he claim by Israel’s 87-year-old former space security chief, Professor Haim Eshed, that Israeli and US governments have been communicating with a “galactic federation” has caused quite a stir.
It is not the first claim of its kind – similar ideas have been circulating for years. In 2011, former Canadian defence minister Paul Hellyer announced that we were routinely visited by extraterrestrials, while former US deputy assistant secretary of defence for intelligence Christopher Mellon and US political insider John Podesta have both expressed their belief that non-human technologies exist on Earth.
These men have been privy to highly-classified defence information and advanced military technologies; so if they tell us that ETs are here, we should believe them, right?
Well, no. Their claims are powerful statements of faith, but not of fact. After years talking to UFO witnesses and government insiders, I concluded that while people have always had inexplicable experiences, the belief that we’re being visited by technologically superior alien beings is just that — a belief, shaped by our own human culture and experience.
If Eshed said that God made the Earth in seven days, and that his son had superhero powers, he wouldn’t make the news — but his galactic federation represents something incredibly appealing, ancient and futuristic, a powerful intersection of insider knowledge, technological speculation and religious optimism.
Eshed and others of this new priesthood may absolutely believe what they are saying, but we shouldn’t feel compelled to believe them.
Belief colours even the most finely-honed perceptions. The ET faithful will point to videos, photographs and case studies as evidence for their beliefs, yet while superficially convincing, none of them represent proof of ET visitation. One person’s metamorphosing cuboid spacecraft will be another’s weather balloon — even if both people are top gun fighter pilots.
As new religious movements go, the belief in ET visitors ranks as a pretty sensible one — we should respect its adherents as we do those of other faiths. And, when the ETs do finally appear, we shouldn’t be surprised if they have some pretty far out ideas of their own.
Mark Pilkington is the author of Mirage Men