Germany and the United States are in the process of developing secret satellites that will be used for spying on other nations, according to the latest round of WikiLeaks cables.
At a price of $274 million, the satellites are "officially" meant to be used for communication during natural disasters. However, WikiLeaks cables from the U.S. Department of State have revealed that the technology will actually be used for good old-fashioned spying.
The HiROS program (short for High Resolution Optical Satellite System) will be up and running as early as 2012. And by "high resolution," they mean really high resolution: The satellites will be able to identify objects that are just 1.5 feet long.
The WikiLeaks cables revealed that the satellites can also take infrared images at night and transmit them to earth stations faster than current technology
The cables quote German diplomats saying they no longer want to be “outmaneuvered by France.” As for the U.S., the State Department declined to comment.