials, sets up various organizations and bodies to process and disclose these records with legal powers, gives a UAP Review Board access the Attorney General to petition courts in the US and abroad, compels the Secretary of State to travel to other nations to advocate for disclosure, provides guidelines for declassification and postponement with the ultimate goal of full public disclosure, and more.

The language of this bill is extremely thorough and serious and shows deep conviction that the issue is credible and urgent. Actions are required by the Senate, congressional leadership, numerous departments, and the President themselves based on the text of the bill further indicating that this is something to be taken seriously.

Due to the length of these legal documents, this will be split into two sections: 1546 and 9001-9006 (this page) and 9007-9015 (available here).

Section 1546

SEC. 1546, titled “Funding Limitation on Certain Unreported Programs,” lays down stringent conditions for the use of funds authorized by this Act for the fiscal year 2024. This section blocks all funds for anything (security, reverse engineering, recruitment, etc.) regarding UAP, both to government and contractors, unless it’s explicitly explained to and approved by congressional leadership and the director of AARO. Further, it requires all materials relating to UAP to be reported to AARO within 60 days and all material turned over within 180 days or face legal consequences (this is the amnesty window). This essentially “renationalizes” any UAP material that may have been turned over to private industry.

Specific Details

Under subsection (a), it restricts the expenditure of these funds for any activities related to “unidentified anomalous phenomena”—unless they have been thoroughly detailed and justified to specific congressional committees, congressional leadership (majority and minority speaker of the Senate, Speaker of the House and minority house leader), and the Director of the All Domain Anomaly Resolution Office (AARO). The covered activities include:

  1. Recruitment and operational tasks (both governmental and contractors) related to the handling of UAP craft.
  2. Analysis of the properties, origins, and usage of these crafts, and efforts towards reverse-engineering their technology.
  3. The management and security of information related to unidentified anomalous phenomena to prevent leaks.
  4. Reverse engineering or replication of the technology, materials, or performance of these phenomena, including data based on sensor and observational information.
  5. Development of non-conventional propulsion technology or aerospace craft derived from or inspired by anomalous phenomena.
  6. Aerospace crafts that use non-standard propulsion technology (non-chemical propellants, solar power, or electric ion thrust).

Subsection (b) requires individuals or entities currently or previously contracted by the Federal Government (including contractors), who possess materials or information related to unidentified anomalous phenomena (past, present, regardless of classification), to report to the Director within 60 days and provide access within 180 days all material and comprehensive lists of all non-earth origin or exotic anomalous phenomena materiel [sic] to obtain amnesty.

Subsection (c) disallows independent research and development funding relating to such material or information to be counted as indirect expenses unless provided to the Director as per subsection (b).

Subsection (d) instructs the Director to notify Congress and congressional leadership within 30 days after receiving any notification or material under subsection (b)(1).

In essence, SEC. 1546 aims to ensure accountability and transparency in activities related to unidentified anomalous phenomena by enforcing strict funding limitations, reporting requirements, and oversight by key governmental entities.

Section 9001

SEC. 9001 serves as the designation of this Division, which may be referred to as the “Unidentified Anomalous Phenomena Disclosure Act of 2023” or the “UAP Disclosure Act of 2023.”

Section 9002

SEC. 9002 provides the findings, declarations, and purposes of this act. It consists of two subsections: (a) Findings and Declarations, and (b) Purposes. It goes so far as to insist that all material relating to UAP should eventually be disclosed to inform the public, and emphasizes that FOIA has been insufficient for this purpose (in part because of DoE exclusions which it explicitly overrules in later sections). These demands are due to “credible evidence and testimonies,” likely from David Grusch and others via the Inspector General of the Intelligence Committee (IGIC) and their subsequent disclosures to the Gang of Eight (high ranking congressional members with privileged intelligence access). The section emphasizes that proper oversight must be reestablished and should be done as soon as possible. In achieving portions of these goals, it establishes a UAP records collection effort at the National Archives.

In short, the amendment underscores the necessity of legislative action for the preservation, centralization, and timely public disclosure of all records related to UAP, emphasizing the need for comprehensive open scientific and technological research in the interests of national security and the public.


In subsection (a), Congress states seven crucial findings and declarations:

  1. It is essential for historical and federal purposes to preserve and centralize all Federal Government records related to unidentified anomalous phenomena.
  2. All such records should carry a presumption of immediate disclosure, and eventually, all should be disclosed to keep the public fully informed about the Federal Government’s knowledge and involvement surrounding unidentified anomalous phenomena.
  3. There is a need for legislation to establish an enforceable, independent, and accountable process for the public disclosure of such records.
  4. Legislation is necessary due to credible evidence and testimonies that indicate the existence of unidentified anomalous phenomena records within the Federal Government that have not been declassified or subject to mandatory declassification review. This lack of declassification is partly due to exemptions under the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 and the broad interpretation of “transclassified foreign nuclear information” exempt from mandatory declassification, preventing public disclosure under existing laws.
  5. Legislation is necessary as the “Freedom of Information Act,” as implemented by the Federal Government’s Executive branch, has proven inadequate in ensuring the timely public disclosure of Government records related to unidentified anomalous phenomena.
  6. Legislation is necessary to restore proper oversight over unidentified anomalous phenomena records by elected officials in both the executive and legislative branches of the Federal Government, which has been lacking up until the enactment of this Act.
  7. Legislation is necessary to provide complete and timely access to all knowledge acquired by the Federal Government concerning unidentified anomalous phenomena. This is important for comprehensive open scientific and technological research and development, essential to avoiding or mitigating potential technological surprise in the interest of national security and the public.

