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Pakistan to Return Stealth Helo Tail

by John Reed on May 16, 2011

Well, it looks like the tail of the secret stealth helicopter used in the raid to kill Osama bin Laden will make it back to the United States after all. For a while there, many were concerned that the tail section of the craft would find its way into the hands of longtime supplier of Pakistani military gear, China. Instead, the tail will be returned to the U.S. tomorrow, Sen. John Kerry (D-MA), announced today.

From Fox News’ website:

The tail of the disabled Navy chopper left behind in the Usama bin Laden raid in Pakistan will be handed back to the United States sometime Tuesday, U.S. Sen. John Kerry announced Monday during a trip to Islamabad.

The senator, the highest-ranking U.S. official to visit Pakistan since the May 2 raid, also issued a joint statement with Pakistani officials saying the two nations have agreed to work together in any future actions against “high value targets” in Pakistan.

Granted, Pakistan has been in possession of the tail (and smaller pieces of wreckage) for about two weeks now. That’s plenty of time for the ISI, PAF and any of their international allies to analyze, sample and document the coatings, facets and inner workings of the stealthy tail assembly. Still, in-depth reverse engineering the tail will be tougher without the actual hardware.

Meanwhile, U.S. officials remain tight lipped on the bird. All they’ll say is that it was a highly modified MH-60 Black Hawk. Until we see an actual airframe, it’s still anyone’s guess as to whether this is true or not.

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{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

Tim May 16, 2011 at 12:47 pm

I'm sure they are more worried about the potential loss of $3 billion in US aid if they didn't cooperate.

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Ken May 16, 2011 at 1:56 pm

Wonder who much the US taxpayers had to give the Paki's for the return?

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Bill May 17, 2011 at 9:44 am

The check will probably bounce anyhow

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Josh May 16, 2011 at 2:13 pm

No matter how much they denounce the raid and drone strikes, they know were doing a job in which they are too corrupt and unstable to conduct. Plus that aid money could easily go away if they dont play their cards right!

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Chuck May 16, 2011 at 2:52 pm

I think the fear that China would get these parts is overblown. They almost certainly already have purchased/stolen samples of the various stealth materials we use. Determining appropriate geometries is a computer-science exercise at this point, and not a particularly complex one at that. There's really not much they could learn from the tail in its current state.

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zippy May 16, 2011 at 3:29 pm

How much did China and Russia benefit from the shootdown of the F-117 in Yugoslavia I wonder.

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Thunder350 May 16, 2011 at 4:28 pm

A blind man can easily see that China and/or Russia already got their hands on the wreckage, and probably took some of the material back. (Pakistan no doubt was paid very well).

That same blind man can also see that the USA paid a good bit of money in return for the wreckage, that China and Russia already got all the information they wanted from.

USA 0
China/Russia 1
Pakistan 4 (Got paid by the USA, China, Russia, and is also keeping their yearly multi-billion check from the US).

Hell I bet they were even getting paid by the terrorist to hide him in a "military" town. They just weren't expecting our stealth op!

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Bob May 16, 2011 at 6:20 pm

We live in an age where we can take detailed three dimensional digital scans of an object that size recording detail down to the dimples in the paint and small chemical samples can be analyzed well enough for duplication by a guy with a laptop and a couple of briefcase sized machines over the course of a few days. In such an era the physical possession of the remains are not really necessary for back engineering beyond a short initial contact. Did I mention that this is with commercially available hardware?

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Mastro May 17, 2011 at 5:11 pm

The shape of the tail – but the chemistry of the coatings- you need samples- and not flak sized.

People send me fingernail sized plastic samples to analyze- sorry- need a bit more than that.

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Stephen Russell May 16, 2011 at 8:17 pm

Yeah, have our copter back after sending docs ,data to China.
Cancel aid to the Paks.
Send in Team 6 & deny Nuke weapon control IE to fire.
Have India help with own Spec Ops Team.
Joint Spec Ops mission.
Fly from India.

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guest May 17, 2011 at 4:32 am

stop all this speculation, can no-one see it just a weather balloon.
im sure us officials would like us to believe it

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Guest May 17, 2011 at 4:14 pm

for shizzle

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dick May 17, 2011 at 4:48 am

iam sorry, but the photos that i seen on here and the ones that show people standing next to it..there is NO WAY that helicopter carried 12 seals let alone 1, from what i gather of the size it was for recon not to deliver a strike team.and he is another thing, knowing the importance of the scope of the raid one would wonder WHY didnt they perfom a better systems check on a peice of equiptment knowing full they would depend on it that much, double,triple check.

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john May 17, 2011 at 4:49 am

that helo was unmanned, just like the predators,

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phrogdriver May 17, 2011 at 5:11 am

The whackos are coming out in force. Looks like a standard 60 with low-observability mods. The extra weight probably made it a little harder to land–hence the hitting of the fence. Occam's razor is your friend.

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SajI May 17, 2011 at 11:17 am

Dear Americans. Congratulations for having such a 'strong' intelligence to conduct a smart operation to kill Osama. Just a little suggestion, try having an equally STRONGER TAIL when you next come snooping around in our land. :) Cheers!!

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Blackhawk Fitness May 17, 2011 at 2:10 pm

That’s no moon…it’s a space station!

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beau May 18, 2011 at 9:10 pm

folks, when you read someone the riot act…..this iz what happens ! I love it ! Pakistani’s have been scamming us for decades & they got caught with their pants down ! Say good bye to annual aid anymore !

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