Special Reports
Two F-16s on alert to counter attacks on Washington ordered to stand down on 9/11
By Wayne Madsen
Online Journal Contributing Writer

Dec 1, 2009, 00:20

(WMR) -- WMR has learned from informed U.S. military intelligence sources that after a single-engine Cessna was stolen from an airfield north of Baltimore by student pilot Frank Corder on September 12, 1994, and flown onto the South Lawn of the White House, slamming into the west side of the presidential mansion, the Department of Defense took measures to counter any future incident involving suicide aircraft missions. In the 1994 incident, Corder was killed in the crash of the Cessna on the White House lawn.

The DC Air National Guard at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland was ordered to maintain two F-16s at the ready and armed with two heat-seeking missiles. The reasoning was that with a small plane like a Cessna, heat-seeking missiles were preferable over radar-aiming systems. In fact, two F-16s were always maintained on alert at Andrews and armed, that is, until September 11, 2001.

Also in response to the Cessna crash, White House Secret Service personnel armed with portable surface-to-air missile launchers were placed on the roof of the presidential mansion.

On that particular morning, an exercise was being conducted that resulted in the two stand-by F-16s being flown without their heat-seeking missiles. When it was determined that the planes had to be pulled from exercise status to a real-time actual threat situation, they landed at Andrews and were dispatched immediately to the skies over Pennsylvania.

WMR has previously reported that the two F-16s engaged United Flight 93 over Shanksville and shot it down. Eyewitnesses who lived in the Mount Vernon, Virginia area reported hearing loud explosions over the Potomac River during the morning of 9/11. These explosions may have been caused by the F-16s from Andrews breaking the sound barrier over the area south of Washington during their flight to Pennsylvania to intercept United 93.

The Commander of the 113th Air National Guard fighter unit at Andrews on 9/11 was then-Brigadier General David Wherley. Wherley and his wife Ann were killed in the crash of a Red Line Metro train on June 22 of this year. It was Wherley who ordered the F-16s off of exercise status and into attack mode on the morning of 9/11. Wherley is reported to have been aware of who in the chain of command ordered the F-16s into exercise status and disarmed.

Previously published in the Wayne Madsen Report.

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Wayne Madsen is a Washington, DC-based investigative journalist and nationally-distributed columnist. He is the editor and publisher of the Wayne Madsen Report (subscription required).

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