Subsection (b) outlines the purposes of this division:

  1. The creation of the unidentified anomalous phenomena Records Collection at the National Archives and Records Administration.
  2. The expeditious public transmission to the Archivist and public disclosure of such records.

Section 9003

SEC. 9003 defines critical terms and concepts used throughout the bill to limit and control interpretations and effectiveness. There are 23 definitions with a number of sub-definitions. En lieu of going through them all, I want to highlight interesting and critical language.

  1. Close observer: Anyone who has come into close proximity to UAP or non-human intelligence
  2. Controlling authority: Any Federal, State, or local government department, office, agency, committee, commission, commercial company, academic institution, or private sector entity in physical possession of technologies of unknown origin or biological evidence of non-human intelligence (NHI)
  3. Government office: Any department, office, agency, committee, or commission of the Federal Government and any independent office or agency without exception that has possession or control, including via contract or other agreement, of unidentified anomalous phenomena records
  4. Legacy program: All Federal, State, and local government, commercial industry, academic, and private sector endeavors to collect, exploit, or reverse engineer technologies of unknown origin or examine biological evidence of living or deceased NHI that pre-dates the date of the enactment of this Act
  5. Non-human intelligence: Any sentient intelligent non-human lifeform regardless of nature or ultimate origin that may be presumed responsible for UAP or of which the Federal Government has become aware
  6. Prosaic attribution: Having a human (either foreign or domestic) origin and operating according to current, proven, and generally understood scientific and engineering principles and established laws-of-nature and not attributable to NHI
  7. Record: Includes a book, paper, report, memorandum, directive, email, text, or other form of communication, or map, photograph, sound or video recording, machine-readable material, computerized, digitized, or electronic information, including intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance, and target acquisition sensor data, regardless of the medium on which it is stored, or other documentary material, regardless of its physical form or characteristics
  8. Technologies of unknown origin: Any materials or meta-materials, ejecta, crash debris, mechanisms, machinery, equipment, assemblies or sub-assemblies, engineering models or processes, damaged or intact aerospace vehicles, and damaged or intact ocean-surface and undersea craft associated with UAP or incorporating science and technology that lacks prosaic attribution or known means of human manufacture
  9. Temporarily non-attributed objects: the class of objects that temporarily resist prosaic attribution by the initial observer as a result of environmental or system limitations associated with the observation process that nevertheless ultimately have an accepted human origin or known physical cause. Although some unidentified anomalous phenomena may at first be interpreted as temporarily non-attributed objects, they are not temporarily non-attributed objects, and the two categories are mutually exclusive. The term includes natural celestial, meteorological, and undersea weather phenomena, mundane human-made airborne objects, clutter, and marine debris; Federal, State, and local government, commercial industry, academic, and private sector aerospace platforms; Federal, State, and local government, commercial industry, academic, and private sector ocean-surface and undersea vehicles; and known foreign systems
  10. Unidentified anomalous phenomena: In general, the term UAP means any object operating or judged capable of operating in outer-space, the atmosphere, ocean surfaces, or undersea lacking prosaic attribution due to performance characteristics and properties not previously known to be achievable based upon commonly accepted physical principles. This includes the terms flying discs, flying saucers, unidentified aerial phenomena, unidentified flying objects (UFOs), and unidentified submerged objects (USOs). UAP are differentiated from both attributed and temporarily non-attributed objects by one or more of the following observables: (i) Instantaneous acceleration absent apparent inertia. (ii) Hypersonic velocity absent a thermal signature and sonic shockwave. (iii) Transmedium (such as space-to-ground and air-to- undersea) travel. (iv) Positive lift contrary to known aerodynamic principles. (v) Multispectral signature control. (vi) Physical or invasive biological effects to close observers and the environment

Section 9004

In SEC. 9004 overviews the creation (within 60 days), administration, and security of the “Unidentified Anomalous Phenomena Records Collection” (the Collection) under the oversight of the National Archives. The Collection aims to act as a consolidated repository for all official records relating to unidentified anomalous phenomena—broadly encapsulating elements such as unexplained phenomena, technologies of unknown origin, and non-human intelligence. The mandate and ethos for this collection emanate from a desire to secure, centralize, and make accessible these records, ensuring public transparency and fostering potential avenues for research and analysis.

What is fascinating in this statute is the role it assigns to the National Archives. As a primarily passive recipient of government documents, the Archives are typically an agency designed for preservation, not investigation or interpretation. This bill positions the Archives as a critical node in an institutional network dealing with the unexplained—hilariously, almost an actual X file repository. It attempts to balance the public right to knowledge with necessary precautions in a realm where new findings could have profound implications on our understanding.

Emphasized is the need for preserving the integrity and provenance of the records in the Collection. In archival theory, maintaining the provenance of a document ensures that it retains its contextual relevance and authenticity. This attention to provenance is interesting for its foresight in the role scientific, legal, and historical rigor will eventually play for the public when reviewing these files. To this end, the provision mandates the construction of a central directory, a subject guidebook, and an index to the Collection. This aims to facilitate the accessibility of this information so things won’t be “lost in a drawer” and overlooked. In the interest of this public consumption, all material marked for disclosure must be made available within 30 days and digitally available online no later than 180 days of disclosure.

Section 9005

SEC. 9005 mandates a thorough identification, organization, and protection of records related to UAP held by any and all government offices “as soon as practicable,” but no later than 300 days from enactment of this Act for the purpose of disclosure to the public, review, and transmission to the Collection. Further, it establishes a review process and specifies all UAP records will be made publicly available in full no later than 25 years after the originating date, except by express interference from the President under certain circumstances.


