The bad news is: governments have been deliberately hiding the ‘truth’ from their citizens about extraterrestrials engaging with the human race for the past 63 years.

The good news is: an American is dedicating his life to getting the ‘truth’ out there – and he will soon be in Malta to talk publicly about his work.

“The principal barrier to ending the ‘truth embargo’ between 1947 and 1991 was the Cold War. When it ended, the process leading to inevitable disclosure of knowledge of the extraterrestrial presence was irreversibly underway,” Stephen Bassett told The Sunday Times.

Cue the eye-rolling and awkward coughing. But Mr Bassett has the credentials to suggest he may not be a stereotypically deluded UFO enthusiast.

He is a political activist and Washington DC lobbyist, who founded the Paradigm Research Group in 1996 to advocate an end to a “government imposed truth embargo” on the issue, and later became executive director of the Extraterrestrial Phenomena Political Action Committee – the first political action committee in history to directly target the politics related to the extraterrestrial phenomenon.

Mr Bassett cites the examples of countries such as the UK, France, Sweden, Brazil and Russia, which are gradually releasing official accounts of strange phenomena recorded in their territories, and he is pushing hard for the US to follow suit and begin the process towards what he terms full disclosure.

He believes there is tremendous political capital to be gained from formally acknowledging the presence of extraterrestrial life.

“The first nation or head of state to formally acknowledge the extraterrestrial presence will immediately acquire perhaps the greatest political legacy in history,” he said.

The United Nations should be the entity which publically discloses knowledge of the extraterrestrial presence, said Mr Bassett, but it has become “dysfunctional and corrupt” through neglect and underfunding.

Mr Bassett hopes US President Barack Obama will prove to be the “disclosure president”, because promises of an open, transparent government were inculcated into his campaign and remain part of his platform as president.

But supposing there is some truth in what Mr Bassett says, what would be the benefits of Mr Obama formally acknowledging that extraterrestrials have engaged with the human race? According to Mr Bassett, aside from the end to an institutionalised campaign of lying to the American people about the nature of reality, we would have access to 60 years of reverse engineering and development of extraterrestrial technologies derived from whatever extraterrestrials left behind.

Not only that, but self-disclosure may lead to formal, open contact with extraterrestrials and the integration of global societies into a galactic structure; access to the stars and a planet without war or want of the fundamentals. It would be life, but not as we know it.

Not everyone agrees with Mr Bassett’s assertions. No less than world renowned physicist Stephen Hawking, a believer in intelligent alien life, has said that if aliens ever visit us, the ­outcome would be much as it was for the native Americans after being ‘discovered’ by ­Europeans.

“What Hawking did was put himself on record that extraterrestrials exist. The silly statement about not talking to ETs is to neutralise any assertions he had become a ‘believer’.

“Hawking, like the Vatican and other individuals and institutions, is positioning himself on the right side of the issue knowing that disclosure is right around the corner,” said Mr Bassett.

Stephen Bassett will be addressing the ‘2012 – A Positive Outcome’ conference at Grand Hotel Excelsior, Valletta, on October 8.

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