Tom DeLonge: America has Been Investigating UFOs for Years. Time for the Rest of Us To Catch Up | Opinion

About 25 years ago, I read a non-fiction book about UFOs while on tour with Blink-182 that blew my mind.

This was a time before smartphones, so being on a tour bus for weeks on end meant we were forced to keep ourselves occupied if we were bored. I chose to read. Timothy Good's Above Top Secret detailed a historical chronology of UFO events in conjunction with domestic and foreign space programs and militaries. It wasn't just a solitary event, but a chain of occurrences. I remember repeating as I was reading, “Oh my god, this is massive.” I probably annoyed the hell out of my bandmates.

Before reading that book, I thought the idea of E.T. and unknown flying vehicles were confined to the realm of science-fiction, which I'd always loved as a kid. But I had no idea these crafts were real and in fact interacting with nuclear missiles, NASA missions and facilities, astronauts, and even civilians.

The book opened my eyes to the enormity of Unidentified Aerial Phenomena (UAP), filling me with curiosity and propelling me on a hunt for knowledge that quite literally changed the course of my life. I became consumed with questions about UAP: How do they travel at such incredible speeds? Who or what are they? Who actually knows the facts and holds the most credible evidence?

I followed many paths of discovery in the field—some peculiar, but all exciting. Back then, I was young and naive, and had trouble separating fact from fiction. As any serious researcher will tell you, UAP and its attendant fields are filled with truly crazy misinformation from countless unreliable characters.

As a result, I undertook the project of seeking out legitimate sources, and learned that for most of history, people thought it was crazy to even think about the possibility of UAP. Things briefly started to change after 1947, when numerous people, both pedestrian and high-level military and government personnel, started witnessing unidentified objects in the sky; military pilots, U.S. presidents, scientists, doctors, lawyers, farmers, politicians, teachers, and children.

During World War II, unknown at first to most of the public, UFOs appeared over our battlefields, nuclear weapons facilities, and even the U.S. Capitol. The highest levels of the U.S. government eventually spoke plainly and publicly about “flying saucers.” For 17 years, the U.S. Air Force's secret government sector Project Blue Book compiled reports of tens of thousands of UFO sightings, roughly 10 percent of which could not be explained by science. After some dismissive conclusions at the dismantling of the project, disbelief returned, and lasted for decades. Once again, UFOs were thought to be a preoccupation of the truly crazy.

But my investigation has led me to believe it's naïve to think that UAPs don't exist. In my quest for knowledge, there have been detractors and naysayers aplenty. But the more I've been able to share my ideas with people I respected, the more sense of community I felt. And I want other people to feel that way too.

For the past few years, I've been in regular communication with people at the highest levels of our intelligence agencies and military branches. It's unreal company to keep, and has empowered me to become a steward of the information I have and to treat it with respect and humility. The ideas and my new cohorts encouraged me create To The Stars Academy of Arts & Science (TTSA).

I envisioned a model that educates (through exciting entertainment), investigates (through scientific research) and innovates (through aerospace engineering). Our team is made up of some of the most experienced, connected, and passionately curious minds from the U.S. intelligence community that have been operating under the shadows of top-secrecy for decades. The team members all share a common thread of frustration and determination to disrupt the status quo and ultimately, to protect the American people by making them aware of what we need to know about our skies.

This quest to reveal the truth, and desire to share what we know about UAP with the masses propelled us to partner with HISTORY, one of the most unbiased and authentic brands in television, to produce “Unidentified: Inside America's UFO Investigation TM.” This six part, non-fiction series premiering on Friday, May 31 st will give the public an opportunity to see newly authenticated evidence and footage; learn the common characteristics of how these UAP move and operate; and perhaps, most significantly, see interviews from eyewitnesses and former military personnel who have never spoken out before.

Together, TTSA and HISTORY have created a truly remarkable program that gives an unprecedented amount of information about UAP and that will hopefully spark the public to ask questions and look for answers. This is not a UFO hunting show, but rather an opportunity to be transparent and thorough with what we have uncovered about these unknown aircraft infiltrating our skies, and share our opinion on how we should be addressing them.

Ultimately, acknowledging and studying the existence of UAP will help us better understand what else is out there and how we fit in. It impacts not only our perception of who we are as human beings but also our understanding of where we're going and how we treat each other. And that might be the greatest change of all.

Tom DeLonge is co-founder of To The Stars Academy of Arts & Science and Executive Producer of “Unidentified: Inside America's UFO Investigation” premiering May 31 at 10pm on HISTORY.

The views expressed in this article are the author's own.