Thursday, January 31, 2008

"Cyber Storm", Russian Arctic X's, + News

"Cyber Storm"

Trains, planes and bloggers concerned U.S. terror drill

This photo provided by the U.S Secret Services shows the work area for the Department of Homeland Security's "Cyber Storm" war games worldwide simulation challenge in Washington

WASHINGTON — It's the government's idea of a really bad day: Washington's Metro trains shut down. Seaport computers in New York go dark. Bloggers reveal locations of railcars with hazardous materials. Airport control towers are disrupted in Philadelphia and Chicago. Overseas, a mysterious liquid is found on London's subway.
And that's just for starters.
Those incidents were among dozens of detailed, mock disasters confronting officials rapid-fire in the U.S. government's biggest-ever "Cyber Storm" war game, according to hundreds of pages of heavily censored files obtained by The Associated Press. The Homeland Security Department ran the exercise to test the nation's hacker defenses, with help from the State Department, Pentagon, Justice Department, CIA, National Security Agency and others.
The laundry list of fictional catastrophes — which include hundreds of people on "No Fly" lists suddenly arriving at airport ticket counters — is significant because it suggests what kind of real-world trouble keeps people in the White House awake at night.
Imagined villains include hackers, bloggers and even reporters. After mock electronic attacks overwhelmed computers at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, an unspecified "major news network" airing reports about the attackers refused to reveal its sources to the government. Other simulated reporters were duped into spreading "believable but misleading" information that worsened fallout by confusing the public and financial markets, according to the government's files.
The $3 million, invitation-only war game simulated what the U.S. described as plausible attacks over five days in February 2006 against the technology industry, transportation lines and energy utilities by anti-globalization hackers. The government is organizing another multimillion-dollar war game, Cyber Storm 2, to take place in early March.
"They point out where your expectations of your capabilities may be overstated," Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff told the AP. "They may reveal to you things you haven't thought about. It's a good way of testing that you're going to do the job the way you think you were. It's the difference between doing drills and doing a scrimmage."
The AP obtained the Cyber Storm internal records nearly two years after it requested them under the Freedom of Information Act. The government censored most of the 328 pages it turned over, marked "For Official Use Only," citing rules preventing the disclosure of sensitive information.
"Definitely a challenging scenario," said Scott C. Algeier, who runs a cyber-defense group for leading technology companies, the Information Technology Information Sharing and Analysis Center.
For the participants — including government officials from the United States, England, Canada, Australia and New Zealand and executives from leading technology and transportation companies — the mock disasters came fast and furious: Hacker break-ins at an airline; stolen commercial software blueprints; problems with satellite navigation systems; trouble with police radios in Montana; school closures in Washington, Miami and New York; computer failures at border checkpoints.
The incidents were divided among categories: computer attacks, physical attacks or psychological operations.
"We want to stress these players," said Jeffrey Wright, the former Cyber Storm director for the Homeland Security Department. "None of the players took 100 percent of the correct, right actions. If they had, we wouldn't have done our job as planners."
How did they do? Reviews were mixed. Companies and governments worked successfully in some cases.
But key players didn't understand the role of the premier U.S. organization responsible for fending off major cyber attacks, called the National Cyber Response Coordination Group, and it didn't have enough technical experts.
Also, the sheer number of mock attacks complicated defensive efforts.
The little-known Cyber Response group, headed by the departments of Justice and Homeland Security, represents the largest U.S. government departments — including law enforcement and intelligence agencies — and is the principal organization for responding to cyber attacks and recovering from them.
The exercise had no impact on the real Internet. Officials said they were careful to simulate attacks only using isolated computers, working from basement offices at the Secret Service's headquarters in downtown Washington.
However, the government's files hint at a tantalizing mystery: In the middle of the war game, someone quietly attacked the very computers used to conduct the exercise. Perplexed organizers traced the incident to overzealous players and sent everyone an urgent e-mail marked "IMPORTANT!" reminding them not to probe or attack the game computers.
"Any time you get a group of (information technology) experts together, there's always a desire, 'Let's show them what we can do,'" said George Foresman, a former senior Homeland Security official who oversaw Cyber Storm. "Whether its intent was embarrassment or a prank, we had to temper the enthusiasm of the players."

Military exercises held in Arctic sea

ARussian strategic bombers are holding exercises in the Arctic sea. More than 40 aircraft will take part in the war games, practicing intelligence gathering, bombing enemy targets and air patrols.
Military officials say the exercises will - in accordance to international rules - take place only in neutral waters, and won't cross the borders of neighboring states.

Universal Detection Technology Inks Chinese Distribution Agreement for Counter Terrorism Detection Technologies and Services

LOS ANGELES, Jan 31, 2008 (PrimeNewswire via COMTEX) -- Universal Detection Technology ( (Frankfurt:PO8), a developer of early-warning monitoring technologies to protect people from bioterrorism and other infectious health threats and provider of counter-terrorism consulting and training services, announced today that it has reached an agreement with Kadinuo Science and Technology Company in Beijing to market and distribute UDTT's products in China......

AreaRAE Sensor Network Deployed at Premier Terrorism Preparedness Exercise

Military Unprepared for Domestic Threats

The U.S. military's reserves and National Guard forces are not prepared to meet catastrophic threats at home and face an "appalling" shortage of forces able to respond to chemical, biological or nuclear strikes on U.S. soil, according to a congressional commission report released today.....

Basij war games kick off in Dezful (Iran)

Raytheon, L-3, Alliant Profits Rise on Iraq War Sales (Update)

Jan. 31 (Bloomberg) -- U.S. defense companies Raytheon Co., L-3 Communications Holdings Inc. and Alliant Techsystems Inc. said profit rose more than analysts' projected and boosted forecasts as the Iraq war lifted sales of combat systems and services....

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

FCS, Cubic, Simulation News, NATO Pandemic, CSC +

Army Future's Software Overload (update)
The Army's $300-billion Future Combat Systems is the most software-intensive weapons program the Pentagon's got. And according to the Government Accountability Office, the military has failed to anticipate the amount of programming required to get more than dozen types of vehicles and robots to communicate, according to a story last week in The Washington Post:

Cubic Introduces Wireless Technology for Virtual Simulations
The defense segment of Cubic Corporation (AMEX: CUB) has added an important new capability to its EST 2000 Engagement Skills Trainer, which is used by thousands of military personnel throughout the world to develop marksmanship, judgmental and collective training skills. Cubic has developed a tetherless M-4 training rifle that uses a wireless technology rather than computer cables to allow greater freedom of movement and more realism during tactical simulations.
Cubic's Simulation Systems Division in Orlando, Florida, delivered its first tetherless system last year to the Mississippi Air National Guard at the Combat Readiness Training Center in Gulfport. The division is under contract to deliver more tetherless M-4 rifles to the Wisconsin Air National Guard's Combat Readiness Training Center at Volk Field later this year. More than 1,000 EST 2000 systems are operational at Army and Air Force installations worldwide, including the continental United States, Alaska, Hawaii, Korea, Germany, Afghanistan, Kuwait and Iraq.
"There has been a growing demand for the soldier to train as they fight, and a tethered weapon can prevent movement, restricting motion in a collective mode," said Terry Fiest, director of Business Development for U.S. Army Programs for Cubic's Orlando division. "A tetherless weapon is more suited to tactical engagements and gives the soldier more latitude. We are finding that our customers like tethered weapons for marksmanship and they prefer tetherless for dismounted and offensive training scenarios."
The new simulator weapons have a CO2 driven recoil with 2.4GHz wireless connection. The electronics are battery powered and the recoil is provided by the CO2, which can be housed in either the ammunition magazine or in attachments to the simulated weapon. They can be used either with Cubic's Engagement Skills Trainer or its Warrior Skills Trainer, an enhancement to EST 2000 that enables soldiers to move around either on foot or in a moving vehicle in a simulation environment that replicates the weather conditions, convoy attacks and judgment issues that arise in certain combat situations.
Cubic's Orlando division is now working on converting other weapons used in EST 2000 and the Warrior Skills Training to operate in a tetherless environment. Cubic could potentially create tetherless technology for law enforcement users in the future. The company's Orlando site is used as a training venue for Central Florida law enforcement teams who want to train with Cubic's laser-based ground combat training instrumentation

U.S. Army Awards Modeling and Simulation Contract to Charles River Analytics
NewswireToday - /newswire/ - Cambridge, MA, United States, 01/30/2008 - Charles River Analytics was awarded a follow-on contract from the U.S. Army for their work on modeling and simulation with GATIR (Graphical Authoring Tool for Inference Rules).

