Last Update: August 19, 2019
Summary of Changes: Pentagon Releases Emails to/from Mr. Luis Elizondo Regarding Request For Video Release
First, it is important to understand what a DD Form 1910 even is. In short, according to the actual form itself, it “is to be used in requesting review and clearance of DoD information proposed for public release in accordance with DoDD 5230.09.” In other words, civilian or military personnel within the DOD can request information for public release. Whether it be to post on the internet, appear in a book, or whatever it may be; a DD Form 1910 is the first step in getting the information released. It then is sent to the Chief, Defense Office of Prepublication and Security Review (DOPSR), also indicated on the form (.mil source reference link).
The review is then conducted, and various determinations can be made.
Here is the reverse side of the DD Form 1910, which contains instructions on how the form is to be filled out. Here is a copy, as sourced to the .mil address above, of the reverse side of the form:
I invite you to read the entire page, but I want to focus on instructions for section 7. It states, in part:
7. RECOMMENDATION OF SUBMITTING OFFICE/ AGENCY. It is of paramount importance to components, as large and complex as those which comprise the Department of Defense, that coordinated and consistent security and policy determinations are made; therefore, Item 7 must be completed by an individual who is a government employee (civilian or military), and possesses the authority to communicate a particular component’s policies and recommendation. Contractors may not sign this form.
I highlighted in red, the most important part of the instruction. Yet, on the DD Form 1910 in question, it’s entirely blank. This section is for the requesting agency, in the case here Mr. Elizondo was with the Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence, to certify that the requested information is cleared by their department for release with no objections or concerns. In other words, not every DOD employee can start requesting releases by filing DD Form 1910s on their own. Their department must produce an authorized signature that gives the first step in the clearance process. It also allows DOPSR to have the knowledge upon review, that the requesting agency has already given their clearance authorization. As stressed directly on DD Form 1910, this procedure is of “paramount importance” for coordinated and consistent security determinations. Although definitely not protocol, the blank section 7 does sometimes happen, according to an official statement from the Pentagon to The Black Vault.
At this point, I want to present 18 different DD Form 1910s that I dug up. They are as early as 1989 and stretch all the way through December of 2018.
These are all sourced directly to various military and government (.mil and .gov) sources. They include the following (in order of the above gallery):
The above 18 DD Form 1910s are 100% genuine, and were all accompanied by the document they aimed to release. A few things you need to note about these documents that span 29 years.
- They all have a portion of section 7 filled out, either partially or entirely. I only found one example that did not have a name, but still had a portion of that section filled out. I invite anyone to find a genuine DD Form 1910, accompanied by the record it aimed to release, with an entirely blank section 7. As a result, I will gladly update this section, with credit to you. That is not a challenge, but an invitation. I simply have been unable to find one.
- Most of the above examples, all had corresponding case numbers on the bottom (in some cases top) of the form. This allowed the specific requests to be properly tracked. It is fair to note not all had a case number, but it is another piece of information potentially missing from the leaked DD Form 1910.
It may seem like nitpicking, but off the bat, from a procedural standpoint, this was not a “by the book” filing, as reported.
To be incredibly clear here, based on the evidence I give above, Mr. Elizondo could also have authorized his own request (if it’s determined he fits the outlined prerequisites), and en haste, or carelessness, or whatever, left section 7 blank. However, authorizing your own form, although happens, the guidelines are still followed. Out of the evidence above, here are two examples that show a situation when the requester authorized their own form, and they still are required to fill out section 7:
And here are two situations where they were different, and section 7 is signed by an authorized person:
I have decided to keep the above breakdown on the formalities, but on May 2, 2019, The Black Vault received an official statement from the Pentagon. This is to be attributed to them, and is considered official. I have blurred the email address, as a courtesy, so they are not bombarded with e-mails. The statement reads:
In an official statement given to me directly from the Pentagon (see above image), it now officially confirms the following:
1) The DD Form 1910 is authentic, but not standard with a blank section 7 (but it happens).
2) The requester needs to abide by the DD Form 1910 submitted, in which in this case, only a limited distribution (no public release) was requested and THAT is what was approved. There was no request for public release, therefore, it is not granted. Note: Mr. Elizondo has been reported to have been the one to get the videos released, so it is assumed he is the redacted requester on the form released by KLAS-TV. I will absolutely correct that name in this writing if the wide-spread reporting on this, that goes back well more than a year, was wrong.
3) Based on the rules of the DOPSR process, and the official statement attached herein, this is undeniable proof that it does NOT constitute a public release of those videos.
The only thing approved by DOPSR, was the limited distribution of the videos, to U.S. Government Agencies and their “partners”.
