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Submission + - X51A Hypersonic Research Flight "A Failure" (

Jeremiah Cornelius writes: According to Associate Press, the Air Force announced the failure of the X-51A Waverider, after being dropped by a B-52 bomber off the California coast. The unmanned experimental aircraft was designed to reach Mach 6, or 3,600 mph. suffered a control failure during an attempt to fly at six times the speed of sound. But the Air Force said that a faulty control fin prevented it from starting its exotic scramjet engine and the craft was lost. The first Boeing-designed X-51A achieved Mach 5 for about 140 seconds in 2010. A second Waverider flight last year ended prematurely with the craft trying to restart its engine until it plunged into the Pacific.
The Military

Submission + - US Journalists Targeted by Pentagon Propaganda Contractors (

Jeremiah Cornelius writes: While conducting investigative reporting on civilian contractors in the Pentagon's "InfoOps" Internet propaganda operations, two reporters found themselves the subject of a highly targeted, professional media manipulation effort. Reporter Tom Vanden Brook and Editor Ray Locker found that Twitter and Facebook accounts have been created in their names, along with a Wikipedia entry and dozens of message board postings and blog comments. Websites were registered in their names. Some postings merely copied Vanden Brook's and Locker's previous reporting. Others accused them of being sponsored by the Taliban. "I find it creepy and cowardly that somebody would hide behind my name and presumably make up other names in an attempt to undermine my credibility," Vanden Brook said. If these websites were created using federal funds, it could violate federal law prohibiting the production of propaganda for domestic consumption.

Submission + - U.S. Strategic Command Deletes Russian Spacecraft (

Jeremiah Cornelius writes: Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin accused the US of sabotage, regarding the recent falure of the Mars-bound, Phobos-Grunt probe. To add additional intrigue, after the allegation the United States Strategic Command "mysteriously" deleted all Phobos-Grunt data from Space Track. Space Track is an online database that tracks every object in orbit, and is publicly available to more than 39,000 users around the world. Phobos-Grunt tracking information was replaced with the following message:

Information regarding the Phobos-Grunt (SCC# 37872) is being accomplished in a different format. This format is different from standard entries posted to Space Track.

Do not underestimate the value of print statements for debugging.