Ex–Blink-182 member Tom DeLonge
© LeAnn MullerEx–Blink-182 member Tom DeLonge
There has been some Twitter controversy lately over a tweet from Tom DeLonge concerning the UFO Phenomenon and the threat it poses to human life on Earth. It seems that people have definite ideas about all of this, and they do not hesitate to make them known in response. This is my attempt to clarify my own position. I do not speak for Tom, of course, but I do believe that too many assumptions have been made by critics of Tom and of To The Stars that confuse the issue unnecessarily.

First of all, it seems that one of the major criticisms of Tom's position is that he is somehow a shill for the Pentagon or the CIA or some military group or cabal. I have seen the term "war monger" used, as well. If one takes the position that the Phenomenon is dangerous to humans, it stands to reason - according to this critique - that the person taking that position is a government stooge. What is the purpose of being a government stooge, then? Why, it's to increase US government defense spending, of course.

There are a few things wrong with that theory when it comes to the Phenomenon, however.

In the first place, US spending on defense far outstrips those of the next nine countries combined (and that includes China and Russia). No one needs Tom talking about UFOs to have any appreciable effect on the defense budget. The amount of money spent so far by the US government on UFO research is minuscule. If it were to double or triple, it would still be minuscule and not approach the cost of, for instance, the cheapest single line item in the 2017 Defense Budget of $89 million for rolling airframe missile systems (a surface-to-air system for defending ships against missile attacks). If we are not talking about UFO research, though, but defense systems against possible UFO attacks, then we have another problem:

In the second place, everyone is assuming that what the Pentagon would need to defend the United States from the Phenomenon is more or better guns and that is why Tom is said to be shilling for the defense establishment. That all we need is more guns is a dangerous assumption to make. It implies that the UFO/UAP is nothing more than a weapons platform that can be neutralized if we had more or better missiles. It is entirely possible that conventional weapons - up to and including chemical and biological weapons and nuclear weapons - would have no effect at all on the Phenomenon. If the Tic-Tac and other footage has shown us anything, it's that the Phenomenon can control our communications systems and even predict what our complex computer algorithms will display in advance, thus effectively neutralizing our capacity for attack. There are reports from both the United States and the then Soviet Union that they have the capacity of turning on and off our missile launch systems, and even of appearing as incoming missiles thereby eliciting a military response, only to have the incoming "missiles" disappear off radar screens at the last moment and thus averting disaster.

So, in what military academy on Earth do they teach that one must declare war on an enemy whose location is unknown, whose weapons are unknown, whose intentions are unknown, whose supply lines are unknown, whose allies are unknown, whose agenda is unknown? To fear such an enemy is not to be a war monger or a shill for the Pentagon; this goes far beyond any normal experience of potential conflict, with a battlefield that stretches from our homes to the skies, from our bodies to our minds.

Thus, to come up with a means of defending the Earth from an outside or alien force (or even just to begin to understand what that force is) will require the cooperation of everyone, in every field of human endeavor, as I have been saying for a long time (both in person and in print). We need to re-examine our ideas about vulnerability, defense, survival, and the entire field of human conflict before we can begin to understand what type of threat we might face from the "alien." In fact, there is no downside to that approach. That type of cooperation among nations, races, ethnicities, cultures, and occupations can only result in increased stability and peace on this planet as a happy side-effect. The entire planet has to be defended, not just one country. Our national borders are not visible from space and would be irrelevant to an invading extraterrestrial force. And, depending on the type and nature of the "attack", an assault on one nation may very well have disastrous effects on nations living on the other side of the globe, in ways we cannot predict.

Further, what if our ideas of "private property" are incomprehensible to the "alien"? If we are to believe the contactees and abductees, they appear unannounced in our homes, kidnap us, and probe our bodies. They may not understand our objections to this treatment. After all, they show up in our air space unannounced, and play with our weapons systems. Maybe that's how they say "hi" in their culture. We would interpret this is as hostility or evil intention. In any case, it scares the crap out of us.

If people insist on projecting their ideas about humans and human incentives onto the "alien" and claiming (a) that the "alien" has no designs on us and only comes in peace, or (b) that since the "alien" has not attacked us so far even though they could have, easily, then their intentions must be peaceful ... etc etc; these are all points of view that are inconsistent with what we do know. By definition, the "alien" should not be considered "human" in the sense we understand that term. We have no idea what environment gave rise to the "alien", what its values are, how it views us. We don't know what is important to them, and we don't know what or how they think about what is important to us. We keep projecting our (21st century North American) ideas, concepts, and conceits onto a Phenomenon about which we know virtually nothing. Ironically, the less we know about It the easier that projection becomes. We accept that their technology is somehow superior to ours, without being able to define "superior" in that context, instead of just "other". Some of us assume that if the "alien" has superior technology then it must be spiritually or morally superior as well. When has that ever been the case on this planet in all of our recorded history? Technologically advanced civilizations routinely invade, colonize, and brutalize less advanced ones. Thus, we have no expectation - based purely on our own experience as human beings of planet Earth - that another race would be benign. In fact, we would have to anticipate the worst.

Now to the question of "evil." Is the "alien" evil? There are individuals in the US government who seem to think so, and who characterize the UFO/UAP Phenomenon in Biblical terms. Then there are those optimists who insist that the "alien" is angelic. Again, these are ideas and concepts (angels and demons, gods and devils) that are peculiar to a specific Earth-bound culture and most likely have no specific relevance at all to the "alien." They are, most likely, filters through which we experience the "alien" as we have written in Sekret Machines.

