back to article Obama's rainbow stealth aircraft uncloaks over Virginia

As we're all now fully aware, the world officially became a lovelier place* on 20 January when Barack Obama was sworn in as the 44th prez of the US of A - a heartwarming ceremony at which he promised sunlit meadows in which children might gaily gambol, just as soon as he'd dealt with this pesky global economic apocalypse. …


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  1. Adrian


    Haven't you guys ever watched a sci-fi film ? The plane at the back is using a holographic artifical multi-spectrum tacion emitting radar-image (HAMSTER for the group hugging brigade) to project another plane in front of them so when those pesky SAM's get launched, they blow up the holgraphic plane not the real one carrying the bombs.

    All hail our holographic overlords !!!!!

  2. pctechxp

    The prez doth promise too much

    Was a great speech but he has promised more than he can deliver I fear.

    Anyway another very funny article from yourself, on top form as ever.

  3. Paul Murphy
    Black Helicopters

    Ah pretty.

    I hope DARPA get the funding for the 'Flowers in Hair' gun they want to develop, or the 'Candy-thrower' (like a flame thrower but for candy-floss) project.

    I can't wait for the secret 'hugs' police to arrive to give me my hug.

    Oh -the helicopter shaped like a cute cloud is here..

  4. Paul

    I would guess...

    That most of the people at DARPA dont care if it is death tech or not, just as long as it is "outside the box".

  5. alan

    i for one

    welcome our rainbow-cloaked luuuurrrv-dispensing* overlords

    * aka hubble-lens-flare-bodied phony-planes**

    **aka reflection-of-the-jetfighter-flying-behind-it***

    ***aka someone-playing-silly-buggers-with-photoshop

    I like to cater for all eventualities..... no telling who will be our overlords these days.....

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I bet

    I bet the Taliban would be done for if we bombed their bases with cuddly toys, candy canes and love letters.

  7. Jason Haas
    Jobs Horns

    No commentary about Bono at the pre-inaugural party?

    The first thing I did after watching the pre-inaugural party on Sunday or Monday (whenever it was) was to come here to El Reg in search of biting commentary about the presence of not just Bono, but the whole band at the party in front of the Lincoln Memorial. And what do I see? Nada. Nada! Effing nothing! I count on you people for this! Bah.

  8. Alain Moran
    Black Helicopters

    Looks like it is based at langley

    Given the path of it's con-trails perhaps the fleet of rainbombers are based at langley?

  9. Tom Paine Silver badge

    Imaging tech

    Looks like an artifact of a pushbroom imaging sensor array on the satellite; these have a single row of CCD pixels that capture one line of the ground after another as the planet rotates beneath the spacecraft. To get colour (and infrared et cetera) multiple lines of sensors are used which are sensitive to different wavelengths. As the aircraft was presumably moving relative to the surface, multiple ghost images are captured. (There's no wikipedia article on pushbrooms, but google has far more than you ever wanted to know on the topic.)

    I could of course be completely wrong about this :)

  10. TeeCee Gold badge

    @Jason Haas

    You too, huh?

    Got it. Out of here.

  11. Sam Green
    Thumb Up


    I have soiled myself mirth-wise.

  12. Mike Richards

    @ Paul

    'That most of the people at DARPA dont care if it is death tech or not, just as long as it is "outside the box".'

    All very true, but it does rather beg the question - 'what are DARPA projects delivered in, if they're already outside of the box?'

  13. amanfromMars Silver badge

    Bono on the Ball at Last .... Now What Magic? :-)

    If Bono was on the ball he would have sent El Reg what was to be Shared and Shown. Then he can Lead with what we Follow.


  14. Mike Moyle Silver badge

    Diffraction grating as stealth technology...

    "'s so crazy that it just might work!"

  15. Fluffykins Silver badge

    My money is on

    Different parts of the spectrum (Maybe what we experts call "Red", "Green" and "Blue") being imaged at slightly different moments.

    Or something like that.

  16. FBJ
    Thumb Down

    Highlights of the speech

    Take out all the superfluous wordage and you're left with:

    "Ma fellow citizens… god… freedom… god… patriots… god… enemies… god… washington… god… founding fathers… god… evil english redcoats… god… change… god the creator… bob the builder… yes we can… god bless you, america.”

