Intercept Protocol for In-Flight Emergency Aircraft on September 11, 2001

ex⋅i⋅gent

1. requiring immediate action or aid; urgent; pressing.

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/exigent
e·mer·gen·cy

1. a sudden, urgent, usually unexpected occurrence or occasion requiring immediate action.

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/emergency
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CHAIRMAN OF THE JOINT
CHIEFS OF STAFF
INSTRUCTION

J-3 CJCSI 3610.01A
DISTRIBUTION: A, B, C, J, S 1 June 2001
AIRCRAFT PIRACY (HIJACKING) AND DESTRUCTION OF DERELICT
AIRBORNE OBJECTS
References: See Enclosure D.

4. Policy.

a. Aircraft Piracy (Hijacking) of Civil and Military Aircraft. Pursuant
to references a and b, the Administrator, Federal Aviation Administration
(FAA), has exclusive responsibility to direct law enforcement activity
related to actual or attempted aircraft piracy (hijacking) in the “special
aircraft jurisdiction” of the United States. When requested by the
Administrator, Department of Defense will provide assistance to these
law enforcement efforts. Pursuant to reference c, the NMCC is the focal
point within Department of Defense for providing assistance. In the
event of a hijacking, the NMCC will be notified by the most expeditious
means by the FAA. The NMCC will, with the exception of immediate
responses as authorized by reference d, forward requests for DOD
assistance to the Secretary of Defense for approval. DOD assistance to
the FAA will be provided in accordance with reference d. Additional
guidance is provided in Enclosure A.

d. DOD Directive 3025.15, 18 February 1997, “Military Assistance to
Civil Authorities”

(http://www.dtic.mil/doctrine/jel/cjcsd/cjcsi/3610_01a.pdf)

---------------------------------------------

Department of Defense
DIRECTIVE

NUMBER 3025.15
February 18, 1997

SUBJECT: Military Assistance to Civil Authorities

4.7.1. Immediate Response. Requests for an immediate response (i.e., any
form of immediate action taken by a DoD Component or military commander to save
lives, prevent human suffering, or mitigate great property damage under imminently
serious conditions) may be made to any Component or Command. The DoD
Components that receive verbal requests from civil authorities for support in an exigent
emergency may initiate informal planning and, if required, immediately respond as
authorized in DoD Directive 3025.1 (reference (g)). Civil authorities shall be informed
that verbal requests for support in an emergency must be followed by a written request.
As soon as practical, the DoD Component or Command rendering assistance shall report
the fact of the request, the nature of the response, and any other pertinent information
through the chain of command to the DoD Executive Secretary, who shall notify the
Secretary of Defense, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and any other appropriate
officials. If the report does not include a copy of the civil authorities' written request, that
request shall be forwarded to the DoD Executive Secretary as soon as it is available.

REFERENCES

(g) DoD Directive 3025.1, "Military Support to Civil Authorities (MSCA)," January 15,
1993

(http://www.dtic.mil/whs/directives/corres/pdf/302515p.pdf)
------------------------------------------------------------

Department of Defense
DIRECTIVE
NUMBER 3025.1
January 15, 1993
USD(P)
SUBJECT: Military Support to Civil Authorities (MSCA)

4.5. Immediate Response

4.5.1. Imminently serious conditions resulting from any civil emergency or
attack may require immediate action by military commanders, or by responsible officials
of other DoD Agencies, to save lives, prevent human suffering, or mitigate great property
damage. When such conditions exist and time does not permit prior approval from
higher headquarters, local military commanders and responsible officials of other DoD
Components are authorized by this Directive, subject to any supplemental direction that
may be provided by their DoD Component, to take necessary action to respond to
requests of civil authorities. All such necessary action is referred to in this Directive as
"Immediate Response."

(http://www.dtic.mil/whs/directives/corres/pdf/302501p.pdf)

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As one can see, the June 1, 2001 revision on 'AIRCRAFT PIRACY (HIJACKING) AND DESTRUCTION OF DERELICT AIRBORNE OBJECTS' left untouched DoD's response protocol for scramble and intercept of aircraft experiencing in-flight emergencies. The June 1, 2001 revision only applied to hijacked aircraft and the destruction of airborne objects.

Since we were told that during the summer of 2001 (between June 2 and September 10) there were ZERO NORAD scrambles to intercept aircraft that experienced in-flight emergencies, that means DoD disobeyed a lawful written order. It might interest one to know that breaking such an order is a court martial offence. OSI, are you listening?

