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Iran claims to have downed US drone; experts question authenticity

AP

This photo released on Thursday, Dec. 8, by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, claims to show a U.S. RQ-170 Sentinel drone which Tehran says its forces downed earlier this week, as an unidentified colonel, right, talks to the chief of the aerospace division of Iran's Revolutionary Guards, Gen. Amir Ali Hajizadeh, in an undisclosed location, Iran.

While Iran claims to have taken down the U.S. drone, there is some speculation as to whether or not the craft the country is showing off is in fact legitimate.

From an AP story:

John Pike, an expert on military and intelligence technology for GlobalSecurity.org, said in an email that the drone shown on Iranian TV looked like "a parade float model of a Sentinel" rather than the high-tech robotic surveillance aircraft itself.

He said that the shape of the aircraft differed from that shown in most other photographs of the Sentinel, and that it was in better shape than would be expected after a crash. "I'm guessing this is a mock-up they have prepared for a parade," he said.

Keep in mind, this is also the country that manipulated a misslie launch image to hide the fact that one missile had failed to fire and that is suspected of welding 55-gallon drums together to look like S-300 launchers.

Read the full story here.

AFP - Getty Images

A still from a video taken from the Iranian state-run Press TV on Dec. 8, shows what Iranian officials claim is the U.S. RQ-170 Sentinel high-altitude reconnaissance drone that crashed in Iran on Dec. 4, displayed at an undisclosed location. Revelations about the US reconnaissance drone suggest Washington is stepping up surveillance and pressure on the Islamic republic over its nuclear program, media reports say. Slogans on US flags read in Farsi