While some people believe the idea of alien invasion is the stuff of science fiction, others fear it may be just around the corner, after a number of UFO (unidentified flying object) sightings occurred in China last month.
Airline pilots and several witnesses reported seeing “a huge spherical illuminant” in the sky above Beijing and Shanghai on August 20, reported China Daily. Then on August 25, some strange objects were seen hovering above Xi’an for hours, according to a news program by Shaanxi Television.
People have claimed UFO sightings around the world for centuries, and there are still more questions than answers.
The United States is a particular center for alien spotting. Former American presidents Ronald Reagan and Jimmy Carter both reportedly saw UFOs.
In 1952, the US Air Force began Project Blue Book, a study program on UFOs. However, in 1969 the government officially ended the program, stating that the incidents posed no threat and there was no evidence of space aliens.
Private UFO research organizations have since taken on the task of providing the American public with the means to report UFO encounters.
Mutual UFO Network (MUFON) is one of the largest private UFO researchers in the US. According to Roger Marsh, director of communications for MUFON, the organization collected 14 UFO reports from New York in July.
However, with their shoestring budgets, these nongovernmental organizations can do little more than collect reports.
In 2007, a panel of experts called on the US government to resume UFO investigations through the US Air Force or NASA.
The US Air Force, however, insisted: “Since the termination of Project Blue Book, nothing has occurred that would support a resumption of UFO investigations.”
The British government also tries to keep quiet UFO sightings because of “a lack of funds” to deal with them, said former Ministry of Defense UFO Project chief Nick Pope.
"We were trying to do two things,” he told the Huffington Post in August. “Either kill any media story on the subject, or if a media story ran, ensure that it ran in such a way that it would make the subject seem ridiculous and that it would make people who were interested in this seem ridiculous.”
Even so, UFO sightings keep coming - even in the UK. In April, police in the Welsh town of Dyfed-Powys revealed that 14 UFO sightings had been reported in the past five years - as well as 26 ghosts, 11 witches, two zombies and two vampires.
A Russian MP has asked an eccentric regional leader to explain his behaviour after claiming on state television that he was visited at home by aliens in a UFO, media reported last
As Hitler's armies began to crumble on fronts as far apart as Stalingrad and North Africa, he turned in increasing desperation to his scientists to create a war-winning super-weapo