A better approach might be to ascertain whether the "alien" is hostile rather than "evil": hostile to all humans, hostile to some humans, hostile to other life forms on our planet, etc. There are those who insist that this cannot be the case, that if they are hostile they would have wiped us out already. We have already addressed that argument above, but briefly: we can't assume that they would act the way we have acted in our history. Their life expectancy, timelines and schedules might be extremely long compared to ours. Or extremely short. We simply don't know and should not assume anything.

Hostility implies intent: that they "intend" to destroy us somehow. They have not done so, the argument goes, so they must not be hostile. The problem with this argument is that we are assuming they would manifest their hostility by blowing something up, or attacking us the way we attack and invade our enemies. They might have been attacking us for centuries already, in ways that make sense to them and which further an agenda we can't begin to imagine or understand.

What if they are attacking us through the manipulation of consciousness? That sounds far-fetched, but we have been doing that ourselves for a long time. It's called psychological warfare, and includes propaganda, disinformation, misinformation, etc. including - again ironically - using the UFO Phenomenon as a means of distracting us from our own secret weapons systems. The Nazis called it "world-view warfare" which is as good a description as any. It's a cost-effective means of reducing an adversary's ability or desire to fight by simply changing their perspective, their point of view. No bullets, no missiles, no scorched earth, no destruction of property or other assets, no damage to the ecosystem. Many contactees report communication with the "alien" by means of telepathy. That automatically presents us with the possibility that human consciousness may be vulnerable to direct outside interference or manipulation by the "alien."

What if they are attacking us using genetics? A slight modification of some "junk" DNA here and there would have remarkable effects down the line, and they seem to have a lot of time on their hands to wait for the evolutionary process to run its course. Science-fiction? But we have gene-editing ourselves. We have CRISPR and other systems. We can even use DNA to carry a digital virus that infects computers. If we can do that, then what the contactees report as biological interference - although crude, even by our standards - may have an ulterior motive or may even mask a more delicate operation.

And what of the contactees themselves? We don't have to believe every story we hear, or take their reports at face value, but we can trace common themes through the accounts that might point us in valuable directions, especially if they are supported in other ways. As I have said elsewhere: eyewitness testimony is notoriously unreliable in criminal cases with different eyewitnesses reporting variations in race, height, weight, etc. but they all tend to agree on one thing: that a crime was committed in front of them. The variations in testimonies between contactees as well as the similarities may not be a bug, but a feature.

And if you think that there is no evidence to suggest that the "alien" is dangerous to us, just listen to the taped sessions with Barney Hill, one of the very first recorded contactees of modern times. Listen to his screams as he describes the forces that he said abducted himself and his wife, Betty, on that lonely New Hampshire road in 1961. It's difficult to hear. Listen to him describe the "alien" as looking like a "Nazi." What did that mean to Barney Hill? What information does that characterization carry? Why wasn't his initial reaction one of bliss and joy?

But then, our gods are also described as "terrible" and as eliciting horror and despair. It could be that the experience of the divine triggers all sorts of deep insecurities in the human consciousness. Moses was not allowed to look at God's face on Mount Sinai. Perhaps we, as a race, have so much repressed guilt and insecurity that the presence of a being that can read our minds and reveal our most personal, most repressed or suppressed memories and emotions, is a threat to our sanity. Our homes are considered personal and private property. In some states one can kill an intruder with impunity. What then of our minds? What if a being could intrude on our consciousness? At that point, ideas like personal, private, borders, doors, walls, nations become ... laughable.

We are simply not trying hard enough to understand the "alien". Admittedly, we don't have a lot to work with. But what we do have at our disposal is enough circumstantial evidence to begin to build a picture if we can just get our preconceived notions of "good/bad", "angels/demons", "war/peace" out of the way. Tom is right to be worried about our ability to defend ourselves against the Phenomenon. We don't have to assume that It hates us or wants us dead, no more than a passing hurricane or tornado hates us, and no more than we "hate" the ants we unknowingly crush with our shoes. But we still have to defend ourselves against the hurricanes and tornadoes of the world. That doesn't mean we are paranoid or fear-mongers or shills for the Pentagon.

What's necessary is a shift in our approach to understanding the Phenomenon. The "alien" seems to be fascinated with our energy plants, our missile silos, our nuclear facilities, and our military bases. I propose creating systems designed to communicate with the "alien" should it show up at any of those. I propose being pro-active, designing an encoded colored light system (a la Close Encounters of the Third Kind) to signal the Phenomenon when it approaches. The Soviets tried hand signals at one point and claimed they got a response. They knew that if they started moving equipment around as if they were preparing to go to battle that the Phenomenon would show up, as if curious.

But that's just one proposal. I am sure there are many other, better, approaches to take.

We are in the air now, for the first time in the thousands and thousands of years of human existence on this planet. And we are also deep in the oceans. We've got their attention. Time to turn it to our advantage. If the best of our analysts, scientists, and "seers" tells us it's too dangerous to communicate with Them, that we open ourselves up to manipulation - or worse - then okay, let's find another way. We must be cautious; that only makes sense. We must proceed on the assumption that the Phenomenon is dangerous to us (perhaps in ways we can't imagine, and I can't stress that enough) and proceed slowly and carefully.

But there is no going back now.

They're here.