What is a UFO? Basic Facts and History

Unidentified Flying Objects and Conspiracy Theories

UFO Definition
UFO Depiction. B J Booth

A UFO is technically an "unidentified flying object," nothing more nor less.

Any object that flies and cannot initially be identified as an airplane, helicopter, blimp, balloon, kite, or any other object that normally flies, is a UFO. Many flying objects that are listed as a UFO can later be identified as an object made on Earth, then they can be called an "IFO," or identified flying object.

What is a UFO? Let's Look at the Basics

For many years now, UFOs have been identified as "flying saucers," or disc-shaped objects. But in reality, any flying object — in any shape — that occurs on earth and not readily identifiable as being a natural phenomenon or man made is referred to as a UFO.

The term UFO was created in 1953 by the United States Air Force, according to worldUFOday.com, a website dedicated to sharing factual and helpful information about the subject of UFOs. The US Air Force is said to have created the term UFO to keep track of the the many unidentifiable aircrafts and missiles that were being tested by countries involved in the Cold War. As a matter of national security, any UFOs seen in the skies were intensely logged and reviewed to keep track of all of these airborne objects being tested during that time.

Even though the term UFO may have been created as a matter of national security, the term has also come to refer to flying objects that may have been created by extraterrestrial life — many people immediately classify UFOs with alien spacecrafts or alien life.

Conspiracy Theories Surrounding UFOs

Many conspiracy theories exist around the topic of UFOs, with many people believing that the government has long tried to hide evidence of extraterrestrial life and their flying vessels. Much speculation has been made around the following reports involving UFOs.

The 1947 Roswell UFO Crash Reports of a crashed alien craft in Roswell, New Mexico left many of the general public feeling that the long awaited proof of extraterrestrial intelligence had come — but hopes were soon dashed, as an earlier statement about a crashed saucer was changed to nothing more than a crashed weather balloon. This proved unbelievable to the public, leaving many suspicious of a government coverup as there were too many witnesses who claimed to have seen the crashed UFOs and alien bodies.

Did President Eisenhower Meet with Alien Beings? Rumors and conspiracy theories point to President Dwight Eisenhower being whisked away in 1954 in a hastily arranged trip to see an alien craft and its wreckage. The location for this alleged clandestine meeting was Edwards Air Force Base.

1980-Cash/Landrum UFO Encounter Two women and one child encountered a craft of unknown origin, and all three suffered not only emotional trauma, but severe physical injury as well in the Piney Woods of Texas, near the town of Huffman on December 29, 1980.

1997-The Phoenix Lights Thousands of people witnessed V-shaped patterns in the sky for space of around 300 miles from the Nevada line in 1996. Numerous photographs, and an abundance of video film make this one of the best documented cases in UFO history.

Every year, new reports are made about UFO sightings all around the world. Be sure to read on you if are looking for answers to your questions about UFOs & Aliens.