Unless there is additional information still being withheld by To The Stars Academy, as it stands, this DD Form 1910 does NOT clear anything for a public release or distribution.
Now, in addition to the statement above, let’s dissect the DD Form 1910 from the top and explore even more. If Mr. Elizondo was part of an ongoing effort to investigate Unidentified Aerial Phenomena as he has stated, and the effort was not cancelled in 2012 as the Government stated, than his filing of the DD Form 1910 was during the time he was investigating the phenomena. Mr. Elizondo said the Pentagon did not take Unidentified Aerial Phenomena seriously, so this led to Mr. Elizondo’s resignation in October of the same year he secured the release of the videos. What is strange is that KLAS-TV decided to redact Mr. Elizondo’s name – since it was Mr. Elizondo who has been credited since day one for securing the release of the videos, ie: he filed the DD Form 1910. In addition, Mr. Elizondo outlined the entire process he undertook, in his February 25, 2018, interview with Mr. George Knapp on Coast to Coast AM. This interview is what motivated me to file a FOIA request, specifically for these document(s). So, why is this redacted since it’s already long established public knowledge?
Moving on from that oddity; in section 1, item d, Mr. Elizondo (based on reporting, I will move forward he is the name redacted that filed this document), told DOPSR that the subject matter of the three videos (referenced in item b) were, “UAV, Balloons and other UAS.” UAV, to the DOD, means “Unmanned Aerial Vehicle” or better known as a drone. Balloons are just that, but a really bizarre way to describe these videos of “unidentified aerial phenomena.” And lastly UAS, to the DOD, means Unmanned Aircraft System. (Source: DOD Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms).
Why would these descriptions be falsely attributed to the videos, as submitted to DOPSR, when according to Mr. Elizondo, his conclusions based on the program he was heading, said they were “unidentified?” Therefore, it’s misleading as they can not be UAVs, UASs or balloons. Did he fabricate this line just to get the form pushed through? Although I do not make the accusation that getting these videos out was under false pretense, others have, like the Washington Post, which Mr. Elizondo decided to address. In his interview with Open Minds for the UFO Congress, Mr. Elizondo said:
“No, there was no trick and there was no false pretense. The videos were released in accordance with the strict manner that DOD prescribes to DOD manuals and regulations involving the release of information. It went through the official DOPSR process and then furthermore an additional step was taken to have the videos reviewed by foreign disclosure representatives. In fact, the most senior foreign disclosure representatives in the department, and ultimately required OCA or original classification authority approval and review to release the video. So in essence, I didn’t release anything, the department of defense released those videos. The documentation is held by the department of defense and the justification for releasing those videos were exactly as stated, and that was to create an unclassified database that people could then access and help us identify the signatures we were seeing.”
He clearly says there was no false pretense, except he led DOPSR to believe that the videos were identified craft, including military drones (UAVs or UASs) or even insinuated they were just balloon[s]. None of that coincides with his conclusion as the head of the AATIP program, nor does it align with what he has led the public to believe.
That leads us to section 3, as filled out presumably by Mr. Elizondo. Section 3 of a DD Form 1910, is a description of why the person is requesting the information to be released. This clues DOPSR into the reasoning and the future use of the material, in order to make the best, and most informed, decision about a release. Mr. Elizondo stated:
“Not applicable. Not for publication. Research and analysis ONLY and info sharing with other USG [U.S. Government] and industry partners for the purposes of developing a database to help identify, analyze and ultimately defeat UAS threats.”
So, in a nutshell, Mr. Elizondo said these videos were for research and analysis ONLY (with emphasis and CAPS on ONLY), and they would only be used by the U.S. Government and their partners, which I take, would mean contractors. The database portion partially lined up with Mr. Elizondo’s statement to Open Minds (even though he didn’t say it would be for government or contractor use), however, the rest does not line up all. In the end, once the videos were “released by the Pentagon” if that scenario is true, Mr. Elizondo did not put them to use by the U.S. Government and their partners; but rather, he resigned from the agency, and only about 6 weeks after DOPSR gave their approval for use based on what Mr. Elizondo said they would be used for. After resignation, he then utilized them in a for-profit venture he is now involved in, known as To The Stars Academy of Arts and Science. There is no database (yet) even though it has been teased by this corporation, but rather, they watermarked the videos as their own, and have largely touted said videos to garner attention for their corporation, a non-government entity, to invite investments into their venture. As we can see from the Pentagon statement above – that was not allowed, per the language he himself put in the DD form 1910 request.
