Forty-three years ago was the last time the U.S. government considered creating an official commission to investigate and report on UFOs. Despite Washington’s efforts to dissuade the public from any interest in UFOs through the 1969 issuance of the University of Colorado’s Condon Report, UFOs continued to appear. Eight years later, with President Jimmy Carter in office, his administration thought the time was right to officially request that NASA look into the phenomenon.

As put by a NASA scientist in a memo issued around the same time, however, “undertaking a formal [UFO] study at this time appears fraught with perils.” Needless to say, the commission was never finalized, and the 1977 deliberations between NASA, the White House, and other governmental agencies are an almost-forgotten episode in the official history of American ufology.

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