She's not having it.
When a reporter bluntly asked Laurie Leshin, the director of NASA and CalTech's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, if she had ever seen or had knowledge of alien spacecraft, she laughed — but that doesn't mean she thinks we're alone in the universe.
"Have you seen spacecraft made from outside this world?" a reporter from Phoenix-based broadcaster Fox 10 asked Leshin.
"Absolutely not," Leshin replied, laughing and shaking her head. "No."
"Has anyone ever talked about that with you?" the journalist pressed.
"No," she said.
The interview demonstrated that the JPL director has a knack for diplomacy as she was asked about recent congressional hearings in which whistleblowers claimed that the government was covering up evidence of extraterrestrial UFOs that crash-landed on Earth.
Last month for instance, Air Force veteran David Grusch told the House Oversight Committee during an eyebrow-raising hearing that the government had been recovering alien spacecraft over recent decades, efforts that were kept from the public.
The hearing garnered a significant amount of media coverage, flooding social media with ridiculous and far-fetched theories about the possible existence of aliens.
"I mean, obviously, there's lots of interest," Leshin told the broadcaster. "Our interest is in following the scientific evidence in looking for life elsewhere, and I think we have the chance in our lifetimes to answer that question."
"Whether it’s intelligent life — that would be very interesting, obviously," she continued.
Translation: either she hasn't seen any extraterrestrial evidence of what the government calls "unidentified aerial phenomena" (UAPs) — or she can't talk about it if she has.
Life On Mars
That said, Leshin made it clear that she can be counted among the growing ranks of people who believe it's entirely possible there's extraterrestrial life out there — and that her colleagues are as well.
"One of our biggest ambitions at JPL is to find life elsewhere," she told Fox 10. "We're trying to explore all kinds of places in our solar system and beyond that might have life."
"If you’re a scientist, the biggest question you can ask is, 'Are we alone in the universe?'" Leshin continued. "So that is what we’re trying to answer, [and] we're on the precipice of it."
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