On the eve of my return to the States, the newsfeeds were swamped with images of fully loaded Iranian drones and missiles attempting to rain fire on Israel. They fell in glowing arcs; some left meteoric trails, some were emberlike orange orbs, other blips evaporated in booms and white flashes. Voice-overs were calling the scale unprecedented – dozens of launches grew to scores, which grew to hundreds, in as official a declaration of war as it gets anymore. And all I’m thinking is, shit, does this mean my flight home gets postponed because there’s a British connection, and terrorist retaliation will shut down Heathrow?

As I learned later, yeah, of course the Brits were in on the action. As were France and Jordan and the United States, which dispatched two F-15 units from the 494th Fighter Squadron at Lakenheath Royal Air Force Base to join their RAF counterparts in foiling Iran’s blitz. The Israeli Defense Force said the mullahs flung 350 drones, cruise and ballistic missiles at Israel’s fabled “Iron Dome” air shield. And what happened next looked like Tehran’s attack was all about purging its inventory of outdated hardware:

More than half the ordnance failed to reach Israeli air space due to technical malfunctions on launch or in flight. Of the remaining assault wave, U.S. Central Command reported half of those platforms were blown apart by American interceptors. Less than 2 percent actually struck their targets, and nobody got killed.

Anyway, leaders on both sides called off the dogs in time, and I made it home without a hitch. But there’s always a glut of matches and gasoline in the so-called Holy Land, and the unending tensions keep sticking it to us at the pump.

What’s new here is the startling contrast between how well American air defenses performed over the Middle East versus their impotent rendering over restricted air space on home court. This week, a month after the story broke about how “drone” swarms met zero resistance over Langley Air Force Base – coupled with an acknowledgement by the director of NORAD of “the potentially ubiquitous presence of UAP” over American military installations – two U.S. senators decided to go on offense.

To read more, click here.