It’s been a busy few weeks for Stephen Bassett, Washington’s veteran UFO lobbyist. Early last month, an ex-U.S. intelligence official who once worked with the Department of Defense’s Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force went public with claims that the federal government has recovered non-human spacecraft. The former official, David Grusch, does not claim to have seen the crashed spacecraft himself. Rather, in an interview with The Debrief, he said he had heard accounts of their existence over the course of his work. And in an interview with NewsNation, Grusch went even further. “Well, naturally, when you recover something that’s either landed or crashed,” he said, “sometimes you encounter dead pilots and, believe it or not, as fantastical as that sounds, it’s true.”
A Pentagon spokesperson told ABC News that the UAP task force “has not discovered any verifiable information to substantiate” Grusch’s claims. Meanwhile, according to Vanity Fair, a number of other news organizations—The New York Times, The Washington Post, and Politico—were approached with Grusch’s allegations but did not publish them. But for Bassett, who has spent more than two decades trying to get official Washington to take UFO issues seriously, Grusch’s claims are monumental. “I mean, Jesus Christ,” Bassett says, “this thing is getting ready to blow sky-high.”
Washingtonian recently caught up with Bassett for his thoughts on Grusch’s allegations and how they might impact UFO-related issues in Washington.
What do you make of Grusch’s claims?
Absolutely legit. One hundred percent legit. He was at the task force. His whole background is legit. So the idea that he would make up false reports from non-existent people and take that to the DOD? It’s a one-in-a-million shot. So it’s legit, period.
What’s the significance of the claims he’s made?
In other words, [Grusch is saying,] “Yeah we have alien tech. Yes, we have crashed vehicles. And yes, we have bodies.” It’s not a surprise to me. The people in my world have been stating this, and putting the evidence forward that we’ve had these vehicles, for years. Now [Grusch] just confirmed it. Well, this was a bomb going off and that really sets a lot in motion and creates a lot of problems for the Senate [Intelligence] Committee and for the White House, because they are not ready to deal with alien craft and bodies.
Where do you think the issue goes from here?
[Senate Select Committee on Intelligence Chairman] Mark Warner is in a really tough position now. Grusch has put the Christmas tree up and [Congress has] no choice but to start hanging ornaments on it. They have got to get those witnesses in front of that committee as soon as possible, or this thing is going to become completely out of hand. So the next thing that is going to happen is that Warner, or possibly Warner and [Senator Marco] Rubio together, will make a formal announcement and a press release that hearings on this will start on such and such a date.
In light of Grusch’s claims, how far away are we from what you call “disclosure”—or the confirmation by the U.S. President of the existence of the extraterrestrials?
Once they get the witnesses to testify, which would almost certainly include Grusch and anybody else prepared to testify directly to ET technology in our hands, which means Roswell was real, which Grusch has alluded to—two weeks.
From the day the hearings start. Because here is the situation: The hearings are going to be probably the most watched hearings in history. So hundreds of millions of people are watching this testimony unfold. They are watching these questions being asked. The media is going nuts. Articles every day. Groundbreaking. After two weeks of that, what are you [as the U.S. president] going to do? You’ve got to go and make an announcement and say, “Look, I’ve talked to the Secretary of Defense. I’ve talked to the key Congressional leaders, and I’ve watched this testimony, and it’s pretty convincing. I think that we now can be assured that in fact, this is nonhuman in origin.” Or [Biden] may say “extraterrestrial presence.” But it is nonhuman, and it’s not our tech. That’s disclosure. Capital D. Bingo. That’s it.
What’s going on right now, and has been going on, it’s not about finding out what this phenomenon is. None of it is about finding out what the phenomenon is—they already know what it is. They’ve known for decades. It is about setting up the scaffolding for the president to formally confirm the extra-terrestrial presence. It’s about setting up the disclosure event in a way conducive and positive and good public relations.
It’s similar to what we do when a president is inaugurated. The president is elected in November and inaugurated in January. And so for many days, they spend a lot of money to build this huge scaffolding on the Western side of the Capitol building for people to sit and watch the stage and everything, so people can participate in the formal passing of power. The difference is that, unlike the presidential inauguration, this scaffolding [of UFO hearings and White House statements] does not need to be taken down. The scaffolding will remain in place to deal with the post-disclosure world that happens the instant after the president makes that confirmation.