US Air Force stands ready to protect Area 51

It's an ominous warning for any would-be alien hunters.

Jackson Ryan Former Science Editor
Jackson Ryan was CNET's science editor, and a multiple award-winning one at that. Earlier, he'd been a scientist, but he realized he wasn't very happy sitting at a lab bench all day. Science writing, he realized, was the best job in the world -- it let him tell stories about space, the planet, climate change and the people working at the frontiers of human knowledge. He also owns a lot of ugly Christmas sweaters.
Jackson Ryan
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Area 51 File Photos

Probably a bad idea to ignore this sign.

Barry King

A tongue-in-cheek Facebook event to "storm Area 51" and "see them aliens" has now attracted almost 1 million attendees, launching a cavalcade of memes and hilarity not seen since the Yanny and Laurel incident of 2018. However, a spokeswoman for the US Air Force discouraged the would-be raiders from coming into the area in a statement to the Washington Post

Area 51, which is a remote and highly classified installation that forms part of Nellis Air Force Complex in Nevada, has long captured the attention of conspiracy theorists because of the intense secrecy surrounding its purpose. Speculation runs rampant that alien technology may be hidden within the base -- which is why, in the year 2019, we now have a meme-fueled Facebook event to finally get inside.

"If we Naruto run, we can move faster than their bullets," reads the event description, referring to Naruto Uzumaki, the spiky-haired ninja from Japanese manga series Naruto. As the science editor at CNET, it's important for me to add a disclaimer here: The Naruto run does not allow you to run faster than bullets -- and even if it did, the US Air Force is ready to respond to any potential human invasion.

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Watch this: Secrets of Area 51: The alien controversy

Speaking to the Washington Post Friday, US Air Force spokeswoman Laura McAndrews said the Air Force is aware of the event before issuing an ominous warning to anyone who may try to mimic a Japanese anime ninja as they storm the facility.

"The US Air Force always stands ready to protect America and its assets," she said.

The Air Force didn'tt immediately respond to a request for comment.

The Facebook event is scheduled to take place on Sept. 20. Though the raid is just a wonderful use of Facebook's event planning platform to produce a meme we can all get behind, I feel it is important to stress this is not a legitimate attempt to overpower the might of the US military at an active Air Force Complex where the armed forces are stationed.

Keep the memes comin' though.

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