Why you should trust David Grusch

The recent comments by whistleblower David Grusch caused a tsunami of reactions, from disbelief to endorsement. Here is why those claims actually make sense.


Published 2023-06-29 at 02:57

Reading Reading 29 min.

The Origin of Crash Retrieval Programs

Back in 1942, there was no Air Force, and no CIA. As these were wartimes, the United States couldn't afford to ignore any reports of strange sightings, as they could be Soviet prototypes, or - even worse - Japanese or German. Collecting reports from both sides of the war, they soon realized that a similar phenomenon was seemingly taking place, no matter where you were. Shapes of light would intercept Allied forces, but instead of shooting them down, they would remain at a short distance, even as the bombers would perform evasive maneuvers. They also seemed impervious to machine guns, albeit seemingly harmless. That wouldn’t last.

Page B of the February 26, 1942, Los Angeles Times, under Fair Use For Information

The Los Angeles Event, 1942

On February 25, 3 months after the U.S. entered World War 2, the aerial defense of Los Angeles unleashed 1440 rounds of anti-aircraft ammunition with little to no effect on an alleged swarm of crafts coming from the sea. 

On February 28, a whole 81 years before the U.S. shot down 3 unidentified objects for the first time in its territorial airspace, the New York Times published an article that could have been written today:

“If the batteries were firing on nothing at all, as Secretary Knox implies, it is a sign of expensive incompetence and jitters. If the batteries were firing on real planes, some of them as low as 9,000 feet, as Secretary Stimson declares, why were they completely ineffective? Why did no American planes go up to engage them, or even to identify them? ... What would have happened if this had been a real air raid?"

Even if that object ended up being of a conventional origin, the aftermath and loss of credibility in the War Department cannot be understated, particularly as that event, nicknamed the 'Battle for Los Angeles', happened one day after a speech by then-President Harry Truman, in which he declared that the U.S. had to “reject the turtle policy” and carry “the war to the enemy in distant lands and distant waters – as far away as possible from our own home grounds”.

By Edward Steichen - U.S. Navy photo 80-G-K-15559, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=97926593
Photo By Edward Steichen - U.S. Navy photo 80-G-K-15559, Public Domain

From Pacific to Europe : Foo Fighters

From 1942 to 1945, MIT’s physicist David Griggs and chief scientific consultant for Secretary of War Henry Stimson, was first tasked to create radar-based surveillance in Europe, then to conduct the exploitation of Japanese technological marvels, and finally to collect information on UAP. Fellow physicist James McDonald later interviewed him and noted:

“Every place he’d go, these things showed up.”

“He felt there was something real involved, but was not sure what it was.”

During his study of Japanese war technology, he discovered they had made significant progress using electromagnetic rays to disable planes, but more interestingly, the Japanese also noted the presence of strange shapes of light. The same effort was conducted on German technology, but neither could explain the reports of the WW2 aces. The Phenomenon remained a mystery for the military at the end of the war.

Picture By Simo Räsänen, CC BY-SA 4.0
Picture By Simo Räsänen, CC BY-SA 4.0

Sweden’s lakes

At that point, the future of war was in space: given their advance on nuclear weapons, the USA was looking for a vector to deliver those anywhere and started financing the development of rockets based on recovered German research. At the same time, in 1946 in Scandinavia, reports arose of unknown rockets crossing the Baltic skies. On July 19, 4 different crashes into lakes were reported, then another one 24 hours later. 

The investigation was conducted with the help of the U.K. for a time, and followed by the U.S. Indeed, the newly appointed head of the Central Intelligence Group, ancestor to the CIA General Hoyt Vandenberg, told Harry Truman that the Ghost Rockets seemed to be Soviet missiles. This situation can be seen as the blueprint for crash retrieval programs among allies, where the U.S. monitors the situation from afar, English-speaking allied countries interact with nations where a crash happened, and the nation itself conducts the search on the ground. As a matter of fact, Sweden conducted the first official retrieval operations of crashed advanced crafts this summer, trying to recover remnants of the crafts in lakes, even though nothing was ever found officially. The British oversaw their work while keeping the U.S. informed. 

