In a Jan. 30, 2018, interview with Luis Elizondo, investigative journalist George Knapp asks about metamaterials, the Secretary of Defense and UFO investigations. Elizondo also talks about the politics of UFO investigations. Part 6 of a 10 Part series.

George Knapp: Question is, do we need special materials? And you know where I’m heading with that question because you’ve been asked that a bunch of times.

Luis Elizondo: Well, I think special materials is important for anything you do. Look, I build cars as a hobby and I know that if I want to have a really strong transmission, I probably want parts of that transmission made out of titanium, maybe not just regular steel alloy, right? Everything in life requires special material. The special material in this microphone and the lightning and the cameras. Everything in nature requires special material. So it would make sense to me that if you wanted to do something where you’re going to bend space time, you would need special materials to do that. I would ask, just go talk to Steve Justice about how the SR-71 was built. What he can tell you is that it was all special material, because you’re talking high degrees of friction, you’re talking all sorts of special needs which require special material.

Knapp: Well, you know, there’s been a lot of speculation, you’ve been asked about it a bunch of times about a reference to special materials that was not an unknown element, but at least special material that was manufactured in a way that we did not know that that was supposedly in the possession of some folks in this program. Can you talk about it?

See the entire series
Luis Elizondo interview

Elizondo: So, what is currently in the U.S. government inventory, sadly, I can’t discuss that because I’m no longer employed by the U.S. government. That’s something you would have to ask the U.S. government. But as I have said before, when you are collecting information and signature data on anything, there are always telltale signs of how something works by its signature. What do I mean by signature? Well, the train that’s rolling behind the building has a particular acoustic signature, a sound that we pick up, “Oh, that’s a train.” Airplanes flying overhead will leave a contrail, right? There’s a signature that you’ll see,  this stream of what looks like smoke or condensation behind an aircraft. That’s how you know it’s an aircraft. Everything has some sort of signature, everything has some sort of, left behind, if you will. It leaves something of itself behind. Sometimes it’s ionization of the atmosphere, in other cases, it’s actual material or residue, right? So anything that is operating in any type of environment, there are ways that you can use whatever’s left behind to analyze. And material, I would submit to you, would be something very important one would want to collect. If you are going to go ahead and try to identify something you don’t know what it is. So any and every opportunity you have, you may call it material, you may call it metamaterials, whatever name du jour somebody wants to call it. The bottom line is that if there’s something left behind that can be recovered and retrieved, you absolutely want to recover it, retrieve it just like a crime scene.

Knapp: So you’re in AATIP, it’s up and running, there’s stuff coming in and out. It all goes to your desk. When there’s an incident, something’s recorded on video, it goes to you.

Elizondo: It does.

Knapp: Was it a lot?

Elizondo: Well, it was a lot. Yes. But it also went to I think it’s important to know that a lot of people think AATIP and they think Luis Elizondo, and it’s probably not an overly accurate assessment, because there were other folks that were related to our efforts, and that were part of our effort. It was a bit of a confederated approach. So you have folks in the Navy in pockets, and DIA in pockets here and there throughout the departments. We worked together collectively on this. As the Director for the Office of the Secretary of Defense, yes, ultimately, these things kind of gravitated towards one central belly button. But we work this together. There are a lot of folks right now. Incredible fine men and women, absolute heroes to this nation, that are still doing this work. And I think it’s important to point out that I wasn’t AATIP, I was part of AATIP. AATIP was a much bigger thing than Luis Elizondo.

Knapp: Did you? Did your boss, your immediate supervisor know what you were doing?

Elizondo: My immediate supervisor did not.

Knapp: Kind of an odd position to be in.

Elizondo: Very odd, in fact, it’s created a great amount of grief for me now. I’ve received many calls where certain individuals within that building are not very happy with me and they have taken steps to make sure I know they’re not happy with me.

Knapp: Come after you? Could they try to smear?

Elizondo: Yes, that’s already occurred. It has been confirmed to me that is absolutely the case.

Knapp: Your immediate supervisor didn’t know and Secretary Mattis didn’t know.

Elizondo: There was a layer that was right below the Secretary. I’d rather not say their names to protect them. I do believe they’re excellent individuals with a great mission. These individuals, their job is to make sure they protect the boss and give the boss only information that he needs to have in order to make a decision and not mire him down in, if you will, the morass of stuff that would take his attention and focus away from something also very pending. Keeping in mind, you have things like ISIS right now and you have things like what just happened in Afghanistan, you have the issues with nuclear proliferation, potentially and North Korea, you have Boko Haram and Africa. You name it right now, he’s got a lot on his plate.

Knapp: Same thing for the president then?

Elizondo: Same thing for the president.

Knapp: If he wanted to know, he could call you up and you know, while you were there and say, hey, I want a briefing on this.

Elizondo: He could have if he … if they were given the ability to know that the program was still finding things. And I briefed multiple times along, as well as pilots were brought up at our behest to brief very, very senior people. And they agree that there was something here was very compelling. But no one really knew what to do with it. And for that reason, it was actually my loyalty for the Secretary of Defense and the department why I left. I didn’t leave because I was upset and frustrated, which I was frustrated, but I’ve been frustrated many times before in many jobs, it’s just the nature of the business. I left because I didn’t know any other way to let the boss know that there was a problem. This is a man that I have spent some time with in some very difficult circumstances, in combat environments.

Knapp: He saved your life.

Elizondo: Absolutely, and many others. He absolutely did. If you were to ask my personal opinion, this man is an American hero and he deserves to know what’s going on. He deserves to know what his department is doing. If there’s any man who can break down these stovepipes and silos, believe me, he’s the man to do it, he absolutely can do it. I’ve seen him do it before. But the bureaucracy, he inherited an organization heavy in bureaucracy, not his fault. This is an organization that’s been around since, you know, National Security Act of 1947. So it’s evolved to be very effective in certain aspects of national security, with exception of the one that’s very nebulous, hard to define. And this is one of those very few areas that was very nebulous and hard to define. And there was a good degree of discomfort and having a conversation. Now, my supervisory chain, that the lower levels was not aware because the list of people who were to be part of this program was very small. I didn’t create that list, but I had to abide by that list. And you know, that’s not my call.

Next story: Alien threat can’t be ignored, former DoD official Elizondo reminds – Part 7