Hurricane Harvey Devastates Houston as Scientists Warn of the Perils of Ignoring Climate Change
TheRealNews on Aug 28, 2017
Millions face flooding as nation’s 4th largest city faces another week of rain.
This week is the 10th anniversary of the destruction of the southeastern gulf coast by Hurricane Katrina.
More than 1,800 people died. There is no estimate for the number of pets and wildlife. Damage was estimated at more than $100 billion.
The White House
For Immediate Release
October 26, 2012
Executive Order — Establishing the White House Homeland Security Partnership Council
– – – – – – –
ESTABLISHING THE WHITE HOUSE HOMELAND SECURITY PARTNERSHIP COUNCIL
By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, and in order to advance the Federal Government’s use of local partnerships to address homeland security challenges, it is hereby ordered as follows:
Nov. 30, 2007
Olbermann reports that Chertoff gave promotions to the FEMA employees who staged as reporters. Olbermann also reports of past fake news conferences.
by Dennis Kucinich
January 19, 2006 (February 6, 2006 issue)
Soon after Hurricane Katrina ripped through New Orleans and the Gulf Coast, destroying hundreds of thousands of homes and jobs, President Bush said the region looked like it had been obliterated by a weapon. It was. Indifference is a weapon of mass destruction. And the Bush Administration’s indifference to the economic security of New Orleans residents continues to this day.
For the 500,000 evacuees still not back in their homes, unemployment is epidemic: About one-quarter of whites, and one-half of African-Americans, are still out of work. It’s not because jobs are scarce; in fact, there is a labor shortage in New Orleans. Most of those who have returned from the Katrina diaspora have found jobs. The massive unemployment is caused by the lack of housing near the reconstruction job sites.
The indifferent Bush Administration, through the now-infamous FEMA, is compounding the unemployment problems of hurricane victims. FEMA located the largest temporary housing facility for evacuees ninety-one miles from New Orleans, in Baker, Louisiana. That’s hardly a reasonable commute, especially for low-income folks. Barry Kaufman, business manager of Local 689 of the Construction and General Laborers, told the New York Times he had “at least 2,000” evacuees willing to take cleanup jobs. The trouble was getting them there; the local’s hiring hall, along with thousands of evacuees, has been displaced to Baton Rouge, more than an hour’s drive away.
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By William Mac
The Mac Manifesto (William Mac)
November 01, 2007
This Week in Time October 22 – 29 2007
William Mac begins by keeping his promise of last week that he will have a hot chick with big boobs and cleavage. So, he had guest director Calvin Klein come over and make some hot steamy commercial segments about how this week in time has been all about complete and utter lies.
But… William Mac has enough of that and decides to just tell you how it is. There are no bombs in Iran, Bush wants World War III, and for some goddamn reason FEMA can’t seem to get it right. Those douche bags.
Oct 26, 2007
FEMA apparently held a press conference where they had their own employees posing as the press and didn’t allow the actual press to attend or ask questions. E.J. Dionne from the Washington Post weighs in.
And the winner is….Dana Perino. Runners up the Concord NH police and Glenn Beck.
For Immediate Release
October 12, 2007
From October 15 – 19, 2007, the Federal Bureau of Investigation will take part in a multi-agency national preparedness exercise known as Top Officials, or TOPOFF. Next week’s exercise is the fourth segment of the TOPOFF series of congressionally mandated exercises administered by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and designed to strengthen the nation’s capacity to prevent, prepare for, respond to, and recover from large-scale terrorist attacks. This full-scale exercise will simulate the response to a radiological dispersal device attack.
“While the FBI strives to prevent a terrorist attack from occurring in the first place, in the event of an attack we must be ready to respond. This exercise is an essential element in our preparation to assert an integrated, coordinated response with our international, federal, state, and local law enforcement and intelligence partners and first responders,” said Michael A. Mason, Executive Assistant Director of the FBI’s Criminal, Cyber, Response, and Services Branch.
More than 15,000 participants representing international, federal, state, local, and territorial entities will take part in the exercise. The venues for this cycle, TOPOFF 4, are Arizona, Guam, and Oregon. In addition, activities will take place on a federal level in Washington, D.C. In coordination with the Department of State, the United Kingdom, Canada, and Australia are full international partners in the exercise.
