Elder Patriot| Iran has shot down a US Navy Broad Area Maritime Surveillance Drone (BAMS-D). The RQ-4A Global Hawk high-altitude long endurance (HALE) drone is among the most technologically sophisticated drones in our arsenal, costing more than $123 million.
The United States said the attack came while the drone was flying in international airspace.\
The RQ-4 reaches altitudes of 65,000 feet which means that the attack on it could not have been successful by a terrorist using a shoulder-fired, heat-seeking missile.
A successful attack at that altitude could only have been carried out using a sophisticated radar-guided surface-to-air missile.
From Business Insider:
Iran just shot down one of the US military’s most advanced drones — it costs more than an F-35 stealth fighter
Iranian forces took out a US unmanned aerial vehicle Wednesday evening with a surface-to-air missile, US Central Command confirmed. The drone the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) shot out of the sky happens to be one of the US military’s most advanced high-altitude unmanned aircraft.
The US military called the incident “an unprovoked attack on a US surveillance asset in international airspace” over the Strait of Hormuz, the entrance to the Persian Gulf. The Iranians have accused the US drone of entering Iranian airspace, an allegation Central Command characterized as completely false.
The aircraft, which is used by both the US Air Force and the US Navy, has a price tag higher than the US military’s new F-35 stealth fighters. A Global Hawk has a unit cost of roughly $123 million, while an F-35A Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter costs only $89 million.
“This isn’t a throwaway drone whose loss the US will just shrug off,” Ulrike Franke, a drone expert with the European Council on Foreign Relations, said on Twitter.
The latest incident comes just days after the crew of an Iranian boat fired an SA-7 surface-to-air missile at a MQ-9 Reaper drone, a roughly $15 million drone, but missed. Wednesday’s shoot-down marks a serious escalation in tensions between the US and Iran.
Iran might’ve just poked the bear once too often:
This story is developing, we will bring you more as the situation develops.