Read This? "Gov't Plans Games to Battle Bug" : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread


Scripps Howard News Service 12/23/98 By LISA HOFFMAN

WASHINGTON -- The federal government is gearing up for top-level war games designed to grapple with possible calamities the ``millennium bug'' might wreak in the United States and abroad.

The ``tabletop exercise,'' as it's being called, will mark the first time since the end of the Cold War that Cabinet secretaries have assembled to plot responses to what could be a nationwide crisis.

Clinton administration officials say they expect any disruptions that might result from computer confusion when 2000 dawns will be minor. But they want to make sure the government is prepared should that forecast be wrong.

Planning for the war games, tentatively scheduled for June, is in its early stages, so officials can't say which Cabinet secretaries will take part, how long the exercises will last or what mock disaster scenarios the leaders will be wrestling with.

According to administration officials, those almost certain to participate are Defense Secretary William Cohen, Health and Human Services Secretary Donna Shalala, Attorney General Janet Reno, Energy Secretary Bill Richardson, Transportation Secretary Rodney Slater and Jamie Lee Witt, the director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which is taking a lead role in preparing for any year 2000, or Y2K, glitches.

Governments, from the city and county level up, are racing to make sure their tens of thousands of vital systems will not fall prey to a programming problem that might cause computers to misinterpret the turn of the century on Jan. 1, 2000, and shut down or otherwise fail.

Given the proliferation of computer chips in everything from traffic signals to medical devices to air traffic control towers, significant disruptions in vital services are at least theoretically possible.

The administration wants to be able to respond rapidly if those occur. One major focus of the war games is expected to be on how to oordinate a response.

At least one other high-level war game is slated at the Pentagon, where the top brass along with Cohen will gather to brainstorm sometime between March and the national exercise in June, according to Pentagon officials.

Their focus won't be so much on handling defense computer foul-ups -- for which a massive preparatory fix now is underway -- as on how the armed forces might be able to help communities in which they are based cope with a crisis, particularly those overseas.

If, for instance, the electrical power fails in Ramstein, Germany, troops at the U.S. Air Force Base there could provide generators to help restore the power, officials said.

(Lisa Hoffman covers military affairs for Scripps Howard News Service. E-mail hoffmanl(at)

-- Joska (, December 23, 1998


Hi Joska! Thanks for posting this. I had read about these plans, and this article has more details. The govt can downplay Y2K all they want, but this plus their martial law plans are a hint that *somebody* at least knows enough to have sounded an alert and gotten the behemoth bureaucracy moving to joint drills, planning, and tabletop exercises. Usually, after the tabletop exercises, the officials realize it's not under control and needs more attention, so they get together for 'action' exercises, where they learn they haven't thought of those 1000 other factors which pop up ....

Thanks again, Ashton & Leska in Cascadia, winter storm approaching, bbrrrr
xxxxxxx xxxxxxx xxxxxxx

-- Leska (, December 23, 1998.

That is going to be one heck of a big simulation. Wonder if it will be the biggest ever run?

-- Paul Davis (, December 23, 1998.

How nice that they've scheduled their war games for June. Will there be a postponement, do you think, or will the bureaucracy move as scheduled? And if they find problems, how will they have enough time to fix anything? Oh, excuse me, enough time to form a committe to oversee the subcommitte which hires the consultants to assess the problems and come up with a viable solution ... Give me a break! Does anybody believe this crap?

-- jhollander (, December 23, 1998.

Life is one big game as we will all soon find out...

-- Andy (, December 23, 1998.

Do any of you know a link to this story? I just finished using Excite's news search engine to try to find it. No such luck.

-- Kevin (, December 23, 1998.


Scripps Howard News Service

LISA HOFFMAN is on staff there, but I cant seem to find a search engine or reference to this article.


-- Diane J. Squire (, December 23, 1998.

This news article on military preparation for Y2K would be major news, if it can be verified.

-- Kevin (, December 23, 1998.

I have contacted my source and awaiting a reply. I received this info from another Forum and copied same to this site. Will let you know as soon as I receive an answer.

-- Joska (, December 24, 1998.

I found it. You can see the article at this link:

"Government plans war games to battle millennium bug"

-- Kevin (, December 24, 1998.


Thank you. And I have forwarded your "find" back to the person who posted this on another forum.

Happy Holidays,


-- Joska (, December 25, 1998.

What?? This is major news, people! Our military making plans to deal with y2K. Is there anything new since this story came out?

-- Paul Harrison (, December 29, 1998.

Here's an excerpt from a new article in "The Detroit Press":

"In the United States, Senator Bennett has asked the Pentagon what plans it has "in the event of a Y2K-induced breakdown of community services that might call for martial law," and a House Committee has recommended that Clinton consider declaring a national emergency.

"Even the Federal Emergency Management Agency is becoming involved. By 15 January 1999, FEMA will update the Federal Response Plan to take into account Y2K disruptions in services such as electricity or water. FEMA has scheduled regional Y2K training exercises for spring 1999, and plans to have joint military-civilian forces on alert by Dec. 31, 1999."

"1998: The year the 2000 bug hatched"

-- Kevin (, January 05, 1999.

Thanks Kevin.

The Y2K pot is coming to a boil. By the end of January, may revise my Y2K "5" repercussions to a "6.5" position. Awaiting events.


-- Diane J. Squire (, January 05, 1999.

More news on this same topic... shtml

"The National Guard is planning its first national mobilization of troops since 1940 in preparation for civil unrest resulting from the Y2K millennium bug, WorldNetDaily has learned.

"The National Guard Bureau in Washington is currently formulating plans for a mobilization test, in conjunction with the Federal Emergency Management Agency."

-- Kevin (, January 06, 1999.

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