When Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev first began discussing matters of global politics, they found that they may have been from completely different worlds in many ways. But when the subject of UFOs came around, the two couldn't have more in common. Both agreed that something strange was going on in the airspace that no one could identify precisely. Both agreed that life likely existed elsewhere in the universe. And if their cold war era speeches are to be believed, both agreed that humanity would have to unite if we ever faced a threat from another world.
No one can argue that UFOs helped shape the world we live in today indirectly - as we saw when Charlemagne first spotted an unidentified flying object that inspired him to unify the Roman empire and take up a new religion, but in the modern world it seems the effect was a bit more direct than we once thought. How did UFOs help end the Cold War and act as a symbolic third faction to help unify two global superpowers whose relationship had turned cold in the aftermath of World War II? Just as Charlemagne had seen something in the skies that would later make him unify Rome once again, Ronald Reagan saw an unidentified object that would serve as a symbolic platform to bring peace between the Soviet Union and the United States in 1974 while flying to Bakersfield, California. The sighting left Reagan with a feeling that the world they knew was not always how it seemed.
No one knows precisely what went through Reagan's mind as he spotted the object he would later talk about, but one thing is certain - he would use that experience when he spoke with the Russians in 1987 in a speech before the United Nations. Addressing the crowd filled with the leaders of nations, he spoke calmly on the matter saying, "Perhaps we need some outside universal threat. I often wonder how quickly our differences worldwide would vanish if we were facing an alien threat from outside our world." Reagan went on to say how the alien he was referring to was the general animosity people had toward one another, and how he hoped peace would come of it. But he went on to further state in a later speech with much more specific language that he had discussed how easy it would be to form peace between the Soviet Union and the United States if it was apparent that an alien species were somehow threatening the planet. While the first statement was less ambitious, the latter was very specific and meaningful.
Gorbachev's opinion of aliens was even more extreme - suggesting publicly that the UFO phenomenon was a real one - and one that he wanted to see taken seriously. In fact, both leaders involved in the end of the Cold War - perhaps the most dangerous war to life on the planet ended their conflict while talking about UFOs and aliens. Whether or not the UFOs actually existed matters little when we consider that all life on this planet may have been wiped out without stories of them to unify people and end the impending threat of nuclear war.