American Luftwaffe has arrived

Smile, you’re on candid camera! Have a good look at the American Luftwaffe. I’m sure Faux News and people like Ann Coulter, Bill O’Reilly and Michelle Malkin are just beside themselves with this news.

Global Hawk

This undated image provided by the US Air Force shows avionics specialists preparing a Global Hawk for a runway taxi test at Beale Air Force Base, Calif. The high-altitude, long-endurance unmanned aerial reconnaissance system is designed to provide military field commanders with high resolution, near-real-time imagery of large geographic areas. The Global Hawk is scheduled to begin flying at Beale Monday Nov. 20, 2006. “This landmark flight has historic implications since it the first time a Global Hawk has not only flown from Beale, but anywhere in the United States on an official Air Combat Command mission,” base spokesman Capt. Michael Andrews said in a statement. (AP photo/US Air Force photo – Stacey Knott)

Global Hawk to Fly 1st Mission Over U.S.

They’ve become a fixture in the skies over Iraq and Afghanistan, a new breed of unmanned aircraft operated with remote controls by “pilots” sitting in virtual cockpits many miles away.

But the Air Force’s Global Hawk has never flown a mission over the United States.

That is set to change Monday, when the first Global Hawk is scheduled to land at Beale Air Force Base in northern California.

“This landmark flight has historic implications since it the first time a Global Hawk has not only flown from Beale, but anywhere in the United States on an official Air Combat Command mission,” base spokesman Capt. Michael Andrews said in a statement.

–Snip–

The planes are designed to fly at high altitudes for 40 hour-missions covering as much as 10,000 miles, mostly providing aerial surveillance. The aircraft, which can cost more than $80 million each, can reach an altitude of 65,000 feet and send back high-resolution imagery.

How long till the brown suits come in?

More links to the story:
The Mercury News
WKRN-Nashville
Times Daily
Salon
Guardian Unlimited
Forbes
Tuscaloosa News
KESQ-Channel 3, CA

Cross Posted from Katrinacrat and The Katrinacrat Blog

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10 Responses to American Luftwaffe has arrived

  1. Ginny Cotts says:

    80 million and the cost of operating them is huge also. How much are the VA, education and health care underfunded?

    Donnie,

    This is a family story I like to keep telling because it illustrates how the people of a country – even in the military- are not always behind it’s leadership.

    My father in law was a navigator for a WWII bomber (a B 29 I think) and was shot down over Germany about 18 months before the end of the war. He was taken prisoner and, along with other Army Air Corps prisoners, held by a members of the Luftwaffe. They had meager and tainted food, minimal clothes and other necessities. However the POWs felt that their guards had little more and treated them with respect for fellow warriors. As the allies started getting close to the camp and the end was becoming obvious, the SS came to kill the POWs. The guards either suspected this or reacted quickly. They killed the SS and waited for with the POWs for the allies to arrive, surrendering without any resistence.

    If it hadn’t been for them, my husband and his brothers would never have been born.

  2. Ginny Cotts says:

    Well, I just stumbled on a video of the press trying to get up close pictures of the TomKat wedding.

    Maybe we could recoup the monetary expense by renting out these planes to the media so they could get better pictures of these REALLY IMPORTANT news items. 🙄

  3. Ginny,

    Love the story about your Paw-in-law. Shows the true honor in being a soldier. Sometimes, honor prevails in bad times even when a complete madman and lunatic is running the show!

    Rent them out? Hmmmm! You may be onto something there, but I would hate to see what the maniacs in the media would do with it. Creepy!

  4. Ginny Cotts says:

    Donnie,

    Renting to the media was definitely satirical. It is almost as creepy as it being in the hands of the military. Between the armed drones and our takeover of military rights in space, is it any wonder we are considered the world’s only stupidpower?

    That military code of honor is what I think the story speaks to. And I believe it is why most people have a sincere respect for those who choose to join and serve. I honestly think they are the ones who have the best perspective on whether a war is worth fighting. Unfortunately, like all human institutions, the military has other members who have different perspectives and priorities – and they are often more vocal with more powerful ties than the really wise ones.

    The history of war and civilization is overwhelming in the path that new superpowers take. Eventually their leaders succumb to the idea that they have to use the military might to accomplish some geopolitical goal favorable to them- and deceive the citizens into believing it is a just cause. On the contrary, they are rarely, if ever, in the interest of the rest of the world. Inevitably the country gets thrown down – financially, morally and ideologically bankrupt.

    What are our chances of changing this scenario and coming out at a better place?

  5. Ginny,

    It is unfair that most of the sane ones do not move up the ladder as quick as the more radical and diehard types. Look at what U.S. Rep. Charles Rangel is up to. He is back trying to give the wingnuts a coronary!!
    Senior Democrat renews call for military draft

  6. Ginny Cotts says:

    Donnie,

    Ever check out America in Denial at http://www.elmercreek.com.? “Bring Back the Draft’ is a very good satirical poke at this.

    Hey, a collective wingnut coronary works for me…

  7. battlebob says:

    They may be using the global hawk for border surveilance.

  8. Ginny Cotts says:

    Bb,

    That could be a very worthwhile use. Not because of the illegal immigrants as much as the drug traffic. I think the gut response here is that Bush is not to be trusted with these kinds of ‘information gathering methods’…..

  9. Javelin says:

    Could be for border security….saw an article this morning where they captured a sub (that’s right, a submarine) loaded with 2.5 tons of cocaine on it! JK and others are right when they demand full implementation of the 9/11 commission. It’s one thing to sell fear, but it’s another to prevent catastrophe. 2.5 tons of explosives can probably move into this country via submarine just as easily as cocaine.

  10. battlebob says:

    We are flying drones over the US-Mexico border. They were made by Israel. Ours were all in the Middle East.
    The Global Hawk canbe outfitted with both cameras or weapons and are really important to our struggles in both Iraq and Afgan.
    They are scarce.
    To use them over the border is not enough of a use as there are cheaper drones available.