NORAD, Russian Officials Plan Upcoming Exercise

NORAD and Russian air force officials met late last month at Peterson AFB, Colo., to hash out details of the upcoming Vigilant Eagle exercise. This year’s Vigilant Eagle is scheduled to take place in August in Anchorage, Alaska, and Anadyr, Russia, and will include a live-fly element as the two organizations fine-tune procedures to deal with scenarios in which a hijacked commercial aircraft traverses both NORAD-controlled and Russian airspace, according to NORAD’s April 30 release. “The Vigilant Eagle exercise series has been an extraordinary and historic opportunity for NORAD and the Russian Federation to coordinate on the response to a mutually acknowledged hijacking threat,” said Joe Bonnet, NORAD’s joint training and exercises director. “From a participant’s perspective, it is more than a military exercise; it is creating lasting bonds and partnerships extremely valuable for the security of our nations,” he added. The meeting took place from April 24 to April 27. The final planning conference will take place in June in Ottawa, Canada, states the release. Last year’s Vigilant Eagle activities featured a command-post exercise and had no live-fly element.