‘Environmental data from the Canadian Arctic’?

A mean-looking bugger, isn’t it?

HERE is the full text of a news release from Northrop Grumman, the American arms manufacturer with some $34 billion in Pentagon contracts, whose president Ronald D. Sugar notably was also a member of the board of directors of the U.S. oil company Chevron Texaco Corp., one of the world’s largest and most profitable oil monopolies, as printed verbatim in the Ottawa Citizen’s Defence Watch.

Government helps establish U.S. control Over Arctic

Another of the “baby steps” that are taken on a regular basis to acclimatize Canadians to the presence of U.S. forces in Canada and keep us unaware of the extent to which the Harper government has placed Canada under U.S. command in the name of “protecting sovereignty.”

Early this month, in the service of U.S. striving for world domination, Harper ordered a rewrite of Canada’s international claim for Arctic seabed rights to include the North Pole, a region Russia has already marked as its own. The Arctic is believed to hold up to 25 per cent of the world’s oil and gas reserves. From Washington’s perspective, the battle for the Arctic is part of its broader global military agenda. Apart from the unbridled violation of Canadian sovereignty, which the Citizen does not object to, and the use of the huge drone, the press release reads like a science fiction story.

Oh yes. Grumman Northrop’s latest drone, known as the Global Hawk Block 30, had numerous operating flaws and recurrent maintenance troubles. However, Grumman used campaign donations and insider access on Capitol Hill to defeat a U.S. Air Force proposal to save $2.5 billion by closing a drone production line and mothballing some of the aircraft and keep the troubled drone aloft at a cost of billions of dollars. Canada intervened on the side of those who are determined to develop it.

And now Grumman is helping “American and Canadian scientists to study changes in topography and Arctic ice caps.” And the destination of the rest of the “environmental data,” Mr Snowden?

* * *

SAN DIEGO, Dec. 19, 2013 /CNW/ – Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE: NOC), the NASA Dryden Flight Research Center and a team of international science organizations successfully flew a Northrop Grumman-produced NASA Global Hawk unmanned aircraft system through Canadian airspace as part of a mission to collect environmental data in the Canadian Arctic.

The Global Hawk was equipped with an Uninhabited Aerial Vehicle Synthetic Aperture Radar (UAVSAR) as well as a high resolution camera to conduct ground mapping and visual observation of Arctic ice caps during the approximately 21-hour flight. Information collected during this flight will be used by American and Canadian scientists to study changes in topography and Arctic ice caps.

“Flying high and long missions with advanced scientific equipment over the Arctic provides scientists with real data to better understand the changes that are affecting our world,” said Janis Pamiljans, Northrop Grumman’s sector vice president and general manager of unmanned systems. “The high-altitude, long-endurance NASA Global Hawk is one of the best tools researchers have to study weather phenomena.”

This flight marks the first time the NASA Global Hawk has flown through Canadian civil airspace. Global Hawk’s high-altitude, long-endurance capabilities enabled the aircraft to depart from NASA Dryden, based at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., and fly over several predetermined key areas in the Arctic before returning to NASA Dryden.

Northrop Grumman, NASA Dryden, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and Canadian science counterparts worked together to enable this mission. NASA Global Hawks have already been used for a wide range of environmental missions, including collecting atmospheric data in support of the Airborne Tropical TRopopause EXperiment and deployment over the Atlantic Ocean to study hurricane formation and intensity change during the Hurricane and Severe Storm Sentinel missions.

The flight over the Canadian Arctic comes after the recent five-year renewal of the Space Act Agreement, a partnership between Northrop Grumman and NASA that allows sharing of NASA Global Hawks for science missions and flight demonstrations. The initial Space Act Agreement, signed in 2008, returned two preproduction Global Hawk aircraft to flight status. A permanent Global Hawk ground control station was built at NASA Dryden.

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Filed under No Harbour for War (Halifax)

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