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The Cold War wasn't always cold for the reconnaissance crews that were out there on the periphery and flying other missions. Their efforts and sacrifices in those dangerous days were instrumental in delivering the vital intelligence necessary to protect the free world. Those efforts continue to this day, on the ground and in the air, against the ruthless fanatics we know as "terrorists." The adversary has changed, the methods are changed, and the intelligence missions and dangers must go on to meet the new and dangerous threats to our security and peace.

My intent here is to provide some historical insights to techniques and developments in this key area of intelligence production.

An intelligence professional is given the task of surveying the bounds of battle in the hidden war of politics and morality known as intelligence.


  • YO-3A (Yo-Yo)
  • OV-1 Mohawk
  • RF-4C Phantom II
  • U-2 / TR-1
  • SR-71

Drones, RPVs, UAVs & UCAVs

  • Selected Programs
  • U.S. Army Aquila - Technology Demonstrator
  • Compass Cope
  • Predator
  • Global Hawk
  • UAV/UCAV Projects & Demonstrations
  • X-46 & X-47

Photo Interpretation & Imagery Analysis

  • What are the "Int's" in Intelligence?
  • The Intelligence Cycle
  • Historical Overview of Aerial Reconnaissance, Surveillance and Target Acquisition
  • What is Photo Interpretation....
  • Photo / Imagery Interpretation Techniques
  • What is a Photo / Imagery Analyst
  • Photo / Imagery Analysis Process
  • Imagery-Derived Intelligence Information Reporting
  • The Signaturing Techniques
  • Imagery Interpretation Keys
  • Pages from a WWII Photo Interpretation Key
  • Pages from a 70s Vintage PI Key
  • Collection Target Categories
  • A 70s Vintage Photo Interpretation Kit (Pictures)
  • “The Berlin for Lunch Bunch…”