Charles River will work with the Modeling and Analysis Team at the U.S. Army Natick Soldier Research, Development, and Engineering Center (NSRDEC) in Natick, MA, to develop state-of-the-art computer-based modeling and simulation techniques for developing new equipment and tactics for Soldiers.“One of the goals of the Modeling and Analysis Team is to conduct assessments of ground Soldier equipment by creating realistic simulated Soldiers and environments where new capabilities can be introduced before they are built or used in the real world,” said Dr. Scott Neal Reilly, Vice President of Decision Management Systems at Charles River and the Principal Investigator for GATIR. “The simulation is both less expensive, since complex equipment can be evaluated before it is ever built, and safer, as the testing does not require live experimentation. It also makes the design, development, and evaluation process for new technologies faster, enabling new equipment and tactics to be deployed more rapidly.”Charles River will develop models of how Soldiers perceive and reason about their environment using cognitive science and artificial intelligence techniques. These models will help, for instance, in the development of new sensors and decision aids to increase Soldiers’ awareness of their surroundings. Such new systems can, in turn, help reduce friendly fire and accidental non-combatant deaths.

Analysis: NATO begins pandemic monitoring
WASHINGTON, Jan. 30 (UPI) -- NATO recently became the latest agency, and the first military one, to sign up for the Global Public Health Intelligence Network, an international initiative that monitors media and other open-source material 24/7 for signs of emerging pandemics and other public health disasters.
The network, based in Ottawa and known by its initials GPHIN, is an "early-warning system using media to detect public health events," GPHIN Senior Surveillance Officer Richard Lemay told United Press International in a recent interview….

CIBER Hosts Feb. 12 Disaster Readiness Webinar for State and Local Government Leaders

CSC to move HQ to Falls Church
Computer Sciences Corp. has announced that it will move its corporate headquarters to Falls Church, Va., from El Segundo, Calif.
The consolidation to Northern Virginia “is without a doubt the right move to power CSC’s accelerated growth and expansion,” said Michael Laphen, the company’s chairman, president and chief executive officer, in a written statement.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

PSYOP Desperation: "Al Qaeda" Attack on Grade Schools!!!!+ WWIV Watch

This was only a test...

Whitman, Mass. - What if foreign terrorists linked to al-Qaeda besieged several area schools and took students hostage?
That’s a frightening “what if?” question that attracted hundreds of police officers, firefighters and medics from dozens of communities and agencies to Whitman's Holt School on a recent Saturday morning.
To test local law enforcement’s response to such a scenario, Officers Bob Stokinger and Andrew Stafford, who are members of the Old Colony Special Operations Team, suggested holding the drill at the former school building on Essex Street.
The team includes police officers from Whitman, Pembroke, Kingston, Duxbury, Plympton and Halifax. Others also participated, including members of the Hanson Fire Department.
The vacant Holt School, once used as the town's high school, is set to be demolished early this year. The town is looking into building a new police station on the former school site.
Special Operations Tactical Training International, which specializes in military, law enforcement and corrections special operations, conducted the drill, said Whitman Police Chief Christine May-Stafford.
The drill simulated an incident in which terrorists simultaneously besieged a school in Whitman and five other Massachusetts schools, she said.
“They were threatening to blow up the school unless they talked to someone in charge and their demands were met,” May-Stafford said.
In the Holt School scenario, a group of terrorists took 14 school children hostage. Adult auxiliary police officers and EMS and paramedic students played the hostages, she said.
“You definitely have to prepare for the worst. This drill opens your eyes to the question that if something like this happened, how prepared would you be?” said May-Stafford. (cont...)

Russian Bear bombers join final drills in N. Atlantic

MOSCOW, January 29 (RIA Novosti) - Six Tu-95MS Bear strategic bombers joined on Tuesday a Russian naval task force in the Atlantic to take part in the final stage of the current naval exercise, an Air Force spokesman said.
During the exercises, from January 28 to February 2, Russian pilots will practice reconnaissance, missile and bomb strikes on mock adversary naval force, and will fly simulated air combat and air patrolling missions.
"Six Tu-95MS, eight Tu-22M3 Backfire C strategic bombers and two A-50 Mainstay airborne early warning aircraft have flown today to join the final phase of the current naval exercises [in the Atlantic]," Colonel Alexander Drobyshevsky said.
A total of 40 aircraft, including Tu-160 Blackjacks, Il-78 Midas aerial tankers, MiG-31 Foxhound long-range interceptors and Su-27 Flanker frontline fighter aircraft will participate in the drills, he said.
The aircraft are expected to fly at least 40 training sorties during the exercise. ....

Russia Air, Ground Forces to conduct joint drills in April

MOSCOW, January 29 (RIA Novosti) - Units of Russia's Air Force and Ground Forces will conduct a joint exercise in the country's Caspian region in April 2008, a senior military official said on Tuesday.
"The exercise will focus on rehearsing command and control of an Air Force and Air Defense Forces combined-arms formation" in what the military terms the Central Asian strategic sector, said Lt. Gen. Valery Stytsenkov, head of the Air Force Combat Training Directorate.
He said units will also practice interoperability and teamwork with aviation, missile defense, antiaircraft, and electronic warfare assets of the Air Force, the Air Defense Forces, and the Ground Forces.


A conference planning the biggest military exercises of NATO in the South Caucasus “Cooperative Longbow/Lancer” kicked off in Yerevan today. One hundred ten representatives from twenty countries participate......

U.S. to resume full-scale war games in Philippines

New anti-bioterrorism technology created

ATLANTA, Jan. 29 (UPI) -- U.S. researchers have developed a rapid, non-disruptive and less expensive method of decontaminating bioterrorism hazards.Georgia Tech Research Institute scientists, in collaboration with Stellar Micro Devices Inc. of Austin, Texas, created flat panels that produce X-rays and ultraviolet-C light to kill anthrax spores within two to three hours without any lingering effects. The technique also kills spores hidden in places like computer keyboards without causing damage.....

Monday, January 28, 2008

China/US/Russia War Watch, Pandemic Drill, FCS, + News

Electronic Weapons Article Index (CHINA)

China Plans a Disruption
January 28, 2008: While the details of Chinese military plans are secret, the general strategy isn't. The weapons, equipment and techniques the military uses, as well as discussions in professional journals, makes it clear how the Chinese plan to fight the United States in the next war. That's how many Chinese military experts describe it. The U.S. is the principal foe, and some kind of conflict is inevitable. All that may seem strange to Americans, but for most Chinese, it's just the way it is.
China plans to disrupt the American military, not destroy it. China takes for granted that they will be on the defensive, and forced to deal mainly with American air and naval forces. Methods discussed include attacks via the Internet (hacking and such) and electronic warfare (jamming and deceptions). China has been very active in controlling its domestic Internet users, and an increasing number of hacker attacks on U.S. military targets are being traced back to China. There, the government denies everything. Yet their professional journals talk about all the opportunities in this area. There are similar discussions of electronic warfare opportunities. In addition, the professional journals are full of exhortations to develop insights into the details of how the American armed forces operates, and adapt Chinese tactics to take care of any U.S. weaknesses. ......

