ISRAELI Anti-Missile Test Blew Up US Space Shuttle Columbia Ten Years Ago

Ten years ago, the Space Shuttle Columbia exploded on descent during a top-secret mission. At the time, my analysis of the cause of the blast drew support from American aerospace engineers along with angry death threats from zealots in the Israeli Air Force.

Not only was the Israeli military incensed by my revealing that their faulty laser gun system had destroyed the U.S. space craft from within but also that the expose was seen as insulting to astronaut Ilan Ramon, the Israeli war hero who had earlier led the air strike on Iraq’s Osirak nuclear reactor.

The Challenger disaster of January 28, 1986, was immediately followed by the greatest cover-up in aerospace history, an information blackout that continues till now,  even after the termination of the shuttle program.

The deaths of seven crew members and scientists on mission STS-107 launched January 16, 2003, were not due to an accident at launch that scraped foam insulation panels from the ship’s hull, as claimed by NASA. That is an out-and-out official lie, and many NASA insiders are well aware that the foam story does not fit the facts.

The actual cause of the Columbia explosion was the malfunction of an anti-ballistic missile weapons systems designed by the Israel Defense Force, which had been secretly mounted aboard the shuttle in preparation for the Iraq War.

The Israeli laser gun on the Columbia is not a sci-fi fantasy. It was the prototype for the current Boeing YAL-1 airborne laser testbed. Although the IDF laser shot was successful, bursting a test rocket midair over the White Sands Test Range in New Mexico, its firing overheated the nuclear-isotope power system. The result was a radioactive cloud that disintegrated the Columbia.



The Smoking Gun of Americium-242

Salvage crews searching for the shuttle debris scattered across Texas were warned about the potential presence of americium-242, a radioactive isotope that vigorously emits neutrons. Since this isotope (which is much more radioactive than the common varietal 241 used in smoke detectors) has no conceivable purpose on a civilian space shuttle, its presence indicated that the Columbia’s secret tests involved a high-powered weapons system. A space engineer at Houston Center confirmed that isotopes including americium-242, neptunium and californium can be used to generate electrical power.

The smoking gun evidence came to my desk in the form of photos from a Western intelligence service, which had intercepted satellite images from three Israeli mini-satellites (each smaller than a basketball). The observation satellites had earlier been launched from the Columbia to record the laser gun’s effectiveness. The series of color images clearly showed that NASA lied about the Columbia catching fire below its left wing. The only heat from the left wing came momentarily from the laser gun, and not from friction during re-entry.

The satellite photos show that a first blast, indicated by a small yellowish cloud of gas, occurred in the rear section of the spacecraft. Just milli-seconds later, the white-hot gas triggered the fuel in the Columbia’s propulsion system, which exploded in a reddish fireball. The loss of the shuttle’s rocket engines and tail section left the stunned astronauts watching helplessly as their spacecraft started to break apart into fiery pieces.

Horizontal Shot at a Rising Rocket

The Columbia explosion occurred just as the shuttle was passing from the Pacific over the Southern California coast along its landing trajectory. Taking into account the Earth’s curvature, that position put the laser gun on a horizontal axis pointed directly at the White Sands Test Range in New Mexico. Ballistic missiles on launch are more easily shot down from sideways and not from above.  

Residents of New Mexico and Arizona heard one loud blast, later confusing it for the explosion that wrecked the shuttle. The damaged Columbia was then much too distant and too high for acoustic waves to reach the inland states. What the startled residents heard was the explosion of a White Sands test rocket that had been laser-shot. The anti-missile test result: An “A” for accuracy, but an “F” for foul-up.

Seeing Through the Smoke and Dust

The IDF laser gun was used on another test during the same STS-107 mission, involving weather engineering over the eastern Mediterranean and Mideast, just prior to the U.S. invasion of Iraq.