The U.S. had its own agencies at work. A memorandum dated August 1st, authored by Colonel Edwin K. Wright, then Assistant Director of Central Intelligence, and sent to President Truman, describes the rockets as maneuverable crafts able to self-destruct. Coincidently, 20 days later, General Doolittle visited Sweden, stating:

“I have only seen a couple of reports about your Ghost Rockets and I have no real idea of what they are. But it would be very interesting to observe one.”

Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Ryan Seelbach/U.S. Navy/Handout, Public Domain

Flying Disks above the United States

In 1947, Howard McCoy, Wright Patterson Air Force Base Chief of Intelligence, immediately requested the Ghost Rockets Files archived at the Department of War. He received 44 documents, which to this day have not been released to the public. 

We won’t dive here into the Roswell case or Kenneth’s Arnold sighting, but suffice it to say that if the U.S. was willing to perform a thorough on-site collection of debris and organize a press conference to show them, one can only imagine the extent of resources it could mobilize in the case of the crash of an advanced craft, Chinese, Russian or other. Furthermore, just like in February 2023, even though the recovery of debris from the Chinese High Altitude balloon was publicized and documented by a Navy Mass Communication Specialist, no public information ever came out regarding the 3 other debris fields, apart from the fact that official research for debris was ended due to difficult conditions on the ground.

On July 4, 1947, Chief of the Atomic Energy Commission David Lilienthal stated that the disks had nothing to do with any governmental atomic project and that he had no idea of what they were but “was anxious to know if any of them had fallen to the ground”.

On the same day, a press release was sent by the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, stating that the Army Air Force was trying to resolve the mystery of the flying disk. The investigation will slowly gain momentum, confirmed by the Twining memo, stating that "The phenomenon reported is something real", and officially launched in 1948 by the Project SIGN. At the time, an intense rivalry existed between the Air Force project, pushing the extraterrestrial origin hypothesis internally, and its counterpart, the Naval investigation, which favored the foreign actor origin. The Navy won, and the project was renamed Grudge

Between April and May 1949, a disinformation campaign was organized to prevent panic in the population. The same investigators that interviewed the most reliable military witnesses of the era were used as figureheads to calm down the public, which caused a first blow to the trust between pilots and investigators, who would then refuse to report sightings.

Alongside the disinformation campaign, an article was planned for release to counter an article promoting the UFO study and reporting. Written by the members of the Air Material Command and based on the work of Project SIGN, it remains to this day one of the most interesting documents available to study the process of how the Air Force has investigated UFO reports and crash retrievals. 

National Military Establishment Office of Public Information, Memorandum to the Press, Public Domain

“Memorandum to the Press, Project Saucer”, shows how the Air Force viewed the UAP investigation. In fact, the term “UAP” was already in use in the report. “UFO” was created later by E.J. Ruppelt - another interesting symmetry - with UAP being pushed today to replace UFO.  

In its very introduction alone, The Project Saucer reads:

  • 30 foreign cases were investigated
  • the Wright-Patterson laboratories were used
  • extraterrestrial origin was viewed as a possibility
  • the exhaustive investigation couldn’t disprove that the cause may be real aircraft of unknown and unconventional configuration
  • “several other government and private agencies” helped Project Saucer in its UAP study

By that point, the blueprint first seen in Sweden appears well fleshed-out. The collaboration with other countries seems well-established regarding UAP investigation and recovery, confirming one of Grusch’s claims.

Furthermore, the report continues by listing baffling unexplained cases. In one subpart, it states that chasing UAP could result in fatalities, citing the case of Capt. Thomas Mantell

January 7, 1948, Mantell and 2 other pilots tried to intercept a UAP described as a metallic and gigantic cone. Radio contact was lost with Mantell during the pursuit, Mantell was later recovered in the wreckage of his plane. While categorically debunking the idea that he could have been lured by Venus, the Air Material Command’s report here confirms Grusch’s claims regarding the possible threat UAP can be to the public. 

