Video shows an object in the sights of a US fighter jet near San Diego. Picture: US Department of Defense
By Hugo Daniels and Emily Saul
AN AMERICAN pilot who claims to have chased an alien aircraft has warned world leaders to take UFO sightings seriously.
Retired US Navy pilot commander David Fravor spoke out in support of former US government intelligence officer Luis Elizondo, who last week revealed he ran a real-life X-Files UFO research department at the Pentagon named the Advanced Aviation Threat Identification Program (AATIP) funded by $28 million "black-ops money" from Congress.
Elizondo secured the release of previously classified US Defence Department videos of UFO encounters - one of which shows the craft Fravor saw darting off at an incredible speed, reports The Sun.
Commander Fravor, 53, was flying one of two fighter jets on a routine training mission about 160km into the Pacific Ocean off San Diego when they were diverted to check out an aircraft spotted on radar from navy cruiser the USS Princeton.
The operations operator said they had been tracking up to a dozen mystery aircraft over two weeks but hadn't had manned planes deployed when they showed up.
The object first appeared at 80,000 feet, then hurtled towards the sea, stopping at 20,000 feet and hovering before dropping out of radar.
When Commander Fravor arrived, he saw a white aircraft hovering 50 feet above a disturbance in the ocean.
He said: "It was just moving randomly around - this 40-foot-long white Tic Tac-looking thing, with no wings.
Retired US navy pilot David Fravor has called on Stephen Hawking to look into his claims
"It was a clear day with a blue background and it was perfectly white. We didn't see any windows, no form of propulsion, nothing, just a big white object.
"It was rounded on both ends and had a cylindrical body which rounded in, same front to back.
"I couldn't tell what it was made of. It was bright white but it wasn't reflecting a bunch of light."
Fravor flew towards it and the aircraft began ascending towards him, passing him at about 12,000 feet. He thinks he got within 800m of it.
He said: "I literally chased the thing and it started to mirror us - it was like it became aware we were there. I cut across to see if I could get closer and it rapidly accelerated and disappeared. Within a matter of a second it was gone."
Asked what was going through his mind, he said: "I was thinking, 'That's pretty strange'. In 16 years of flying I had never seen anything like that. Nothing that can hover and climb at that rate up and then accelerate and just disappear.
"I was more curious then afraid. I wanted to see how close I could get to it, to see what it was."
The two fighter jets were told to head to a rendezvous point 100km away.
However the radio operator on the Princeton then radioed and said the mystery aircraft had turned up before them.
At this point another aircraft was sent to investigate and recorded radar footage of the aircraft. The 90-second video shows the oblong-shaped object hovering before it darts off to the left at what appears to be an unprecedented velocity.
Fravor said: "It jammed the radar. You couldn't lock it with a conventional radar. You could passively track it and see it, but if you tried to grab a lock it wouldn't allow you to do that.
"When it takes off and goes to the side, that's a significant amount of distance to travel in a very short period of time - we're talking miles. That thing just goes poof and in about a second it's off the side of the screen.
"You look at the video of it - there's no exhaust flume, there's no indication of how that thing is moving around. Having seen a lot of different aeroplanes, you can always at least (see) hot spots where the exhaust is coming out. I was close enough visually to go, 'We don't have anything like that.'"
He insisted the object was alien in origin.
He said: "It was impressive, it had incredible performance. Obviously I wasn't in a hostile act with it. You'd have your hands full if you were.
"I honestly don't think humans have that technology to do what that thing did. Nor could the human body withstand accelerations like that. It's an incredible technology to be able to go up to space and back down and hang over the water.
"I know what I saw and the other three people that were there saw at the same time. I think you would be hard-pressed to question my credibility flying experience-wise. I'm totally sane, in good health, I don't do drugs.
"We physically saw and chased it and are the only ones that have actually got close to one of these things."
Fravor is now calling on British physicist and cosmologist Stephen Hawking to view the video and give his take on it.
He said: "They should be talking to Stephen Hawking. He's a brilliant man - I would like to hear his thoughts on it. They said they're talking to some other theoretical physicists like him about the possibilities."
And in a stern warning to governments around the world he added: "We all need to take these seriously as a species, because right now we don't know the intent of these things. If they're like ET it's great, if they're like War Of The Worlds, not so much.
"You can ignore them and hope they're just going to observe, or you can do something about it and try to understand what they're doing and develop technology, in case they do have a bad intention."