In a remarkable report in Wired Magazine, it has been revealed that US stealth bombers have to communicate with their British allies using conventional radio. What that means in practice is that it would be child's play for the enemy to use basic techniques like triangulation to locate these otherwise invisible aircraft.
While the thought of an ineffective multi-billion-dollar stealth bomber program seems preposterous, some may argue that the military has bigger problems maintaining discretion when even the CIA director is busted having an affair via Gmail. After all, it costs nothing to download GnuPG
So what could the Americans and British do to put the stealth back into stealth bomber? Maybe it is time that pilots were issued with smartphones running Lumicall - with the built-in encryption features, could it make all their worries go away? At the very least, this issue demonstrates in a remarkable manner the reasons to stick with open standards like XMPP and SIP for building interoperable communications systems.
If they missed our talk on Free, open, secure and convenient communications at FOSDEM, that may also be an interesting place to start searching for answers, as the idea of federated real-time communications is just as valuable in the air as it is for business or private purposes on the ground. The video is available now for those who missed it, and my earlier FOSDEM wrap-up provides more food for thought about the relevance of private communications for maintaining individual freedom (with or without the help of airborne supremecy).