I ask you to again reference the 18 real, DD Form 1910s I offer above. In nearly every case, they offer detailed descriptions on what the use of the information being requested will be for. In many cases, they also specifically make mention of records intended for various websites. These 18 DD Form 1910s serve as example after example, of detailed (and accurate) descriptions on what the use is, in order to best inform DOPSR, so they can make an informed determination.
The above is all documented, and can not be disputed. It uses the words of Mr. Elizondo, and the words directly from his filing of a DD Form 1910. By the wording of the document, he led DOPSR to believe it was for internal use, and never stated he would use them to benefit from, in the private sector. Therefore, if we read this in plain English, the Pentagon did not release the videos to the public. They cleared them for “Open Publication” for use in a database used by the U.S. Government and its contractors.
I will let you decide, on whether or not that all constitutes “false pretense” and if in the end, you feel the Pentagon released this to the public. But what Mr. Elizondo did with those videos, vs. what the DD Form 1910 stated he was going to do with them, are two wildly different scenarios.
In conclusion, I personally feel there is an issue with the current state of the DD Form 1910 from a procedural standpoint, that although it does sometimes happen according to the Pentagon, it is not the norm. More so than that, I feel there are huge discrepancies regarding what is on this form and what we have been led to believe. I feel there is something to be said for how Mr. Elizondo phrased the wording on the “subject” of the GoFast, Gimble and FLIR video, calling them UAVs, balloons and UASs. I also feel strongly, based on the information within DD Instruction 5230.09, DD Instruction 5230.29, and the official statement by the Pentagon, that we can officially put to bed the debate on if THIS form proves a “public release.” Clearly, for the reasons outline above, it does not.
To make it all crystal clear, I received a second statement from the Pentagon, clarifying my points above. My questions were fairly specific, as indicated by the response.
Update 6/9/2019: Since the publication of the above, many have tried to spin the entire story to their own agenda. If you look closely, the spin articles (largely attached to their own individual fund-raising campaigns) completely ignore and do not inform their readers about the second statement issued by the Pentagon for clarity.
In an effort to cover all bases, and to address the spin, I went back to the Pentagon for comment. I asked, based on the popular (and erroneous) belief that TTSA and/or the NY Times would somehow be authorized to publish those videos given the “industry partner” language listed on the DD Form 1910.
The Pentagon has made it clear, it would not. They also specifically name TTSA and the NY Times in their statement, thus taking another step in making this crystal clear for those who are still arguing the opposite, but can not offer any proof to the contrary.
Click on the image for a more easily readable version.In a final follow-up, Ms. Gough, Pentagon Spokesperson, offered the following:
When asked for comment from one of the authors of the NY Times story, Mr. Ralph Blumenthal stated, “… our story said the videos were released by AATIP and I’m not going to go beyond that. Sorry I can’t be more helpful for now.” Mr. Blumenthal added after my follow-up, that he will “stand by” the reporting in their article and he would not add any more information. Ms. Leslie Kean never responded to previous requests for interviews with The Black Vault to question any of this, but she did post a public comment after my first Pentagon statements were published. She stated, “For those following what I believe to be unnecessary controversy about the source of the DOD videos. If we at the Times did not have this document from a reliable source, we would not have stated that the videos were from the DOD.” She then links to an article by Alejandro Rojas from OpenMinds.tv that was used on his Patreon campaign that seeks donations from his readers. In this specific article, Mr. Rojas spins the original statements I received, and completely OMITTED part of the statements that would, if he published them, completely negate his word. I am quite surprised Ms. Kean would link to such a misleading article, especially one that specifically ignores and withholds from his readers what the Pentagon actually said. Assuming Ms. Kean means the DD Form 1910 in her Facebook post, the document itself is not in question, given the Pentagon’s statement. What is in question, is whether or not the NY Times, TTSA or the plethora of media outlets that published those videos as “officially declassified” and if that is accurate.
Ms. Helene Cooper did not respond to related questions regarding her reporting on the subject.
This now calls into question some reporting by the mainstream media, along with statements by To The Stars Academy, going all the way back to day 1. It was touted there was official “chain of custody” documentation to prove the DOD released the videos. Although that, in itself, is incorrect when referring to a DD Form 1910, we now know that is all completely false. Unless they are hiding now additional information, we have no proof of any release, let alone what is being touted is even the same evidence connected to this DD Form 1910.
If we see a blatant disregard for the truth by Mr. Elizondo on display with this DD Form 1910, and we see the same disregard for the truth by To The Stars Academy as they have touted documents proving a public release – how can we believe everything or anything else from the same sources?
Keep questioning, my friends. The TRUTH will survive scrutiny.
Note: This article will continue to be updated, as any updates come about.