"Is there anyone out there?" That’s an obvious question that arises spontaneously in anyone’s mind when contemplating the night sky with the naked eye.

Response: Perhaps we need to reframe the question: “Is there anyone ELSE out there?” One only has to look at this tiny, obscure rock we call Earth that is hurtling around our Sun to see that life exists in our universe; it is diverse, and it is plentiful.

The tricky question is: “Does life also exist elsewhere?” And if so, would we (as organic organisms) even recognize another life form if it doesn’t fit neatly within our definition of a living being? To answer that question, we can simply look at the common virus for answers…

A virus has very little in common with anything we would define as “life” in that it lacks DNA, it does not rely on any of the same sources for energy, nor does it reproduce in any usual manner associated with life forms here on Earth. Yet, a virus does possess other qualities that are certainly similar to other living things, it replicates, it evades danger, and even uses camouflage to evade detection as a means of survival.

I believe the UAP (Unidentified Aerial Phenomena) issue is a complex one, that could reasonably lead an individual to the conclusion that “life” as we know it, may indeed exist in other places throughout the cosmos. With that said, it may also be the case that UAPs may indeed not even be from outer space but from inner space or a multidimensional space we have yet to understand. Of course, the easiest assumption is that UAPs are from right here on Earth and may belong to a foreign power as part of a super secret technology that has yet to be revealed. Ultimately, we simply don’t have enough data yet to make a reasonable hypothesis and as such, we must continue to seek data and ask the hard questions.

Under the light of the most recent discoveries and with the help of the modern observation instruments that can extend the human eye’s reach to a point where it at times seems possible to even ‘get a glimpse’ the origins of the universe, the question becomes even more motivated. Or, at least, that's what makes sense to our rational mind.

But, the more our knowledge increases and deepens, the more the possibility of finally understanding the accomplished sense of so much immensity, so enormous that cannot be enclosed in any mathematical formula, where the very concepts of infinitely small and infinitely large may no longer make any sense, seems to fade away.

A complex situation, that can become even more so if we factor in the possibility of the existence of different dimensions, or planes of existence, coexisting with ‘our own’. Many planes that could each one harbor many worlds and civilizations, be they similar or different to ours.

The primal questions of humanity: who are we, where do we come from and where do we go - not only from a scientific perspective - persist unanswered though, along with their doubts, voids, and the absence of a logical explanation in this cosmic void of possible answers.

But, safely remaining within the range of the human capabilities in that "visible" dimension in which we can measure our steps, we must admit that the feeling of not being alone in the universe in general, and in our peripheral solar system of our similarly peripheral galaxy specifically, appears to grow stronger and stronger.

And even if until now it has been practically impossible to have any proof of not being alone, there is no doubt that such a feeling has grown stronger along with our capacity to transmit first elementary symbols, and progressing towards more refined processes of transmission/reception.

In the last century we have witnessed phenomena, events, discoveries that have greatly magnified this feeling, and along with it came the fear of what the future might hold for us.

Speculating on this, we often trivially think of aliens and UFOs (or UAPs). This is not the only enigma to which today's man wants to try to give a comprehensive answer, however. Instead, it is the need to try to metaphorically ‘look out into someone else’s courtyard’, that is, in a dimension which is not the one which we know and master.

And this is because these singular phenomena, analyzed nowadays with a new approach often force us to face questions almost at an existential level, at the limits of our understanding, pointing to an unimaginable, at least for now, elsewhere.

An ‘elsewhere’ that, being unknown, arouses suspicion but above all fear for the mere possibility of having to face something or someone that has no reference to our familiar dimension.

The only fact that would look sure enough though, is that this ‘something or someone’ would not be terrestrial entities, that is, entities not belonging to the human civilization that has developed on this planet. This is the nodal point where scientists and human minds are confronted with an unknown substance that seems to have been made specifically to be unexplainable, if not at the price of negation.

A good occasion to ponder on this and other similar questions was the 7th International Congress of Ufology ‘City of Rome’ organized by Centro Ufologico Nazionale at the end of October 2018, aptly titled From Orson Welles’ War of the Worlds to the Pentagon’s UFOs.

An important moment, especially by force of the event that has recently created quite a stir - the revelation that the Pentagon has (had) a secret program to study UFOs, despite having officially denied for decades any interest in the phenomenon. This research program, named AATIP, went on from 2007 to 2012.

This stir was created by the To the Stars Academy of Arts and Science, a newborn US public interest company that intends to carry out an all-round action aimed at theoretical and applicative research on “the outer edges of science”, among which in particular the UAP phenomenon, in a totally open way and free from governmental logic (and fetters).

Founded in 2017 by an interesting and unusual trio of well-known UFO researcher and former rock star Tom DeLonge, senior intelligence manager Jim Semivan and scientist Dr. Harold Puthoff, all from the United States, the Academy has brought together a number of high-profile personalities from the US government, defense, intelligence, research and industry sectors.

Luis Elizondo, a DIA senior Intelligence manager, also joined the Academy after resigning from his AATIP’s Director role in 2017. Last December he told his story in that capacity to three New York Times journalists. The groundbreaking article they wrote made first page headline news around the world.

The Academy also made headline news by releasing three Pentagon’s officially declassified video documents portraying unknown round objects exhibiting extraordinary flying performances.

