Missile tests like the one the Navy performed off the coast of Southern California on Saturday night present military officials with something of a conundrum.
On the one hand, said Loren Thompson, a military analyst with the Lexington Institute, the military needs to give local aviation officials enough information as to the time and place of an upcoming test to ensure no planes are in the area.
But at the same time, the military is determined to keep tests shrouded in secrecy in order to thwart any efforts by potential adversaries – namely Russia and China – to monitor the missile launch and flight, Thompson said.
The confusion and social media uproar that erupted Saturday night as a mysterious white cone of light coursed across the night sky is an unfortunate but necessary tradeoff, Thompson added.
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