Intelligence: American Eyes Over Iran


November 9, 2005: Iran has been complaining, for over a year, about the many reconnaissance flights American aircraft and UAVs have made over their territory, especially along the Iraqi border. The Iranians have not been able to get much traction with these complaints, but now they are trying a different approach. Iran recently revealed, and displayed, the wreckage of two American UAVs that had come down inside Iran (some 200 kilometers from the Iraqi border.) The United States says nothing, and the story will soon go away. The two downed UAVs were an RQ-7 Shadow 200 (used heavily by the U.S. Army) and a larger (Israeli made) Hermes 450. Actually, the Hermes is also used by Britain, but apparently the United States is willing to accept the blame (by not saying anything.) The UAV flights over Iran are apparently continuing, with the Iranian air defense systems in such a state of disrepair, that the Iranians cannot shoot down the unmanned aircraft. The two UAVs crashed in July and August, apparently as a result of equipment failures.


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