That test, known as the MEIDEX, the Mediterranean Israel Dust Experiment, was purportedly to test an infrared camera in studies of dust clouds and high-atmosphere visible charges known as sprites and elves. (

The larger goal, according to the official record, was to probe the impact of dust on climate change. The real objectives, however, were related to the impending Iraq War, and involved bizarre man-made weather effects.

First, the infrared camera, mounted in the rear near the the americium generator, was used to search for camouflaged Iraqi SCUD mobile missile launchers, not only through dust clouds but also beneath the sort of dense petroleum smoke released in the first Gulf War. 

My suggestion that an  infrared laser had been put aboard to penetrate dense cloud cover was rebutted by a hail of criticism from George Bush supporters.

Second, a much bigger objective was weather change, to create a cold front in advance of the U.S. invasion of Iraq. The Pentagon was worried that American soldiers would wilt under the desert sun. The Columbia tests actually triggered record snowfall across the Middle East and did much more than that.

Royal Ark Misadventure: Waterspouts Hit Cyprus

The British Admiralty sent a flotilla to the eastern Mediterranean, led by the flagship carrier Royal Ark, as part of MEIDEX. Arrays of antennae aboard the naval vessels, in tandem with a British military HAARP ground station in Limassol, created a standing wave of electromagnetic energy up through the atmosphere just off the southeast coast of Cyprus.

As the Columbia passed overhead, its laser gun fired downward in four short bursts, just off the port (left) side of the British cruisers, which were stationed in a straight line.  Four waterspouts rose into the air, perfectly aligned columns of seawater, as shown in Royal Navy photos that were quickly suppressed by official censors.

The waterspouts caused a massive downdraft of cold air from the higher atmosphere. Frigid air spiraled to the sea surface, much like bathtub water pouring into a drain. The Levant and Mideast became icy within hours.

Meanwhile, the energetic spouts took on a life of their own, speeding toward the port of Limassol, apparently attracted by the extralong-frequency emissions from the British HAARP base. The man-made tornadoes made landfall, flinging cars into the sky, ripping away rooftops and killing a couple of residents. Greek Cypriot colleagues have confirmed that the HAARP station was operational at the time, and that RAF planes were used to dust the clouds in support of the Royal Ark flotilla and shuttle Columbia.

Secrecy at Cape Canaveral Launch

Prior to the Columbia launch for mission STS-107, NASA blocked any launch-site access to European scientists and Euro Space Agency staffers. Only Israelis were permitted inside the launch area, while the Europeans were confined to another building more than a mile away.

The special importance of the Columbia mission was highlighted by the participation of Colonel Ilan Ramon, the Israeli wing commander who had taken out Saddam Hussein’s nuclear reactor. Ramon was and still is revered by Israeli air cadets as an avenging angel, the Jewish nation’s noblest warrior and Zion’s greatest hero.

Going against a demigod is not easy, but I shall dare to say that Ramon definitely does not deserve the U.S. Congressional Aerospace Medal of Honor. For all  his boldness and prowess in the skies, his cockeyed toying with half-baked weapons killed six fellow members of the Columbia crew. On an ill-timed and thinly disguised military mission, Ramon died an accomplice to mass murder, considering the deadly toll on all sides of the illegal Iraq War. If Ramon was an angel, he is tragically a fallen one.

I will undoubtedly receive more death threats from those blind believers in Zionist infallibility, and perhaps a bullet, but the truth of the Space Shuttle Columbia’s fate belongs on the public record and not inside a locked file. More than any other event, including the Challenger disaster, the destruction of Columbia has brutally cut short humankind’s exploration of space. Weapons, especially nuclear-powered systems, must be banned or Earth itself will be doomed. Space should be protected as a realm of peace so that it might remain a zone of wondrous discovery.

On this 10th anniversary of the loss of Columbia, we should salute the courage and fortitude of the astronauts. May they venture forth as true angels of science in the spirit of cooperation among nations.


Yoichi Shimatsu, former Editor of The Japan Times Weekly in Tokyo, is a Hong Kong-based science writer.                                                                                              







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