U.S. Begins Domestic Anti-Terrorism Exercise
by Ted Gogoll
05/23/00 08:29:40 AM U.S. EDT
A multi-agency U.S. government team has begun a 10-day crisis management exercise to assess U.S. capabilities against integrated, no-notice terrorist threats and acts.
Exercise Top Off 2000 is being staged in various cities around the country, bringing together the Federal Emergency Management Agency, FBI, Energy Dept., Environmental Protection Agency, and the Health and Human Services Dept. along with state and local agencies in a $3.5 million program to pinpoint the weaknesses in the nation’s anti-terrorism capabilities. The combined agencies make up the Joint Task Force Civil Support (JTF-CS), based in Norfolk, Va. – a newly established unit under the U.S. Joint Forces Command – with control over DOD forces which support a lead federal agency for managing the consequences of weapons of mass destruction incidents in the U.S.
“Our mission is to save lives, prevent injury and restore life critical infrastructure,” said Army Brig. Gen. Bruce Lawlor, JTF-CS commander. “We have many strengths, including our organization, size and logistics structure. Our inherent strengths lie within our transportation, medical and food services skills.”