Michael Solberg: If the truth about aliens is out there, politicians won't want to share it

One overarching truth about governments of all political stripes is that they rarely feel obliged to tell you the whole truth.

By: Michael Solberg

On February 18, the Mars Perseverance rover landed successfully in the Jezero Crater on the surface of Mars. Millions from around the world celebrated the little SUV-sized fella as it began the important work of searching for evidence of life on Mars. 

This extraordinary feat of ingenuity and human accomplishment renewed my childhood obsession with space and the age-old question underpinning virtually every alien conspiracy theory out there: what do governments around the world really know about life from outer space? The news this week that an American Airlines flight reported contact with an unidentified fast-moving object over New Mexico, despite an apparent absence of nearby military flights, added fuel to that particular fire.

I have worked in and around Canadian politics for just shy of a decade. This has included my time spent as a fledgling political staffer in Ottawa under the former Harper government to more recent days where I spend my time lobbying governments across the prairies on the behalf of the private and non-profit sector. The one overarching truth I have learned about governments of all political stripes is that they rarely feel obliged to tell you the whole truth (or even some of the truth) on issues that are difficult to communicate or have limited political upside. This would no doubt be true about aliens. I mean, what is the political win for a government who wants to share classified material about UFOs and little grey men? 

Yes, little grey men — and no, I don’t mean the former Conservative cabinet. I mean aliens from the far reaches of outer space. The concept of visitors from other galaxies have been the subject of speculation and study by scientists, philosophers, explorers, and regular people for thousands of years. “Are we alone in the universe?” is a question that is foundational to human thought and a product of our own constant pining to understand our place in the cosmos.

Today, we have reached a point where this question and our approach to it has evolved. Technological advancement, decades of research and pioneers of space exploration have led us to a place where we no longer reasonably doubt that life of some kind exists, or has existed, elsewhere in the universe. Thus, the question has evolved to something more fitting of a blockbuster movie than a research lab full of white coats: If life exists, does it exist now, is it intelligent and advanced, and, most important of all, have they been visiting us?

Surely, governments around the world have asked themselves this very same question. In fact, we know that they have. Last spring, the Pentagon declassified several documents and videos from the Navy and Air Force related to the presence of "unidentified aerial phenomena.” (See a photo of one such incident, taken by a U.S. jet fighter, above.) One former Pentagon official has even gone so far as to boldly claim that “there is very compelling evidence that we may not be alone." Of course, the official response from the Pentagon stopped just short of confirming the presence of alien life forms, but truthers and conspiracy theorists alike were set ablaze, nonetheless.

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Canada has its role in this conversation as well. Paul Hellyer, who served as minister of national defence from 1963 to 1967 under then-prime minister Lester Pearson, famously confirmed to a Russian news outlet in 2014 the presence of four different species of aliens who have been visiting Earth for “thousands of years.” If the former minister is right, I can only hope they have been using the UFO landing pad in St. Paul, Alberta.

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney also served honourably as minister of national defence in 2015. As we enter budget week in the province, Alberta’s press gallery is no doubt preparing to pepper the premier with questions on revenues and expenses and “will you implement a sales tax, premier?” This is noble work, but I would instead ask them to consider saving at least one of their carefully crafted questions to confirm whether the premier was also privy to the same information as his Pearson-era predecessor. You’d be doing the public a great service!

Now when I was a political staffer in Ottawa, I was granted “Secret” level security clearance. I can tell you that whatever status I was afforded to review protected documents certainly did not meet the threshold where I was exposed to the truth about aliens. In fact, I am quite certain that the only alien who came back to Canada that I encountered in Ottawa was Michael Ignatieff.

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However, what is clear to me and I think any logical person, is that government’s around the world know more than they are telling us about UFOs and other life in the universe. Prime Minister Trudeau prorogued Parliament last fall to avoid answering questions about the WE scandal investigation. Imagine what he would do when confronted about what knowledge he has of other civilizations? Would he dodge questions because he has already accepted a leisurely ride on their alien spacecraft? Perhaps he brought his new foreign minister with him? I hear has some experience in these things. I only hope our new alien overlords sent them back with some vaccines.

Yes, I jest — but with tongue somewhat in cheek, I do challenge any reader who has made it this far to ask themselves to hold their governments to account on matters where transparency is important. I am not asking you to challenge our nation’s leaders to wear matters of national security on their sleeve; let’s not be silly. I am simply asking you to compel the Government to let us regular people know when a cabinet minister has their hand in the public purse, or when they are about to sole source a billion-dollar contract out to their friends, and yes — when they are made aware of an extraterrestrial being visiting the planet.

I don’t think that’s too much to ask. Do you?


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