Iran will defiantly keep U.S. drone it claims to have caught
'This was an act of invasion and belligerence,' General says
Ever defiant, the nation of Iran says it will not return an unmanned
American stealth plane that it says it has. That's the word of one of
Iran's top generals, according to the semi-official Fars news agency.
U.S. officials have said that US intelligence assessments indicate that Iran neither shot the drone down, nor used electronic or cyber-technology to force it from the sky. They contend the drone malfunctioned.
"It makes no difference where this drone originated and which group or country sent it to invade our air space," Salami added. "This was an act of invasion and belligerence."
Salami called the downing of the plane as "very valuable for us" and "a victory for us and a defeat for our enemies." He also claimed Iran had earlier downed other drones -- but went unannounced as they were not as important.
Iranian TV aired images last week of what it says is the drone, an apparently intact RQ-170 drone propped on a pedestal and triumphantly displayed with gaudy banners and anti-American slogans.
U.S. officials have not confirmed that the drone in a video telecast in Iran is a U.S. aircraft, but Pentagon spokesman George Little has said that an American drone is missing -- and had not been recovered as of Thursday of last week.
Two U.S. officials have confirmed to CNN that the missing drone was part of a CIA reconnaissance mission that involved both the intelligence community and military personnel stationed in Afghanistan.
Iran's official Iran Republic News Agency said the country's armed forces had downed the drone near Kashmar, some 140 miles from the border with Afghanistan on December 4.
There was disagreement among Pentagon officials about whether the drone in the video was real. Military and intelligence officials were analyzing the Iran television footage.
One U.S. official says the U.S. can't be certain it's the real stealth drone - he also added there's no reason to think it's a fake.
A senior U.S. military official says the chief question is how the drone could have remained virtually intact given the high altitude it is believed to have crashed from.
The condition of the drone in the video suggests it was not shot down but suffered a system failure, aviation analyst Bill Sweetman said. There are no burn marks from a fire, no holes and no outward damage.
U.S. officials have said that US intelligence assessments indicate that Iran neither shot the drone down, nor used electronic or cyber-technology to force it from the sky. They contend the drone malfunctioned. The officials had spoken anonymously in order to discuss the classified program.
© 2011, Catholic Online. Distributed by NEWS CONSORTIUM.
- - -
Pope Benedict XVI's Prayer Intentions for January 2013
General Intention: The Faith of Christians. That in this Year of Faith Christians may deepen their knowledge of the mystery of Christ and witness joyfully to the gift of faith in him.
Missionary Intention: Middle Eastern Christians. That the Christian communities of the Middle East, often discriminated against, may receive from the Holy Spirit the strength of fidelity and perseverance.
Keywords: Iran, U.S. drone, aircraft malfunction
Rate This Article
Leave a Comment
More Middle East News
- Israel and Syria at brink of war as both sides exchange fire, threats
- Elements of Syrian opposition feared to be aligned with al-Qaeda
- You'll be surprised to see what Palestinians are smuggling into Gaza
- Use Twitter, go to HELL
- As death and destruction rain down in Syria, refugees flee with lives to Jordan
- Hezbollah can reach Israel with missiles, report says
- Did intervention in Iraq unjustly discriminate against the Christians there?
- With Hezbollah statement, Syrian conflict threatens to spread into multinational conflict
- Chemical weapons in Syria - Did they or didn't they?
- Fr. Paul Schenck: Finding Living Faith on Catechetical Sunday
- The Movie Yellow: Incest as 'Normal' and Cassavates's Slides Into the World of Woes
- The Chicago School Teachers Strike Reveals the Need For School Choice
- The Sexual Barbarians and the Dissolution of Culture
- The Happy Priest Challenges Us to Ask: Who is Jesus to Me?
- Michael Coren on Canadian Public Schools: Teachers, leave those kids alone
- We Cannot Ignore Our Consciences: Cardinal Dolan On Religious Liberty
- In the Face of Danger, Successor of Peter Travels to Lebanon as a Messenger of Peace
- Reflections on the Dignity and Vocation of Women: Who or What?