According to a U.S. official quoted by the Wall Street Journal, a Hellfire missile – a weapon that is extensively used by the U.S. military – was shipped by mistake shipped to Cuba in 2014. The anonymous source claimed, however, that the missile in question was actually a dummy used for practice.
 
The Hellfire is an air-to-surface missile that is laser-guided. It weighs approximately 100 pounds and is manufactured by Lockheed.  The anonymous source told media that the manufacturer had been authorized to export the dummy to be used in a NATO training exercise. It was a shipping error, allegedly, that caused the mix up. The Obama administration is seeking to retrieve the missile from Cuba.
 
The Wall Street Journal report on January 7 traced the missile’s route from a military exercise in Spain, for which it was authorized. It then made its way to Germany and finally France where it was loaded onto a flight from Paris to Havana, courtesy of Air France. 
The official said the U.S. doesn't want any defense technology to remain in a proscribed country, whether that country can use it or not. The official said there is greater concern that Cuba could give more technically advanced countries access to the dummy.
 
There are concerns that Cuba, a proscribed country, might utilize any technology it can glean from the inert missile. It did not contain explosives, according to the report. Cuba could potentially share the technology to hostile countries such as North Korea and Russia.
 
The inert missile did not contain any explosives, the Journal reported, but there are concerns that Cuba could share the technology with potential U.S. adversaries like North Korea or Russia.

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Spero News writer Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.

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