Section (a) sets prohibitions to ensure the preservation of these records. It dictates that no UAP record can be destroyed, altered, or mutilated in any way. It protects any such record disclosed to the public prior to the enactment of the Act from being withheld, redacted, postponed for public disclosure, or reclassified. Further, any such records created by an entity outside the Federal Government cannot be withheld, redacted, postponed for public disclosure, or reclassified, except where necessary to conceal names or identities consistent with requirements of section 9006.

Subsections (b) and (c) establish a review procedure. The former specifies that, until the review has been conducted, the heads of government offices will retain the records for preservation, security, and efficiency. The latter requires heads of government offices to review, identify, and organize each unidentified anomalous phenomena record within 300 days of the Act’s enactment for the purposes of public disclosure, review by the Review Board, and transmission to the Archivist. This section also provides a detailed list of requirements for government offices to follow during this process, such as identifying which records are unidentified anomalous phenomena records and determining which of these have been disclosed publicly in an unredacted form.

Subsection (d) then mandates the preparation of identification aids to be attached to every UAP record subject to review for easy cataloging within the Collection. It also establishes a uniform system for cataloging and locating each such record.

Subsection (e) specifies that the heads of government offices must transmit to the Archivist all UAP records and make those which can be publicly disclosed immediately available to the public. Records whose disclosure has been postponed must also be transmitted to the Archivist to be reclassified by the Review Board.

Subsection (f) deals with the custody of postponed records, stipulating that these should be held for reasons of security and preservation by the originating body until such time as the information security program has been established at the National Archives (SEC 9004).

Subsection (g) requires periodic reviews by the Archivist and originating agency that can downgrade or declassify postponed or redacted records with an aim toward public disclosure. Any records deemed to require continued postponement must come with an unclassified written description of the reason for such continued postponement. Further, it specifies that each UAP record shall be publicly disclosed in full and available in the Collection no later than 25 years after the originating date of the record unless the President certifies that “continued postponement is made necessary by an identifiable harm to the military defense, intelligence operations, law enforcement, or conduct of foreign relations and the identifiable harm is of such gravity that it outweighs the public interest in disclosure.”

Lastly, subsection (h) stipulates that Executive agencies must transmit digital records electronically in accordance with section 2107 of title 44, United States Code, and must charge fees (no more than cost) for copying unidentified anomalous phenomena records - waivers may be granted.

Section 9006

SEC 9006 lays out the grounds for postponement of UAP records. Due to the obvious sensitive nature these records may carry, the amendment allows postponement for threats to military, intelligence, or foreign relations that outweigh public interest (such as protecting an intelligence asset, source, or method or a national security defensive secret).

Part two is available here.

Beyond the Unknown: Anticipating China and Russia's Reaction to U.S. NHI Disclosure

by Ian Q. Calderwood

This paper is a follow up to Strategic Silence: NHI Disclosure and Global Power.

I. Introduction and Assumptions

In light of the potential disclosure from the U.S. government regarding the existence of non-human intelligence (NHI) technologies, the equilibrium of geopolitical power faces potential reconfiguration. In this policy analysis, the goal is to probe potential scenarios in which two significant geopolitical entities—the People’s Republic of China and the Russian Federation—respond to the U.S. disclosure. Their reactions are anticipated to significantly shape the global narrative around NHI technologies, guide the evolution of international power structures, and impact the international norms and regulations that may be formulated around these technologies.

This paper proceeds under several key assumptions. The primary assumption is the global acceptance and verification of the U.S. government’s disclosure regarding NHI technologies. This global acknowledgment acknowledges the existence of similar programs in other countries, despite the absence of Russian and Chinese public disclosures. A further assumption is that China and Russia’s reactions and strategic orientations will reflect their historical strategic tendencies, current geopolitical orientation, and their perception of the potential transformation offered by NHI technologies. Given the novelty of the situation, these assumptions may not encompass the full breadth of their strategic considerations.

We also proceed under the assumption of relative continuity in the international system, encompassing the ongoing presence of international institutions, alliances, and rivalries. Additionally, we posit that NHI technologies will be perceived as significant transformational factors, carrying enormous potential for collaboration and conflict, in a manner akin to the advent of nuclear technologies in the mid-20th century.

In constructing these scenarios, we acknowledge the inherent uncertainties and complexities that underpin this analysis. These scenarios are not definite forecasts but provide potential frameworks for understanding and planning. They are intended to guide strategic thinking and policy formulation, rather than provide certain predictions. The goal is to foster a comprehensive understanding of potential outcomes and to aid in the development of robust, adaptable policies in response to these uncertain and rapidly changing geopolitical landscapes.

This analysis will also consider the potential for simultaneous occurrence and interplay between various scenarios. We are cognizant of the dynamic nature of the global geopolitical landscape, where nation-states can shift their strategies swiftly, reacting to emerging developments and altering the course of events.

II. Understanding Chinese and Russian Strategic Thinking

The potential strategic reactions of China and Russia to the U.S. disclosure of NHI technologies can be more thoroughly anticipated by examining their historical strategic postures, their approaches to technology adoption, their crisis management strategies, the interplay of political ideologies and national identity in shaping their strategic thinking, and by also delving into their domestic political dynamics and their relationships with other countries.

