A secret U.S. surveillance drone that went missing last week in western Afghanistan appears to have crashed in Iran, in what may be the first case of such an aircraft ending up in the hands of an adversary.
Iran’s news agencies asserted that the nation’s defense forces brought down the drone, which the Iranian reports said was an RQ-170 stealth aircraft. It is designed to penetrate enemy air defenses that could see and possibly shoot down less sophisticated Predator and Reaper drones.
A stealthy RQ-170 drone played a critical role in providing surveillance of the compound in Pakistan where Osama bin Laden was hiding in the months before the raid in which he was killed by U.S. Navy SEALs in May.
If an RQ-170 drone crashed in Iran, it would mark a significant setback for the U.S. military. The U.S. has lost less-sophisticated unmanned aircraft in recent years over Iran, but a nearly intact RQ-170 could offer a potential windfall of useful intelligence for the Iranians and their allies.
The aircraft has special coatings and a batwing-like shape that is designed to evade detection by enemy radar. The aircraft could help the Iranians better understand the vulnerabilities of U.S. stealth technology and provide them with clues on how to spot other aircraft, U.S. officials said.
Similar stealth technology is used in U.S. B-2 bombers and is a major feature of the military’s F-35 fighter jet, which is one of the largest and most expensive weapons programs in Pentagon history.
The Washington Post reports that “U.S. officials declined to comment on what the drone’s mission had been before it crashed.”
However, Bruce Gagnon of the Global Network Against Weapons and Nuclear Power in Space shared the following analysis of the downed stealth drone in his Organizing Notes blog:
The Post tried to make it sound like the drone just veered off course while on a mission in Afghanistan. I seriously doubt it. We’ve known for several years, thanks to journalist Seymour Hersh, that the U.S. has been sending special operations troops inside Iran on destabilizing missions along with Iranian terrorist organizations. They’ve been blowing up targets and killing people. These drone missions are likely connectioned to those operations.
Routine ISR can be done with existing sophisticated U.S. military satellites orbiting the Earth. As was shown by their use in the U.S. Navy Seals raid on Abbottabad in Pakistan, the U.S. uses these drones when they are doing operational planning. To me that means these stealth drones are supporting existing special ops activities already inside Iran and/or they are doing ISR for future strike missions.
Either way it is abundantly evident that Obama is poking a stick into a hornet nest. Sooner or later he is going to get a reaction and that is when holy hell could break loose.
For those who still believe in Mr. Obama this is just one more bit of information in the avalanche of facts that indicates the “president” is indeed an agent of the CIA and the military industrial complex.
If this event had happened during the reign of George W. Bush the liberals would be screaming bloody murder – as they well should – but we’ll now find them largely silent on this sad turn of events.
Once again Obama proves his worth to the corporate oligarchy. He gives them all they want and at the same time keeps a lid on the left-wing of his party. It’s no wonder that the Republicans have such a sad lot running for president. The oligarchy knows it has a good thing going with Obama and they don’t want to put it in any danger.