Russian Navy Hits Target in Atlantic Ocean with Supersonic Cruise Missile (update)

MOSCOW (RIA Novosti) -- The flagship of Russia's Black Sea Fleet has effectively engaged a designated target with a supersonic cruise missile as part of a Navy exercise in the northern Atlantic, a Navy spokesman said.
The Moskva guided-missile cruiser launched the P-500 Bazalt (NATO reporting name SS-N-12 Sandbox), a liquid-propellant supersonic cruise missile, last used in 2003.
The P-500 Bazalt, which entered service in 1973, has a 550 km range and a payload of 1,000 kg, enabling it to carry a 350 kT nuclear or a 950kg semi-armor-piercing high explosive warhead.
A Joint Naval Task Force, comprising the Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft carrier, the Udaloy-Class destroyers Admiral Levchenko and Admiral Chabanenko, as well as auxiliary vessels, is currently on a two-month tour of duty in the Mediterranean Sea and the North Atlantic.
"The missile system used for launches has no match in performance terms," Capt. 1st Rank Igor Dygalo, an aide to the Navy commander, said Monday.
Russian warships will also practice interoperability with naval aviation and strategic bombers for several days.
The operation is the first large-scale Russian Navy exercise in the Atlantic for 15 years. All the warships and aircraft involved are carrying full combat ammunition loads, the Navy said.
Vice-Admiral Nikolai Maksimov, commander of Russia's Northern Fleet who is heading the task force, earlier said that the current tour of duty to the Mediterranean, which started on December 5, was aimed at ensuring Russia's naval presence "in key operational areas of the world's oceans" and establishing conditions for secure Russian maritime navigation.

Pandemic Risk – US releases in-depth results of 2007 Pandemic Flu exercise

The three US sponsoring bodies – the Treasury, the Financial Services Sector Coordinating Council for Critical Infrastructure Protection and Homeland Security (FSSCC), and the Financial and Banking Information Infrastructure Committee (FBIIC), on Thursday released in-depth results (PDF: 1.5 Mb) of the Pandemic Flu Exercise held in 2007.
This exercise, held from September 24 to October 12, 2007, was the largest of a number of pandemic flu exercises held for financial services across the world. Originally, over one-third of participants stated that they had not yet developed pandemic-specific business continuity plans. After the exercise 91% said they would apply lessons they learned from the exercise to their business continuity plans.
“The results of this report demonstrate the clear need for conducting this exercise,” said Treasury Deputy Assistant Secretary Valerie Abend. “Even businesses who had pandemic plans in place found that a global avian flu outbreak poses complex issues and were able to identify areas where more work was needed.”
The exercise simulated absentee rates at up to 49 percent across the country. Results, taken from over 400,000 responses, compare issues ranging from healthcare and school closings, to financial market information and industry security. All findings are anonymous. Critical infrastructures that the sector relies on were tested and issues such as telecommuting and stockpiling equipment and anti-virus medication were included.
99% of participants said that the exercise met its objectives and was useful in assessing their pandemic planning needs. As a result, the exercise “provided participants with the opportunity to examine key crisis management issues, foster strategic thinking, and strengthen the sector's overall preparedness”. The overall conclusion of the report is that while there may be significant impacts to the financial services sector during a pandemic outbreak, the US sector overall will continue to operate

Three nations hold Cope Tiger war games

Aviation and ground units from the Royal Thai Air Force and Army, US Air Force and Marine Corps, and Republic of Singapore Air Force have begun Cope Tiger 2008, a multi-nation field training exercise in Thailand.
The war games began on Saturday and will last until Feb. 5.
Cope Tiger is an annual, multilateral large force exercise conducted in the Asia-Pacific region and is the only multilateral field training exercise held in Thailand. Headquarters are at Korat Royal Thai Air Force Base, Nakhom Ratchasima, and at Udon Thani Royal Thai Air Force Base.
More than 1,400 people will participate in the exercise. They include approximately 700 Thai and an equal number of US service members, as well as Singapore forces. .....

Hovering Drones Rushed to Iraq (Updated)

Ducted-fan unmanned aerial vehicles are making their way to Iraq to help spot improvised explosive devices. These new drones, which can hover in place, have been under development as part of the Army's massive Future Combat Systems, but it's actually the Navy that plans to deploy them, reports Flight International:......

Defense Focus: FCS follies -- Part 1

For the past 2-1/2 years, we have been reporting in these columns about the growing problems generating by former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld's visionary Future Combat Systems program to make the U.S. armed forces unbeatable in the 21st century.FCS had the ambitious vision of integrating the firepower of combat forces of the U.S. Army through a wireless network in real time. It offered the prospect of field commanders video conferencing with front-line officers in tanks on the battlefield. It offered the vision of minimizing combat casualties by sending in large numbers of robots to defuse mines and open ways through battlefields.The program was one of the most costly in the history of the U.S. Army. The Washington Post Friday said its estimated cost was $200 billion. As we have previously reported in these columns, some estimates from the Congressional Budget Office and the Government Accountability Office have already gone 50 percent higher than that. And even those estimates assumed that the basic concepts of the program were sound and that it would work as projected.In fact, as the Post reported Friday, the number of lines of software code required by the project has more than doubled in only the past five years. The Army originally reckoned it needed 33.7 million lines of code. Now it reckons it needs 63.8 million. The paper also cited Dennis Muilenberg, Boeing's project manager on the FCS, as maintaining that the original estimate was 55 million lines of software, not 33 million.No one doubts that interconnectivity and rapid response is vital on the battle field. No one doubts the U.S. armed forces have enjoyed a decisive global superiority in applying these key technologies over the past quarter century. And no one with any sense doubts that it should be a top priority goal to seek to retain that advantage through the coming decades.But as we have warned in these columns before, the FCS from the very beginning appeared doomed to failure: It sought to replace the flexibility easily available in modern off-the-shelf communications technology with enormously ambitious and rigid integrated goals that swallowed up limitless resources.......

Lockheed Martin Demonstrates Air Space Control Software that Mimics Human

Thursday, January 24, 2008

UAVs, Terror Drill, FRA/ RU X, + News

'Remote' Possibilities: UAVs Come To Florida

Soldiers from the 53rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team dismantle a Shadow unmanned aerial vehicle at the Armed Forces Reserve Center in Pinellas Park, FL. Photo by TSGT Thomas Kielbasa

1/24/08, St. Augustine, FL —Shadows and Ravens flying over Florida?What sounds like an Edgar Allen Poe clich√© is really the future of reconnaissance for Soldiers, as the Florida Army National Guard is beginning to field its first unmanned aerial vehicles.As U.S. forces in Iraq and Afghanistan have increased their use of remote-piloted drones during the past few years, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) like the Predator have gained notoriety for their ability to enhance battlefield intelligence.Now the Florida Army National Guard is testing two of the smaller UAVs – the Shadow and the Raven – for use with the Infantry and Special Forces.With a wingspan of 12.3 feet, the lightweight Shadow UAV is primarily used by Army brigades for battlefield reconnaissance; the smaller Raven with a 5-foot wingspan is used for reconnaissance by smaller units like battalions or companies. Both operate by remote control and utilize state-of-the-art camera systems to transmit real-time video images to Soldiers on the ground. (Cont...)

It Was Only a Drill: Emergency crews react to terrorist attack, blast
Reports of an explosion and chemical spill at a local paper mill. Injuries, contamination and a toxic cloud on the move. And, at the same time, an armed terrorist targeting Rodman Dam with a biological attack.It was, as the saying goes, only a test.About 75 people participated in the full-scale emergency simulation Wednesday.Members of Putnam County Emergency Management, Putnam County Sheriff’s Office, Palatka Police and Fire Departments, and other agencies worked together to manage the multiple emergencies.
“We are here to challenge local responders and emergency management officials,” said Joseph Garcia, a regional planner at the Northeast Florida Regional Council in Jacksonville.“This will help identify any potential issues and improve plans before an actual event,” he said.The simulation was designed and executed by the regional council, which also conducted preparedness events prior to the 2005 Super Bowl in Jacksonville.

