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Sunday, July 23, 2006

Amalgam Virgo I

Edit Nov. 30th. Polishing this up a bit. Before polish archive

Okay, this one is a bit trickier as far as documentation of evidence goes (you'll see why soon), but I'll give it my best shot.

First a quote from an "official source"
This year's exercise is a commercial airliner-hijacking scenario -- planned before the Sept. 11 attacks, Snyder said. Last year's exercise, he said, was a scenario involving a cruise missile launched by "a rogue (government) or somebody" from a barge off the East Coast.

Future scenarios include air piracy and drug interdiction - - "anything else that might pop up," Snyder remarked. "We're planning for the worst-case scenario that was previously unimaginable" before the terrorist-hijacked airliner attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.
(Screenshot below)

So far, the only site which I've been able to confirm a pre-9/11 Amalgam Virgo mention is ANZUS, Inc.'s site. (screenshot below) This doesn't mean that mentions didn't exist elsewhere prior to 9/11, just that I haven't found IA strength evidence to confirm that.

Next we have a bit of information on something formerly called the the freedom jet but now apparently known as SMART-1.
The Freedom Jet is a record-maker! Formerly known as the Silver Bullet, it is listed in the Guinness World Records under "the smallest jet." The aircraft, N21AP, weighs about 437 lbs, has a 17 foot wingspan and is 12 feet long. With the current engine - Microturbo TRS-18-1, 300 lb. thrust - it is capable of speeds of 260 knots (300 mph) in level flight. It has a fuel capacity of 36 US gallons in the airshow configuration and 54 gallons in the military configuration. The jet is still used to conduct some cruise missile simulation tests for the US military.
and a reference to its participation in Amalgam Virgo '01 at Tyndall AFB. (see screenshots)

From the site Globalsecurity.org we get a description of the excersise and some of the participants, among them the 513th Air Control Group.
The exercise was coordinated by the Air National Guard's 1st Air Force and involved active duty, National Guard and Reserve forces, the U.S. Navy and Coast Guard as players.
Navy Aegis cruiser, USS Yorktown, in the Gulf of Mexico.

Because of the capability for people with very limited means, in relative terms, to be able to obtain a cruise missile, NORAD has to be very serious about that threat. Key to defending against cruise missiles is making sure all air defenders see the same thing. The goal of this exercise was to improve the air picture and counter new and emerging threats.
The Coast Guard, Navy and U.S. Southern Command, took the lead in detecting, identifying and prosecuting the surrogate terrorist vessel that "launched" the cruise missiles for the exercise.
At the heart of the exercise was the Joint-Based Expeditionary Connectivity Center, or JBECC, which 1st Air Force tested as part of its Area Cruise Missile Defense demonstration. Ackermann explained that the JBECC is a highly mobile connectivity shelter, which can be deployed to high-risk areas to provide early warning of a cruise-missile attack. It does this by collecting and correlating radar information from the different services to provide an accurate tracking picture of low-level targets such as cruise missiles.
During the June 2001 exercise Amalgam Virgo, ANZUS, Inc. demonstrated the Rosetta LINK-16 / Link-11 gateway functionality. Tracks and data were forwarded between both links in both directions in real-time.

The .pdf document would seem to indicate that this exercise was done under the direction of SEADS, but I've seen several sources which would seem to indicate that the exercise was under the aegis of the CJCS and CinCNORAD, which would move the level of the exercise up to the highest levels in NORAD's chain of command (and awareness). Considering the scenario (shown in the pdf) of a hijacked airplane coming across the CONUS to Washington D.C. from Russia via Alaska, it seems likely that this exercise was not solely designed for and attended by members of SEADS.
Amalgam Virgo DoD statement screenshot

Amalgam Virgo I pdf screenshots


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