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yowza
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Joined: Fri Jul 29, 2005 7:01 am

Interesting Piece About Military and Private Spy Planes over the US

Tue Aug 08, 2017 3:28 pm

I'm not sure how responsible it was to share all of this but at the least you would hope a number of the parties involved pull their socks up.

https://www.buzzfeed.com/peteraldhous/hidden-spy-planes

YOWza
 
WIederling
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Joined: Sun Sep 13, 2015 2:15 pm

Re: Interesting Piece About Military and Private Spy Planes over the US

Thu Aug 10, 2017 10:33 am

yowza wrote:
I'm not sure how responsible it was to share all ...


Very responsible. Looks like The State is overstepping here.
Murphy is an optimist
 
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flyingturtle
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Re: Interesting Piece About Military and Private Spy Planes over the US

Thu Aug 10, 2017 11:16 am

It's a wonderful piece of investigative err... statistical journalism.

WIederling wrote:
Very responsible.


Yes, because it makes public debate on these spying flights possible. In my opinion, a government hiding facts and information from its citizens is always a bad government, because it's undemocratic to do so. The only restricted information should be those in my, yours and everybody's privacy.


David
Keeping calm is terrorism against those who want to live in fear.
 
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yowza
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Re: Interesting Piece About Military and Private Spy Planes over the US

Thu Aug 10, 2017 2:15 pm

WIederling wrote:
Very responsible.

flyingturtle wrote:
it makes public debate on these spying flights possible


Don't get me wrong I'm all for controlling government overreach. I'm just a little surprised to see that many of the agencies in question appear to have not been given the chance to explain themselves.

YOWza
 
WIederling
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Re: Interesting Piece About Military and Private Spy Planes over the US

Thu Aug 10, 2017 6:33 pm

yowza wrote:
Don't get me wrong I'm all for controlling government overreach. I'm just a little surprised to see that many of the agencies in question appear to have not been given the chance to explain themselves.


first make it public than wait for answers. If you ask the agencies "in private" you get nothing but a courts gag order out of it. ( We've seen that often enough already.)
Murphy is an optimist
 
WKTaylor
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Re: Interesting Piece About Military and Private Spy Planes over the US

Fri Aug 11, 2017 6:49 pm

Similar slowly orbiting flights by a Beech King-Air [or Cessna Conquest] sized twin-turboprop acft are occurring multiple-times weekly, roughly centered over Tinker AFB, Oklahoma City.

I estimate a typical orbit is ~3-miles diameter at very high altitude [~25,000-ft] and very low cruise speed.

I live very close to TAFB and do yard work starting ~1800 mid-week... and ‘walk the dog’ at ~2200 every day. Began noticing a TP-twin aircraft cutting these ‘boring left-turning circles’ anywhere from 1-to 3-days/week starting a few months ago. One time... in the early PM daylight... I noted the acft entering the orbit and slow-climbing from [~15,000-Ft AGL] to high altitude simultaneously.

Unsure, but I’ve had the impression that the orbit-path radius was ‘gradually tightened’ [over the months] from ~5-to-6 miles [edges over TAFB and OKC center] to ~3-miles primarily centered over TAFB/Midwest City. After the orbit is established, nothing seems to change about the general flight path, altitude or power settings for hours-on-end. I have noted that weather and wind cause the ‘orbit’ to drift from a circle to an ellipse occasionally.

At first I thought these flights were for sight-seeing/tourism... but that illusion faded fast... after the oddity set-in. The prospect that these flight are ‘doing surveillance’ seems to be the ‘best-fit’ for my observations.
 
smithbs
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Joined: Wed May 17, 2017 6:09 pm

Re: Interesting Piece About Military and Private Spy Planes over the US

Fri Aug 11, 2017 10:54 pm

This is always an interesting topic. I'm familiar with what goes on and what capabilities are out there due to my past work involving Afghanistan. And I had no problem with those operations over there - in fact, they were fascinating. Most people have no idea, and when they are surprised by various headlines regarding the breadth and depth of surveillance, I ask them why they ever thought it wasn't already possible.

But I get uptight when they occur so much at home. There are laws that govern what can be collected and used, but the fallibility of laws is linked to the fallibility of those who work in them, and those people often "lean forward" and now we see things such as front companies for military agencies to keep these aircraft and operations from public knowledge. I am supposed to believe that Congress at least has oversight on what happens so that my rights are not infringed upon. That requires trusting Congress. Oh boy....

Kudos to the news team. It must have been a fun project to work on that story from the technical perspective.

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