United Kingdom, Ministry of Defense, Project Condign, Public Domain

Interestingly, another official report, the U.K. Ministry of Defense’s Project Condign, states that “attempts by other nations to intercept the unexplained objects, which can clearly change position faster than an aircraft, have reportedly caused fatalities.” The report adds that “Radiated effects are reported to be sufficient [...] to cause scorching of the human skin and damage to nearby terrestrial objects.” Furthermore, regarding aircraft, it states that “coupling to vehicle electronic and electrical systems can occur and affect equipment operation”.

Interestingly, the summary of the report concludes with: “Further investigation should be into the applicability of various characteristics of plasmas in novel military applications”. The report hints here at one of the core reasons why UAP are so highly regarded in national security concerns, but only behind closed doors.

Article by Associated Press, Wilmington Star News,1947

Regarding investigation methods, the Project Saucer's report states that:

“Often the Wright-Patterson laboratories were called on to make an analysis of objects claimed to be fragments salvaged from “flying disk” ”. 

So it appears that, as soon as 1949, any found, interesting debris would have been investigated by the Army. The report also explains how A-2 intelligence officers could be dispatched to the ground to collect debris and interview witnesses. The report states that an investigation would go like this :

  • local intelligence agencies interrogates witnesses
  • a standard questionnaire is given to the witness
  • fragments, soil samples, and photographs are sent back to the Air Materiel Command
  • the report and materials are analyzed
  • data is shared with agencies and technical labs inside AMC
  • flying objects are categorized into shapes: discs, torpedoes, spheres, and lights
  • the type of propulsion is estimated depending on the reported shape and data
  • data is sent back from agencies and laboratories with their analysis

As it turns out, as early as 1949, Air Materiel Command was more fleshed out than AARO is in 2023, with the ability to: 

  • investigate civilian cases 
  • mobilize law enforcement and intelligence agencies 
  • deploy experts on the ground
  • gather debris and samples

One could really wonder how advanced today’s classified research on UAP is, particularly if, as David Grusch claims, it was already that well-organized 74 years ago.

Viking 1 By NASA - Public Domain

A possible extraterrestrial origin

The next part of the report is even more astonishing by today’s standard, as the report explains why Mars is the best candidate for a possible extraterrestrial origin of UAP. Something that is, today, used to ridicule Grusch, is here given serious consideration in the report in 3 full pages. Furthermore, inside the extraterrestrial hypothesis, Project Saucer tried to deduct from the data and materials they recovered, what type of technology could propel such UAP. In other words, they started informally reverse-engineering UAP. 

The report also lists other possibilities, considering it could be from a foreign adversary only if it managed an accidental discovery “of a novelty never achieved before”. Finally, the report states that they even considered strange extraterrestrial animals, like the one envisioned recently in the movie Nope, due to the animalistic behavior apparent in some cases, something well described by pilots encountering them to this day, but that they lacked data to be sure.  

It is interesting to see how a public report written in 1949 contains actually more information than the last UAPTF report.

Photo By U.S. Army Credit: USAMHI - Public Domain

Cold Wars and Reverse-Engineering

The Cold War was a technological race, with each side trying to outcompete the other in every field. The Space Race was a huge success for The Soviet Union until 1969, and the acquisition of their own nuclear bomb, just 5 years after the U.S., changed everything. When it comes to spying, recording and reverse-engineering, Soviet technology was of the utmost importance for the US. 

A 1951 incident involving a MIG 15, crashed in Korean territorial waters, is an interesting example. It was spotted by a British aircraft, and a U.S. recovery team was immediately dispatched to recover the fighter. After failing, they tried again, combining British and U.S. forces, but this time directly under fire from the Communist forces also trying to recover it. They managed to pick up the plane and send it to the U.S. where it was analyzed for reverse engineering. The Project Moon Dust is another example of such retrieval operations. 