Joint Russian-French naval drill starts in Atlantic
MOSCOW, Jan. 24 (Xinhua) -- Russia and France started a joint naval drill code-named "Passex" in northeastern areas of the Atlantic Ocean on Thursday, Russian news agencies reported.

Security Drill for Super Bowl
Phoenix--Anticipating enhanced homeland Security concerns during Super Bowl week, Army MARS members in Arizona and adjoining states tuned up emergency communications in a joint exercise with the state Division of Emergency Management (AZDEMA) January 19, 2008.
The drill's scenario cited simulated intelligence warnings of a possible
IED (Improvised Explosive Device) attack along five Interstate highways leading to the February 1st game site in Glendale, AZ. AZDEMA Communications Coordinator Jerry Justus KB7UKG monitored the “Hidden Shadow” (simulated terrorist) drill from the state's mobile command center in Phoenix.
MARS participants in Arizona, California and Nevada were tasked with reporting suspicious activity to the AZDEMA's special Super Bowl Task Force. Arizona Army MARS Director Pat O'Brien AB7AZ (MARS call AAA9AZ) reported the 35 participating ham operators filed 76 information messages to the state mobile command post by WinLink digital and HF voice.

Report: Army's Future Combat System plagued by software problems

Emergent BioSolutions In Joint Venture With 9Bio

PUTRAJAYA, Jan 24 (Bernama) -- US-based Emergent BioSolutions Inc and Ninebio Sdn Bhd (9Bio) have forged a joint venture to focus on creating critical biologics infrastructure and supplying biodefence counter-measures, including anthrax vaccine and other complementary products and services to the government.The joint venture is also expected to supply similar products and services to member countries of the Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC) as well as others within Asia.9Bio is a government-owned company and one of the national health institutes under the Health Ministry.The government through 9Bio, has selected Emergent BioSolutions as one of its principal partners to assist in vaccine development and manufacturing infrastructure.According to 9Bio chief executive officer Dr Nor Shahidah Khairullah, the joint venture was a step towards achieving the objectives of obtaining vaccine development and manufacturing capabilities as well as bioterrorism preparedness......

2008 ASM Biodefense and Emerging Disease Research Meeting
The American Society for Microbiology (ASM) will host its 2008 Biodefense and Emerging Diseases Research Meeting February 24-27, 2008 at the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront Hotel in Baltimore, MD.
There is a continuing need for research that helps better protect the public against not only the traditional agents of bioterrorism, like anthrax, but also against emerging infectious diseases that hold the potential for serious human and economic harm, such as H5N1 influenza. In 2006 the federal government budgeted approximately $4 billion for biodefense research and preparedness and last year created the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, designed to help speed the development of biodefense countermeasures using an estimated funding of $1 billion dollars in fiscal year 2008....

Bases compete for Cyber Command


Wednesday, January 23, 2008

CA Terror Drill, DARPA, Purdue U, FEMA +

Terror drill scheduled for county disaster unit
CHULA VISTA: More than 100 officers, deputies, firefighters and hazardous-materials personnel will be at Coors Amphitheatre tomorrow to practice responding to a potential terrorist attack.
The drill, by the San Diego region's Metropolitan Medical Strike Team, will be held from 8 a.m. until 3 p.m. or later at the amphitheater and Knott's Soak City on Entertainment Circle near Heritage Road, sheriff's Lt. Phil Brust said.
The team consists of firefighters, emergency medical workers and peace officers from agencies throughout San Diego County. The drill will use up to 100 emergency vehicles, Brust said. –M.A.

NATO AWACS coming to San Diego for exercise
SAN DIEGO, Calif. — A German E-3A Component aircraft is coming to San Diego for a weeklong joint training exercises with U.S. naval forces off the California coast, military officials said Tuesday.
The NATO Airborne Early Warning and Control System aircraft is coming from its home base in Germany with a NATO trainer cargo aircraft and about 80 crew members and support personnel representing 12 nations, NATO officials said in a news release. They will provide air control and air surveillance as the “eyes in the sky” during the at-sea exercises, scheduled through Jan. 31.

Defence research: Still in the lead?
Half a century after its creation, the Pentagon's Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is considered a paragon of government innovation. But some question whether it is still relevant. Sharon Weinberger reports.

Cell Phone Sensors Detect Radiation To Thwart Nuclear Terrorism (Purdue Again!)

Purdue physics professor Ephraim Fischbach, at right, and nuclear engineer Jere Jenkins review radiation-tracking data as part of research to develop a system that would use a network of cell phones to detect and track radiation. Such a system could help prevent terrorist attacks with radiological "dirty bombs" and nuclear weapons by blanketing the nation with millions of cell phones equipped with radiation sensors able to detect even light residues of radioactive material. Because cell phones already contain global positioning locators, the network of phones would serve as a tracking system.

Bush Administration Lied 935 Times About Iraq Before Invasion: Study
For years, the Bush administration has faced charges that it bent the truth or flat-out misled the public about Iraq's alleged stockpile of weapons of mass destruction in the lead-up to the 2003 invasion of the country. Now, a study by two nonprofit journalism organizations claims that President Bush and top officials in his administration issued nearly 1,000 false statements about the security threat posed by Iraq in the wake of 9/11…..

Are Pakistan's nuclear weapons safe?
Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf has dismissed fears that his country's nuclear weapons could be acquired by Islamist militants.

Advance Nanotech Adds Homeland Security Expert to Its Board of Directors

Don't rely on drugs to delay flu pandemic
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Vaccines and drugs will not be enough to slow or prevent a pandemic of influenza, according to a U.S. government report released on Tuesday.
The report from the U.S. Government Accountability Office confirms what most experts have been stressing for years -- that the pharmaceutical industry cannot be relied on alone to protect the world from bird flu.
The GAO, the investigational arm of Congress, reached its own conclusion independently.
"The use of antivirals and vaccines to forestall the onset of a pandemic would likely be constrained by their uncertain effectiveness and limited availability," the GAO report reads.
Health experts almost universally agree that a global epidemic -- a pandemic -- of influenza is inevitable and even overdue. Flu is always circulating but, every few decades, a completely new strain emerges and makes millions sicker than usual.

Emergency response plans restore local authority (FEMA),0,2692850.story
WASHINGTON - In the first overhaul of emergency response planning since the botched response to Hurricane Katrina in 2005, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff unveiled a blueprint yesterday that restores authority to state and local officials, emphasizes preparedness and strengthens the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

IAF "Brazen Chariots", WWIV Watch, + News

"Brazen Chariots"

Army, IAF to showcase might in March
NEW DELHI: After "soft power", it's time to flex the military muscle now. In keeping with its aspirations to be viewed as an emerging superpower, India will showcase its hard military power to an international audience with a huge Army-IAF combat exercise in March. Defence ministry sources say plans are afoot to call around 150 foreign military observers, including defence attaches based in New Delhi, for the exercise named "Brazen Chariots". It will be held in the deserts of Rajasthan in the third week of March.

Russian bombers to test-fire missiles in Bay of Biscay
Russia has sent two long-range bombers to the Bay of Biscay, off the French and Spanish Atlantic coasts, to test-fire missiles in what Moscow billed as its biggest naval exercise in the area since the Soviet era.
Firing missiles off the coastline of two Nato members is the latest in a series of Kremlin moves flexing Moscow’s military muscle on the world stage.
Russian bombers joined aircraft carriers, battleships and submarine hunters from the Northern and Black Sea fleets for the Atlantic exercises, which come as the country enters an election campaign to choose a successor to President Putin.
“The air force is taking a very active part in the exercises of the navy’s strike force in the Atlantic,” the Russian air force said in a statement reported by Reuters. “Today, two strategic Tu-160 bombers departed for exercises in the Bay of Biscay, which ... will carry out a number of missions and will conduct tactical missile launches."