Dean Jackson/Editor-in-Chief DNotice.org
Washington, DC

I Saw Your 9/11 Blogger Submission

Joe,

I saw your 9/11 Blogger entry. That's why I followed up with mine, which includes the June 1, 2001 CHAIRMAN OF THE JOINT CHIEFS OF STAFF INSTRUCTION you presented, plus the two previous DoD directives one must go back to in order to determine what was the actual intercept protocols on September 11, 2001.

Dean Jackson/Editor-in-Chief DNotice.org
Washington, DC

A lingering question on hijacking v. emergency protocols

When I first became a 9/11 Truther in Fall 2005, I read some claims by folks on our side that the change in protocol around mid-2001 (which was then said to have reverted after 9/11) may have been responsible for the lack of interceptions. Supposedly, scrambles in response to hijacked airliners had to be approved by the Secretary of Defense.

I was a little amused to learn that certain of the True Believers also made this claim. It wasn't until reading Prof. Griffin's Debunking 9/11 Debunking that I learned about the "reference d" exception. Indeed, I didn't fully grasp until then the crucial distinction between the Hijacking Protocol and the in-flight Emergency Protocol.

But there is still a lingering contradiction I haven't seen resolved.

There is no doubt that if FAA controllers determine some kind of in-flight emergency is underway--simultaneous loss of radio contact and transponder, departure from authorized flight path, failure to obey an order--that the FAA can request assistance and NORAD can immediately respond.

However, the claim is also made that if the flight is known to be hijacked then authorization from the top is needed to scramble fighters, irrespective of other ordinary signs of trouble. If this is true, then it seems to correlate more with the official explanation (leaving aside whether that 2001 directive might have been arranged for just this purpose.)

It would otherwise make sense if, for instance, an air traffic controller detects trouble with a flight and requests assistance, scramble orders are issued and fighters launched. THEN, if it's determined to be a hijack, the hijacking protocol would kick in--with approval from higher up.

The main difference would be how the fighters engage the plane. Under the Emergency Protocol, fighters might make a pass trying to get the pilot's attention, whereas under the Hijacking Protocol they may just fly a few miles behind the plane and monitor it. In other words, the Hijacking Protocol would involve a pulling back, so to speak--and that is what permission would be needed for.

But is permission needed to scramble fighters if it's known in advance to be a hijacking?

Robin Hordon made this claim in the movie Zero. (And he seemed to be saying that this was the case even before 2001.) Yet in Debunking 9/11 Debunking he was quoted as saying that the fastest protocol would be used (presumably in all cases,) which would mean that fighters should certainly have been launched in response to all four 9/11 flights immediately.

(I realize this may not matter in all four cases, since the FAA should have requested assistance in at least 2 or 3 instances where there was known to be an in-flight emergency before it was clear there was a hijacking. But the question still lingers.)

Can anyone shed some light this?

The $64,000 Question

JTL,

great questions!

The 1993 DoD directive one must go back to to determine the truth simply says, "Imminently serious conditions..." A hijacker getting clearance from ATC before altering an aircraft's flight path is in a situation that isn't an "Imminently serious condition[s]". However, a hijacker that pays no attention to ATC and alters the aircraft's flight path unilaterally has created an "Imminently serious condition[s]".

Hijacking or no hijacking, the June 1, 2001 CHAIRMAN OF THE JOINTCHIEFS OF STAFF INSTRUCTION doesn't prevent immediate response from NORAD IF the situation is of an "Imminently serious condition[s]".

Dean Jackson/Editor-in-Chief DNotice.org
Washington, DC

Calling Robin Hordon

What you're saying makes sense. And clearly DRG's writings are based on this assumption.

I'd still like to know why Robin Hordon seemed to state otherwise in Zero. He's a man in position to know.

MR. HORDON, ARE YOU AVAILABLE FOR COMMENT?

So assuming the truth of this, then I guess the scenario I posited above is on track: Fighters are scrambled immediately pursuant to Emergency Protocol. If determined to be a hijacking, then word would go up the chain. Then, if implementing the Hijacking Protocol were approved, word would be transmitted to the fighter pilots that this is now being treated as a hijack, which would mean that they would modify their ensuing steps per a new set of instructions. Meanwhile, at least the fighters were already in the air and well on their way to the troubled flight.

DRG is A-OK on "reference d", He Missed "reference g", However

JTL,

DRG came up with the correct analysis, even though he missed the 1993 DoD directive.

JTL says, "If determined to be a hijacking, then word would go up the chain."

