Nick Pope (born 19 September 1965) is a freelance British journalist and media commentator. He was an employee at the British Government’s Ministry of Defence (MoD) from 1985 to 2006 and is best known for a role he undertook for the British Government from 1991 to 1994 which involved investigating reports of UFO sightings to determine their defence significance.
He moved to the United States in January 2012.
Ministry of Defence
Pope joined the Ministry of Defence in 1985. After serving in a number of different posts, he was assigned in 1991 to a section of Secretariat (Air Staff) known as Sec (AS) 2a, where his duties included investigating reports of UFO sightings, to see if they had any defence significance.
At the time, while the Ministry of Defence stated that it “remains totally open-minded about the existence or otherwise of extraterrestrial lifeforms”, it also stated that there was no evidence to suggest that any UFO sightings posed any threat to the UK or that they were extraterrestrial in origin. It is clear from material that Pope wrote whilst still at the MoD that he did not share the MoD’s view that conventional explanations could be found for all UFO sightings.
Pope’s final posting in the MoD was to the Directorate of Defence Security. He resigned in 2006 and in 2009 MoD announced that UFO sightings would no longer be investigated.
In November 2006, he resigned from his post at the MOD, saying the government’s “X-Files have been closed down”. He continues his research and investigation in a private capacity and now works as a freelance journalist and media commentator, covering subjects that include the unexplained, conspiracy theories, space, science fiction and fringe science.
He does work for a number of film companies and PR agencies, promoting the release of science fiction films.
On 24 June 2013 he appeared on IGN’s comedy show Up At Noon promoting the game The Bureau: XCOM Declassified.
In 2015, he appeared in multiple episodes of UFOs Declassified, airing on Canada’s History Television, the UK’s Yesterday, and Smithsonian Channel in the US.
Open Skies, Closed Minds is Pope’s autobiographical account of his interest in ufology. It provides an overview of the UFO phenomenon, with the emphasis on Pope’s three-year tour of duty as the Ministry of Defence’s UFO desk officer. Pope also discusses the politics surrounding the way in which those within government and the military view UFO-phenomena. In 1997 he released a second book on similar themes entitled The Uninvited. His book Encounter in Rendlesham Forest: The Inside Story of the World’s Best-Documented UFO Incident, written with John Burroughs, USAF, Ret., and Jim Penniston, USAF, Ret., was published by Thomas Dunne Books in April 2014.
Pope has also written two science fiction novels, Operation Thunder Child and its sequel Operation Lightning Strike.
Pope also writes for online alternative news site “Neonnettle.com” in which he talks about current topics and news as well as UFO based material on the site fortnightly column.