A. People’s Republic of China

China’s strategic approach over the past several decades is one of balance between assertiveness and measured patience, leveraging its rapidly expanding economic influence to subtly yet persistently reshape international norms and institutions. The Belt and Road Initiative encapsulates this strategy, slowly reorienting global economic dependencies in China’s favor through an expansive network of infrastructure investment and development assistance.

Chinese technology adoption is aggressive, pursuing strategic advantage in emergent technological domains. Indigenous innovation characterizes the domestic technology policy, an approach combining heavy investment in research and development with the acquisition of foreign technology and knowledge. China’s advancements in areas such as 5G, artificial intelligence, and quantum computing indicate that this approach will likely extend to NHI technologies.

When faced with crises, China often exhibits a preference for stability and long-term strategic gains and demonstrates a willingness to adopt unconventional measures to safeguard its interests. Examples include its handling of the South China Sea disputes and its strategic maneuvering in the U.S.-China trade war.

Centralized planning and state control over key sectors, legacies of Chinese political ideology influenced by Maoism and Socialism with Chinese Characteristics, also extend to its approach towards technology. The Chinese nationalism narrative, characterized by the ‘China Dream,‘ fuels the pursuit of technological superiority as a means to restore China’s historical global stature.

Domestically, the Chinese Communist Party maintains a strict control over information dissemination, which will play a crucial role in shaping public perception of the U.S. NHI disclosures. Internationally, China’s relations with countries involved in its Belt and Road Initiative, and its strategic competition with the U.S., may influence its strategy toward NHI technology.

B. Russian Federation

Inherent in Russian strategic thinking is a deep-seated sense of geopolitical insecurity, driving an assertive, and at times aggressive, foreign policy to protect its perceived sphere of influence. Evident in its interventions in Ukraine and Syria, alleged meddling in various Western nations‘ electoral processes, and its recent large-scale military operation in Ukraine.

Russia’s approach to technology adoption often prioritizes military applications, striving to maintain parity or achieve superiority in areas essential for national security. This strategy is evident in its pursuit of nuclear, cyber, and space technologies, suggesting a likely security-centered perception of NHI technologies.

Russian crisis management strategy regularly exploits crises as opportunities to advance its geopolitical interests. This approach was clear in its annexation of Crimea during Ukraine’s political turmoil, demonstrating a willingness to escalate conflicts to secure advantageous negotiating positions or to create strategic ambiguity.

A resurgence of nationalism tied to a nostalgic ideal of Soviet strength characterizes Russian political ideology under Putin. This nationalism, often manifested in assertive foreign policies, is reinforced by the Russian Orthodox Church, fostering a sense of exceptionalism that often justifies its geopolitical maneuvers. Coupled with an ingrained suspicion of Western intentions, Russia may react to U.S. NHI disclosure with particular skepticism and strategic caution.

In terms of domestic politics, Putin’s near-total control over the Russian media landscape will play a pivotal role in shaping public perception of the NHI issue. Internationally, Russia’s strategic partnerships, particularly those under the auspices of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, and its adversarial relations with NATO countries, will influence its strategic calculations vis-à-vis NHI technologies.

III. Assessing Beijing: Strategic Projections for China’s Response

In assessing Chinese responses to U.S. NHI technology disclosures, it’s essential to establish our foundation on the bedrock of China’s historical strategic approaches, norms, and identities. We must also keep in mind the complex interplay of geopolitical and domestic considerations, and the unique challenges posed by the NHI element (and the rumored treaties surrounding it). Consequently, the following scenarios present a blend of possible actions and orientations the Chinese administration may take.

  1. The Middle Way: Selective Disclosure and Strategic Ambiguity

Given the gravity of the U.S. disclosure and the allegations regarding China’s involvement in NHI retrieval and reverse engineering programs, complete silence from China would be a surprising and potentially unwise choice. It would risk casting China as a passive actor or even a potential technology laggard in the emerging global narrative.

In response, it is most likely that China will deploy a strategy of selective disclosure, revealing enough to maintain its image as a global power engaged in these groundbreaking developments. The specific contours of this disclosure could be tailored to serve China’s strategic imperatives. China might choose to confirm the existence of its NHI program, potentially even disclosing some advancements or capabilities that can be safely shared without compromising national security.

Strategic ambiguity could play a key role here, allowing China to control the narrative without committing to specific details about the extent of their NHI-related advancements. They may select to spotlight certain facets of their NHI program, such as its peaceful intent or the potential societal benefits, while keeping a lid on the specifics of technological progress. This approach will maintain a degree of mystery and provide flexibility for future actions.

  1. Scripting the Discourse: Narrative Framing and Norm-Setting

A more proactive, yet nuanced, stance China could adopt is seeking to influence the international narrative surrounding the NHI and shaping the norms associated with it. Given the power dynamics inherent in controlling the discourse, it’s likely China will take strides to avoid the narrative being completely U.S. dominated.

Utilizing its growing diplomatic clout and leveraging its influence in multilateral institutions, China may initiate discussions around the governance, ethical implications, and legal aspects of NHI and related technology. It could emphasize principles that align with its broader strategic interests, such as the non-militarization of NHI technology or the equitable distribution of benefits arising from it. In this context, rumored treaties could serve as leverage points, influencing the direction and tenor of the discussion.

  1. Playing the Power Game: An Aggressive Stance

While a more aggressive stance is less likely, considering the generally cautious approach China has adopted in its international relations, it cannot be ruled out entirely. Several conditions might trigger a bolder response from China. For instance, if it perceives that the U.S. disclosures or subsequent actions constitute a violation of existing treaties, or if it feels that the U.S. is unfairly monopolizing the benefits or the narrative of the NHI phenomenon, it might react more assertively.

