Former CIA Director R. James Woolsey said he believes UFOs could exist after his friend’s plane was “paused at 40,000” feet – and hopes humans would be friendly to extraterrestrials if they ever make contact, according to a report.
The former chief spook — who ran the agency from 1993 to 1995 — spoke Friday to the Black Vault’s YouTube channel, where he promoted his new book with co-author Ion Mihai Pacepa, “Operation Dragon: Inside the Kremlin’s Secret War on America.”
“There have been over the years now events of one kind of another, usually involving some kind of aircraft-like airframe,” Woolsey said in the interview.
“I never thought there was anything to all this, it always seemed pretty far out to me,” he continued.
“But there was one case in which a friend of mine was able to have his aircraft stop at 40,000 feet or so and not continue operating as a normal aircraft,” Woolsey continued, adding that the source was someone he “respects.”
“What was going on? I don’t know. Does anybody know?” he said. “There had just been enough things like that that have occurred that I think there will be a lot of examination of what’s going on over the course of several months or years.”
He added: “I’m not as skeptical as I was a few years ago, to put it mildly, but something is going on that is surprising to a series of intelligent aircraft, experienced pilots.”
During the interview, Black Vault podcaster John Greenwald Jr. said other intelligence chiefs also have left open the possibility of extraterrestrial life.
In December, ex-CIA Director John Brennan said it was “presumptuous and arrogant” to believe there are no other forms of life than the ones on Earth.
“I think some of the phenomena we’re going to be seeing continues to be unexplained and might, in fact, be some type of phenomenon that is the result of something that we don’t yet understand and that could involve some type of activity that some might say constitutes a different form of life,” he said on the podcast “Conversations with Tyler.”
In April 2020, the Department of Defense released a statement confirming three unclassified Navy videos from 2004 and 2015, each showing “unidentified aerial phenomena.”
Brennan commented on the videos, calling them “quite eyebrow-raising.”
“You try to ensure that you have as much data as possible in terms of visuals and also different types of maybe technical collection of sensors that you have at the time,” he added.
Last month, former Director of Intelligence John Ratcliffe said on Fox News that “there are a lot more sightings than have been made public,” adding that “some of those have been declassified.”
“And when we talk about sightings, we are talking about objects that have been seen by Navy or Air Force pilots, or have been picked up by satellite imagery that frankly engage in actions that are difficult to explain,” Ratcliffe said.
“Movements that are hard to replicate that we don’t have the technology for. Or traveling at speeds that exceed the sound barrier without a sonic boom,” he added.
A new Pentagon report expected to be released by June 1 will also detail any threats posed by the aerial phenomena and whether foreign adversaries are suspected of controlling them.
In December, then-President Donald Trump signed the $2.3 trillion COVID-19 relief and government funding bill, which started a 180-day countdown for the Pentagon and spy agencies to say what they know about UFOs.
The Navy videos were first leaked to The Stars Academy, a UFO research group founded by former Blink-182 singer Tom DeLonge, and then obtained through efforts by the New York Times.
The UFOs were seen moving at incredible speeds and performing seemingly impossible aerial maneuvers. One of the clips showed a dark circular object flying far in front of a jet, while a second caught a small object racing over land.
The third captured a circular object first speeding, then appearing to slow down — and moving closer to the pilot’s camera.
The Pentagon announced in September that it created an Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force.
Greenwald, the Black Vault host, has claimed that the trove of records on UFOs unsealed by the CIA appeared to be intentionally difficult to sift through since they used an “outdated” file format.
“The CIA has made it incredibly difficult to use their records in a reasonable manner,” he said. “In my opinion, this outdated format makes it very difficult for people to see the documents, and use them, for any research purpose.”
The latest developments come amid rising interest in UFOs, which has been indicated by a surge in sightings.
Sightings were up in 2020 compared to the previous year — with more than 6,600 recorded during that period, according to National UFO Reporting Center data.
For more on UFOs, check out The Post’s video series about the phenomenon.