Commenting on them, Luis Elizondo observed with disarming simplicity: "I can tell you for sure only what they are not - they are not terrestrial, as they do not belong to the inventory of any terrestrial power". We had the opportunity to meet Luis Elizondo, who participated together with Tom DeLonge in the Roman congress of the CUN, and we asked him some questions. That's what he told us.

We have recently witnessed unprecedented events, such as the admission after decades of official denial that the Pentagon indeed studied the UAP phenomenon, and the release of official video documents portraying manifestations of UAP phenomena. What has changed, what are the reasons for this epoch-making evolution in the attitude of the US military complex?

In the spirit of accuracy, I cannot answer on behalf of the US Government why there appears to be this sudden change in attitude towards the UAP issue, but I can speculate there may be several reasons.

Perhaps, as the younger generation begins its slow and steady rise to positions of leadership, and the older generation fades away, new perspectives of our global struggle for survival have allowed fresh minds to process information that does not threaten long-held philosophical beliefs or political agendas.
After all, governments are comprised of individual people who are in turn, influenced by the cultural norms of the time and technology. Advancements in communications across the planet have brought humans closer than ever before. We now can literally communicate at the speed of light! Suddenly, our world view becomes much more homogeneous with others around the planet and the exchange of new ideas and possibilities are also shared.

Or, perhaps the reason for this sudden change in behavior is due to the increased liability of keeping secrets like this locked away for so many years. In today’s age of cell phone cameras, world-wide video monitoring, and surveillance, the task of keeping UAPs secret is becoming increasingly difficult, and frankly untenable at this point. In fact, keeping UAPs secret for much longer may indeed work contrary to the original purpose for keeping it secret in the first place. As an example, 40 years ago a government may have chosen to keep the topic of UAP secret from its citizens to help minimize the risk of that government from appearing incompetent and unable of protecting and defending its people from a poorly understood threat. However, in 2018 it is becoming increasing clear that UAPs exists, and by keeping UAPs secret, governments now run the risk of committing an even bigger sin among its citizens, appearing dishonest and untrustworthy. As such, perhaps it is now in the best interest of governments to simply acknowledge the existence of the phenomena.

Of course, another option is that governments are overwhelmed with other priorities and may see disclosure as some sort of relief, thereby shifting the role of UAP study over to the private sector and industry partners such as aerospace and academia.

The documents that have recently been made known to the international community describe objects and behaviors that cannot be explained by the current knowledge of humanity. Why then make them known?

Truth is a fundamental imperative for any civil society and is ultimately in the best interest of mankind. Both science and religion pursue truth, albeit from different perspectives, (how versus why) because truth is the only thing that is constant in our universe. For this reason, we innately pursue truth about important things like God, love, and physics. Furthermore, we develop means to identify and express truth such as religion, marriage, and mathematics. Truth, whether bad or good is an essential element for our survival and helps us find solutions to things like cancer, hunger, and even conflict.

The truth about UAPs should not be feared, after all, truth and knowledge often lead to new opportunities. As with any new revelation, the truth about UAPs is simply a better understanding of the reality to which we already belong. Ultimately, it is the truth about UAPs that may help us better understand the truth about ourselves.

You pointed out that the only sure thing about these phenomena is that they are not of terrestrial origin. Speaking on a personal level, do you think you are in a position to venture some hypothesis as to their possible origin?

Out of respect to the many hypothesis that are now under discussion, it would be unfair for me to provide you one opinion among the many, many possibilities. Again, to flatly deny that UAPs are not a cleverly held secret of a foreign nation, however unlikely, cannot be entirely discounted. As such, all options must remain on the table until we have a better understanding of the data.

Speaking instead at the level of the TTSA, I would like to ask you if you are aware of any study specifically aimed at ascertaining the origin of these phenomena, such as (but not limited to) researches on the existence of dimensions parallel to ours.

Yes, many possibilities are being explored from a scientific perspective in order to narrow the possibilities of what UAPs are, how they work, and perhaps their origin.

As well as possessing much more effective tools of knowledge, do you think that today's humanity is more aware and prepared than it was eighty years ago when Orson Welles so dramatically announced the alien landing?

In some cases, yes, in some cases, no. Today, we are more interconnected than ever before. As in the case of global climate change, things that I effect over here on my side of the planet, may have a dramatic effect on thing over on your side of the planet. For that reason, I believe we have a mutual interest on issues that impact us globally, UAPs certainly being one of them. Conversely, we continue to pursue selfish gains as a matter of self preservation. Fort this reason, there is still an inherent interest from a political perspective to keep advanced technology secret in hopes it provides us a strategic advantage over a potential adversary. As such, some interests would prefer UAPs remain within the budget lines of black programs and disinformation.

Leaving aside the present for a moment and looking forward to a tomorrow that could likely be very close, what would you suggest to do, and what disposition of mind would you advise in order to face the possibility of an "extraterrestrial future"?

I suggest that we continue to have the courage to ask the hard questions, remove the stigma, and engage our national leaders. Perhaps even engaging multinational bodies such as the United Nations and others who could then help champion what is perhaps the greatest enigma mankind has faced since we first left the cave and reached for the light.

(Thanks to the precious collaboration of Paolo Guizzardi Deputy ICT Manager Italian Embassy in Berlin)