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The blob, captured on distant, fuzzy video by Navy pilots, seems to skitter just above the ocean waves at improbable speed, with no discernible means of propulsion or lift. “Oh my gosh, man,” one aviator says to another as they laugh at the oddity. “What ... is it?”

Is it a bird? A plane? Super drone? An extraterrestrial something?

The U.S. government has been taking a hard look at unidentified flying objects like this one. A report summarizing what the U.S. knows about “unidentified aerial phenomena” — better known as UFOs — is expected to be made public this month.

There won’t be an alien unmasking. Two officials briefed on the report say it found no extraterrestrial link to the sightings reported and captured on video. The report won’t rule out a link to another country, according to the officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to discuss it.

While the broad conclusions have now been reported, the full report may still present a broader picture of what the government knows. The anticipation surrounding the report shows how a topic normally confined to science fiction and a small, often dismissed group of researchers has hit the mainstream.

Worried about national security threats from adversaries, lawmakers ordered an investigation and public accounting of phenomena that the government has been loath to talk about for generations.

“There is stuff flying in our airspace,” Republican Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, one of the senators who pressed for the probe, recently told Fox News. “We don’t know what it is. We need to find out.”

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