Debate over whether Iran is showing a real drone
December 8th, 2011
06:08 PM ET

Debate over whether Iran is showing a real drone

By Chris Lawrence and Barbara Starr

There’s disagreement among Pentagon officials about whether the drone shown on Iranian television on Thursday is really the U.S. drone that crahsed.  Military and intelligence officials are analyzing the Iran television footage.

One US official said right now the military can't be certain it's the real stealth drone, because they don't have access to it.  But he added there's no reason to think it's a fake.

But a second senior US military official said that a big question the official has about the Iranian footage is how it could have remained virtually intact given the high altitude it is believed to have crashed from.

Earlier this week a different senior military official told CNN that based on U.S. satellite imagery, the drone appeared to have sustained significant damage.

Pentagon spokesman said the video is being examined. FULL POST

December 8th, 2011
12:11 PM ET

Iran TV shows alleged US drone

By Joe Sterling

Iranian TV aired images Thursday of what it says is the U.S. stealth drone that went down in Iran last week.

Press TV showed different angles of an apparently intact craft on a pedestal with uniformed people in the scene, including two having a discussion about the unmanned aircraft - identified as an RQ-170 drone.

The authenticity of the footage could not be independently confirmed.

Two U.S. officials confirmed to CNN Tuesday that the drone was part of a CIA reconnaissance mission that involved both the intelligence community and military personnel stationed in Afghanistan.

A senior U.S. official with direct access to the assessment about what happened to the unmanned aircraft said it was tasked to fly over western Afghanistan and look for insurgent activity, with no directive to either fly into Iran or spy on Iran from Afghan airspace.

A U.S. satellite quickly pinpointed the downed drone, which apparently sustained significant damage, the senior official said.

Press TV network also showed reporters questioning the Swiss envoy to Tehran, who was summoned by Iran's Foreign Ministry over the issue. Switzerland represents U.S. interests in Iran, which doesn't have diplomatic relations with the United States.

Read the full story here

Filed under: CIA • drones • Iran
NATO, Russia square off over missile defense
US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen in Brussels
December 8th, 2011
10:19 AM ET

NATO, Russia square off over missile defense

By CNN's Elise Labott

NATO and Russia remained at odds over the alliance's plans for a missile defense system in Europe after a foreign ministers meeting in Brussels Thursday.

NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said "differences remain" over the plans, but he rejected Russia's complaints that NATO was ignoring Moscow's concerns the missile defense system could be used against it.

"We listen and we have listened today," Rasmussen said after a meeting of NATO's 28 foreign ministers with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. "We take Russian concerns seriously."

Rasmussen's tone was softer than his comments Wednesday, when he said Russia's threats to withdraw from the START treaty and deploy ballistic missiles on its southern border to counter the missile shield were reminiscent of a confrontation of a bygone era and reflect a "fundamental misunderstanding of the West's intentions."


Defense: Military failed to heed warnings Manning was unstable
Suspected WikiLeaks leaker Bradley Manning faces a hearing December 16 at Fort Meade, Maryland.
December 8th, 2011
10:17 AM ET

Defense: Military failed to heed warnings Manning was unstable

Before suspected WikiLeaks leaker Bradley Manning was arrested in May 2010, numerous military personnel considered the young soldier to be mentally unstable, immature and potentially dangerous to himself and others, a new court filing by his defense team says. Read the entire document

The 23-year-old Army intelligence specialist exhibited behavior that should have prompted his superiors to take his weapon and block his access to classified material, according to a 20-page witness list filed last week in the case and published on a blog written by Manning's attorney, David Coombs.

Warnings and concerns about Manning's mental health were either ignored or were not passed up through the chain of command, the document says.

The Army private is due at Fort Meade, Maryland, on December 16 for an Article 32 hearing, a military version of a civilian arraignment. But unlike a civilian hearing, it often includes a considerable amount of testimony and presentation of evidence. The military has said the hearing is expected to last five days. A military officer will decide if Manning will face a court-martial.

Manning faces violations of military law, including aiding the enemy, stealing records, transmitting defense information and fraud. If convicted, he could go to prison for life. He has been held for more than 18 months in military custody and is currently behind bars at Fort Leavenworth prison in Kansas.


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Filed under: Bradley Manning • Security Brief • WikiLeaks