Defense-related activities are vital to the town of Alamogordo and to Otero County, which covers much of the Tularosa Basin desert. Look up and you might see the dark, bat-shaped outline of a Stealth fighter swooping overhead—Holloman Air Force Base is home to these high-tech fighter planes. Many residents work at White Sands Missile Range, where the nation's first atomic bomb exploded at Trinity Site on July 12, 1945.
If you find U.S. 70 closed temporarily, it's due to test launches (locals have grown accustomed to this). South of Alamogordo huge military exercises involving both U.S. and foreign troops are conducted at the Fort Bliss Military Reservation along Route 54. It's not all that surprising that flying objects can be mistaken for Unidentified Flying Objects in this state.