Response: Only if the hijacking was not an "Imminently serious condition". If the hijacked aircraft goes off its flight path without ATC consent, then we have an "Imminently serious condition", which necessitates immediate response by NORAD according to the1993 DoD directive.

Dean Jackson/Editor-in-Chief DNotice.org
Washington, DC

Right . . .

But I was presuming that the Emergency Protocol had already been implemented and fighters already launched. It sounds like the Hijacking Protocol would be implemented subsequently, if approved, and would simply mean that modified instructions would be sent to the fighter pilots already in the air. Is this not correct?

This discussion has made things clearer, but now I begin to wonder why we even have a hijacking protocol. Even if a hijacked airliner doesn't deviate from its established flight course, it still represents a serious situation that would warrant military intervention. So we would need higher-up approval to scramble fighters if it were "merely" a hijacking?

"immanently serious condition[s]"

JTL says,

"But I was presuming that the Emergency Protocol had already been implemented and fighters already launched. It sounds like the Hijacking Protocol would be implemented subsequently, if approved, and would simply mean that modified instructions would be sent to the fighter pilots already in the air. Is this not correct?"

Response: No, it's not correct.

If the situation presented by the hijacked aircraft were not considered an "immanently serious condition[s]", then there would be no fighters already in the air according to the June 1, 2001 Instruction. However, if the hijacked aircraft were an in-flight emergency, then fighters would be immediately scrambled because that does constitute an "immanently serious condition[s]".

Read the following from the June 1, 2001 Instruction on aircraft piracy:

Aircraft Piracy (Hijacking) of Civil and Military Aircraft. Pursuant
to references a and b, the Administrator, Federal Aviation Administration
(FAA), has exclusive responsibility to direct law enforcement activity
related to actual or attempted aircraft piracy (hijacking) in the “special
aircraft jurisdiction” of the United States. When requested by the
Administrator, Department of Defense will provide assistance to these
law enforcement efforts. Pursuant to reference c, the NMCC is the focal
point within Department of Defense for providing assistance. In the
event of a hijacking, the NMCC will be notified by the most expeditious
means by the FAA. The NMCC will, with the exception of immediate
responses as authorized by reference d, forward requests for DOD
assistance to the Secretary of Defense for approval.

See where it says, "In the event of a hijacking...The NMCC will, with the exception of immediate responses as authorized by reference d, forward requests for DOD assistance to the Secretary of Defense for approval." Even the June 1, 2001 Instruction says that the new protocol on hijacked aircraft reverts to "reference d" IF the hijack situation requires "immediate response as authorized by reference d".

Some in the 9/11 Truth Movement have these past 8.6 years misinterpreted section 4 (a) of the June 1, 2001 CHAIRMAN OF THE JOINT CHIEFS OF STAFF INSTRUCTION on aircraft piracy.

Dean Jackson/Editor-in-Chief DNotice.org
Washington, DC

The Atta transmission?

Good question JTL. I have been looking at 9/11 only since Oct of '07. so it is likely I am missing something here. I can't say for sure this was the mindset of authorities that day, but there was a transmission, supposedly by Mohammed Atta, that said "we have some planes". I believe this set in place the hijacking protocols. Of course this is only my conjecture, but it seems prudent to me. I hope this helps shed some light if only a very little. It might be a place to start.

I do have a question for Dean however. You stated:
"Since we were told that during the summer of 2001 (between June 2 and September 10) there were ZERO NORAD scrambles to intercept aircraft that experienced in-flight emergencies"

Who stated this? Its the first I've heard. It was montra'd for some time that there were 67 intercepts between June of 2000 and Sept 11, 2001 and that they happen all time. My question for you is just exactly how do we know if there were 0 or 67 or what the regularity is? Is there a public source where the number of intercepts can be determined? The 67 number I remember came from a Toronto Star article cited by DRG in Omissions and Distortions. I even found that article on the internet. What I don't know is where the article got this number. 67 seems like an awful high number to me for a years time. If there were that many, how could there be 0 from June to Sept of 2001? Your input is greatly appreciated.

dan

The 2000-1 scrambles and the transmission

The report was actually that there were 67 scrambles between Sept. 2000 and June 2001. I say "scrambles," because it's not clear how many resulted in actual interceptions. The best review of this is in DRG's Debunking 9/11 Debunking pages 237-240.

As far as the alleged transmission from Flight 11, the official story is that the "We have some planes" statement was not rendered intelligible for another 40 minutes. (See DRG's Omissions and Distortions, page 156.