China could do this by positioning its own advancements in the NHI field as superior, or by leveraging the U.S. disclosures as evidence of American aggression or a threat to international stability. However, such an approach carries significant risks, including potential backlash and the escalation of tensions, and would thus only be likely under specific and challenging circumstances.

  1. Harmony and Cooperation: A Collective Approach

The least likely scenario, given China’s historical preference for strategic autonomy, is that it might opt for a cooperative response. If the terms of any existing treaties encourage collaboration or if China perceives substantial benefits in global cooperation on NHI issues, it might choose this path.

Under this scenario, China would openly share its findings and cooperate with the global community to steer the narrative towards mutual development, shared benefits, and enhanced stability. This could also involve active participation in or even leading global initiatives to establish international norms and frameworks around the interaction with NHI and the use of related technology.

China’s strategic response to U.S. NHI disclosures will likely be a complex interplay of historical behavior, evolving geopolitical realities, and the specificities of the disclosed information. We anticipate that China will endeavor to maintain its strategic autonomy while seeking to secure its position within the new global narrative. In the subsequent section, we will shift our focus towards Russia, the other key player rumored to have significant involvement in NHI programs.

IV. Navigating the Kremlin: Strategic Projections for Russia’s Response

In interpreting the prospective Russian responses to the U.S. disclosure of Non-Human Intelligence (NHI) technology, we must view the situation through the prism of Russia’s historical strategic doctrines, contemporary geopolitical considerations, and their unique security-focused lens. The apparent internal upheavals, especially the recent Prigozhin-triggered instability, coupled with external tensions manifested in the ongoing Ukrainian conflict and escalating tensions with NATO, add additional layers of complexity to Russia’s strategic calculus. The four prospective responses we outline take these intricacies into account and aim to provide a comprehensive, if necessarily speculative, analysis of Russia’s possible strategies.

  1. Asserting Power: Proactive Disclosure and Narrative Control

In the face of significant internal and external challenges, the most probable response from Russia would be a proactive and assertive disclosure of its involvement with NHI technology. Russia’s historical narrative has often been characterized by resilience and triumph in the face of adversity. Leveraging this narrative could serve dual purposes: rallying domestic support by bolstering national pride and establishing Russia as a major player in the NHI discourse, capable of contending with the U.S. in this extraordinary domain.

An assertive disclosure could entail acknowledging Russia’s ongoing engagement with NHI retrieval and reverse engineering, possibly accompanied by a display of some advancements to lend credibility and weight to the disclosure. However, in alignment with the Russian tradition of strategic information management, we anticipate that the disclosure would be carefully calibrated, with precise control over the level of detail divulged.

Moreover, seizing the narrative baton would enable Russia to frame the NHI issue in a manner aligned with its strategic imperatives. For instance, Russia could position the NHI technology as a harbinger of a new era in human evolution, emphasizing its potential for addressing pressing global challenges such as climate change, energy, and health crises. Such a narrative could help to consolidate Russia’s image as a global technological leader while offsetting criticisms pertaining to other geopolitical issues.

  1. The Shadow Puppeteer: Denial and Discreditation

While an assertive disclosure seems most probable, we cannot rule out the potential for Russia to adopt a more obfuscating strategy, leveraging its history of sophisticated disinformation campaigns. Under this scenario, Russia may respond to the U.S. disclosure with outright denial or discreditation. The intent would be to inject confusion into the global narrative, creating doubts about the authenticity of U.S. claims and undermining its credibility.

For instance, Russia might question the genuineness of the disclosed NHI artifacts or suggest alternative explanations for the phenomenon that the U.S. attributes to non-human intelligence. Simultaneously, Russia could leverage its state-controlled media outlets to amplify these narratives, both domestically and internationally.

However, such a strategy carries substantial risks. If further evidence emerged that conclusively corroborated the U.S. claims, Russia’s denial strategy would backfire, causing significant damage to its international standing and credibility. Moreover, if Russia is indeed engaging in NHI technology retrieval and reverse engineering, as alleged, a denial strategy could jeopardize its position in the evolving global discourse on NHI.

  1. Capitalizing on Chaos: Exploiting the Disclosure for Geopolitical Advantage

Another possible response from Russia involves utilizing the U.S. disclosures as a geopolitical lever. This aligns with Russia’s historical pattern of capitalizing on international developments to further its strategic agenda. Under this scenario, Russia might criticize the U.S. for purportedly weaponizing NHI technology or accuse it of instigating a new arms race, thereby destabilizing global security.

These criticisms could be leveraged to erode international support for the U.S., create divisions among Western alliances, and build alliances with countries that share similar concerns. For instance, Russia might intensify its outreach to non-aligned nations, portraying itself as a champion of international stability in contrast to the“reckless” U.S. pursuit of NHI technology.

  1. Reluctant Cooperation: A Pragmatic Alliance

The least probable, yet not entirely dismissible, scenario is that Russia might opt for a cooperative response. The conditions necessitating this approach would likely involve the perception of significant risks or rewards stemming from the NHI technology.

Should the NHI technology’s potential power become apparent and if this power is seen to pose an existential risk to Russia or to global stability, Russia might consider international cooperation as the most prudent approach. However, even under these conditions, we expect any cooperative overtures from Russia to be meticulously calculated to protect and advance its interests.

