The Alitalia pilot spotted the unmanned craft, described as "a black drone", hovering just 200 feet from his jet about three miles east of the airport as he made his approach from Brooklyn.
"He was very clear as to what he saw," a source was quoted by the New York Post as saying.
The pilot told investigators the object was flying at about 1,800 feet and looked like "a black drone about a meter square, with helicopter rotors on the corners".
NYís Joint Terrorism Task Force and the Federal Aviation Administration are also investigating the pilotís claim, and so far neither they nor the FBI have been able to explain what an unidentified drone was doing in controlled airspace.
The type of drone the pilot describes witnessing.
News reports initially focused on the idea that it was either a remote-controlled model-aircraft enthusiastís airplane, or it was "terrorists" (the reactionary go-to bogeyman). There was no room in the message for federal agency involvement, even in light of recent drone-related messages coming from the government and law enforcement.
Drones have been used on American soil previously by authorities to target suspects, and have been used to target and murder American citizens abroad.
Those at civil aviation forum Airliners.net speculated on the droneís origins:
"I donít think itís a stretch to imagine DHS/ATF/FBI/CBP (as a starter list of potential operators) flying a surveillance drone near JFK, or anywhere else in the US for that matter. It is a stretch to imagine someone with the skills and financial wherewithal to operate a camera-equipped drone up to 1500, would hover it on a approach pattern to JFK."
"Well now that depends on whose drone it is...The point of drones is we, the population at large... are not supposed to be cognizant of the fact they are in the air watching whatever. I have already seen (3) in class Charlie airspace in Suffolk county. This begs the question, in New Yorkís congested airspace...who gets the blame when a county, state or US government Drone impacts an airliner and kills."
USAToday.com: "...Flying unmanned aerial vehicles is illegal for most business purposes; however, governments and public entities such as police departments can apply for permission to operate them."
No matter whether it was a hobbiest or a federal agency piloting the drone, the maneuver was dangerous to all involved, and it also demonstrates further occurrence and acceptance of drones in the public sphere.
But thereís a bigger question here: why was there a drone flying over Brooklyn to begin with? The NYPD has said on the record that itís "interestedí in using drones to give it crime-seeking eyes in the sky, but no official program is in place. The legal framework for domestic drone operation isnít even solidifiedóthough that hasnít stopped both government and private sector operators from flying them over the US.
It canít be stated enough: this will only become common up to the point that itís the norm.
Where the Islamic State Gets Its Weapons 2015-05-04 21:26
Early one morning in late February, a European investigator working in Kobani, the northern Syrian city that for months had been a battleground between Kurdish fighters and militants from the Islamic State, stepped outside the building where he was staying and saw something unusual. A Kurd on the street was carrying a long black assault rifle that the investigator thought ...
Garland Shooter Elton Simpson ‚ÄėHandled‚Äô By Paid FBI Informant 2015-05-05 4:49 In our story released late last night, we posed this question to our readers:
‚ÄúWere these supposed ‚Äėdead gunmen‚Äô part of the drill, or were they patsies handled by a counter-terrorism federal ‚Äėinformant‚Äô?‚Äú
We didn‚Äôt know it at the time, but it turns out that we were right.
Image: ‚ÄėGarland Gunman‚Äô Elton Simpson, adjusting his CCTV camera at his apartment in Phoenix, AZ.
What is Sacred to Americans? 2015-05-05 4:32 The free speech fest in Texas that resulted in the police shooting of two apparent terrorists at the Curtis Culwell Center in Garland marks growing prominence and qualified support for the movement for free speech for anti-Muslim satire, led by the American Freedom Defense Initiative, a well-financed New York group.
No similar type of organization in America dares to test ...
A Lesson for New York Cops: How to Subdue Brawlers Without Hurting Them 2015-05-04 23:07
Every day in America police assault, injury and kill people who do not pose a threat to them.
‚ÄúThe increase in police brutality in the U.S. is a frightening reality. In the last decade alone the number of people murdered by police has reached 5,000. While the number of soldiers killed since the inception of the Iraq war is 4,489,‚ÄĚ The ...
Israel Is Preparing For Alien Invasion - Are The 'Tall White' Aliens Coming? 2015-05-04 21:00
Earlier in the week, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) conducted a training exercise for its Air Force cyber unit, the ‚ÄúOfek‚ÄĚ (Horizon). The training exercise was based on a scenario in which the world is under attack by alien invaders, and IDF tech forces are faced with the challenge of sabotaging the advanced technological systems of attacking alien spacecraft.
Although Lt. ...