Nuclear First Strike Needed Vs Weapons Of Mass Destruction - NATO Generals
Brussels, Belgium (AHN) - A pre-emptive nuclear strike is necessary as a deterrent to the proliferation of nuclear and weapons of mass destruction, international terrorism, political fanaticism and religious fundamentalism, according to former American, British, German, French and Dutch military chiefs.
The use of force without approval from the United Nations is also necessary "to protect large numbers of human beings," they say
The unprecedented recommendation comes from Gen. John Shalikashvili, the former chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff and former NATO supreme commander in Europe; Lord Inge, Field Marshal and former head of the general staff and the defense staff in Britain; Gen. Klaus Naumann of Germany and former chairman of NATO's military committee; Admiral Jacques Lanxade, former French chief of staff; and Gen. Henk van den Breemen, ex-Dutch chief of staff.
The manifesto - which has been submitted to the Pentagon and NATO - is likely to be discussed in April at a NATO summit in Romania, according to The Guardian.

Next in flight: antimissile system (update)
Three 767s will start running the technology in April, but experts question this use of homeland-security resources.

Carlyle may buy Booz Allen Hamilton
The Carlyle Group is in discussions to buy the government consulting business of Booz Allen Hamilton Inc., according to a source familiar with the negotiations.
The source spoke to the Baltimore Business Journal on the condition of anonymity because the talks are still ongoing. The price tag for the deal is around $2 billion, according to media reports, though the source could not confirm this amount.
Officials with Washington, D.C.-based Carlyle and McLean, Va.-based Booz Allen Hamilton, a technology consulting firm, declined to comment.

Logan begins new fingerprint system for international travelers

A Pandemic That Wasn’t but Might Be
Last year, for the first time since avian flu emerged as a global threat, the number of human cases was down from the year before. As the illness receded, the scary headlines — with their warnings of a pandemic that could kill 150 million people — all but vanished
But avian flu has not gone away. Nor has it become less lethal or less widespread in birds. Experts argue that preparations against it have to continue, even if the virus’s failure to mutate into a pandemic strain has given the world more breathing room…..

Robotic Fly to Descend on New York
"Harvard University's tiny microrobotic fly, hailed by its creators as 'the first robotic fly that is able to generate enough thrust to takeoff,' will be showcased at New York's Museum of Modern Art starting Feb. 24. The life-sized 'Flybot' reportedly has a wingspan of 1.2 inches (3 cm) and weighs a mere 0.002 ounces (60 mg). This project of the Harvard University Microbotics Lab has received funding from DARPA, the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, which hopes to gain access to micro-miniature surveillance technologies."

Monday, January 21, 2008

Massive Russian Exercise, DARPA, Super Bowl Security +

* I give a moment of silence in tribute to M.L.K. - probably killed for his anti-Vietnam War stance, rather than anything racial. Activists like him are no longer possible with Military control of media and COINTLEPRO infilitration of EVERYTHING.

The Russians are coming! - Atlantic exercise starts

A massive naval training exercise is underway in the Atlantic Ocean. It’s the largest operation of its kind since the fall of the Soviet Union.

Russian warships in Atlantic for exercise

MOSCOW. Jan 20 (Interfax) - A large group of Russian warships has moved to the Atlantic from the Mediterranean on a military training mission, the Russian Navy announced in a press release.
"A strike naval group comprising the heavy aircraft carrying cruiser Admiral Kuznetsov, the missile carrying cruiser Moskva, the large anti-submarine ships Admiral Levchenko and Admiral Chabanenko, and the supply ships Sergei Osipov and Nikolai Chiker left the Mediterranean on January 19, passed through the Strait of Gibraltar and reached the Atlantic," Russian Navy spokesman Igor Dygalo said, according to the press release....

Russia warns it can use nuclear weapons

Russia's military chief of staff said Saturday that Moscow could use nuclear weapons in preventive strikes to protect itself and its allies, the latest aggressive remarks from increasingly assertive Russian authorities.
Gen. Yuri Baluyevsky's comment did not mark a policy shift, military analysts said. Amid disputes with the West over security issues, it may have been meant as a warning that Russia is prepared to use its nuclear might.
"We do not intend to attack anyone, but we consider it necessary for all our partners in the world community to clearly understand ... that to defend the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Russia and its allies, military forces will be used, including preventively, including with the use of nuclear weapons," Baluyevsky said at a military conference in a remark broadcast on state-run cable channel Vesti-24.
According to the state-run news agency RIA-Novosti, Baluyevsky added that Russia would use nuclear weapons and carry out preventive strikes only in accordance with Russia's military doctrine.
The military doctrine adopted in 2000 says Russia may use nuclear weapons to counter a nuclear attack on Russia or an ally, or a large-scale conventional attack that poses a critical risk to Russia's security. (cont...)

Aircraft carrier readies for exercises off coast

The Everett-based aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln is readying for exercises off the coast of Southern California in advance of a new deployment overseas.

ANALYSIS: New Israeli spy satellite sends Iran a message

The pre-dawn launch Monday of a new reconnaissance satellite further establishes Israel as one of the world's superpowers in space, and grants it an important further intelligence advantage over its rivals. The primary intelligence contribution of the TECSAR satellite, manufactured by Israel Aerospace Industries, lies in improving capabilities of intelligence gathering and coverage over Iran.

'Biometrics' used to identify terrorists,23599,23087674-2,00.html

THE combination of a facial expression, a spoken word, or a fingerprint could be enough to stop a terrorist attack.
Computer scientists and engineers are working with intelligence agencies on an international collaborative database that will use biometrics or unique individual facial, voice and physical "signatures", to identify and trace terrorists and persons of interest.
U.S.-based Professor Patrick Wang of Boston's North Eastern University told the first international "e-Forensics" conference, held in Adelaide this week, Australia is working with the U.S., UK, Canada, Japan and China on the database.
"Biometrics is working with Homeland Security to try to prevent terrorist attacks using artificial intelligence," he said. "Cross-country collaboration is already under way. There have been some very minor achievements, but people still expect to spend more money and time and to achieve a solution that cannot afford any more mistakes - aiming for 100 per cent accuracy," he said.

Giuliani Had Ties to Company Trying to Sell Border Technology

On the presidential campaign trail, former Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani often promotes the installation of electronic monitoring devices at the border to stem illegal immigration, without mentioning that until a few months ago, he was partner in a company trying to market such technology.
Mr. Giuliani and his consulting company were part owners of SkyWatch L.L.C., a closely held start-up company that says it has developed a sensor capable of monitoring illegal border crossings. SkyWatch, in collaboration with Raytheon, a large military contractor, is now looking to market the technology to the federal government and elsewhere.
Mr. Giuliani’s company, Giuliani Partners, was invited to join the venture more than two years ago by Abdol Moabery, then the chief executive of SkyWatch’s parent company, who went on to help the Giuliani campaign raise money in Florida....

Pocket plasma planes (DARPA)

Novel Explores Bioterrorism and National Security Measures for Weapons of Mass Destruction (PSYOP WATCH)

Fighter jets part of Super Bowl security plan

The roar emanating from the stadium stands on Super Bowl Sunday will be more than equaled in the skies over the West Valley on Feb. 3. Heightened security measures for the game will include a strong air presence of F-16 jets from Luke Air Force Base.Phoenix police Sgt. Andy Hill said Tuesday the increased fighter jet traffic is a precautionary measure.“Since 9/11 times have changed,” he said.On the ground, too, West Valley residents will see stepped-up security, public safety officials said Tuesday......

