Reprinted from www.libertylobby.org, home of The SPOTLIGHT archive
Pentagon Reviews 'Attacks' on Cities
The Joint Chiefs of Staff are reviewing the Pentagon's practice of conduction what many consider dangerous military maneuvers by Special Operations forces in major U.S. cities, according to military sources.
Since the early 1990s, The SPOTLIGHT has reported on military maneuvers, which frequently utilize live ammunition and what appear to be black helicopters flying at roof-top levels above heavily populated areas of American cities.
Early on this populist newspaper was criticized for its coverage of the maneuvers, and officials flatly denied it, but in recent years, after the Pentagon attacked their towns, several mainstream newspapers have joined the bandwagon.
And while in the past the Established media has obliged the Pentagon in dismissing The SPOTLIGHT's stories as over-reaction, and worse, it appears, now the so-called "mainstream press" is also reporting the problems created by the incidents. The military brass has been moved to reconsider these "mock attacks" on Americans.
The beginning of a major problem for the Pentagon seems to have started when Charlotte, North Carolina, was chosen in March for one of the targeted cities.
When the dark-painted helicopters suddenly swooped down on apartment building in Charlotte, dropping troops on rooftops, some with their weapons being discharged into an abandoned warehouse to capture what were supposed to be a group of 'terrorists," residents, totally unaware of the exercise, became "terrified."
"Some terrified residents grabbed their guns," the Washington Post reported. "Others ducked into doorways, The 911 line went crazy, as did Mayor Pat McCrory's telephone line."
"I could barely hear the callers because of the helicopter noise and the gunfire in the background,' the mayor explained.
Neither the mayor not the chief of police knew what was going on. Then McCrory recalled that three months earlier he had been visited by two representatives of the Army's Special Forces Command at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, who dressed in jeans and t-shirts, asked permission to conduct what they claimed were counter terrorism exercises, which, they said would "go unnoticed."
The mayor was even asked to sign a "confidentiality statement," in which he agreed not to disclose the event beforehand due to "national security."
Now, in the post's own story, not The SPOTLIGHT's "over-reaction," here is what happened:
"We were misled," said McCrory, who was forced by public outcry to keck the army out of charlotte after the first day of what was to have been three days of urban terrorism training. "'How they thought you could come without any disturbance is beyond me. It was almost like a blitzkrieg operation. People went and got their guns. I feel fortunate no one was hurt.'"
The Charlotte fiasco was followed in June by a similar exercise in Houston, Texas, where what The SPOTLIGHT had long warned might happen did in fact happen.
"In Houston, a night's exercise was cut short when a helicopter landed hard, rolled over and its two occupants were hospitalized," the Post reported. "Thousands of callers to local media there demanded that the troops leave town.
"Who invited them?" one caller reportedly demanded to know.
Last year, residents of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania were shocked by an invasion that it between midnight and 2 am on June 4. City officials, the police and media reported receiving hundreds of anxious calls about helicopters.
In one phase of the exercise, soldiers slid down ropes to the ground from hovering helicopters amid explosions on the ground. Soldiers also fired what the Army said was blanks. The Army called off the exercise early.
In 1995, a similar type of exercise resulted in residents of Chicago suburbs fleeing their homes amid the low-flying helicopters, gunfire and explosions. "I was more frightened than I've ever been in my life,' said one man to a local newspaper.
Of course the accident could have been much worse. The helicopter's hard landing might have been against the side of an apartment complex, filled with sleeping men, women and children.
Naturally, the Pentagon will classify the foregoing paragraph as another case of "over-reaction."