If the U.S. and their allies are willing to go that far to obtain conventional technology, how far would the U.S. be willing to go to obtain advanced exotic hardware, not to mention preventing another actor from obtaining it? Even though currently the U.S. lacks the industrial base for mass-producing advanced exotic technology, the more pieces of materials they can recover, the less are available for rival nations or even allies to conduct their own research. 

This one example of what is called the Foreign Military Exploitation program, reminiscent of the Foreign Material Program, was recently pointed out by Canadian M.P. Maguire to be an international recovery program for UAP debris - validating once again some of David Grusch’s claims. 

One of the most comprehensive analysis available today on UAP technologies was written just a few years ago by Bristish analyst Franc Milburn, and published by the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies of the Bar-Ilan University, Israel. Both articles give a thorough description of the geopolitical struggles regarding the topic, and the possible UAP technologies that could be recovered.

In fact, on the other side of the world, China has been trying to gain an edge in UAP studies. 

  • They’re ready to spend extravagantly to recruit the best brains and holders of secret knowledge ;
  • China has had its own military investigation on UAP for years;
  • They’ve been monitoring witness reports for decades through state-validated Ufological associations;
  • China is willing to overthrow any power trying to challenge its territory.

How long can the U.S. wait before being outmatched? That’s the question raised by Lue Elizondo, Christopher Mellon, late Senator Harry Reid and others. According to them, the race has been on for decades regarding UAP technology, but with the amount of self-inflicted stigma in the U.S., forcing each agency to create its own UAP management team cut off from all others, there is an urgency to break the shackles that prevent them to work together. As stated by Rep. Gallagher in a recent interview, “we need to rediscover the fact that we are the good guys, our values are better, America is the leader of the free world”. 

This a very interesting statement coming from an elected official, when the U.S. is still today one of the most hostile environments on Earth to work on UAP - with the U.K. following closely - due to the amount of stigma regarding the topic. This harsh climate is the very reason why whistleblowers have been briefing Congress for years. Ever since the appearance of the Phenomenon, the U.S. have been secretly channeling crash retrieval operations and expanding them in recent years, according to Canadian Member of Parliament Maguire, using the Five Eyes and probably the AUKUS alliance.

Harvard, Galileo Project, Dr. Avi Loeb, Spherules recovered from IM1, Run 8, under Fair Use for Information

“Exotic Technologies”

There is of course the great, magnificent, ontological question that makes everybody shivers. What do we mean by “exotic” materials? 

The concept of extraterrestrial life dates back to Ancient Greece and was used in metaphors for literally millennia inside folklore. 

Until the first probes arrived on Mars, mainstream science and culture considered that life would be common among the cosmos, due to the sheer size of the universe and the tendency of life to be extremely hard to eradicate. But a cultural shock happened when the first pictures of what was thought to be a sister planet to Earth arrived. It turned out to be an unlivable, unbreathable toxic desert. 

The concept of extraterrestrial life was then stuck inside fiction and associated with monster stories and sensationalism. Even the strange results of the experiments done on Mars by Viking 1 and 2 to find extraterrestrial life were dismissed at the time, even though today they are thought to have discovered a very strong signal similar to what biological life on Earth would generate. These experiments were never tried again to confirm the results. 

The fact that in the Martian atmosphere a methane cycle exists can also be a signal of extraterrestrial life, alongside the recent detection of phosphine in Venus’ atmosphere. 

Almost every day, the James Webb Space Telescope captures hints that extraterrestrial life could be happening in our galaxy or elsewhere in the universe. Just a few days ago, it detected phosphate, a key ingredient for life, in the waters of Enceladus, a moon of Saturn, and also identified methyl cation in a new star system in the Orion Nebula - another building block of life. 

Still, the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI)  has been the victim of the stigma propagated by UFO and close encounter stories, sensationalized by mass media into grotesque accounts. 