Local Company To Provide Security At Super Bowl

A local company is providing high-tech security for the Arizona stadium that is hosting the Super Bowl.
NewsCenter 5's Jim Boyd reported that Security Detection of Watertown is headed to Arizona to provide screening systems for the Super Bowl. Its equipment will augment an extremely tight security operation.
"It's actually a national security event, so they're not going to mess around with anything or take any chances," said Michael White, of Security Detection. White's company is sending 41 walk-through metal detectors to Arizona.
The company is also providing 250 hand-held devices, along with four X-ray machines.....

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Saturday Editorial

"Global War on Terror"/Iraq, Vietnam....Plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose

"Thirty-eight years ago Sunday, network television was interrupted at 11:36 p.m. EDT so President Lyndon B. Johnson could tell the nation that U.S. warships in a place called the Gulf of Tonkin had been attacked by North Vietnamese PT boats.In response to what he described as "open aggression on the open seas," Johnson ordered U.S. airstrikes on North Vietnam.The airstrikes opened the door to a war that would kill 1 million Vietnamese and 58,000 Americans and divide the nation along class and generational lines.Over the years, debate has swirled around whether U.S. ships actually were attacked that night, or whether, as some skeptics suggest, the Johnson administration staged or provoked an event to get congressional authority to act against North Vietnam

Recently released tapes of White House phone conversations indicate the attack never happened.

One of the reasons I stay in the 9/11 movement, besides fighting for our very freedom, is for vindication in history. It took almost Four decades for the Gulf of Tonkin to be officially declared a staged event, how long will it take for 9/11?
In research for my blog, I stumbled across a high school class in Iowa being indoctrinated with lies about the attacks:
Central students study terrorism

cultures/global studies class continues ambitious research projects"Ever since the events of 9/11 in New York City, Washington, D.C., and Shanksville, Pa., Americans have been on heightened alert against terrorist attacks," said John Adelmann, of Central's world cultures/global studies class. "The young men who flew the passenger planes into the World Trade Center Towers and the Pentagon were very religious, and were willing to die for what they believed in -- that America is the symbol of evil and must be destroyed."It isn't a typical "read the chapter and take the test class," Adelmann added, "far from it."

my comment posted:

“Nice to see the U.S has subverted schools to the level seen in the USSR with Stalinist Science: "The young men who flew the passenger planes into the World Trade Center Towers and the Pentagon were very religious, and were willing to die for what they believed in.." - Is this true? One of the alleged "hijackers" ate pork chops did cocaine and lived with a stripper in Florida as per Daniel Hopsicker, investigative journalist. Has this "teacher" looked into ANY elements of the official story around 9/11? 9/11 was false flag terrorism conducted by our own military to create a rationale for foreign plunder and corporate welfare. God help this nation when reason has been replaced with propaganda”

I would imagine all the schools across the nation are indoctrinating the youth with this propaganda. What hope is there for change from this madness unless the masses realize that what they think is reality was manufactured by elites for their sick agenda?

At six plus years, officials are slowly coming out from hiding: "Twenty-five U.S. Military Officers Challenge Official Account of 9/11 -Official Account of 9/11: “Impossible”, “A Bunch of Hogwash”, “Total B.S.”, “Ludicrous”, “A Well-Organized Cover-up”, “A White-Washed Farce”
January 14, 2008 – Twenty-five former U.S. military officers have severely criticized the official account of 9/11 and called for a new investigation. They include former commander of U.S. Army Intelligence, Major General Albert Stubblebine, former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense, Col. Ronald D. Ray, two former staff members of the Director of the National Security Agency; Lt. Col. Karen Kwiatkowski, PhD, and Major John M. Newman, PhD, and many others. They are among the rapidly growing number of military and intelligence service veterans, scientists, engineers, and architects challenging the government’s story. The officers’ statements appear below, listed alphabetically."

How will we see America when it becomes official that we slaughtered 3,000 of our very own to go to war and kill Hundreds of thousands abroad? Can the nation survive?History will decide, but only through our persistant involvement in challenging whatis now considered as fact, i.e. 9/11 was Arab terrorism, done because "they hate our freedom"
9/11 was self inflicted terrorism, done because our Government in Washington hates our freedom. I can only hope it doesn't take decades and countless lives before the truth-seekers are vindicated around 9/11. No more wars for lies, no more control from a sham Government.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Noble Resolve '08, Robotic Armies, Space War +

"Noble Resolve 2008" *thanks to Michael Vail

Joint forces to sharpen disaster response
The U.S. Joint Forces Command and Northern Command are planning a series of computer-based disaster drills with four states this year as part of their Noble Resolve 2008 preparedness exercises.
The drills are intended to enhance military support during and after natural disasters, accidents and terrorist attacks. The participating states are Indiana, Oregon, Texas and Virginia.
Although the Joint Forces Command is based in Suffolk, Va., and Northcom is at Peterson Air Force Base, Colo., the exercises will bring together participants using computer models and common scenarios, Rear Adm. Dan Davenport, director of the joint concept development and experimentation directorate for the joint forces, said in a news release.

Although the Joint Forces Command is based in Suffolk, Va., and Northcom is at Peterson Air Force Base, Colo., the exercises will bring together participants using computer models and common scenarios, Rear Adm. Dan Davenport, director of the joint concept development and experimentation directorate for the joint forces, said in a news release.
The scenarios will focus on maritime domain awareness, tracking of weapons of mass destruction, information sharing and tracking of populations.
Participants will make decisions and work together online just as they would in case of a real crisis. By using the models, no troops or emergency personnel will have to actually deploy or respond to events, saving money and time, the news release stated.
"We can let them actually see the scenario and provide their responses and execute their procedures in their own locations, fusion centers and operating centers," Davenport said.
Other participants in the exercises include the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Homeland Security Department, U.S. Pacific Command, National Guard Bureau and National Guard organizations from several states. Several smaller Noble Resolve events will be held throughout the year, as well as a major exercise in July.
Disaster drills typically involve government employees, contractors, public officials and volunteers. Government contractors sometimes are called on to provide additional support during major preparedness exercises.

US Army proto-Dalek combat robots enter testing

Monster Pentagon contractors Boeing and SAIC jointly announced today that two of their latest offerings for the future robot armies of America have entered military testing early. The machines in question are a relatively dull lightweight groundcrawler job and a frankly splendid ducted-fan flying Dalek.
The two mechanoid warriors are known as the Small Unmanned Ground Vehicle (SUGV) and the Class I (Block 0) Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, aka Micro Air Vehicle or MAV. According to a joint Boeing/SAIC release, 25 SUGVs and 11 MAVs will be shipped to US Army test facilities starting this month.

"The decision to accelerate, driven in part by feedback from soldiers in theatre... confirms that we are on the right track to deliver a crucial capability that is needed and desired by our soldiers currently serving in combat operations," said Boeing wardroid veep Dennis Muilenburg.

Disharmony in the spheres

Modern American warfare relies on satellites. They make America powerful but also vulnerable, particularly in light of China's new celestial assertiveness

A HUSHED, dimmed hall in the nerve centre that controls America's air operations from Somalia to Afghanistan is dominated by giant video screens tracking coalition aircraft. Blue dots show the location of ground forces, with “troops in contact” highlighted for priority air support. Smaller screens show live black-and-white footage, relayed by satellite from unmanned drones which, in their turn, are remotely controlled by pilots in America.
The Combined Air Operations Centre's exact location in “southwest Asia” cannot be disclosed. But from here commanders supervise tens of thousands of sorties a year. Through aircraft surveillance pods they get a god's eye view of operations that range from old-fashioned strafing to the targeted killing of insurgent leaders with bombs guided by global positioning system (GPS) satellites, and emergency air drops to isolated soldiers using parachutes that steer themselves automatically to the chosen spot. (cont...)
Staging the Largest Terrorism-Response Drill in US History (TOPOFF Summary)

Lasers Zap With 'Nonlethal' Pulses

Zapping lenses and sensors is just the beginning. The same technology behind the Laser Crazer weapon I describe in Wired News may ultimately be used to produce ray guns designed for "personnel incapacitation."

