The Pentagon is unable to explain images of what witnesses took to be a high-altitude rocket launched off the coast of southern California at sunset Monday, officials said.
But John Pike, a defense expert who is director of GlobalSecurity.org, said he believes he has solved the mystery.
“It’s clearly an airplane contrail,” Pike said Tuesday afternoon. “It’s an optical illusion that looks like it’s going up, whereas in reality it’s going towards the camera. The tip of the contrail is moving far too slowly to be a rocket. When it’s illuminated by the sunset, you can see hundreds of miles of it … all the way to the horizon.
“Why the government is so badly organized that they can’t get somebody out there to explain it and make this story go away … I think that’s the real story,” Pike added. “I mean, it’s insane that with all the money we are spending, all these technically competent people, that they can’t get somebody out there to explain what is incredibly obvious…”
The Federal Aviation Administration, the Coast Guard, Navy, Air Force, and California Reps. Dana Rohrabacher and Jane Harman — whose coastal districts are closest to the offshore contrails — were at a loss to explain the images.
“The FAA ran radar replays of a large area west of Los Angeles based on media reports of the possible missile launch at approximately 5 p.m. (PT) on Monday. The radar replays did not reveal any fast moving, unidentified targets in that area,” said FAA spokesman Ian Gregor. “The FAA did not receive reports … of unusual sightings from pilots who were flying in the area on Monday afternoon. “The FAA did not approve any commercial space launches around the area Monday,” he added.
The Feds have mostly come up empty because they’re all bloody afraid that one or another secret agency did something behind their collective butts. If they accept conventional wisdom that it’s a simple optical illusion – and something devious is proven – they’d rather look like ignoranuses than agencies not in on the secret.