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OPERATION VIGILANT EAGLE: Air Terror Drill Intercepts, Investigates Hijacking in Simulated Air Terrorist Operation


A first-of-its-kind hijacking exercise involving the U.S., Canadian and Russian militaries went “flawlessly,” and a similar drill is planned next year, an American officer said.

Russian Federated Air Force, the USAF and Candian Air Force worked a training exercise that simulated terrorists hijacking a Boeing 757 in the Alaskan region of the North American Aerospace Defense Command.

Other aircraft involved in the exercise were F-22’s that were involved in interception and investigation. ON the Russian side the aircraft was intercepted and investigated by three SU-27 jet fighters, a MIG-31, and two more SU-27’s.

The three countries worked together on the air terrorism exercise.

Operation Vigilant Eagle is also an American law-enforcement effort headed by the FBI aimed at preventing political violence by “lone wolf” terrorists. The operation was first mentioned in the Wall Street Journal in April 2009.

In this case a “lone wolf” is a person who operates alone, outside of extremest organizations. Examples included Theodore Kaczynski, the Unabomber, Scott Roeder who killed a Kansas abortion doctor and James von Brunn who attacked the American United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. Such attackers are hard to detect as they do not associate with other extremists.