According to defense officials, it took until Wednesday afternoon for the U.S. to have what they called more robust intelligence on Russian movements around Gori. With the military's eyes and ears focused on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, intelligence-gathering was hampered through the weekend until the Pentagon authorized the repositioning of some satellites and was able to meld that data with reports from the ground, the officials said.
Russia (as well as China, Iran etc..) knows exactly where the US reconnaissance satellites are, and when they fly over. They can plan their movements and exercises accordingly, a SR-71 could have been dispatched within hours of news of Russia's invasion. Now the U-2s are also being retired, leaving the US totally dependent on a technology who's scheduled snooping are well known by adversaries. Absolutely never going to have the element of surprise when your every move is scheduled.
High Speed, High Altitude, low radar signature reconnaissance aircraft are desperately needed in the US inventory.
Based in the UK and Japan would allow them to be on station within hours of a crisis anywhere in the World.