Picture by NASA, Gold-Plated Record is attached to Voyager 1, Public Domain

Are we alone?

The question remains the same. Either we are alone, or we are not. Statistical studies show that we can’t be alone, as the solar system’s configuration (considering life is limited to Earth-like conditions) is not unique. The next argument used is the so-called “Fermi paradox”. We should hear radio chatter coming from everywhere using the SETI program, and it detected no repeating signals in the last 30 years. That’s forgetting that recent studies found potential candidates in the unexplored archives of SETI, impressive results considering that SETI’s approach is extremely restricted in terms of bandwidth, power level, and window of observation. Radio chatter also postulates that other intelligent species, predating us by millions of years, would still be using radio to communicate and that they would want to talk to us.

On the other hand, for alien probes to be scouting the solar system, you only need one species with a good amount of intellectual thirst and technological savvy in the universe. We are ourselves, already there. Voyager 1 and 2 are going for outer space with a message in the bottle. If we did it, others probably did it, as we are statistically unlikely to be special, but we need to be searching for their bottles, the same way Harvard’s Dr. Avi Loeb of the Galileo Project is doing it in the Pacific Ocean, collecting what could be debris from an interstellar probe. 

As explained previously, there is no doubt that such a piece of potential technology would be recovered. Indeed, that’s what Dr. Loeb is doing. But two questions remain:

  • If there are UAP crashes, how would advanced exotic technology could failing if they are so much ahead of us?

That one is pretty easy: no technological system is ever perfect, and everything, advanced and complex systems in particular, always ends up failing at some point. The cost/benefit ratio must be also considered, as we never spent the ressources needed to recover a non-reponsive man-made probe because it was cheaper to send another one. We consider UAP technologies to be ground breaking, but due to time dilation increasing with speed, the alleged crafts arriving here would already be obsolete compared to what would be crafted at their point of origin.

  • Would there be pilots in these crafts?

Regarding the statement by David Grusch that pilots were recovered with the crafts, several interesting similarities with our own history exist.

Among all astronauts to ever land on the moon, only one was a scientist. All others were former military personnel. One of the most common arguments to explain why another species would come that far is often that it’s “for science”. Interestingly, that is not an anthropomorphism, as we have done that to show our strength, not to gather knowledge. Some Moon rocks were distributed to allied countries as a token of appreciation. One of the current ambitions to get back on the Moon today is to beat China. That should make us wonder about the diversity of situations we could meet out there, or witness right here. 

With our level of understanding of physics, it is unlikely that entirely new physics would be required for propulsion. Just with a ship in 1 G acceleration, perfect for the human body, you can reach the next star system in a few years. Why would you need pilots? You could sort things out using Artificial Intelligence in Von Neumann probes-like self-repairing crafts. But you would need to trust autonomous AI - a subject of debate nowadays. You could pilot your probes remotely, but with no information able to cross the speed of light, the delay becomes a problem really fast. For example, there is a 7-minute delay between the Sun and Earth. Piloting a probe requires acting 7 minutes in advance and hoping nothing bad happens. And bad things happening in space are quite common. 

Regarding the duration of such a trip, there are right now funneling gigantic amounts of private and public funds to extend human life beyond its natural limitations, and slow down metabolism to ease transport on long distances. Science moves faster than Science-Fiction writers today. 

And there we go again. You just need one. Even if 99% of alleged exotic crafts are A.I.-driven, you just need to find one that has bodies. It's a rare event, not a miracle. Once you consider the amount of possible life out there, extended over billions of years, statistics make it simple: the existence of non-human bodies actually makes sense.

Finally - a favorite of mine - it could very well be, as stated above, breakthrough technology kept away from the public, even though in the first part of the article we saw how far back the Phenomenon goes. 

