July 27th, 2010
01:22 PM ET

WikiLeaks documents: When unmanned aircraft crash, scavengers often follow

WASHINGTON — When unmanned aircraft crash in Afghanistan, scavenger hunters frequently aren't far behind, U.S. military incident reports published by WikiLeaks suggest.

On several occasions, military units sent to recover Tactical Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (TUAV) have arrived to find the aircraft stripped of valuable parts. In April of 2007, a parachute deployed on a TUAV that had maintenance issues, one report says. A patrol sent to recover the aircraft couldn't reach it until the next day, when they discovered it was missing some of its electronic components and its payload. The report says the Afghan National Police and local elders "will continue to work with (local residents) to recover any pieces that were collected by inappropriate personnel."

Similarly, a UAV crashed in March of 2008. The report reads: "The nose of the UAV is missing and the engine is burned. There are multiple footprints in the area from locals."

Ditto in November of 2008, when a UAV had a hard landing with its parachute deployed. The aircraft was destroyed, the report says, but "several components in good condition were grabbed by LN (local residents) before the QRF (quick reaction force) arrival."

soundoff (9 Responses)
  1. No american in support

    All military are killers, in the military you are fair game to be killed just as you have signed up to be a killer, no military, no wars!

    July 28, 2010 at 4:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • MaryM

      If you have no military then there is no one to protect you. If that's how you wish to live then so be it. Move to Switzerland and leave wonderful America to the deserving.

      July 30, 2010 at 3:54 pm | Report abuse |
  2. team america

    UAV's are the future of aviation! So, if your a terrorist or supporter of terrorism -look up now!

    July 28, 2010 at 1:17 pm | Report abuse |
  3. team america

    UAV's are the future of aviation! So, if your a terrorist or supporter of terrorism -look up and smile!

    July 28, 2010 at 1:16 pm | Report abuse |
  4. team america

    UAV's are the future and if your a terrorist or supporter of terrorism -look up and smile!

    July 28, 2010 at 1:16 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Pete Larson

    I posted some preliminary statistical analysis of the Wikileaks data on my personal blog including some maps that you probably wouldn't normally see. Please take a look at it if you are interested.

    http://peterslarson.com/2010/07/26/afghan-wikileaks-war-diary-part-2/

    July 27, 2010 at 8:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ricky Martin

      Again, as they say:"There are lies, damned lies and statistics"

      July 28, 2010 at 11:38 am | Report abuse |
  6. Smith in Oregon

    Of course informed individuals would be seeking parts of America's ROV's when they are shot down or crash. American taxpayers were charged Billions of dollars in designing and engineering them originally. China, Israel and Russia could easily de-engineer the engines, airframe and electronic sensors for less than 1/100 of the original engineering costs. Win-Win! Of course the American taxpayers get HOSED, while the rest of the world get's it for pennys on the dollar and lives fat.

    July 27, 2010 at 5:23 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Roberto Mussi Filho

    The russians lost the war and US will lose too. Go home, before more US soldiers die. There´s no solutions in that part of the world.

    July 27, 2010 at 1:59 pm | Report abuse |