Curiosity, Questions Linger Over KCBS ‘Missile’ Video

By Andrew Gauthier 

The New York Times

Gil Leyvas has been a photojournalist on board a television news helicopter for more than a decade. He has seen countless airplanes and their wispy contrails. What he saw–and recorded–near Los Angeles on Nov. 4 and 8 looked nothing like the trail from an airplane. It looked, to him, like the launching of a missile.

The first time, it looked like a far-off plume of smoke somewhere over the Pacific Ocean. The second, it appeared to be rising into the air, a large vertical column set against the bright orange sky at sunset. It was spectacular.


The sunset video piqued the attention of KCBS, the TV station Mr. Leyvas works for, and by dawn the next day, last Tuesday, news anchors were speaking of a “mystery missile” More…