Updated: I guess the egg’s on my face this time. Turns out the video the Iranians broadcast (see below) is not an RQ-170 — it’s a Lockheed Polecat on a test flight. (Thanks goes to reader “blowback” for pointing this out.)
As the story about Iran’s capture of an RQ-170 stealth drone continues to unfold,
it is the credibility of American officials that keeps on getting shredded.
Here’s the latest from the Associated Press:
Officers in the Revolutionary Guard, Iran’s most powerful military force, have claimed the country’s armed forces brought down the surveillance aircraft with an electronic ambush, causing minimum damage to the drone.
American officials have said that U.S. intelligence assessments indicate that Iran neither shot the drone down, nor used electronic or cybertechnology to force it from the sky. They contend the drone malfunctioned.
Is this how a malfunctioning drone makes a perfect landing on an Iranian airstrip?
President Obama says the U.S. has asked for its drone back. But Iran has no intention of returning it and claims to be in the final stages of extracting data from it according to one lawmaker.
The Washington Post reports:
Parviz Sorouri, a key member of the parliament’s national security and foreign policy committee, told Iranian state television that the extracted information would be used to file a lawsuit against the United States over the “invasion” by the unmanned aircraft.
He asserted that Iran would “soon” start to reproduce the drone after a nearly finished process of reverse engineering was completed. “In the near future, we will be able to mass produce it. . . . Iranian engineers will soon build an aircraft superior to the American [drone] using reverse engineering,” he was quoted as saying.
Sorouri also said the country’s armed forces would soon conduct an exercise on closing the Strait of Hormuz, the narrow waterway between the Gulf of Oman and the oil-rich Persian Gulf.
Noting the strategic importance of the strait, Sorouri said, “We will hold a military maneuver on how to close the Strait of Hormuz soon,” the Iranian Students’ News Agency reported. “If the world wants to make the region insecure, we will make the world insecure.”