MORE GOOD NEWS FROM THE MISUNDERSTOOD CULTURE – AT 10:42 A.M. ET: The claim cannot be verified, but this is what happens when we lose an intelligence asset. From Fox:
TEHRAN, Iran – Iran claimed Sunday that it had reverse-engineered an American spy drone captured by its armed forces last year and has begun building a copy.
Gen. Amir Ali Hajizadeh, chief of the aerospace division of the powerful Revolutionary Guards, related what he said were details of the aircraft's operational history to prove his claim that Tehran's military experts had extracted data from the U.S. RQ-170 Sentinel captured in December in eastern Iran, state television reported.
Among the drone's past missions, he said, was surveillance of the compound in northwest Pakistan in which Usama Bin Laden lived and was killed.
Tehran has flaunted the capture of the Sentinel, a top-secret surveillance drone with stealth technology, as a victory for Iran and a defeat for the United States in a complicated intelligence and technological battle.
U.S. officials have acknowledged losing the drone. They have said Iran will find it hard to exploit any data and technology aboard it because of measures taken to limit the intelligence value of drones operating over hostile territory.
COMMENT: There are some very disturbing reports, and commentaries, from knowledgeable sources, suggesting that the United States is about to strike a "grand bargain" with Iran, essentially caving in on critical "red lines," undercutting our allies, even undercutting UN resolutions, and, bottom line, "trusting" Iran. We cannot verify that this is in store, but we have been hearing of a mood of apprehension in the more mature wing of the foreign-policy establishment.
We'll know soon...but will we know in time for the election? Don't count on it.
April 22, 2012