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  1. #1
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    Mysterious "missile" launched near California coast

    The Pentagon is unable to explain what appears to be a large missile launched near a major American city. I suspect that this is either an accidental military launch, or a very powerful amateur rocket. It's frightening to consider that the technology to build and launch such rockets is available to the general public.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-11721981

    Yeehaw! Even rednecks with pickup trucks can launch powerful rockets...

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D6tCV...eature=related

  2. #2
    Ricardo Cabeza
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    the government knows nothing about it, wink wink
    Whenever the legislators endeavour to take away and destroy the property of the people, or to reduce them to slavery under arbitrary power, they put themselves into a state of war with the people who are thereupon absolved from any further obedience, and are left to the common refuge which God hath provided for all men against force and violence - John Locke

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  3. #3
    Iohannes fac totum
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    Cool.

  4. #4
    Ricardo Cabeza
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deus_Ex_Machina
    It's frightening to consider that the technology to build and launch such rockets is available to the general public.
    if you aren't doing anything wrong, you haven't got anything to worry about
    Whenever the legislators endeavour to take away and destroy the property of the people, or to reduce them to slavery under arbitrary power, they put themselves into a state of war with the people who are thereupon absolved from any further obedience, and are left to the common refuge which God hath provided for all men against force and violence - John Locke

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  5. #5
    Misfit Toy
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    Anyone know what Bent has been up too lately.........
    It's all fun and games until someone ends up in a cone.

    Don't make me go all honey badger on your ass

  6. #6
    jaded bitter joy crusher
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deus_Ex_Machina
    The Pentagon is unable to explain what appears to be a large missile launched near a major American city.
    Never mind:
    Jonathan McDowell, an astronomer who tracks space launches at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge, Massachusetts, says it was probably an optical illusion caused by a plane.
    "If it's coming over the horizon, straight at you, then it rises quickly above the horizon," he told New Scientist. "You can't tell because it's so far away that it's getting closer to you you'd think it was just going vertically up," he says.

    The fact that it occurred at twilight would have emphasised the contrail, he adds. "It's critical that it's at sunset it's a low sun angle. It really illuminates the contrail and makes it look very dense and bright."
    Example contrails:







    Compare to the "missile" launch:



    And a bit of evidence:






    And another perspective on the "missile" trail, taken a few minutes later, but from a different angle:


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  7. #7
    Motorator
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    I have a hunch Cooper's somehow involved.
    Beam me up, baby.

  8. #8
    Sooper Dooper Moderator!
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    Quote Originally Posted by snapdragen
    Anyone know what Bent has been up too lately.........
    I'm thinking lemonlime or bigbill had an itchy finger.

  9. #9
    Palm trees & sunshine!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deus_Ex_Machina
    Yeehaw! Even rednecks with pickup trucks can launch powerful rockets...

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D6tCV...eature=related

    Powerful? It was completely unguided, slow and doesn't even look like it broke 1000'. They could *maybe* hit a helicopter *if* the chopper was right in the aimed flight path and was able to move itself fast enough to correct for the rocket's course deviations. And then the rocket would shatter on the chopper's fuselage.

    Amateur rocketry has been around for over 100 years.


    supervillain

  10. #10
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    There are missiles being fired all the time at Vandenberg and over here at White Sands missile ranges. The government just doesn't always want to explain exactly what it was they were testing. Big Deal.
    With people like Peter P. around, I am done posting on this website. Mean people have driven me off after 9 plus years. Good luck newbies beware.

  11. #11
    xxl
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    I say they were cleaning their missile, and it accidentally went off.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by xxl
    I say they were cleaning their missile, and it accidentally went off.
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    My brain hurts

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fredke
    Damn, you mean we didn't nuke Iran?

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fredke
    ...an astronomer who tracks space launches at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge, Massachusetts, says it was probably an optical illusion caused by a plane.[/I]
    "If it's coming over the horizon, straight at you, then it rises quickly above the horizon," he told New Scientist. "You can't tell because it's so far away that it's getting closer to you you'd think it was just going vertically up," he says.

    The fact that it occurred at twilight would have emphasised the contrail, he adds. "It's critical that it's at sunset it's a low sun angle. It really illuminates the contrail and makes it look very dense and bright."
    [/I]
    I'm not entirely convinced by this explanation. I agree that in still photos a contrail can seem like an optical illusion. In this particular video it looks very much like a missile or rocket.

    Those who take comfort in the idea that amateurs or terrorists cannot build and launch such weapons should think again. High power rocket enthusiasts regularly launch rockets up to 40,000 feet in altitude, and even beyond that. While they do not have guidance systems, they don't really need them if they are being launched at an urban area. A rocket with this range could be launched from a field outside of a city and easily hit a populated area with no guidance system whatsoever. I think that defense and security officials know this is true, and they are avoiding the subject because it demonstrates vulnerability.