Senator of Florida Marco Rubio, picture by US Senate - Email from the Office of Senator Marco Rubio, Public Domain


Now that we’ve purged sensationalism out of the topic and answered Grusch’s main claims, there is only one remaining. Is David Grusch trustworthy? Let’s just list the facts here:

  • Nobody has proven he is wrong:

Critics’ argumentation relies on “it’s not possible”. Well, until 1803, people didn’t think meteorites could exist - after all, stones don’t fly. Furthermore, most witness reports, including military personnel, describe UAP close-encounters with, interestingly, human pilots. Even if Grusch's claims raised a wave of criticism, not one of them was able to disprove his character, background, or his complaint to the Inspector General of the Intelligence Community (ICIG).

  • He isn’t alone:

The New York Times has compared David Grusch with Bob Lazar - maybe to have him share Lazar's aura of controversy. But, while Bob Lazar was never able to produce corroborative witnesses, David Grusch has enjoyed backing from numerous allies - in turn, validated by half a dozen journalists, and including named military personnel.
Recently, investigative journalist Michael Shellenberger and former White House advisor Dr. Pippa Malmgren also reported separately that David Grusch's claims were corroborated by multiple sources on condition of anonymity.

  • His complaint for harassment was validated:

The (ICIG) has found that he indeed suffered harassment following his investigation, and that his complaint is deemed “credible and urgent”. Amusingly, very few journalists ask themselves why on Earth would an intelligence officer be harassed after reporting illegal UAP crash retrieval programs. 

  • He sacrificed his career:

David Grusch has nothing to gain from the process, quite the opposite, having sacrificed his lifelong career in the DoD when becoming a whistleblower. 

  • He does have proof:

One of the most common criticisms is the fact that David Grusch doesn’t have proof. Except he does. They were given to the (ICIG), and confirmed by corroborative witnesses. As it is an ongoing investigation, and because the materials are classified (the very reason he started the whistleblower process) the public can’t see it until it’s declassified. The U.S. public can request their president to declassify the materials if they wish to see it, but the decision isn’t in the hands of David Grusch. 

  • He is only the first:

As stated by Senator Marco Rubio in a recent interview, other whistleblowers are now coming to Congress to brief the elected officials on crash retrieval programs on UAP. Sen. Rubio also declared that they were looking for these programs based on Grusch’s claims, adding that he thought of David Grusch as a “very smart, highly educated [...] with high clearances and very important position”, and comparing him to Navy pilots who encountered anomalous craft causing near-misses. He continued, stating that they were “taking it seriously, it’s bipartisan”, adding that illegal programs keeping knowledge out of Congress “would be a huge problem, if it’s even partially true”. Regarding the possibility that other whistleblowers could confirm Grusch claims, he answered that:

“because it’s a whistleblower process, not just him but others, there are people that have come forward to share information with our committee over the last couple of years[...] that have first hand claims of certain things. Some are public figures, that you’ve heard from them in the past publicly, others have not shared publicly, and so we are trying to gather as much of that information as we can”.

Intriguingly, he adds: “some of these claims are things that are beyond the realm of what any of us has ever dealt with”, explaining that the whistleblowers are “serious people” with no incentive to report these information.

David Grusch, Need to Know, Image may not be reproduced or circulated without permission of the authors

One could laugh at David Grusch's claims if they didn't deal with concealed knowledge affecting world security. As rival nations are engaged in a frantic race to acquire hypersonic weapons technology, can the United States still afford the luxury of turning a deaf ear to the warnings issued by former intelligence officers like David Grusch concerning hidden technologies that could change the face of the world ?

Main picture: David Grusch, Copyright © D. Grusch. Image may not be reproduced or circulated without permission of the authors

Baptiste Friscourt

Born in 1986, this certified visual arts teacher started looking for reliable information on UAP in 2017 at the request of his students. Since then, he's been covering UAP research in France for The Debrief while vulgarizing international content on a demonetized platform of his own which was named Explorer Lab. After serving as Editor-in-Chief of UAP Check News between February 2023 and January 2024, he is currently editor-in-chief of Sentinel News.