The world of UFO social media has been in a whirlwind ever since former AARO director Dr. Sean Kirkpatrick published a scathing op/ed in Scientific American deriding UFO allegations. Without naming David Grusch, he listed the UFO whistleblower’s claims and presented them as being conspiracies that were wrong and wasting congress members‘ time. Many have pushed back against his claims, including government officials with personal knowledge themselves.
To review a comprehensive, in-depth breakdown of UFO whistleblower David Grusch’s claims, with citations, see our story here.
A Defense Source Said About His Op/Ed: ‘This Is Problematic’
A defense source who spoke only on the condition of anonymity told Liberation Times that if Kirkpatrick’s op/ed had been approved by DOPSR (which it was), it was troubling for a big reason.
They shared: “If he did have it reviewed and they approved it, this is also problematic because in his article he provides a summary of the results of a study for Congress and the Department of Defense that has not been completed yet or provided to the U.S. government. One then must ask questions. Who gave him authority to release the results of a report before they were even provided to Congress? If the study is ongoing, where is the analysis? If he is biased, why is he still being used by the Department of Defense as an ‘unpaid consultant’ to advise the Deputy Secretary of Defense?”
On X, Dan Warren shared that he had reached out to Susan Gough, Department of Defense spokesperson, about whether Kirkpatrick’s piece was approved by DOPSR.
Gough replied: “As required, Dr. Kirkpatrick submitted his draft document for a security review prior to publication. Please note: Approval for release by the Defense Office of Prepublication and Security Review (DOPSR) means the material submitted by an individual does not contain classified information, controlled unclassified information (CUI), or other sensitive information such as that protected for operations security (OPSEC) reasons, and that the aggregate of information in the material does not fall under one of those categories. Approval does not imply DOD endorsement or factual accuracy of the material. The views expressed when individuals release the material publicly for non-official purposes are their own and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Department of Defense or the U.S. government.”
A former official, under anonymity, told Liberation Times: “It will be very difficult for the Department of Defense to regain faith and trust with new whistleblowers given the behavior and deceitfulness of Kirkpatrick. His article appears to be written from the perspective of someone who failed at their job and is now throwing a child’s fit of rage.”
Christopher Mellon Disputed Kirkpatrick’s Claim That No Whistleblowers in the Public Eye Had Come to AARO
In his op/ed, Kirkpatrick wrote: “As of the time of my departure, none, let me repeat, none of the conspiracy-minded ‘whistleblowers’ in the public eye had elected to come to AARO to provide their ‘evidence’ and statement for the record despite numerous invitations.”
However, Christopher Mellon, former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense, disputed this claim.
Mellon wrote on X:
“I was astonished by one of the central claims made by Dr. Sean Kirkpatrick in his recent article in Scientific American blasting UAP ‘conspiracists.’ Specifically, his claim that: “As of the time of my departure, none, let me repeat, none of the conspiracy-minded ‘whistleblowers’ in the public eye had elected to come to AARO to provide their ‘evidence’ and statement for the record despite numerous invitations.”
He continued, writing: “I’m baffled because, to assist his investigation, I introduced Dr. Kirkpatrick to the former Director of the AATIP program, Lue Elizondo, as well as Dr. Eric Davis and Dr. Hal Puthoff. Each of these prominent voices associated with the AATIP program spent hours briefing Dr. Kirkpatrick in a classified setting. None have received any feedback. Hopefully, the pending report to Congress on the alleged UAP recovery program will describe the specific claims made by these and dozens of other witnesses and what AARO did to evaluate them.”
Lue Elizondo, Former Director of AATIP, Wrote That They Would Come Forward if AARO Won’t
Many, let me repeat, MANY people who I know personally have spoken to AARO and provided detailed information to Kirkpatrick and his office for the record. If AARO isn't willing to tell the truth to Congress…we are! @ChrisKMellon https://t.co/aGoUjGtKuU
— Lue Elizondo (@LueElizondo) January 24, 2024
Lue Elizondo, former director of AATIP, confirmed Mellon’s message, writing: “Many, let me repeat, MANY people who I know personally have spoken to AARO and provided detailed information to Kirkpatrick and his office for the record. If AARO isn’t willing to tell the truth to Congress…we are! ”
Kirkpatrick Claimed No Whistleblowers Have Firsthand Evidence, Which Officials Have Also Disputed
In his op/ed, Kirkpatrick wrote: “During a full-scale, year-long investigation of this story (which has been told and retold by a small group of interconnected believers and others with possibly less than honest intentions—none of whom have firsthand accounts of any of this), AARO discovered a few things, and none were about aliens.”
However, this assertion has already been disputed multiple times. As Post Apocalyptic Media previously reported, Sen. Marco Rubio said that a number of firsthand witnesses have spoken to Congress.
“I will say there are people who have come forward to share information with our committee over the last couple of years,” Rubio told News Nation.
And many of these didn’t want their names in the public for fear of reprisal, he added.
“…[They] have firsthand knowledge or firsthand claims of certain things,” Rubio told NewsNation. “Some are public figures, you know, and we’ve heard from them in the past. Others, umm, you know, have not shared publicly. And so we’re trying to gather as much of that information as we can… And the reason why I’m being cautious, I’m not trying to be evasive, but I am trying to be protective of these people. Some of these people still work in the government. And frankly a lot of them are very fearful: fearful of their jobs, fearful of their clearances, fearful of their career, and some frankly are fearful of harm coming to them.”
AARO Wasn’t Fully Operational Until October
Kirkpatrick wrote in his op/ed: “During a full-scale, year-long investigation of this story (which has been told and retold by a small group of interconnected believers and others with possibly less than honest intentions—none of whom have firsthand accounts of any of this), AARO discovered a few things, and none were about aliens.”
We have a video below that looks into those claims from TikTok.
It’s interesting to contrast Kirkpatrick’s statement to a recent report from the DoD, which we previously covered. The unclassified report detailed the government’s approach to UAP sightings, based on findings from the inspector general of the DoD. The classified version of the same report was published in August 2023.
According to the report: “The Under Secretary also commented that the report describes AARO as having been ‘operational’ at the time of its establishment when in fact the office was not at initial operational capability. The Under Secretary stated that AARO will achieve full operational capability using the resources provided in the Future Year Defense Plan beginning in FY 2024.”
So AARO didn’t become fully operational until around October 2023 (i.e. FY 2024’s start), but it was still able to conduct such an in-depth “year long” investigation that it could conclude Grusch’s claims were unfounded?
Kirkpatrick Framed Grusch’s Claims as Baseless, Which the ICIG Disagrees With
Kirkpatrick’s entire op/ed, though not naming Grusch, listed his claims and then proceeded to try to present them as baseless. However, the Inspector General of the Intelligence Community has said that Grusch’s claims were urgent and credible.
The ICIG recently met with House members to discuss Grusch’s claims in a SCIF. After the meeting, several mentioned that the meeting left them with even stronger beliefs in the credibility of at least some of Grusch’s claims. You can read our story here to see all the reactions.
“I believe that he [Grusch] is telling the truth,” Rep. Anna Paulina Luna said. “I think that he is a credible witness.”
Rep. Jared Moskowitz tweeted: “Based on what we heard many of Grusch claims have merit!”
Yet Kirkpatrick’s op/ed didn’t mention the ICIG’s claims or meeting once, which is odd.