US military given ‘continuity of government’ standby orders for COVID-19 pandemic

PentagonFor the first time in the modern history of the United States, the Department of Defense has been given standby orders to ensure the “continuity of government”, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. These extraordinary measures, which include evacuating White House officials to remote quarantined locations, and devolving the nation’s leadership to “second-tier officials”, were originally meant for the aftermath of a nuclear war.

However, according to Newsweek, “Above-Top Secret” contingency plans are now in place, in case the nation’s Constitutional power successors are incapacitated by the pandemic. Standby orders have been issued for a series of plans under the US Northern Command (NORTHCOM), which was created in response to the 9/11 attacks as a homeland defense military authority.

These operations are codenamed OCTAGON, FREEJACK and ZODIAC, said Newsweek, and include CONPLAN 3400 (homeland defense if the US itself is the battlefield), CONPLAN 3500 (defending civil authorities in an emergency), and CONPLAN 3600 (defending the National Capital Region from an attack). Newsweek added that the Defense Secretary, Mark T. Esper, has authorized NORTHCOM to “prepare to deploy” in support of these “potential extraordinary missions”. These include “the possibility of some form of martial law”, where military commanders would be given executive powers across the US until a new civilian leadership would emerge.

An added complication to these plans is that the military itself is vulnerable to the coronavirus pandemic, which makes for “extraordinary circumstances”, said Newsweek. In recognition of this vulnerability, the Department of Defense has instituted unprecedented restrictions for off-base activities of military personnel. Having first banned overseas travel, the Pentagon is now keeping all uniformed personnel on or nearby military bases across the country and the world. Newsweek added that several other national security agencies are following the Pentagon’s contingency plans, and that continuity personnel at the White House are “readying [for an] evacuation”.

Author: Joseph Fitsanakis | Date: 18 March 2020 | Permalink

8 Responses to US military given ‘continuity of government’ standby orders for COVID-19 pandemic

  1. Pete says:

    Standby orders to devolve “the nation’s leadership to “second-tier officials”” are prudent given the US, at the Presidential level, is now a “Gerontocracy”. Gerontocracy being rule by an old President (Trump 73) and his 2 likely opponents (Biden would be 78, Sanders would be 79) more likely to be felled by COVID-19.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Trump will be fine. Good article though.

  3. Diane Long says:

    I cannot help but think that this is not as much about Corona as other things.

  4. Ludy Gibson says:

    Trump tested negative for Corona, so rest assured, if he didn’t contract it as close of quarters as he was to the infected Senator, he will be VERY cautious at this point in time.

  5. Patrick Leonce Kealy says:

    Great stuff President Trump from DOWN UNDER. You are doing a very good job and Australia stands by you.

  6. Al says:

    Operating outside the Constitution is illegal…the government cannot suspend the Constitution ever for any reason… therefor Presidential directive 51 (continuity of government) is unconstitutional…

  7. Ralph says:

    I think many other reasons than corona

  8. Pingback: 9/11: Neue Zweifel an der offiziellen Version –

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