Russia’s strategic response to the U.S. disclosure is unlikely to be monolithic and fixed. Given the multifaceted complexity of global politics and the unique challenges posed by the NHI phenomenon, Russia’s strategic response is expected to be multifaceted. It could encompass a blend of various strategies, modulating between them as circumstances evolve. Therefore, while we have discussed these scenarios separately for analytical clarity, in reality, they might unfold concurrently or alternately, or even amalgamate into a hybrid strategy. The nature of Russia’s multi-pronged approach would be dictated by a complex interplay of domestic exigencies, international pressures, and the shifting sands of the NHI narrative. Constant vigilance and adaptability will be required to anticipate and respond to Russia’s moves.

V. Conclusion: Uncharted Territory in the New Strategic Landscape

We find ourselves on the precipice of an epochal shift in global politics and security dynamics. The imminent potential U.S. disclosure of its Non-Human Intelligence (NHI) retrieval and reverse engineering programs and subsequent allegations of similar programs in China and Russia have thrust the international community into a realm of unprecedented strategic complexity. These developments have the potential to rewrite the rules of geopolitical competition and cooperation, testing the agility and adaptability of our strategic frameworks and policy responses.

The scenarios laid out have drawn on historical precedents, normative behaviors, and the unique strategic cultures of China and Russia. We posit that China is likely to adopt a blend of selective disclosure, narrative framing, and strategic ambiguity, leveraging its increasing diplomatic and informational capabilities to navigate this new terrain effectively. Simultaneously, Russia, ensnared in its own domestic and regional complexities, may deploy a combination of public denial or downplaying, strategic distraction, and leveraging these developments for geopolitical advantage. This analysis has underscored the fluidity and volatility of the new strategic landscape, with each scenario intertwining with others in intricate and unpredictable ways.

While our study provides an initial understanding of the landscape, it is essential to underscore that we are dealing with a dynamic, evolving situation. Unpredictability will be a defining feature of this new strategic epoch. This calls for strategic agility from U.S. policymakers, the ability to adjust and recalibrate strategies in real-time as events unfold and new information becomes available. To this end, we strongly recommend a proactive approach to strategic anticipation, scenario planning, and capacity building in policy circles.

In terms of immediate policy implications, it is clear that managing the narrative and the discourse surrounding NHI and related technologies will be a strategic imperative for the United States. China’s potential attempts to frame the discourse, Russia’s possible efforts to leverage the situation, and the overall narrative control will significantly influence how this situation evolves. This puts a premium on strategic communication, diplomacy, alliance management, and multilateral engagement.

The need for international norms and governance frameworks concerning NHI and associated technologies is another clear conclusion from our study. Given the potential for a multiplicity of actors to possess and develop these technologies, the absence of agreed norms and rules could lead to heightened risks and instabilities. This underscores the importance of initiating international discussions on the governance of NHI technologies and forging consensus on key principles.

Finally, we recognize the necessity for more in-depth analysis of the policy implications, potential consequences, and strategic responses associated with the scenarios discussed in this paper. As the next step in our research, we will embark on a detailed investigation of these issues, the results of which we will present in a follow-up piece. This forthcoming analysis aims to provide policymakers with concrete recommendations to navigate this new strategic frontier effectively and ensure U.S. national as well as global security interests are robustly protected.

Strategic Silence: NHI Disclosure and Global Power

by Ian Q. Calderwood

I. Towards a New Political Landscape

The assertion of ongoing Non-Human Intelligence contact and technology retrieval programs within the U.S. governmental apparatus, if validated, represents a paradigm shift in our understanding of geopolitical realities and the known limits of technological advancement. The implications extend beyond our current prevailing understanding, with potential ramifications touching every sphere of human activity—from technology, economics, and geopolitics, to philosophy, culture, and religion. The spectacle of non-human intelligence (NHI) not only challenges the preeminent humanist narrative, but ushers us into an era of confronting the extraterrestrial ‘other’.

The rumblings from whistleblowers within the U.S., suggesting a history of encounters and the possession of NHI artifacts, is already sending ripples across the global political landscape. The ongoing Congressional hearings and the impending full disclosure, should it manifest, represent the precipice of a new world, one where humanity is potentially not alone.

The conspicuous silence from other major powers, namely the Russian Federation and the People’s Republic of China, adds another layer of complexity to an already opaque issue. The absence of their voice within the international conversation raises questions about their strategies, intentions, and the potential consequences of their reticence on the global stage.

This analysis aims to address these questions. It delves into the silence of Russia and China, decoding it through the lens of international relations theory, strategic latency, and cultural context. The following sections of this paper will explore:

  1. The strategic implications of Russia and China’s silence, and how it potentially alters the existing power dynamics.
  2. The domestic impact within these nations, with a focus on societal stability, transparency, and the ideological paradigms that might influence their response to the NHI discourse.
  3. Policy recommendations for stakeholders within the U.S. government and beyond.

As we venture into this uncharted territory, we must acknowledge the assumptions we are making. Primarily it is assumed, for the sake of this paper, that the claims of David Grusch are true and that federal action will soon follow.

It is critical to approach this analysis with an openness to reevaluate our prevailing assumptions about the nature of power, sovereignty, and intelligence. Our exploration of these themes, and the speculation it invites, must be balanced by an acknowledgment of the limits of our understanding. This is particularly true given that the silence of Russia and China could be as strategic and revealing as any disclosure. As we navigate this complex terrain, it is prudent to recall that in the realm of international relations, silence can speak volumes.

II. Evaluating NHI Strategic Latency

In the chessboard of international relations, power dynamics are often influenced by a combination of diplomatic, economic, and military prowess. The introduction of a new variable such as Non-Human Intelligences (NHI) and potential technologies derived from them add an additional, unforeseen dimension to this game.

