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Neon Tommy - Annenberg digital news

Iranian Jets Fire At American Drone

Michael Juliani |
November 8, 2012 | 6:38 p.m. PST

Executive Producer

Obama's use of unmanned drones has drawn scrutiny from some.  (Flickr Creative Commons)
Obama's use of unmanned drones has drawn scrutiny from some. (Flickr Creative Commons)

Two Iranian fighter jets fired at an unarmed United States drone in the Persian Gulf on November 1, according to CNN.  The Pentagon disclosed that the drone was doing routine maritime surveillance in international airspace 16 miles off the Iranian coast. 

The Iranian jets didn't hit the drone, but the attack raises new questions about President Obama's use of unmanned drones as well as Iran's willingness to use force.

"Our aircraft was never in Iranian airspace.  It was flying in international air space.  The recognized limit is 12 nautical miles off the coast and we never entered the 12 nautical mile limit," said Pentagon Press Secretary George Little.

According to Fox News, the Iranian jets trailed the drone for a short period before the drone landed safely at an undisclosed location.  The jets fired beneath the drone.  U.S. military intelligence remains unsure if the Iranian pilots didn't hit the drone because of lack of skill or because they had no intention of bringing it down. 

One official said, "It doesn't matter, they fired on us."

The United States has levied crippling sanctions against Iran that have severely injured the country's economy.  Fox News also reported that the Iranian regime received news of President Obama's re-election with stern warning that the United States should not expect any renewed negotiations.


Read more of Neon Tommy's coverage of Iran here.

Reach Executive Producer Michael Juliani here.



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