Shoot. People really want to believe in aliens.
Over the weekend, a white light was spotted, blazing across the night sky in southern California, transforming the Internet into a sea of blurry smartphone recordings and Facebook statuses swearing alien spacecraft.
But alas, the mysterious light can be attributed to the nearby doings of the Navy’s Pacific Missile Range, which had conducted a scheduled, unarmed Trident II (D5) missile test at sea off the USS Kentucky (SSBN-737).
(But of course, that’s precisely what the government wants us to believe!)
According to Defense Tech, the USS Kentucky is armed with 24 Trident II ballistic missiles, measuring more than 44 feet long and 6 feet wide. Each one has an operational range of more than 7,400 miles and can carry as many as 14 thermonuclear warheads.
“Launches are conducted on a frequent, recurring basis to ensure the continued reliability of the system,” said the Navy in its official statement. “Each test activity provides valuable information about our systems, thus contributing to assurance in our capabilities… Strategic Systems Programs does not routinely announce missile testing. Information regarding the test launch of Trident II (D5) missiles is classified before the launch.”
Hence the social media frenzy and flood of bewildered reports to police and local news stations on Saturday night.
Due to the military activity, incoming flight patterns to the Los Angeles International Airport were also temporarily altered. (Ooh, another cover up, perhaps?)
Again, I jest.
Forget the crappy iPhone recordings. Check out this beautiful time-lapse footage of the launch, which features the missile streaking over San Francisco’s illuminated Golden Gate Bridge.