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GWEN Towers- *Important*

 
tommy
11/13/2004 11:34 PM
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GWEN Towers- *Important*
Ground Wave Emergency Network
Ground Wave Emergency Network

GWEN-A Threat

According to environmental documents we have received, the United States Air Force is actively preparing for fighting and winning a protracted nuclear war. Across America, the Air Force is constructing up to 400 towers specifically designed to allow the transmission of trigger-release codes for B-1 bomber and MX missile nuclear warheads at the beginning of nuclear war. This system of radio towers is called the Ground Wave Emergency Network(GWEN). Neither the Air Force, Congress, nor the American public has adequately informed itself about what the use of GWEN would mean to life on the planet. Nor, consequently, have we been able to make a considered decision on whether we should pursue such a politically and environmentally dangerous system.

There has been an important change in American plans for fighting nuclear war since the early days of nuclear planning. The early goal of massive retaliation was replaced in the Kennedy era with a policy of "flexible response." More recently, selective use of nuclear weapons was seen to be impaired by lack of real time Presidential control over our nuclear warfighting capability. Carter´s Presidential Directive 59(July 25, 1980) set out to ensure that improved communication would allow the President or a successor to actively pursue nuclear war for a prolonged period. These changes in nuclear policy have moved the U.S. toward the use of nuclear weapons for war fighting, not war prevention. GWEN is part of the system being built to allow nuclear war fighting.

What is GWEN?

GWEN is a network of low frequency radio towers whose purpose is to send release messages to U.S. strategic forces at the beginning of and during a nuclear conflict. The Air Force states two main rationales for the system: GWEN is resistant to electromagnetic pulse (although not hardened against nuclear blasts themselves) and is an internally redundant system (messages can be switched along various paths when certain towers are destroyed during a nuclear war).

The network consists of three types of communications stations:

Input-Output Stations: These stations can both enter messages for transmission through the GWEN network and receive messages from the network. An example of such a station is the Strategic Air Command headquarters in Omaha, Nebraska.

Receive Only Stations: These stations will be located at missile command centers and Air Force bases. Emergency Action Messages, such as those that order the use of nuclear weapons, will be received at these stations.

Relay Stations: These stations will make up the bulk of the GWEN network and will consist of automated radio relays. These stations will be located in areas that are currently not high priority military targets (such as Eugene). The relay stations will be organized so that messages can be routed around the network even if large numbers of the relays are destroyed during nuclear war. This will require several hundred relay stations.

The GWEN network is currently under construction, although a small part of it is already operational. Construction of GWEN is to take place in three phases. These phases are:

Phase 1: A limited number of test sites, presumably input/output stations, have already been built at existing military installations.

Phase 2: The Thin Line Connectivity Capability, currently under construction, consists of 95 towers and would perform the GWEN function temporarily.

Phase 3: Final Operational Capacity will involve towers variously numbered at 158, 240, or "approximately 400," depending on the Air Force document/informant cited. This phase has not yet been built, nor funds for it appropriated, although the Army Corps of Engineers has completed lease negotiations for some of the sites.

Each site would consist of a 299 foot tower (presumably to get around automatic imposition of the National Environmental Policy Act requirement for an environmental impact statement for any federally-funded 300 foot tower), a concrete building, and a series of fences on a 700 foot square site. Underground, a "ground screen" of copper wire would radiate to 330 feet at regular intervals. Physically unimpressive, the towers are presented to the public by the Air Force as radio towers for "emergency communications."

Each tower will cost $1.4 million, the entire system a billion dollars. Other systems such as AFSATCOM, Milstar, Green Pine, and Giant Talk are designed to provide nuclear war communications at other electromagnetic frequencies and with the same or other weapons systems. Because of GWEN´s relatively simplistic technology, the Air Force presumes that GWEN will be replaced in 15 years by a satellite system.