Over 250 FBI subject matter experts from the FBI Laboratory’s Hazardous Materials Response Unit, the National Press Office, and the Critical Incident Response Group’s Crisis Management Unit and National Level Tactical Assets will participate. These national assets will supplement the tactical units, hazardous material response teams, special agent bomb technicians, and crisis management coordinators from the FBI’s Portland, Phoenix, and Honolulu field offices. The FBI participants will work in close coordination with our federal partners, including the Department of Justice, DHS, the Department of Energy, the Department of Health and Human Services, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, and the Environmental Protection Agency, as well as our Legal Attaches in the U.S. Embassies in London, England; Ottawa, Canada; and Canberra, Australia.
TOPOFF 4, the largest segment of the series to date, engages participants on all levels of government. The exercise’s implementation of the National Response Plan will include practicing incident response, incident command, cross-jurisdictional coordination, emergency and risk communication, and implementation of protocols and policies. The FBI’s jurisdiction to investigate terrorist activities and to prevent, deter, and disrupt terrorist plots before they come to fruition is provided by federal law, regulations, Presidential Decision Directives, and the National Response Plan. As such, the FBI considers participation in TOPOFF 4 an integral component in its efforts to defeat terrorism.
by Prof. Michel Chossudovsky
Global Research, October 6, 2007
US Northern Command (USNORTHCOM) has announced the conduct of major war games under Vigilant Shield 2008 (VS-08).
Vigilant Shield 2008 (15 to 20 October, 2007) is designed to deal with a “terrorist” or “natural disaster” scenario in the United States. The operation will be coordinated in a joint endeavor by the Pentagon and the Department of Homeland Security.
Yet, VS-08, which includes a massive deployment of the US Air Force resembles a war-time air scenario rather than an anti-terrorist drill. The VS-08 war games extend over the entire North American shelf. Canadian territory is also involved through Canada’s participation in NORAD. (See Nazemroaya, October 2007)
These war games are being conducted at an important historical crossroads, amidst mounting US pressures and threats to actually declare a “real war” on Iran.
VS-08 is predicated on the doctrine of preemptive warfare, with a vie to protecting the Homeland. The war games are coordinated with anti-terrorist drills directed against presumed Islamic terrorists.
Moreover, the announcement by NORTHCOM of the VS-08 war games-anti-terror drills coincided with a declaration by the Bush administration in early September that military action against Iran is being contemplated at the highest echelons of the US government and Military:
“President George W Bush and his inner circle are taking steps to place America on the path to war with Iran, .. Pentagon planners have developed a list of up to 2,000 bombing targets in Iran, … Pentagon and CIA officers say they believe that the White House has begun a carefully calibrated programme of escalation that could lead to a military showdown with Iran. (Quoted in The Sunday Telegraph, 16 September 2007).
VS-08 is a large scale military exercise to be conducted over North America and the Northern Pacific Ocean, extending westwards towards the Far East borders of Russia and China:
“USNORTHCOM’s primary exercise venues for VS-08 include locations in Oregon, Arizona and a cooperative venue with USPACOM in the Territory of Guam. NORAD’s aerospace detection and defense events will take place across all the exercise venues, to exercise the ability to mobilize resources for aerospace defense, aerospace control, maritime warning, and coordination of air operations in a disaster area.” (PNC, October 2007)
Both the war games under VS-08 as well as the domestic antiterrorist drills involve the participation of Canada, Britain and Australia:
“VS-08 and National Level Exercise 1-08 will provide local, state, tribal, interagency, Department of Defense, and non-governmental organizations and agencies involved in homeland security and homeland defense the opportunity to participate in a full range of exercise scenarios that will better prepare participants to prevent and respond to national crises. The participating organizations will conduct a multi-layered, civilian-led response to a national crisis.”( See NORTHCOM Fact Sheet).
Pacific Shield 2007
Vigilant Shield 2008 will be preceded by another set of exercises organized by Japan. The Tokyo government will host a multinational Proliferation Security Initiative (PSI) Maritime Interdiction Exercise “Pacific Shield 07”(PS-07) in the eastern sea area off Izu Oshima, and at the Ports of Yokosuka and Yokohama (13-15 October, (See the Japanese government communique). The stated objective of the PS 07 exercises is to “prevent the spread of weapons of mass destruction (WMD)”. Australia, France, New Zealand, Singapore, the UK, and the US will be participating in ‘Pacific Shield 07’.
The administration is talking about “linked exercises”, where war scenarios are conducted simultaneously and in close coordination with civilian anti-terrorist drills. This central concept –which underlies the “Global War on Terrorism”– has a direct bearing on the conduct of the US led war in the Middle East. At the same time, the process of “domestic security” has become entrenched and integrated into military planning.
The ‘linked exercises” provide an environment which favors the militarization of civilian institutions. They also impart the military with a further opportunity to interfere in domestic civilian law enforcement and judicial functions.
The conduct of the anti-terrorist exercise is intended to justify the need to retaliate against an illusive outside enemy (Al Qaeda), even if the US is not attacked.
But there are indications that the administration has envisaged from the standpoint of military planning, for several years now, a scenario of a second major terrorist attack on America . According to Pentagon officials referring to a classified military document:
“Another [second 911] attack could create both a justification and an opportunity that is lacking today to retaliate against some known targets [Iran, Syria], according to current and former defense officials familiar with the plan.” (WP 23 April 2006).
The above Pentagon statement suggests that a “Second 911” attack characterised by a “mass casualty producing event” is part of military doctrine and planning. A real “false flag” attack or even the threat of a terrorist attack could be used as a justification to wage war on Iran.
In the month following the 2005 7/7 London bombings, Vice President Dick Cheney is reported to have instructed USSTRATCOM to draw up a contingency plan “to be employed in response to another 9/11-type terrorist attack on the United States”. Implied in the contingency plan is the certainty that Iran would be behind a Second 9/11.
Targeting Russia and China
VS-8 is based on a scenario of confrontation with Russia and China. The Bush administration has accused Tehran of supporting Islamic terrorism, while also pointing to the fact that Iran in has the support of both China and Russia.
While the contents of VS-08 have not been released, last year’s Vigilant Shield exercise (Vigilant Shield 07), which simulated the outbreak of a major war, contemplated four hypothetical enemies: Ruebek (Russia), Churya (China), Irmingham (Iran) and Nemazee (North Korea).
In last year’s briefing documents of the Vigilant Shield 07 war games, the following scenario was contemplated by participants:
“•Nemazee continues to develop nuclear and missile capabilities
• Southwest Asian country of Irmingham intent on uranium enrichment program
• Western countries and United States seeking U.N. assistance to halt Irmingham’s enrichment program
• Eurasian country of Ruebek attempts to mediate Irmingham crisis by offering nuclear oversight while secretly supporting enrichment program
• Asian country of Churya will become concerned at increasing level of Ruebek-U.S. hostility”
(quoted by William Arkin, Washngton Post, October 2006)
The outcome of VS-07 was a limited attack by Ruebek and Nemazee on the United States.
“Minus 1 Day:
• Ruebek Expels US Mission
• Phase 2 / Execution: 10 – 14 Dec 06
– Pre-Attack I & W
– Imminent Terrorist Attack on Pentagon Suggests Pentagon COOP [continuity of operations plan]
– Nemazee Conducts 2 x ICBM Combat Launches Against United States
– Ruebek Conducts Limited Strategic Attack on United States”
TOPOFF 4: Selective Propaganda directed at “Top Officials”
This year’s VS-08 exercise combines the VS-08 hypothetical war scenario over the North American shelf with the conduct of major domestic anti-terrorist drills under TOPOFF 4.
The latter is a large scale anti-terror exercise for “top officials”. It includes the participation of senior decision makers from federal, State and municipal governments, law enforcement, nongovernmental bodies as well as representatives from the business community.
According to Denis Shrader, Deputy DHS Administrator in testimony to the US Congress (October 3):
“The exercise will be executed with the participation of all appropriate Cabinet-level secretaries or their deputies, and will include the activation of all necessary operations centers to accurately simulate a truly national response to these major terrorist incidents. This will include the utilization of all five elements of the National Operations Center and the FEMA Region IX and X Regional Response Coordination Centers. In addition, the FEMA Emergency Response Teams and Federal Incident Response Support Teams as well as DHS Situational Awareness Teams will activate in each of the venues and will simulate the establishment of a Joint Field Office in accordance with the latest National Response Framework guidance.”
This year’s TOPOFF 4 exercises involves setting off fake radiological dispersal devices (RDD) or “dirty bombs” in Oregon, Arizona and the US Pacific island territory of Guam. According to Northern Command:
“The T4 FSE, based on National Planning Scenario – 11 (NPS-11), begins as terrorists, who have been planning attacks in Oregon, Arizona, and the U.S. Territory of Guam successfully bring radioactive material into the United States. The first of three coordinated attacks occurs in Guam, with the simulated detonation of a Radiological Dispersal Device (RDD), or “dirty bomb,” causing casualties and widespread contamination in a populous area. Similar attacks occur in the hours that follow in Portland and Phoenix. A RDD is not the same as a nuclear attack. It is a conventional explosive that, upon detonation, releases radioactive material into the surrounding area. Although it does not cause the type of catastrophic damage associated with a nuclear detonation, there are severe rescue, health, and long-term decontamination concerns associated with a RDD.”
