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article imageClassified mission has helicopters flying over Washington area

By Ken Hanly     Jul 23, 2019 in Politics
Washington - The US Army is carrying out a classified mission that involves Black Hawk and other helicopters flying over the Washington DC area.
Mission revealed only through requests for funds
Bloomberg first reported on the mission: "The mysterious classified operation was disclosed when the Army asked Congress for approval to shift funds to provide an extra $1.55 million for aircraft maintenance, air crews and travel in support of an “emerging classified flight mission.”It’s part of a $2.5 billion request this month to “reprogram” funds in the current fiscal year’s budget to programs considered high priorities. “Without additional funding, the Army will not be able to perform this classified mission,” the Defense Department said."
The extra $1.55 million will be shifted for the maintenance of 10 UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters, to pay aircrews, and for travel. The mission includes both active-duty and reserve troops. The extra funds are also required for a Sensitive Compartment Information Facility (SCIF). This facility will be at Davison Army Airfield located at Fort Bevoir, Virginia that is due south of Washington DC.
In the funding documents the Defense Department notes: “Without additional funding, the Army will not be able to perform this classified mission."
Mission started last year
According to an Army spokesperson the mission began last year on October 1 and is ongoing. Its duration is not determined.
Army spokesperson Wayne Hall would not say whether the mission involved protecting the White House or other government buildings. He would not say either whether the mission involved the Pentagon's Special Operations Command, a group that includes the Delta Unit and Navy's Seal Team Six.
A recent article suggests who some of those involved may be: "The SCIF, together with the mention of the Black Hawks, strongly points to the unit in question being the Army's relatively obscure 12th Aviation Battalion, which is based at Davison. This unit flies a mix of UH-72 Lakota light utility helicopters and UH-60s, including a handful of modified and luxurious VIP-configured "Gold Top" Black Hawks. The 12th is part of what is known today as The Army Aviation Brigade, or TAAB, which also includes a fixed-wing VIP aviation detachment and ground support elements, including air traffic controllers, to manage operations at Davison or other locations, as necessary."
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