By David Montanaro
Published July 15, 2019
One million Facebook users have now responded that they would go to a Facebook event scheduled for Sept. 20 at 3:00 a.m., with the creator writing "they can't stop all of us."
“If we naruto run, we can move faster than their bullets,” the event description said, referencing a Japanese comic character known for his speed.
“Let's see them aliens.”
The social media campaign made national headlines as it grew last week, forcing the Air Force, which runs the installation, to respond and caution UFO enthusiasts against traveling to the area.
"[Area 51] is an open training range for the U.S. Air Force, and we would discourage anyone from trying to come into the area where we train American armed forces. ... The U.S. Air Force always stands ready to protect America and its assets," spokeswoman Laura McAndrews told The Washington Post.
Responding Monday on "Fox & Friends," Annie Jacobsen – author of "Area 51: An Uncensored History of America's Top Secret Military Base – dismissed the idea that civilians could get close to the facility. She explained that the classified military facility is housed inside a classified testing and training range which is the size of Connecticut.
"That base is so jealously guarded, both in terms of media and in terms of actual physicality. I don't think the Air Force or any of the other military partners or intelligence community partners that are all working out there at Area 51 are gonna let anybody anywhere near the entrance to Area 51," said Jacobsen.
Area 51 is a facility near Groom Lake, Nev., run by the Air Force whose operations are highly classified. It has been linked to alien conspiracy theories since the testing of a spy plane in 1955 in which the Central Intelligence Agency first shed light on the military detachment.
Jacobsen, a Pulitzer Prize finalist and New York Times bestselling author, said "disinformation" and "cover stories" about the operations at Area 51 continue to this day.