Contactees are individuals who claim to have experienced contact with extraterrestrials. Contactees have typically reported that they were given messages or profound wisdom by extraterrestrial beings, and that they were compelled to share these messages. These claimed encounters are often described as ongoing, but some contactees claim to have had as few as a single encounter.

Michael Salla: "In the early 1950’s a select group of individuals began to publicly make claims of having had direct physical contact with ‘human looking’ representatives of different extraterrestrial civilizations. These ‘contactees’ claimed to have been given knowledge of the extraterrestrials’ advanced technologies, philosophical beliefs and their efforts to assist humanity in becoming part of a galactic society where open contact with off world civilizations would occur. Contactees described the Extraterrestrials as benign, very respectful of human free will, and ancestrally linked to humanity (thus dubbed the “space brothers”.) The contactees further revealed that extraterrestrials, who were in many cases indistinguishable from humans, had secretly integrated into human society. The apparent goals were to better acquaint themselves with different national cultures, and/or to participate in an educational uplift program to prepare humanity for galactic status.Contactees began to disseminate to the general public the nature of their experiences and knowledge gained through interaction with extraterrestrials.

"Information revealed by contactees presented an unrivaled national security crisis for policy makers in the U.S. and other major nations. Two main elements comprised this crisis. First, the advanced space vehicles and technologies possessed by extraterrestrial civilizations were far more sophisticated than the most developed aircraft, weapons and communications systems possessed by national governments. This presented an urgent technological problem that required vast national resources to bridgethe technological gap with extraterrestrials. It led to a second Manhattan project whose existence and secret funding would be known only to those with a “need to know.”3 Manhattan II, along with evidence of extraterrestrial visitors and technologies, would be kept secret from the general public, the media and most elected political representatives.
"Second, extraterrestrial civilizations were contacting private individuals, and even having some of their representatives integrate into human society.4 This was encouraging growing numbers of individuals to participate in a covert extraterrestrial effort to prepare humanity for “galactic status” - where the existence of extraterrestrials would be officially acknowledged and open interaction would occur. Also included was the issue of nuclear disarmament. Tens of thousands of individuals supported the contactees who distributed newsletters, spoke at conferences and traveled widely spreading their information for peacefully transforming the planet, and calling for an immediate end to the development of nuclear weapons. Nuclear weapons threatened more than humanity’s future according to the extraterrestrials. Every detonation disrupted the fabric of space that could also seriously affect their own worlds in destructive ways.

"Directly confronted were the policies of major nations that were actively building nuclear weapons. Enormous revolutionary potential for the entire planet was put forward. Thus, contactees presented an urgent national security need for an extensive counter-intelligence program. Preventing the contactee movement from becoming a catalyst for global changes through the teachings and experiences gained from extraterrestrials became top priority. Consequently, a highly secret and ruthless counter-intelligence program was finally implemented that directly targeted contactees and their supporters.
A series of covert intelligence programs were implemented that aimed to neutralize the revolutionary potential of the contactee movement. These programs evolved in three stages that resulted in the final counter-intelligence program that was adopted to eliminate any threat posed by contactees."

source: Exopolitics Journal 2:3 (January 2008)

It must be noted that the contactee phenomenon is a mixed bag of goodies: while there are very strong indications that at least some cases are genuine, there also were deluded individuals as well as attention seekers. The phenomenon certainly was not helped either by the fact that some contactees may well have had genuine experiences, but may subsequently have started fabricating stories to keep up with an ongoing demand for information. Add to that the fact that the COINTELPRO approach was rather effective in tainting some cases as well, and it becomes clear that much discernment is needed with contactee cases.

Some of the more interesting contactee cases: