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Spy Flies All the Buzz at Washington, N.Y. Political Events

Ever wish you could be a "fly on the wall" at a closed-door meeting or to hear a foe’s secrets?

Enter the robobug.

Witnesses are buzzing about recent sightings of robotic-looking dragonflies seen at Washington and New York political events. And U.S. government and private agencies have admitted to striving for the spy technology, The Washington Post reports, though no one has confessed to deploying the bugged bugs.

• Click here to read the full story in The Washington Post.

"They looked kind of like dragonflies or little helicopters," New York college student Vanessa Alarcon said after seeing the dragonflies while working at an antiwar rally in Lafayette Square last month.

The U.S. has used robotic fliers as early as World War II, but their numbers were fewer and the technology more primitive.

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"I'd never seen anything like it in my life," Washington lawyer Bernard Crane said. "They were large for dragonflies. I thought, 'Is that mechanical, or is that alive?'"

Some federally funded groups are implanting live insects with computer chips in hopes of using spyware and remote controls to manipulate their flight.

The robobugs could be used to track suspects, guide missiles or find trapped survivors in collapsed buildings.