How the National Reconnaissance Office came to choose a sinister, planet-devouring octopus for a logo

Michael from Muckrock writes, "When the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) announced the upcoming launch of their NROL-39 mission back in December 2013, they didn't get quite the response they hoped. That might have had something to do with the mission logo being a gigantic octopus devouring the Earth. Researcher Runa Sandvik wanted to know who approved this and why, so she filed a Freedom of Information Act with the NRO for the development materials that went into the logo. A few months later, the NRO delivered."

The response includes two stories explaining the octopus: one completely mudane and silly; another, heavily redacted, that tells the "secret origin" story of the patch.

As for the question of "why a giant octopus," the NRO offers up these two clunky paragraphs, written with all the verve of a ninth-grader who only made it two-thirds of the way through the book.

"A little sinister!!" The story behind National Reconnaissance Office's octopus logo

[JPat Brown/Muckrock]