The are a whole family of lasers that create intense pulses of laser energy, that, in turn, produces a plasma flash-bang at the target's surface. The Laser Crazer is just the latest example.The big bear of this technology is the Pulsed Energy Projectile, a chemical laser weighing several hundred pounds that's being developed as a nonlethal antipersonnel weapon. It fires pulses slowly -- at a rate of less than ten per second.The middle bear is the Plasma Acoustic Shield System, a solid state laser producing hundreds of pulses a second as a screening device and to stun and disorientate. The latest device is the little bear of the three, based on a femtosecond laser firing ten thousand plus pulses a second, creating a series of minute explosions at the target surface. That's enough to scratch glass and damage lenses, but little else. The photo at left shows the laser hitting a glass target.But there's more to it than that. When the PEP's predecessor was being developed – the Pulsed Impulsive Kill Laser or PIKL – the emphasis was on the shockwave it produced. Then it was discovered that against living targets, there was a more dramatic effect of pain and paralysis. This turned out to be due to the electromagnetic pulse caused by the expanding plasma, and the PEP took a new direction.
In 2005, documents released under the FoIA showed that PEP was being tuned to maximise the pain effect of the plasma blasts . The term to watch out for is "nociceptor activation." Nociceptors are the pain-sensing nerve cells, and activation is setting them off. The problem is that these laser-generated plasmas are not yet well understood.
A session at the Directed Energy & Non-Lethal Weapons conference in December was supposed to have included a session on the PEP. The topic: "identify & specify bio-effects parameters that would cause personnel incapacitation and to determine if a laser system can produce that incapacitation effect." But apparently this was canceled, alas.
So, naturally, I was interested in a paper on "detection and analysis of RF emission generated by laser-matter interactions" -- especially because the contributors included researchers into femtosecond laser and those who had done the "maximum pain" work. Basically, they fired ultrashort, one-joule pulses at copper and dielectric targets and measured the EMP produced. In the results the authors record fields of 400 volts/meter, noting that somewhat higher fields (10,000 volts/meter) are needed for nociceptor activation.
The femtosecond laser they used is not quite capable of causing agony at the receiving end. But that seems to be the intention (the fact that the study was sponsored by the Joint Nonlethal Weapons Directorate may be a clue, too). DARPA-back researchers are already working on a shoebox-sized femtosecond laser, and it's likely they will succeed in the near future. Of course, humans aren’t the only ones vulnerable to electromagnetic pulse. The same technology could be used to develop anti-missile, anti-aircraft, anti-satellite and other weapons which would use a relatively weak laser to zap the target with EMP from a plasma burst on its surface. The US Army is developing an ultra-short pulse laser which aims to destroy IEDs and other targets.
The technology is advancing fast; how long it remains in the open is anyone's guess
World Bank Washington Buildings Closed Today After Bomb Threat

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Terror Drill (NE,IA), Holographic Simulator, FCS + News

Agencies use mock terror attack for drill
Many agencies prepared for a large-scale terrorist attack Tuesday, including Civil Service Teams from Nebraska and Iowa, as part of a training simulation.
Teams expected a drill at around 10 a.m. The call came in at 8 a.m. announcing a terrorist attack on the ConAgra Campus near 10th and Farnam streets in Omaha.
"They're trying to rattle us," Assistant Chief Matt Thomas with the Council Bluffs Fire Department said.
A Nebraska Civil Service Team handled the ConAgra incident and discovered the chemical agents used were manufactured in Council Bluffs.
"We got a phone call on a suspicious vehicle parked in front of a warehouse, " Thomas said.
The warehouse, at 1001 S. Sixth St., became the terrorists' mock headquarters, complete with two chemical warfare labs and a floor dedicated to making bombs.
Pottawattamie County Sheriff's Office Bomb Squad members tackled the suspicious maroon minivan parked out front.
"The van had chemicals and a dispersion agent inside, so we called out the bomb squad to send in their robot and take a look," Captain Brad Nocita with Council Bluffs HAZMAT said. (cont…)

High-tech simulator unveiled at Camp Pendleton
Holographic technology is among the high-tech elements of the Infantry Immersion Trainer at Camp Pendleton.

The Marine Corps is embracing breakthrough holographic technology to teach combat tactics and battlefield ethics at Camp Pendleton as troops there begin another major round of deployments to Iraq.
Marine officials yesterday unveiled the Infantry Immersion Trainer, a high-tech prototype simulator that resides in a former – and decidedly low-tech – tomato-packing plant that still bears directions for truck drivers.
The 32,000-square-foot, $2.5 million training ground became reality after a request from Gen. James Mattis, former commander of the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force at Camp Pendleton. The program capitalizes on 15 years of Navy and Marine research on everything from body movements to urban warfare, coupled with the latest advancements in simulation from defense companies such as Lockheed Martin. (cont…)


HOMELAND SECURITY UPDATE: Chertoff Announces New Border-Crossing ID Rules

Showing off FCS: Officials must realize program's importance
Future Combat Systems is exactly what it says -- the future. FCS is the future of the Army and reflects what it will require in terms of personnel, equipment and communications to successfully conduct combat in future arenas. It is the core of the force modernization that is going on now.
It's important that U.S. government officials, elected or otherwise, have a solid grasp of FCS' importance and the necessity of keeping it adequately funded. (cont..)

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Japan ABM Shield, Sim Urban Panic, SAIC, GD, + News

Japan plans Tokyo missile shield
Japanese officials have carried out exercises to see whether a missile defence shield could be deployed in the capital, Tokyo.
Teams set up radio masts and tested communications at two separate locations in the city.
The military was assessing whether Patriot Advanced Capability 3 (PAC-3) surface-to-air interceptor missiles could be deployed at such sites.
Concern over North Korea has prompted Japan to up its missile defence.
In 1998 Pyongyang test-fired a long-range Taepodong-1 missile over northern Japan.
In 2006 the communist state also tested a longer-range missile, as well as carrying out a nuclear test. (cont..)

Modeling Urban Panic
Schneier is reporting that Arizona State University's Paul Torrens has been developing a computer simulation to model urban panic. "The goal of this project is to develop a reusable and behaviorally founded computer model of pedestrian movement and crowd behavior amid dense urban environments, to serve as a test-bed for experimentation." The simulation tests behaviors from how a crowd flees from a burning car to how a pathogen might be transmitted through a mobile pedestrian over time among others
“"The goal of this project is to develop a reusable and behaviorally founded computer model of pedestrian movement and crowd behavior amid dense urban environments, to serve as a test-bed for experimentation," says Torrens. "The idea is to use the model to test hypotheses, real-world plans and strategies that are not very easy, or are impossible to test in practice."
Such as the following: 1) simulate how a crowd flees from a burning car toward a single evacuation point; 2) test out how a pathogen might be transmitted through a mobile pedestrian over a short period of time; 3) see how the existing urban grid facilitate or does not facilitate mass evacuation prior to a hurricane landfall or in the event of dirty bomb detonation; 4) design a mall which can compel customers to shop to the point of bankruptcy, to walk obliviously for miles and miles and miles, endlessly to the point of physical exhaustion and even death; 5) identify, if possible, the tell-tale signs of a peaceful crowd about to metamorphosize into a hellish mob; 6) determine how various urban typologies, such as plazas, parks, major arterial streets and banlieues, can be reconfigured in situ into a neutralizing force when crowds do become riotous; and 7) conversely, figure out how one could, through spatial manipulation, inflame a crowd, even a very small one, to set in motion a series of events that culminates into a full scale Revolution or just your average everyday Southeast Asian coup d'√©tat -- regime change through landscape architecture.” (cont...)

