In 1949, the UFO program began to take an extremely serious turn, after several secret meetings held by several experts, where they decided that something real was going on which required serious investigation. In the documentation available, up to that point in time, the Navy (ONR) displayed seriousness, while on several occasions the Air Force officials seemed to be taking it all too lightly. After these meetings, this attitude changed significantly.
The UFO program (SIGN) was invigorated, and placed under the control of Air Force Combat Intelligence (Headquarters-USAF, also AF Intelligence-AFCIN), namely as AFCIN-4 Plan on UFOs, with oversight by AFCIN-X and X 1.
During this transformation programs such as UFO, Moondust, and Bluefly came into being. These programs were formed in order to secretly deal with capturing downed, possibly unfriendly* aero-craft of unknown origin, as well as other space objects in need of acquisition.
[*as per the evasive actions taken by some of these unknown aero-craft, when perued by Air Force interceptors]
I have purposely referred to HQ AF Intelligence as Combat Intelligence when referencing these UFO matters, because the different units acquired to assist in investigations were quick reaction, combat Intelligence Units, and the satellite programs which evolved from them are now utilized for Combat Intelligence.
The Air Force Intelligence Office (AFCIN), and their "over-all" UFO Program" -which enlisted all of the other services (including the CIA, and the Armed Forces Security Agency)is what later evolved into what we would now refer to as Air Combat Intelligence Command.
Generally, Combat Intelligence Command refers to the premiere Intelligence gathering group for real-time combat information. They keep the area of combat operations under surveillance, and report on changing conditions to the Major Commanders in the field, whether they are Air Force, Army, Navy, or Marine Corps Commanders. In the broadest application, this would apply to Major Command and the National Security Space operations. Today this includes data acquired from Naval ship-to-shore communications satellites like the UHF Follow-On military satellites (UFO), which are the follow-on systems for the current MILSTARS, which evolved out of the "Discoverer" program.
One can say, unequivocally, that all of the Defense Support Program (DSP) satellites can trace their beginnings to the early efforts of the likes of Joseph Kaplan, and George Valley. The "call-to-action" came from the meetings discussing Unknown Vehicle Impacts, in combination with the "Green Fireball" scare. This is when, and where, DSP was hatched. The term was first coined by Kaplan, and was actually known as the Detection, Surveillance, and Protection program (DSP).
The rise of Joint Army, Navy, Air regulation (JANAP) 146 came from the change in the attitude of the UFO program. This regulation was set in place to open communications channels for serious UFO reporting by military and civilian pilots. By declaring the word CERVIS, prior to the transmission, it would be understood that a serious Unknown Aerial Object report was forthcoming.
As you can see from this web site on Combat Intelligence http://www.fas.org/man/dod-101/usaf/docs/aoc12af/part01.htm it is the vital link for combat commanders and their operations in any combat theater, be it Iraq, Afghanistan, or in the case of UFOs, even within the borders of the United States, which is referred to as the Zone of the Interior (ZI). My position is that even though project Blue Book was "closed" in 1969, the UFO program was not. Rather, it was simply absorbed into the common framework of the expected duties of the Air Force and ADC. Since the special groups, such as the 1006th AISS were strapped, it fell to every Commander of any Air Force Base to see to any investigating, of any nature, which would be required in any UFO case, on a case-by-case basis.
The documentation held by the Archives makes clear that the military held the UFO problem as one of great importance.
If it were not so, AFCIN would have never become involved in the first place.