Were U.S. Military Phones 'War-Dialed' on 9/11?

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Oct 4, 2007, 2:46:01 AM10/4/07
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"Ringing Like Crazy": Were U.S. Military Phones 'War-Dialed' on 9/11?

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Submitted by Shoestring <http://911blogger.com/user/308> on Wed,
10/03/2007 - 11:04am.
NMCC <http://911blogger.com/taxonomy/term/6741> | NORAD
<http://911blogger.com/taxonomy/term/996>
Activists and researchers have long tried to understand how the highly
sophisticated U.S. military could have failed so completely to stop the
attacks that took place on September 11, 2001. Statements made by
several U.S. military personnel who were deeply involved in the crisis
response that morning suggest an alarming method that may have been used
to sabotage normal defenses. Revealed here for the first time, this is
one possible reason that the military was in such a state of paralysis
until it was too late to make a difference.
*NORAD AND THE NMCC*
A key military installation on 9/11 was the North American Aerospace
Defense Command (NORAD) operations center, located deep under Cheyenne
Mountain in Colorado. Major General Eric Findley, NORAD's director of
combat operations, was there, and has recalled events around the time of
the first attacks. He had just been finishing breakfast when a colleague
said to him: "The Federal Aviation Administration's asked for NORAD
assistance with a hijacking." As he then came back to the battle cab,
someone told him: "Sir, you wanna have a look at this." The monitor was
showing television footage of the North Tower of the World Trade Center,
with a burning hole in it from having just been hit by an airplane.
Before Findley knew it, TV showed the second tower being struck. He
said: "We've got a coordinated attack." [1]
Crucially, Findley has recalled that, at that moment, "every phone in
this cab, and every phone over in the command center, and every phone in
all the centers in this building were ringing off the hook." [2] Master
Corporal Daniel Milne, the emergency action controller on duty in the
NORAD operations center, has similarly recalled: "The feeling was total
disbelief. Then the phones started ringing like crazy. I could not
believe that we were under attack." [3] This wasn't just happening at
NORAD. The American Forces Press Service has described events in the
National Military Command Center (NMCC), located within the Pentagon,
based on the recollections of two officers who were there. Like the
NORAD operations center, the NMCC would have been one of the most
important parts of the military that morning. After the second plane hit
the WTC, phones there "began ringing off the hook." [4]
What caused all these phones to suddenly ring? Could it have been an
influx of concerned agencies suddenly requesting help, now it was
obvious the U.S. was under attack? Or was it something more sinister? A
clue is in a 1996 article from the U.S. Air Force's own magazine,
/Airman/. The article quoted Stacey Knott, a technician in the NORAD
operations center: "Things can be pretty quiet in here." However, she
added: "One of the busiest times is during exercises. This room fills
up. ... /The phones are ringing off the hook, and I've got phones in
each hand/." [emphasis added] [5]
*COMPUTER NETWORK ATTACK*
It just so happens that NORAD was in the middle of a major annual
exercise the morning of 9/11, called Vigilant Guardian. It involved "all
HQ NORAD levels of command," and "would pose an imaginary crisis to
North American Air Defense outposts nationwide." Vigilant Guardian was
conducted in conjunction with a U.S. Space Command exercise called
Apollo Guardian and a U.S. Strategic Command exercise called Global
Guardian. [6] While little is known about Apollo Guardian, Global
Guardian has been confirmed as being "in full swing" at the time the
real attacks started. [7]
Furthermore, a military newsletter reported in 1998: "For the last few
years, United States Strategic Command has incorporated computer network
attack (CNA) scenarios into its annual major exercise known as Global
Guardian. The primary purpose of including CNA is to test the processes
we have in place in case of a real attack against our information
infrastructure." To carry out these attacks, the U.S. Strategic Command
(Stratcom) would employ "red team" members "and other organizations to
act as enemy agents." The attacks would range "from attempting to
penetrate the Command from the Internet to a 'bad' insider with access
to a key command and control system." Most significantly, "The attackers
also /'war dialed' our phones to tie up the phones/ and sent faxes to
numerous fax machines throughout the Command." [emphasis added] Could a
"computer network attack" where the phones were "'war dialed" have been
incorporated into the exercise on 9/11? The 1998 article had ended: "We
plan to increase the level of CNA in future Global Guardian exercises to
imitate as closely as possible the technical capabilities of a hostile
source." [8]
*THE NEED FOR INVESTIGATION*
This raises many questions. Might a CNA incorporated into Global
Guardian have provided a smokescreen for sabotaging the phone system, at
a time when the U.S. military needed to communicate most effectively so
as to respond to the real world attacks? If so, who was behind this act
of treason? A thorough and dedicated criminal investigation would be
required to identify these rogue individuals.
Major General Eric Findley has tried to suggest that it was not a
problem when all the NORAD operations center phones suddenly started
ringing. He told the CBC: "The good news is we had lots of people here
and we already had an operational architecture. We already had the
command and control, the network, the phones, the data links. Everything
was already in place that enabled us to react to the situation." [9] Yet
how believable is this? As Findley had himself stated, "every phone" had
been "ringing off the hook." Now I can imagine that would be quite a
hindrance when you are trying to respond to an unprecedented emergency.
And if telephones "ringing like crazy" were really such a harmless
occurrence, the U.S. military would have had no need to practice dealing
with it during training exercises.
*NOTES*
[1] "NORAD and September 11." CBC, September 11, 2002
<http://archives.cbc.ca/IDC-1-71-1552-10476/conflict_war/norad/clip8>.
[2] Ibid.
[3] Ray Dick, "Inside NORAD." /Legion Magazine/, November/December 2004
<http://www.legionmagazine.com/features/militarymatters/04-11a.asp>.
[4] Jim Garamone, "9/11: Keeping the Heart of the Pentagon Beating."
American Forces Press Service, September 7, 2006
<http://www.defenselink.mil/news/NewsArticle.aspx?ID=734>.
[5] Pat McKenna, "The Border Guards." /Airman/, January 1996
<http://www.af.mil/news/airman/0196/border.htm>.
[6] Hart Seely, "Amid Crisis Simulation, 'We Were Suddenly No-Kidding
Under Attack.'" Newhouse News Service, January 25, 2002
<http://web.archive.org/web/20020219050126/http://www.newhouse.com/archive/story1a012802.html>;
"Vigilant Guardian." GlobalSecurity.org, April 14, 2002
<http://web.archive.org/web/20021106090640/www.globalsecurity.org/military/ops/vigilant-guardian.htm>.
[7] Joe Dejka, "Inside Stratcom on Sept. 11 Offutt Exercise Took
Real-Life Twist." /Omaha World-Herald/, February 27, 2002.
[8] Ward Parker, "Incorporating IA Into Global Guardian."
/IANewsletter/, Summer 1998
<http://iac.dtic.mil/iatac/download/Vol2_No1.pdf>.
[9] "NORAD and September 11." CBC, September 11, 2002
<http://archives.cbc.ca/IDC-1-71-1552-10476/conflict_war/norad/clip8>.


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