Published: 2:43 PM 12/22/2014
(UFO researchers) were getting useful material lawfully through military sources
By Billy Cox, Herald-Tribune
Early this year, the Air Force cracked down on FOIA requests for unfiltered radar records tracking air traffic across the United States.
In its decision to withhold data that had been accessible for God knows how long, Air Combat Command implied that the release of certain computerized documents — in this case, known as En Route Intelligence Tool, or ERIT data — would expose vulnerabilities in coverage.
The timing of this seemed a little arbitrary, considering how those inferred vulnerabilities had been available to homicidal fanatics and other species of devilish riff-raff for more than a decade after the 9/11 catastrophe.
But a closer look at more recent history suggests the clampdown went into effect because UFO researchers, who in 2008 had been enormously successful in reconstructing one of the most detailed incidents on record, were getting useful material lawfully through military sources at the 84th Radar Evaluation Squadron (84th RADES) in Utah.
De Void wanted a bit more information and sent this email to the USAF’s designated point person, Anh Trinh, on June 3:
“Dear Ms. Trinh:
“It has recently come to my attention that public access to U.S. radar data has been severely restricted. Specifically, the transfer of FOIA requests from RADES 84 to Langley appears to evoke a wall of denials. I have several questions I'd like to ask:
“Why, so long after 9/11, is Air Combat Command only just now addressing radar data in the public domain? What happened to force this change? Who was involved in the reassessment of FOIA/radar data policy -- names and/or agencies -- and how high up the chain of command did this decision go?
How long did it take to provide the 84th with data from FAA controlled radars, after 9/11? Can the ACC provide information on the system employed to transfer data from radar sites to the 84?
“What other military units and government agencies have access to 84th's radar database? From approximately how many different parties did the 84th receive FOIA requests, for radar data, in 2013? What other USAF units maintain a similar but separate database for radar records? For example, does DHS keep a separate database, or does it all originate with the 84th?
“Thanks for your punctual consideration. I am a reporter for the Herald-Tribune in Sarasota, FL.”
De Void is still waiting to hear back. It’s probably just a matter of time.