GWEN and Environmental Law

The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) requires that significant environmental or human health impacts of any proposed federal project be assessed and described in an environmental impact statement so that the public and decisionmakers can judge whether the projects should be undertaken. As a federal project funded by public money, the GWEN system and each GWEN tower fall under the mandates of this law (whether or not the 300 foot tower height is reached).

An environmental assessment is less complete than an environmental impact statement, involves less public input, ad is written for projects that are expected to have no significant health or environmental impact. The Generic Environmental Assessment for GWEN describes the environmental effects of constructing the GWEN towers. It takes into account the possibility of encountering "Indian" graves during excavation. It states that no weed killers will be used that would permanently damage the soil. Portable chemical toilets will be used while building te tower. It describes the general range or radio wave radiation that will emanate from the tower when in use.

Despite other Air Force documents clearly demonstrating GWEN is being built to assist with nuclear war, the Environmental Assessment never mentions the words "nuclear war", nor does it describe the role GWEN is to play in nuclear warfighting strategy. THe National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) demands, however, that the effects of a project in use be assessed and discussed. In the case of a roadbuilding project, for instance, NEPA requires more than an examination of the environmental impact of road materials and road construction. NEPA requires a discussion of the secondary impacts of using the road, e.g. increased auto emissions or alteration of local community life.

The impacts of the GWEN system in use as yet remain unaddressed. The only time GWEN will be put into use is to either start nuclear war, or shortly after nuclear war has started. Its sole function is to ensure that nuclear warfighting capability will endure through what a Joint Chiefs of Staff publication calls "graceful degradation, restart and recovery." On this basis, the Air Force is required to review the impacts of a prolonged nuclear war on the environment and on human health.

The environmental implications of at least four aspects of the GWEN system need to be addressed in an environmental impact statement:

1. GWEN contributes to the execution of prolonged nuclear war.

2. Any site on which a GWEN tower is built becomes a higher priority target in the event of nuclear war.

3. Communications systems such as GWEN are essential for conducting a prolonged nuclear war.

4. Systems such as GWEN contribute to the illusion that a nuclear war is winnable, and therefore thinkable, and therefore more likely.

What Now?

Citizens are currently suffering from the schizophrenic situation in which scientists ad other technicians develop military hardware to fill Caspar Weinberger´s prescription that U.S. nuclear forces should "prevail even under the conditions of a prolonged war", while at the same time being told by other scientists (biologists, climatologists, physicians, etc. that really very little will prevail under the condition of nuclear war except subfreezing temperatures, darkness, exposure to ionizing and ultraviolet radiation, starvation, and mass extinction.

We have reached the point where the mutual concerns of both peace activists ad environmentalists are intertwined. There is no greater threat to our environment than nuclear war. As our government contrives new and more threatening systems for mass destruction, the horrifying ad inevitable effects of the use these systems must be enumerated if the public and the government are to make meaningful and informed decisions.

The No-GWEN Alliance contends that the Air Force needs to prepare an environmental impact statement that discusses the possibly environmental effects of using GWEN to facilitate a prolonged nuclear war. On June 27, we filed suit against the Air Force, asking the court to enjoin the Air Force from continuing construction on the GWEN system until it has described te possible effects of GWEN in use, i.e., the effects of prolonged nuclear war, and the likelihood that communities such as ours will be a high priority for retaliation because of the GWEN system.

Several suits have been brought against the military regarding weapons systems and they are relevant to our proposed suit: Concerned About Trident v. Rumsfeld, Wisconsin v. Weinberger, Catholic Action v. Weinberger, and Foundation on Economic Trends v. Weinberger. These suits have addressed such issues as the applicability of NEPA to the military, the need for assessment of alternative sites and longterm effects of the weapon system in place, and contemplated versus stated use for a weapons site. Western Solidarity v. Reagan is a suit that has not yet been ruled on; a minor emphasis of the suit involves the claim that the effects of nuclear war must be addressed in the environmental impact statement for the MX missile.

