Ali Fadavi, commander of the naval branch of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, told Press TV (another state-run outlet) that the Scan Eagle Unmanned Aerial Vehicle was conducting a reconnaissance flight over the Persian Gulf when it entered Iranian air space and was captured.
Fadavi’s claim, and the Iranian footage, could be bunk. Even if the captured robot is real, it’s not clear whether it crashed or was somehow forced down. Cmdr. Jason Salata, a Navy spokesman, told the AP that all U.S. drones were “fully accounted for.” However, he did say that some Scan Eagles have been lost at sea in the past.
The alleged drone capture comes just a month after Iranian jets tried and failed to shoot down an American Predator UAV — and almost exactly a year after getting its hands on a stealthy U.S. Air Force Sentinel drone that crashed, or was hijacked, on the Iran-Afghanistan border.