TOPOFF 4 will involve the participation of some 15,000 federal, state, territorial and local officials in what is described as “a full-scale response to a multi-faceted terrorist threat”. Canada, Australia and the UK will participate in TOPOFF. Observers from some 30 countries have also been invited.
“It will ‘accurately simulate a truly national response to these major terrorist incidents’ by emergency response teams, medical units, police forces and top government officials who will have to make difficult decisions to save lives.” (quoted by AFP, 4 October 2007)
TOPOFF is a propaganda operation intended for at top decision makers. The objective is to build a consensus among key decision makers that America is threatened by Islamic terrorists, using an improvised nuclear device.
These terrorists are, according to recent statements, supported by Tehran. The presumption is that the Islamic terrorists, rather than the US, UK or Israel, have the required military capabilities and constitute a real nuclear threat.
These various anti-terrorist scenarios are intended to build a consensus among key top officials in the US and its coalition partners that the terrorist threat is not only real but the terrorists would be attacking America in a “Second 911” as part of a broader process of military confrontation, in which a number of enemy countries including Ruebek, Churya and Irmingham would be involved.
We are not, however, dealing with a classical media disinformation campaign. While the TOPOFF exercise has been casually mentioned in press reports, it is not the object of extensive media coverage. In fact very few people are aware of these exercises.
With regard to TOPOFF, the consensus building process is “internal”, it does not pertain to the public at large. The disinformation campaing is intended for key decision-makers within these various governmental and nongovernmental bodies. It includes more than 10,000 participants in important decision-making positions (federal and State officials, law enforcement, fire departments, hospitals, etc), who may be called to act in the case of an emergency situation. These individuals in turn have a mandate to impose the “Global War on Terrorism” consensus within their respective organizations, –i.e. with their co-workers and colleagues, as well as with the people working under their direct supervision.
In other words, this consensus building process reaches out to tens of thousands of people in positions of authority. The antiterrorist agenda and exercises thus become a “talking point” within numerous governmental and nongovernmental organizations.
In turn, the holding of these antiterrorist exercises supports the National Security doctrine of “preemptive war”, –i.e. that America has to legitimate right to self defense by intervening in foreign lands including Iran and that America must defend itself against terrorists.
It also sustains the myth of WMD in the hands of terrorists, being used against America, when in fact the US is the largest producer of WMD, with a defense budget of more than 450 billion dollars a year.
The objective is to sustain the war and national security agenda –and of course the possibility of martial law– within the governmental, nongovernmental and corporate business sectors. Ultimately, the objective is develop across the land, an unequivocal acceptance by key officials (and of their coworkers and subordinates), from the federal to the local level, for an emergency situation, where civil liberties and the rights of citizens would be suspended.
Michel Chossudovsky is the author of the international best America’s “War on Terrorism” Global Research, 2005. He is Professor of Economics at the University of Ottawa and Director of the Center for Research on Globalization.
To order Chossudovsky’s book America’s “War on Terrorism”, click here
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© Copyright Michel Chossudovsky, Global Research, 2007
The url address of this article is: www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=6997
by Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya
Global Research, October 6, 2007
Vigilant Shield 2008
US Northern Command (USNORTHCOM) has just announced plans for an anti-terrorism exercise called Vigilant Shield 2008. The series of exercises is mandated by the US government to prepare, prevent and respond to any number of national crises that would call for the use of the military inside the United States.
Terrorism, Air Defences, and the Deployment of the U.S. Military in American Streets
Vigilant Shield 2008 builds a scenario of a domestic disaster in the US (terrorist attack or natural disaster). It posits the domestic use of the US military including a special role for the US Air Force.
Hypothetically, a terrorist event could trigger the massive deployment of the US military as part of a national emergency. If a terrorist incident were to occur and Iran were to be blamed for the attacks, the military could also be used to shunt anti-war opposition within the US.
A precedent for the domestic use of the US military within US cities was established in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina.
Vigilant Shield 2008 is said to be designed to deal with a terrorist or natural disaster scenario in the United States. Yet, the deployment of the US forces in the upcoming US military-security exercise, organised by Homeland Security and the Pentagon, resembles a war-time air scenario over North America and the Pacific rather than an anti-terrorist drill. Canadian territory is also involved through NORAD and so is Guam in the Pacific Ocean.