We have been joined in our efforts by citizens´groups in Chico, California, and Amherst, Massachusetts, and by the Commissioners of Lane Country, Oregon. Nationally renowned figures, such as William Arkin of the Institute for Policy Studies ad Starley Thompson of the TTAPS Report on Nuclear Winter have agreed to give expert testimony on our behalf.

How Can You Help?

We need your financial support. As you know, legal suits are expensive. The Air Force has virtually limitless funds to subvert the intent and process of NEPA. We are a small group of citizens who have come together to fight the arms race that is being thrust into our backyards, but our goal is to force public discussion of the entire concept of prolonged nuclear war rather than to merely block the placement of one tower in Eugene. We ask you to send a generous personal contribution ad to ask your affiliated group to join and/or sponsor our effort.

Time is of the essence. The Air Force plans to conclude construction of the TLCC phase before the end of the year.

It is only through coordinated commitment that this country´s citizens can seek to hold the military accountable for its actions.

Thank you for taking the time to inform yourself on this issue of vital concern to us. Thank you, also, in advance, for your considered aid and generosity.

For more information, please contact:

NO-GWEN ALLIANCE of Lane County
P.O. Box 3197
Eugene, OR 97403
(503) 344-8052
Anonymous Coward
12/08/2005 10:17 AM
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Re: GWEN Towers- *Important*
"the Environmental Assessment never mentions the words "nuclear war", nor does it describe the role GWEN is to play in nuclear warfighting strategy."1dunno1
Government Agent
12/08/2005 10:17 AM
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Re: GWEN Towers- *Important*
Forget it, you can spend all the money you want, but the courts are gunna shut you out. Do you really think that legal challenges are going to help you win this??

Trust me, the only thing that legal challenges will do now is get you put in to one of the new detainment camps. You will end up sitting out the duration of the war in the middle of the desert with the other detainees.

Look, its over. Just go home and enjoy life. For your own good, sit this one out.
tommy
12/08/2005 10:17 AM
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Re: GWEN Towers- *Important*
google- GWEN TOWERS PROJECT-

numerous links, including the OP thread from Totse

lol its not my doing,,,just postin the links
Anonymous Coward
12/08/2005 10:17 AM
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Re: GWEN Towers- *Important*
Hello.... this is alrady in place with a much more sophiticated system than GWEN
tommy
12/08/2005 10:17 AM
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Re: GWEN Towers- *Important*
lawsuits do shit - I just posted the article for the gist of info about the towers
Anonymous Coward
12/08/2005 10:17 AM
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Re: GWEN Towers- *Important*
I remember seeing these in the U.K. Didn´t know what they were until my girlfriend told me they were for wartime communications in the event of a nuclear war. Drove up to the gates of what looked like an abandoned site and saw the Ministry Of Defence sign hanging on a beat-up gate--Place hadn´t been used in years and I thought about going in, but my girlfriend said the local constables patrolled the place regularly.
Anonymous Coward
12/08/2005 10:17 AM
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Re: GWEN Towers- *Important*
" In 1994, the departments of Transportation, Commerce, and Defense, which were looking for ways to improve the information provided by GPS, recommended the expansion of the Coast Guard´s differential global positioning system (DGPS) system. They also noted that the U.S. Air Force, which operated GWEN, planned to decommission the network and its 53 transmitters across the country. In a subsequent field test, it was demonstrated that these transmitters, which operated on frequencies near the Coast Guard DGPS radio-beacon frequencies, could be successfully used to provide navigational information for surface transportation applications. The Department of Transportation (DOT), which was designated in 1996 as the lead agency for all federal civil GPS matters, determined that conversion of the GWEN transmitters would save the Air Force $6 million in decommissioning costs, while decreasing NDGPS deployment costs by $10 million."



But of course I guess you would rather believe the ramblings of paranoid delusionals.
Anonymous Coward
12/08/2005 10:17 AM
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Re: GWEN Towers- *Important*
B


Time for the young ones to hear and learn the truth-it will their world

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