June 20, 2019

Trump downplays Iranian shootdown of U.S. surveillance drone

Featuring Chris Dougherty

Source: The Los Angeles Times

Journalist David S. Cloud

An unarmed U.S. surveillance drone was shot down by a missile fired from Iran, the Pentagon said Thursday, but U.S. and Iranian military officials disputed whether the unmanned aircraft was in Iranian airspace and President Trump downplayed the attack, calling it a mistake.

The incident was the most serious military clash between the U.S. and Iran since the Pentagon began beefing up its presence in the Middle East in early May, saying intelligence indicated that Iran was preparing to attack U.S. forces or allies.

While he may still order retaliation, Trump sought to ease tensions, suggesting the downing of the Navy’s RQ-4 Global Hawk unmanned aircraft by an Iranian surface-to-air missile was inadvertent or a misjudgment by a rogue Iranian military officer or unit.

Read the full article and more in The Los Angeles Times.


  • Chris Dougherty

    Senior Fellow, Defense Program

    Chris Dougherty is a Senior Fellow for the Defense Program at CNAS. His primary areas of research include defense strategy, operational concepts, and force planning. He combin...