    Plus ça change.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    <title goes here>

    You are all wrong.

    That is an Obama ordered attack plane vaporising the plane previously called Air Force One ostentatiously taking Blockhead Bush back to Texas.

    The media "showing" of him arriving at Texas is clearly a fake.

    Obvious, really.

  18. James

    @Mike Richards

    "All very true, but it does rather beg the question - 'what are DARPA projects delivered in, if they're already outside of the box?'"

    DARPA projects don't get delivered, they deliver YOU.*


  19. E

    @Anonymous Coward

    Canada had a secret plan to carpet bomb the entire USA with BC Bud had Bush ever turned his squint northward.

    Perhaps we could adapt that plan for Afghanistan.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters

    But I'm too tired

    Forget all this DARPA tech. Our ultimate technology against fighting countries is fast food. If the Middle East had cheap burgers and fried chicken every two blocks, do you think they'd have the energy for protests and violence? They'd all watching TV and surfing the web like the modern lazy world. How much has been spent on bullets, bombs, and airstrikes? How much would it cost to subsidize fast foot restaurants? See?

  21. Andy Bright

    Perhaps the Prez doesn't promise too much

    Being a footie fan in the US, I was a bit surprised at how much faith the average Premier League fan puts in the new Prez. Cries of "Bring on Obama, he'll fix everything.." when their team is losing badly are getting pretty common place now.

  22. Mike Flugennock

    @ Fluffykins: you'n'me both...

    ...on the spectral artifacting in that image. Now that you mention it, it reminds me a whole lot of one of my favorite Cassini images at:

    ...containing the image of Saturn and the ring plane with "opposition glow" off the rings at

    ...which is an approximate composite natural-color view shot in three rapid-fire exposures through red, green, and blue filters as the spacecraft pulled away; everything is "in register" except for the opposition glow which, because the spacecraft was travelling so fast, was exposed in three slightly different positions, creating a spectral artifact which wouldn't be visible to the hypothetical human passenger aboard Cassini.

  23. Kevin

    @AC 19:39

    Actually your idea is why I thought America got planes rammed into its tower due to them not wanting us pushing that stuff over there and destroying their heritage...

    Only thing America really needs (besides invulnerable killbots and other fun DARPA related death machines) is to stop applying the American way of life on every other country on this planet and leave them alone.

  24. Ben

    @ Kevin

    Sorry? You thought that the whole Twin Towers thing was just a pissy reaction to yet another gerkin lurkin' in his Big Mac?

  25. R Callan

    US stealth

    As the rear aircraft is obviously a Hawk and the unstealthing one looks very similar, perhaps the stealth technology is British. Hawks are too small to have miracle stealthy gear added as an afterthought.

  26. Richard Freeman

    Sun, Sun come and get your Sun....

    at which he promised sunlit meadows...

    I watched the inauguration, and the weather is still crap. Where's the lovely weather we citizens of Earth were promised, eh?

    Ah - it all got delivered Down South - we seem to have too much Sun down here in Australia at the moment..... the blasted courier driver has delivered your Sun to the wrong place and now we have too much, do you want to come and pick it up?

  27. Jonathan McKeown

    Highlights of the speech: @FBJ

    I think it might have been the Daily Telegraph where I saw the inauguration speech rendered as a tag-cloud.

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Refracted sunlight

    It's probably sunlight being refracted in water vapour just below the jet. I've seen similar around the shadow of a plane when flying above clouds.

    Check the position of the rainbow relative to the jet, and the shadow angles from the jetties at the bottom of the picture - they are the same.

  29. Yorkshirepudding


    admiral kirk got lost on his way to find some humpback whales?

    mines the one with the invisibility cloak

  30. Anonymous Coward

    got another sighting of same plane here

    37° 5'47.71"N


    looks like they are flying a few miles behind the other plane

  31. Chris

    I found the base !!!

    ok I have been doing some tracking and found the base for the "rainbow" squadron

    whats that noise.. hey you leave me alone !! is that a tazzo.......... bzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzt


    2 hours later

    oh my head...

    why does my ass hurt???

  32. Alice Andretti

    BC bud

    "E" said:

    "Canada had a secret plan to carpet bomb the entire USA with BC Bud had Bush ever turned his squint northward."

    I thought Canada was already doing that.

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