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Thursday, March 19, 2009


According to reports that began to emerge just a few days ago, the US air force claimed to have shot down an Iranian drone (unmanned aircraft) on 25 February 2009. Most reports say the drone was operating over an area some 60-70 miles northeast of Baghdad and was shot down after having operated over the area for 70 minutes. The US military identified the Iranian drone as an Ababil 3 unmanned aircraft. While the aircraft can be used as a type of flying bomb capable of delivering some 45kgs of explosives, its usual use is as a reconnaissance aircraft fitted out with cameras and other such equipment.

But, wearing my aeronautical engineers hat, here’s the problem with the story as the US is telling it: The Ababil 3 drone is capable of a speed of 300 kph and an operational radius of just 150 kms. or 300 kms. all-out straight flight range. Since the aircrafts maximum speed is only 300 kph this would give the aircraft an operational duration of just one hour (60 minutes) at full speed and full power yet we are told that the drone was flying around for 70 minutes and that, even if it included its flight time from the launch place in Iran to the place it was monitored operating over, is over the aircraft’s duration ability even if the motor had been throttled back to increase duration. And if the 70 minutes is the time it spent over the operational area and excluded the time it took to fly to there from the launch site in Iran, and presumably the time needed to fly the drone back to Iran for recovery, then we have a technical impossibility if we assume that the specs for the Ababil 3 are correct. (See ‘Janes All the Worlds Aircraft’.)

The US has not provided any physical evidence that supports their claim of having shot down the drone. Certainly there seems to be no photographic evidence of the wreckage that may identify the drone type. All we have is their claim.

To top it off there is also Iran’s denial that any of their drones was shot down over Iraq. While they are hardly likely to put their hands up and admit that they had, it does seem in this case that the US story has been fabricated as part of a propaganda campaign to prepare the West for the possibility of an attack against Iran in the future.


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Anonymous said...

Fool me once....why the hell do you fools keep trying to fool me again, and again, and again,,,,,I ain't buying it!

Anonymous said...

The maximum range may be limited by radio signal.
US drones have direct link via satelittes, I don't think Iranian drones are linked to their command centers via satelittes.

Damian Lataan said...

True but, while range as you suggest may be linited by radio range to maintain control, duration is limited to fuel consumption regardless of where the aircraft is at. The aircrafts duration is about one hour. The US reckons it was flying around for around 70 minutes. Even if the controller was close by, say, right on the border, it doesn't add up

Anonymous said...

The people who will believe the US propaganda are the people who have neither the mentality or will to examine the story critically.

Me think what government tell me think. Hyuk, hyuk.

Anonymous said...

Another point not made in the article is that the current Iraqi government is an ally of Iran and one would think that they have a direct channel for sharing military intelligence about the occupation forces.

Also, the Iraqi government has got the USG to agree not to attack any country from Iraq, so the idea that the Iranians are sending over drones to spy on US troops for fear of an attack is silly at best.

The purpose of the story is to plant the idea firmly in your mind that the Iranians may send a drone with 45kg of high explosive and attack a US target.

Of course no prizes for guessing who's got drones flying all over the ME, and who are also documented false flag operatives. Strike on a US carrier anyone? Who will benefit from that?

Anonymous said...

Ummmm, don't you think that Iran could have smuggled the drone into Iraq and launched it from around Baghdad so that they could spy on the capitol and US. That's what I would have done if my spy drone did not have the range, but that explanation escapes this guy. Any idiot should realize this fact.

Damian Lataan said...

Ern, the Ababil 3 has a wing span of 3.25m and is 2.88 long. It also requires a truck or ramp to launch from. All this makes it a bit conspicuous for smuggling wouldn't you think?

Anonymous said...

You are all wrong the plane had the shape of Osama Bin Laden with wings.

I think the US shot down a Mossad or its very own drone.

Not the first time. Interestingly this "breaking news" wasn't reported outside the US and not even in Israel

bLaKouT said...

"I think the US shot down a Mossad or its very own drone."

While a totally believable theory, if they'd done so, they'd have wreckage to display, (after removing identifying markings, of course), as stated, there was apparently no physical evidence to confirm the shoot-down, so why waste a drone when you can just say you did? Keep it simple.