WASHINGTON (CBS DC) – In order to protect the nation’s capital from potential off-shore cruise missile attacks, the Pentagon will be testing blimps as a means of detection.
CBS News is reporting that officials hope the blimps will help address what is presently a gap in the Army’s ability to discover potential threats.
“As it stands today, we have practically zero capability to detect it, much less defend against it,” an unnamed military officer was quoted as saying regarding potential cruise missile attacks.
Similar technology has been employed in Afghanistan and along the Mexican border, CBS News additionally learned. Russia is said to have several cruise missiles in its arsenal. Iran and other nations are reportedly developing similar weapons.
The blimps may reportedly be outfitted with radars and cameras that will allow U.S. Army officials to monitor both ground vehicular movement and individuals.
Some expressed concern regarding the potential invasions of privacy inherent in the use of the blimps. However, they are presently legal for the U.S. Army to utilize.
“Right now there are no rules,” Christopher Calabrese of the ACLU told CBS News. “There’s nothing that bars us from having high-powered cameras monitoring our every public movement.”
Two blimps will be tested in the fall of this year.