Scrambles = Interceptions

JTL,

when NORAD scrambles, it actually does intercept! It's like firefighters heading for a fire, they can't be called back. They have to arrive at the scene to determine the situation even if the person(s) who called the fire department say there is no fire...that it was a mistake.

"[If the Air Traffic Control Center sector] has no datablock or other information on it, the military will usually scramble an intercept flight. Essentially always they turn out to be private pilots… not talking to anybody, who stray too far outside the boundary, then get picked up on their way back in. But, procedures are procedures, and they will likely find two F-18s on their tail within 10 or so minutes." -- Air Traffic Control Center, ‘ATCC Controller’s Read Binder’, Xavier Software, August 1998.

Dean Jackson/Editor-in-Chief DNotice.org
Washington, DC

My assumption is . . .

. . . that you're probably correct--unless of course the fighters are simply recalled beforehand. I was merely relating the fact that the report didn't make that point clear. What is indisputable is that there were 67 scramble orders issued.

"But, procedures are procedures"

JTL,

no such thing as call-back. Interceptors are prescribed by protocol (the quote says "procedures") to intercept regardless, so there would be no call-back. Note where the quote says, "...then get picked up on their way back in."

Also, notice how fast NORAD intercepts the errant aircraft even when its transponder is off...ten minutes or so!

Dean Jackson/Editor-in-Chief DNotice.org
Washington, DC

Good points

This sounds like very useful information. Thanks very much! I tend to follow the precautionary principle in my declarative statements, when I'm not 100% sure of something with reliable documentation. But this sounds like straight info.

Back To The Future

JTL,

when it comes to 9/11, there's nothing like MAINSTREAM sources confirming 9/11 Truth, especially MAINSTREAM data published BEFORE September 11, 2001!

Dean Jackson/Editor-in-Chief DNotice.org
Washington, DC

Court Martial Anyone?

dtg86,

another good question!

"At a NORAD operations center in Cheyenne Mountain in Colorado Springs, Colo., a noncommissioned officer listens to conversations on the FAA network from all over the United States, said Maj. Douglas Martin, NORAD spokesman.

"If he hears anything that indicates difficulty in the skies, we begin the staff work to scramble," Martin said. Before Sept. 11, the FAA had to telephone NORAD about any possible hijackings.

From Sept. 11 to June, NORAD scrambled jets or diverted combat air patrols 462 times, almost seven times as often as the 67 scrambles from September 2000 to June 2001, Martin said." -- http://911research.wtc7.net/cache/planes/analysis/norad/020812ap.html

We are told that scrambles ceased for in-flight emergencies as well as for hijacked aircraft as of the June 1, 2001 CHAIRMAN OF THE JOINT CHIEFS OF STAFF INSTRUCTION!

Subpoena The Intercept Logs

dtg86,

dtg86 says, "If there were that many, how could there be 0 from June to Sept of 2001? Your input is greatly appreciated."

There couldn't be zero scrambles and interceptions for the summer months of 2001! Everyone would be up and flying who could be up and flying! We have NORAD in another obvious lie. All one has to do is subpoena the NORAD interception logs for that time period.

Dean Jackson/Editor-in-Chief DNotice.org
Washington, DC

thanks Dean

this helps, I read thru the pages in Debunking 9/11 Debunking which also helped. I am currently reading thru the The Hidden History of 9/11 edited by Paul Zarembka. I finished DRG's WTC7 book earlier. There was a lot of good information in this discussion.

What we don't know about this whole thing then is if Section (d) was utilized. If DoD approval was required and denied, then there would have been (or at least should of been) a record of the support being denied or delayed. If the Section (d) protocol was invoked and still no scrambles, then that seems to suggest a stand order was in effect. Would it be possible that this protocol was initiated and worded this way for the specific purpose to cause confusion? Having officials unsure if they should be scrambling, getting approval? I don't know because there was no real investigation to uncover all the records of when requests were made, when scramble orders were given. Maybe if Aiden is reading, he'll have another FOIA to send in for the scramble logs.

Thanks for everything guys.

peace all

dan

"reference d" Situation

dtg86 says,

"Having officials [officers] unsure if they should be scrambling, getting approval?"

NORAD officers are briefed on changes in scramble protocols and already knew what "immanently serious condition[s]" means and what response the phrase requires. See where in the 1997 DoD directive it says "...exigent emergency..."? While all hijackings are emergency situations, they aren't "exigent" as long as the hijackers wait for ATC approval for any flight path deviations they might be intending to make.

Dean Jackson/Editor-in-Chief DNotice.org
Washington, DC