SAIC working on the cutting edge (anthrax/Ft Detrick)
Science Application International Corp., or SAIC, has been a mainstay of Frederick's biotechnical research community since 1995.
A contractor for the National Cancer Institute, SAIC-Frederick's mission is to provide scientific, technical, management, administrative, and logistical support to National Institutes of Health intramural laboratory research and development into causes of and cures for cancer and AIDS.
Since President Nixon's declaration of the war on cancer in 1972, the area where SAIC-Frederick is located at Fort Detrick has been owned by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
SAIC-Frederick employs about 1,770 people, and operates on the largest single research contract awarded by the Department of Health and Human Services.
SAIC-Frederick occupies 68 acres and 116 buildings at Fort Detrick.
The Frederick location and proximity of the buildings is well sited. The National Institutes of Health is nearby, as well as the I-270 biotech corridor.
Satellite locations off-base, such as a genotyping facility in Gaithersburg and the vaccine pilot plant off Md. 85 are easily accessible to the operation.....
Government Awards Passport Card DealsTuesday January 15, 1:37 pm ET
General Dynamics, Unisys Win Government Contracts for Work on Passport Card
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The government has awarded contracts worth up to $99.3 million to General Dynamics Corp. and up to $62 million to Unisys Corp. to produce identification cards and reader technology.
Under a five-year State Department contract announced Tuesday, General Dynamics Information Technology will produce so-called passport cards, which will contain Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology. The cards will allow citizens to return to the U.S. from Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean by land or water.
And under a separate five-year contract announced by U.S. Customs and Border Protection, part of the Department of Homeland Security, Unisys will produce the technology and infrastructure needed to read the cards at U.S. borders

Do U.S. pandemic plans threaten rights, ACLU asks
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. policy in preparing for a potential bird flu pandemic is veering dangerously toward a heavy-handed law-enforcement approach, the American Civil Liberties Union said on Monday.
The group, which advocates for individuals' legal rights based on the U.S. Constitution, said federal government pandemic plans were confusing and could emphasize a police and military approach to outbreaks of disease, instead of a more sensible public health approach.
"Rather than focusing on well-established measures for protecting the lives and health of Americans, policymakers have recently embraced an approach that views public health policy through the prism of national security and law enforcement," the ACLU report reads.
But the U.S. Health and Human Services Department (HHS) said the group had misunderstood the government's approach and said current plans already incorporate many of the ACLU's recommendations.
Infectious disease experts agree that a pandemic of some sort of influenza is inevitable, and most worries focus on H5N1 avian influenza. Although it mainly attacks birds, the virus has infected 349 people since 2003 and killed 216 of them.
A few mutations could turn it into a highly infectious disease for people and could kill millions globally.
Most countries are working to develop plans to deal with the potential consequences. The U.S. plans are available on Web sites such as
The ACLU said it was worried that the plan called for military and police involvement in enforcing a quarantine.
The ACLU experts said they were especially disturbed by an October executive order from President George W. Bush that directed HHS to establish a task force to plan for potential catastrophes like a terrorist attack, pandemic influenza or a natural disaster that would ensure full use of Department of Defense resources.

Health workers in Texas prepare national border for pandemic flu
Juvaris BioTherapeutics enters research deal with CDC

NATO, Russia to hold theater missile defense exercise
NATO and Russia are going to conduct a joint Theater Missile Defense (TMD) exercise next week in Germany, the alliance said in a press release Monday. The computer-assisted exercise will be the fourth in a series of joint NATO-Russia TMD exercises. While previous exercises have focused on command and control of the TMD forces and the execution of operations in a joint theater of operations, this exercise will concentrate on the planning processes required to enable an effective and efficient employment of such forces, NATO said.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Fake Iran Encounter Simmed in '02, CO Pandemic X, + News

Community plays out a devastating scenario in a tabletop exercise (CO)
From left, Montrose Memorial Hospital CEO Ken Platou, David Dreitlein, M.D., and Emergency Room Director Sharon Holbrook study what the chain of command would look like in the event of an outbreak of pandemic flu during a tabletop exercise at the hospital Wednesday. (Barton Glasser / Daily Press)

MONTROSE — “What if?” was the question local law, emergency and health officials faced last week during a pandemic tabletop exercise.Montrose County Health and Human Services collaborated with Montrose Memorial Hospital to present a devastating scenario involving the avian flu. The exercise was to test the readiness of important community entities including the police and sheriff departments, the hospital, health and human services, Montrose County and city, the fire department and school district.
“The outcome for us was to get the conversation started and get different players working together,” said Dr. Dick Gingery, MCHHS facilitator for the event. “We would all have to work together in this situation if it was a reality.”
Representatives from the different organization were given a packet that laid out a series of events which participants found daunting and overwhelming to their department.
The scenario started with an explosion at a chicken farm outside of Montrose. At the same time, there is “buzzing” in the community about the discovery of the avian flu virus in a chicken farm in Delta.
A pandemic is an outbreak of a disease that is prevalent over a whole county or the world.

Air Forces to launch relief exercises
Pacific Air Forces will launch its first-ever total force humanitarian assistance and disaster relief exercise, known as Pacific Lifeline, from three locations within the Hawaiian Islands, Jan. 20 through Feb. 9, according to a news release from the Air Force.
About 900 Department of Defense personnel will participate in the 13th Air Force-led exercise, which will train and integrate Air Force and Army active duty, Air National Guard and Reserve component forces to respond to a real-world humanitarian crisis or national disaster in the Pacific Region. Initial forces will begin prepositioning at Kona International Airport Jan.11 via U.S. Air Force transport aircraft.
"We live in a region were natural disasters occur, unfortunately, all too often, and Pacific Air Forces are postured and ready to respond quickly and effectively when the call for help comes in," said Lt. Gen. Loyd S. "Chip" Uttterback, 13th Air Force commander. "Pacific Lifeline is a terrific venue to exercise our ability to organize, plan, rapidly deploy and lead a joint force to provide disaster relief and humanitarian assistance anywhere in the Pacific theater."

Iran Encounter Grimly Echoes ’02 War Game
WASHINGTON — There is a reason American military officers express grim concern over the tactics used by Iranian sailors last weekend: a classified, $250 million war game in which small, agile speedboats swarmed a naval convoy to inflict devastating damage on more powerful warships.
In the days since the encounter with five Iranian patrol boats in the Strait of Hormuz, American officers have acknowledged that they have been studying anew the lessons from a startling simulation conducted in August 2002. In that war game, the Blue Team navy, representing the United States, lost 16 major warships — an aircraft carrier, cruisers and amphibious vessels — when they were sunk to the bottom of the Persian Gulf in an attack that included swarming tactics by enemy speedboats.
“The sheer numbers involved overloaded their ability, both mentally and electronically, to handle the attack,” said Lt. Gen. Paul K. Van Riper, a retired Marine Corps officer who served in the war game as commander of a Red Team force representing an unnamed Persian Gulf military. “The whole thing was over in 5, maybe 10 minutes.”

WorldView satellite delivers its first views of the world
A high-resolution imaging satellite that launched in September from Vandenberg Air Force Base has delivered extremely detailed first pictures, according to DigitalGlobe, the spacecraft's owner-operator.
The firm released images from the WorldView-1 satellite, showing skyscrapers in Houston, Texas; the port of Yokohama, Japan; and an area around a traffic circle in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, while announcing that WorldView-1 has reached full operating capability for all customers.

Homeland Security proposes delayed Real ID rollout

Russian missile cruiser near Malta

India, China to hold 2nd military exercise this year: PM
India and China on Monday announced to hold their second joint military exercises this year and welcomed the "progress" in negotiations on the boundary issue.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Chinese counterpart Wen Jiabao during extensive talks agreed to substantially enhance economic engagement by stepping up bilateral trade target from $40 billion to $60 billion by 2010.
Building on the goodwill generated by the landmark handshake between the world's two powerful armies last month in Kumming in China, the two leaders decided to have a second military exercise in India.
"We have agreed to continue to deepening mutual understanding and trust between our armed forces and welcome the successful first exercise in Kumming," Singh said.