MYSTERY WIRE — The phrase, “I want to believe” has only one meaning to many people. It is the phrase most commonly associated with the TV show X-Files and implies a want to believe in UFOs. Now, according to a new New York Times article, this is the wrong sentiment and the wrong questions to ask.

NY Times investigative journalists Ralph Blumenthal and Leslie Kean are giving the public more insight into their recent article on the government’s investigation into unidentified aerial phenomena (UAP), better known as UFOs.

Both Blumenthal and Kean write that asking and being asked if they believe in UFOs is missing the big picture of their story. They write “We’re often asked by well-meaning associates and readers, “Do you believe in U.F.O.s?” The question sets us aback as being inappropriately personal. Times reporters are particularly averse to revealing opinions that could imply possible reporting bias.”

They continue by writing “As we see it, their existence, or nonexistence, is not a matter of belief.” They write it’s now up to science to figure out how it works and what it is.

More Mystery Wire stories on this topic:

In the most recent story, they talked with astrophysicist Eric Davis. The Times reported Davis said he gave a classified briefing to a Defense Department agency in March of 2020 and the topic was about retrievals from off-world vehicles not made on this earth.

However, as the writers point out, getting hard evidence proved a challenge. “Numerous associates of the Pentagon program, with high security clearances and decades of involvement with official U.F.O. investigations, told us they were convinced such crashes have occurred, based on their access to classified information,” the Times reports. “But the retrieved materials themselves, and any data about them, are completely off-limits to anyone without clearances and a need to know.”

And then, Blumenthal and Kean finish this story with new details about hard evidence they did see in person.

“We were provided a series of unclassified slides showing that the program took this seriously enough to include it in numerous briefings. One slide says one of the program’s tasks was to “arrange for access to data/reports/materials from crash retrievals of A.A.V.’s,” or advanced aerospace vehicles.
Our sources told us that “A.A.V.” does not refer to vehicles made in any country — not Russian or Chinese — but is used to mean technology in the realm of the truly unexplained. They also assure us that their briefings are based on facts, not belief.”

New York Times, Do We Believe in U.F.O.s? That’s the Wrong Question, July 28, 2020

On a side note, the “I want to believe” poster seen behind Fox Mulder’s desk in the show has an interesting backstory. X-Files creator Chris Carter told the look of the poster “came from me saying, ‘Let’s get a picture of a spaceship and put–Ed Ruscha-like—“I want to believe.”’”

And according to New Republic, Carter also said that no one got clearance for the UFO photo, which had been taken in Europe by a man named Billy Meier. After an intellectual property lawsuit the show used a different picture in the poster in the fourth season.