The Taliban’s First Drone? Not Quite

So, some pictures of a micro-UAV that was found during a raid on insurgent supply cache in Helmand Province, Afghanistan recently emerged on the Internet prompting some to wonder if this example of one of the Taliban or al Qaeda’s first ever homemade drones. I can almost guarantee it’s not. What I can (almost) guarantee is that the little drone shown above is a Lockheed Martin-made Desert Hawk drone that went down — likely due to an accident — while being operated by NATO forces. Remember, UAVs crash pretty frequently and small, cheap ones like the Desert Hawk can go down for a number of reasons ranging from bad weather to straying too far from the unit that launched it and losing its connection with the laptop that’s controlling it.

The local insurgent crew likely scooped up the little plane as a cool trophy — just looking at the pics above you can see that it doesn’t appear to be in flight-worthy shape. Even if the inusrgents could repair the obvious physical damage to the drone, they most likely don’t have access to the computer software and communications gear needed to make it work.

Click through the jump for more pics of the captured and then recaptured drone along with some pics of Lockheed’s Desert Hawk that I took at last year’s Modern Day Marine expo.

Compare the drone above to these pics of Lockheed’s Desert Hawk.

H/t the Aviationist.

23 Comments on "The Taliban’s First Drone? Not Quite"

  1. They can buy better planes from a Tower Hobbies catalog.

  2. They Do have drone technology. It is tethered buy a string. unfortunately it only flies in circles…

  3. Who is the wise one that decided to pick up a piece of US military hardware that has a probability of having some kind of intact tracking system? And then bring it back to your safehouse/weapon cache. I swear these guys are a few bricks short of a full load.

    "if you didnt put it there, dont move it"

  4. Anyone who has a RC plane and mini cameras can make a recon UAV not surprised AQ has some. Im sure Russian and China have them (alot more advance too).

  5. McPosterdoor | May 21, 2012 at 4:41 pm | Reply

    Are those big bags of opium Lockheed Martin's as well? That's one hell of a picnic they are planning, great buffet table.

  6. My Parrot UAV controlled by my iPad would serve them better.

  7. Taliban throw down mountain with camera and they got a UAV!

  8. gunslinger6 | May 21, 2012 at 6:23 pm | Reply

    I am looking for the video to post link, but I have seen video of Marines firing at Taliban UAV's with 240's. Shows how close they are to some OP's

  9. The big advantage the Taliban and Al Qauada have is that they can buy technology on the open market. There are lots of examples of them getting better stuff then our troops because of that. We are limited to buying from defense contractors.

  10. The Taliban and AQ DO have drones, but not flying ones. Their drones are would-be martyrs who strap on a bomb and try to take others with them.

  11. John Larsen | May 22, 2012 at 9:35 am | Reply

    The " drones " are the greatest invention since " sliced bread " if it saves just one American lifel, let's keep hoping the Talliban or Al Qauada never get the smarts to put one together.

  12. I have a spy plane and i bought it out of an Estes rockets catalog. made some homade rockets for it to.

  13. Infidel4LIFE | May 22, 2012 at 11:42 am | Reply

    They use kites.

  14. Do you think our imposter-in-chief will ask politely for this one back? The tactic worked really well in Iran.

  15. Perhaps the RQ-170 was simply a Trojan Horse…..we'll probably never know the real reason why one of them is in Iranian hands.

  16. They are the same but can be reversed engineered and fixed up but this is really no more than a large flying model you can buy at an R/C shop

  17. PORTER FIELD | May 22, 2012 at 6:16 pm | Reply

    WHY WOULD THEY EVEN NEED A DRONE??? THEY CAN GRAB A KID OFF THE STREET, PAY HIS MOM $20 , GIVE HIM A BOMB IN A BAG AND TELL HIM TO GO VISIT THE US SOLDIERS…..INSTANT DRONE!!!

  18. tom breidel | May 23, 2012 at 7:51 am | Reply

    People its only a matter of time before our drones will bite us in the ass.
    Everything on the market can and will be used against us.

    Its the Law of "what go around comes around"!

  19. Well I think there should be a fail safe soon as it goes down and you still have contact there should be like a little piece of eexplosives inside of it and they could detonate it and that is so the drones internals and maybe it externals are destroyed

  20. JUST BE PREPARED TO DEFEND YOUR GROUND.

    IF A DRONE FLY ARROUND YOUR PROPERTY SHOOT IT DOWN WITH A 12 GAGE.

    JUST LIKE SHOOTING WITH SKEET OR TRAP. JUST A FLYING TOY.

    Pathfinder22554

  21. As soon as I looked at the picture of that drone I laughed that little toy is funny I should buy my cousin one at toys r us

  22. bennyliuwantara | January 11, 2013 at 5:12 am | Reply

    better you use mininuc to abolish them all, it is good for the future of human being inthe world

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.


*