The Iran Link: Air War Scenario?
The involvement of a Pacific front suggests a scenario of confrontation with Russia or China. The Pacific Ocean, along with an arctic route across Canada are the most likely routes for hypothetical Chinese and Russian aerial attacks in response to a broader global war resulting from attacks on Iran. These assumptions were actually built into last year’s Vigilant Shield exercise (Vigilant Shield ’07).
United States Northern Command
Exercise Vigilant Shield ’08 slated for October
August 30, 2007
PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. – North American Aerospace Defense Command and U.S. Northern Command along with U.S. Pacific Command, the Department of Homeland Security as well as local, state and other federal responders will exercise their response abilities against a variety of potential threats during Exercise Vigilant Shield ‘08, a Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff-designated, North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) and U.S. Northern Command (USNORTHCOM)-sponsored, and U.S. Joint Forces Command-supported Department of Defense exercise for homeland defense and defense support of civil authorities missions.
VS-08 will be conducted concurrent with Top Officials 4 (TOPOFF 4), the nation’s premier exercise of terrorism preparedness sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security, and several other linked exercises as part of the National Level Exercise 1-08. These linked exercises will take place October 15-20 and are being conducted throughout the United States and in conjunction with several partner nations including Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom, as well as the Territory of Guam.
VS-08 and National Level Exercise 1-08 will provide local, state, tribal, interagency, Department of Defense, and non-governmental organizations and agencies involved in homeland security and homeland defense the opportunity to participate in a full range of exercise scenarios that will better prepare participants to prevent and respond to national crises. The participating organizations will conduct a multi-layered, civilian-led response to a national crisis.
USNORTHCOM’s primary exercise venues for VS-08 include locations in Oregon, Arizona and a cooperative venue with USPACOM in the Territory of Guam. NORAD’s aerospace detection and defense events will take place across all the exercise venues, to exercise the ability to mobilize resources for aerospace defense, aerospace control, maritime warning, and coordination of air operations in a disaster area.
United States Northern Command
USNORTHCOM prepared for hurricane response
Aug. 29, 2007
By Petty Officer 1st Class Joaquin Juatai
NORAD and USNORTHCOM Public Affairs
August 29 marks the second anniversary of Hurricane Katrina’s devastating landfall on the Gulf Coast. Local, state, federal and military responders rushed to New Orleans, one of the most devastated areas, to offer rescue, aid and clean up in the aftermath of the storm.
U.S. Northern Command is responsible for the Department of Defense’s role in response to a disaster such as Hurricane Katrina. In that role, USNORTHCOM coordinates movement of equipment and personnel in support of the primary responding agency, whether that is the Federal Emergency Response Management Agency, the National Guard or another primary responding agency.
“Hurricane Katrina’s impact on this country was unprecedented. There are still many of our fellow Americans whose lives still haven’t returned to normal,” said Gen. Gene Renuart, commander of North American Aerospace Defense Command and USNORTHCOM. “It will take many years for the Gulf Coast to fully recover.
“The United States military was deeply involved in the response to the hurricane and subsequent flooding,” Renuart said. “While our Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, and Marines helped thousands of people, we also learned many lessons.”
According to Renuart, USNORTHCOM has been using the lessons learned from Katrina to modify plans to respond to both natural disasters and potential terrorist actions.
“We have been conducting exercises and working with our federal partners to be better prepared for a future catastrophe,” Renuart said.
Since Katrina, USNORTHCOM has pursued a robust planning and training program, developing and testing concepts of operation and response to a disaster such as a hurricane.
Personnel at the command have identified many of the resources that may be needed during a disaster and established a process to move them quicker.
The command has continued to work with other federal agencies to improve the overall federal response.
In May, USNORTHCOM and its subordinate commands participated with FEMA Region 1 in a National Hurricane Preparedness Exercise, which enabled further refining of processes and procedures in disaster response.
USNORTHCOM is ready to help federal, state and local officials to be prepared for a major hurricane and to be successful at conducting response operations, if necessary and requested by the primary responding agency. Some of the ways these objectives are being achieved are:
The mission of USNORTHCOM is homeland defense and civil support. The command conducts operations to deter, prevent, defeat and mitigate threats and aggression aimed at the United States, its territories and interests within the assigned area of responsibility and, as directed by the President or Secretary of Defense, provides military assistance to civil authorities including consequence management operations.
Related Global Research Articles
© Copyright Mahdi Darius Nazemroaya, Global Research, 2007
The url address of this article is: www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=6992