Analyzing the responses, or rather, the lack thereof, from Russia and China, provides insight into their potential strategic postures. The lack of official public engagement on the issue from these nations, despite Grusch’s claims indicating the existence of their own crash retrieval programs, can be interpreted as a manifestation of ‘strategic latency.’ In the realm of international strategy, such latency is not an unfamiliar tactic, and we can gain some insight by exploring historical precedents.

During the Cold War, strategic latency was a vital aspect of the nuclear arms race. Both the United States and the Soviet Union embarked on extensive programs to develop and amass nuclear weapons, keeping much of their progress and capabilities concealed. The cloak of ambiguity provided a strategic advantage, maintaining a level of uncertainty about each nation’s actual nuclear capabilities and thresholds, thus adding another layer to the deterrence paradigm. In the current scenario, Russia, with its historical experience in engaging in latent strategic maneuvers, seems to be adopting a similar approach in dealing with the NHI factor.

China, a rising global power with a well-documented history of maintaining opacity on crucial matters of national and international import, provides another example. In recent decades, China’s military modernization efforts, particularly its naval expansion, stealth technologies, and advances in areas like artificial intelligence, have been shrouded in strategic obscurity, leaving the international community guessing about the true extent of its capabilities. Applying a similar strategic reticence in the context of NHI disclosures allows China to maintain control over its narrative, and protect its national interests.

In light of these historical instances, it becomes clear that the current silence from Russia and China might be a calibrated strategic decision, enabling them to control their narrative and shape their strategic position in response to the emerging NHI reality. This approach is akin to studying the games of another chess player to better understand how to counter them as an opponent.

The U.S. disclosure not only opens its strategy but also defines the parameters of this new game. By maintaining silence, Russia and China obtain a strategic advantage, having the ability to observe, absorb, and formulate an informed response to the unfolding scenario. This non-committal stance offers them the flexibility to adapt and pivot their strategy in real-time, potentially maximizing their strategic benefits.

Moreover, the strategic ambiguity provides these nations an opportunity to assess their own programs, presumed to exist in parallel, in light of the U.S. revelations. Observing the extent and nature of American disclosures, they could gauge the progression of their own NHI-related endeavors and maintain ambiguity regarding their capabilities. They retain the ability to manage global expectations while simultaneously working towards potential technological breakthroughs that could challenge the existing balance of power.

This power dynamic, however, extends beyond the geopolitical landscape. It infiltrates the domestic realm, shaping national narratives and societal realities. It is within this framework that we look into the potential domestic implications of these revelations, a subject of equal, if not greater, importance.

III. NHIs and National Narratives

The prospect of the revelation of Non-Human Intelligences not only interrogates our notions of political and scientific realms, but also necessitates a deep understanding of the societal context within which such revelation is received. With respect to Russia and China, their historical, philosophical, and political legacies exert a profound influence on their societal responses to this global awareness shift.

The collective societal frameworks, deeply ingrained in both China and Russia (even if weakened from previous states), shape their worldviews and potentially their reactions to such paradigm-shifting information. This collective perspective, while posing challenges, could also conceivably act as an advantage when dealing with this kind of existential recalibration. The strength of collective societies lies in their ability to rally around a central idea or authority, which in this case would be the government’s narrative about NHI. In an authoritarian regime where information flow is top-down and tightly controlled, the societal response might be more unified, thereby minimizing potential disruption or conflict.

However, while a top-down model could foster compliance and acceptance, the narrative itself, if inconsistent with societal expectations or belief systems, could engender internal discord. In the case of Russia, its historical orthodoxy and the strong influence of the Russian Orthodox Church, with its emphasis on human exceptionalism, may prove to be an obstacle to the seamless acceptance of Non-Human Intelligences.

In contrast, China, with its philosophical traditions like Taoism and Confucianism, which emphasize harmony and unity, might be more flexible in accommodating the existence of Non-Human Intelligences. Taoist cosmology, with its acceptance of multiple realities and the unity of the cosmos, could potentially provide a conceptual framework for understanding and accepting the existence of non-human entities.

However, this speculation should be tempered by the understanding that these philosophical traditions may not uniformly permeate the diverse and complex Chinese society, and that the state’s role in managing the narrative will be paramount. Both Russia and China have a history of state control over information dissemination and narrative shaping. Consequently, the capacity to control and shape the narrative around this revelation becomes a crucial factor in determining societal response.

Indeed, the crux of the issue is not just the existence of Non-Human Intelligences, but the implications of government involvement and secrecy surrounding the issue. The idea that their respective governments have been engaging covertly with non-human entities could be seen as a significant breach of trust, leading to potential social instability. Furthermore, the influx of advanced extraterrestrial technology could disrupt societal norms and expectations, increasing pressure on the government to manage the transition effectively.

The potential societal disruptions, however, do not necessarily signify that Russia and China would refrain from disclosure indefinitely. Rather, their current silence might be a strategic pause, allowing them to craft their own narratives while observing and learning from the global response to the U.S. disclosures.

IV. Policy Recommendations: Expanding Horizons Amid Strategic Silence

Having briefly examined the strategic landscape and the domestic implications of the ET disclosure within major global powers, we now pivot our attention towards deriving solutions to the challenges and opportunities that this extraordinary epoch presents. The insights derived from the preceding analysis necessitate a range of policy considerations that can mitigate potential hazards and cultivate a harmonious global environment in light of these game-changing revelations. It is essential to remember that these proposed measures not only reflect the exigencies of the present but also offer an anticipatory response to the future, addressing the evolving realities and contingencies of the international arena post-disclosure.