    Here is an 'amateur' rocket enthusiast with his home made projectile. Just imagine him with a long beard and you begin to appreciate the destructive potential of these types of rockets.


  15. #15
    E Plurbus Elvis
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deus_Ex_Machina
    Those who take comfort in the idea that amateurs or terrorists cannot build and launch such weapons should think again. High power rocket enthusiasts regularly launch rockets up to 40,000 feet in altitude, and even beyond that. While they do not have guidance systems, they don't really need them if they are being launched at an urban area.
    Yes, but in this the terrorists are not idiots. A rented box truck can carry a much heavier payload a lot farther and more accurately than any hobbyist rocket.

    You might want to read up on basic rocketry, thrust, and payload mass before continuing to entertain your paranoia.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deus_Ex_Machina
    I'm not entirely convinced by this explanation. I agree that in still photos a contrail can seem like an optical illusion. In this particular video it looks very much like a missile or rocket.

    Those who take comfort in the idea that amateurs or terrorists cannot build and launch such weapons should think again. High power rocket enthusiasts regularly launch rockets up to 40,000 feet in altitude, and even beyond that. While they do not have guidance systems, they don't really need them if they are being launched at an urban area. A rocket with this range could be launched from a field outside of a city and easily hit a populated area with no guidance system whatsoever. I think that defense and security officials know this is true, and they are avoiding the subject because it demonstrates vulnerability.

    Here is an 'amateur' rocket enthusiast with his home made projectile. Just imagine him with a long beard and you begin to appreciate the destructive potential of these types of rockets.

    The good news is that so far Al Qaeda's efforts since 9/11 to attack the US have been so incompetent that the "threat" is laughable.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alpha & Omega
    The good news is that so far Al Qaeda's efforts since 9/11 to attack the US have been so incompetent that the "threat" is laughable.
    And why is that?

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by tcufrog02
    And why is that?
    Because most of them are simply idiots.

  19. #19
    E Plurbus Elvis
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alpha & Omega
    Because most of them are simply idiots.
    Yet you suggest these same idiots can overcome huge cost, material, and intellectual hurdles to convert hobby rockets into effective weapons? Most countries cannot do that.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by ElvisMerckx
    Yet you suggest these same idiots can overcome huge cost, material, and intellectual hurdles to convert hobby rockets into effective weapons? Most countries cannot do that.
    I have suggested nothing of the kind. AQ cannot even build a proper car bomb. For them to build a ballistic missile to attack American Cities as Deus is suggesting is doubtful at best.

  21. #21
    E Plurbus Elvis
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alpha & Omega
    I have suggested nothing of the kind. AQ cannot even build a proper car bomb. For them to build a ballistic missile to attack American Cities as Deus is suggesting is doubtful at best.
    My bad, I accidentally confused you with Deus_Ex_Machina who said, "Those who take comfort in the idea that amateurs or terrorists cannot build and launch such weapons should think again."

  22. #22
    Call me a Fred
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    It's all done with smoke and mirrors.
    Mike

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  23. #23
    Misfit Toy
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    Sure....that's what THEY want you to think.....
    It's all fun and games until someone ends up in a cone.

    Don't make me go all honey badger on your ass

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by ElvisMerckx
    You might want to read up on basic rocketry, thrust, and payload mass before continuing to entertain your paranoia.
    Hamas militants routinely fire crude unguided rockets from Gaza into Israel. Most of them are ineffective simply because there is no urban area within their range. If the range were increased enough to hit an urban area there would be casualties almost every day(until Israel retaliates by flattening Gaza). A terrorist could easily do the same thing in the United States or anywhere else. Truck bombs do carry potentially larger payloads, but rockets have the advantage of being inexpensive and portable. They could create terror because of their random and indiscriminate targeting.

  25. #25
    E Plurbus Elvis
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deus_Ex_Machina
    Hamas militants routinely fire crude unguided rockets from Gaza into Israel. ... Truck bombs do carry potentially larger payloads, but rockets have the advantage of being inexpensive and portable. They could create terror because of their random and indiscriminate targeting.
    Hamas fires Iranian/Russian rockets into Israel, not hobbyist tinkertoys.

    If you knew *anything* about rockets or trucks, you'd know that a truck (which is far cheaper and more portable than a rocket) can carry an exponentially larger payload than any hobby rockets can lift off the ground.

    In order for your scenario to work, terrorist would require an assembly line of missile manufacturing, a means of getting the missiles near to or inside the US, trucks/boats to transport the missiles, and personnel to handle and fire the missiles all without detection. What you're suggesting is a state-funded secret army, and you sound about as misguided as Hamas' katyushas.

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