1. Diplomatic Engagement

Given the novel and unprecedented nature of NHI phenomena, it is crucial to avoid misunderstanding and misinterpretation. By initiating diplomatic engagement, particularly with silent observers like Russia and China, we can prevent conflict rooted in lack of communication and create a foundation for potential cooperation. In a similar vein to how the ‘Red Phone’ served as a direct line of communication between the White House and the Kremlin during the Cold War, establishing a dialogue concerning NHI-related matters could be instrumental in ensuring shared understanding.

2. Intelligence Sharing

In light of NHI revelations, a comprehensive reassessment of intelligence-sharing protocols becomes paramount. Drawing parallels from the intelligence cooperation that emerged post the 9/11 attacks, the horizon of multilateral intelligence agreements needs to be broadened to accommodate NHI-related intelligence. Inclusion of Russia and China in such agreements, despite historical tensions, could foster a global cooperative environment. It’s important to balance this delicate operation with historical contexts, particularly considering the potential for NHI technology to precipitate a new arms race. Such steps towards transparency could go a long way in building mutual trust and diminishing the chances of conflicts triggered by secrecy and suspicion.

3. Public Communication

With the advent of NHI disclosures, the role of public communication is heightened considerably. Lessons can be drawn from the panic caused by Orson Welles’s War of the Worlds radio broadcast in 1938, illustrating how miscommunication and misinformation can lead to societal chaos. A systematic and well-managed public communication strategy can help mitigate potential destabilization. Techniques borrowed from social and behavioral sciences can guide message delivery to foster understanding, curiosity, and caution, preventing undue panic.

4. Multilateral Frameworks

There is historical precedence in the form of the Montreal Protocol in managing global crises through multilateral frameworks. The potential ramifications of NHI discovery necessitate the formation of new multilateral agreements to manage shared exploration of NHI technology, ensure equitable access, and maintain international security. This cooperative approach can help avoid a disruptive geopolitical competition akin to the Space Race of the mid-20th century.

5. Strategic Transparency

In contrast to strategic ambiguity, the U.S. could opt for a policy of ‘strategic transparency’. This approach, considering the specific context of NHI disclosures, would involve the U.S. positioning itself as a global steward of NHI technology. By embracing transparency, the U.S. could leverage its industrial and scientific might to usher in an era of prosperity and peace. Such a proactive move would redefine the concept of global leadership, moving away from a power-centric paradigm towards a model emphasizing shared benefits and cooperation. Open patents should be considered to further speed any technological transition.

6. Non-Proliferation Efforts

Given the potential for NHI technology to exceed current technological capabilities significantly, the risk of it being militarized could lead to a highly destructive scenario. Drawing from the historical precedents of the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT) and the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), discussions centered around the limitation of proliferation and militarization of NHI-derived technology should be initiated as a matter of priority.

V. Conclusion: Embracing the New Epoch and the Pursuit of Global Leadership

As humanity stands on the threshold of what could be the most transformative era in its history, it is imperative to fully grasp the enormity of the potential revelation of Non-Human Intelligences (NHI). The disclosures by the U.S. signal a fundamental shift that not only redefines our understanding of our place in the cosmos but also reconfigures the existing geopolitical and socio-cultural matrix.

In this unfolding narrative, the silence of Russia and China adds a layer of strategic opacity. Their reticence, while at first glance may seem perplexing, upon deeper analysis, reveals itself to be a strategic decision rooted in geopolitical, historical, and societal contexts. This strategic latency preserves their flexibility to adapt their narratives and responses to the shifting global landscape in the aftermath of the U.S. disclosure.

However, this new epoch of NHI discovery requires more than a reactive approach; it calls for proactive leadership. The U.S., by making the initial disclosures (even if it is against their will), is poised to redefine the concept of global leadership. By embracing strategic transparency, it can leverage its scientific and industrial prowess to steer the world towards a more collaborative and harmonious future. This potential evolution of leadership, underpinned by cooperative exploration and shared benefits, can act as a buffer against disruptive geopolitical competition.

The recommendation to adopt a policy approach akin to the non-proliferation agreements like the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks (SALT) and the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) is a case in point. Given the potential destructive capabilities of NHI-derived technology, it is crucial to prevent a new arms race. Hence, discussions centered around the limitation of proliferation and militarization of such technology should be initiated with urgency.

The revelation of NHI is a phenomenon that transcends traditional boundaries of international relations, cutting across various domains of human life. In the light of this new reality, humanity must adapt and evolve its strategic approaches, prioritizing global cooperation, transparency, and a renewed understanding of leadership. The path forward will undoubtedly be challenging, but it also carries the potential to inaugurate a new era of peace, prosperity, and shared exploration.

As we conclude this exploratory analysis, it is important to note that this discourse is just the beginning. The complexity and novelty of the NHI phenomenon necessitate an ongoing, dynamic reassessment and continuous discourse. To this end, forthcoming pieces will feature speculative scenarios designed to enhance our understanding of the newly emerged NHI factor in global relations. This is not a conclusion but an open-ended exploration of a new geopolitical reality. Let us collectively embark on this journey, equipped with the understanding that the pursuit of knowledge is an ongoing endeavor, demanding both courage and curiosity.


This paper is a followed by Beyond the Unknown: Anticipating China and Russia’s Reaction to U.S. NHI Disclosure.