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September 11, 1980 - Image 9

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1980-09-11

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The Michigan Daily--Thursday, September 11, 1980-Page 9

Protecting officials

from nuke attacks

reens light up with the launch of a
~ussian missile from a submarine
steaming in the North Atlantic. The
target is Washington. The president
working quietly in the White House
Oval Office, is notified, and is rushed in
secrecy and silence to a location where
he can survive the nuclear blast. Elap-
sed time: 12 minutes.
That scenario illustrates the
breathtaking swiftness of any nuclear
War in the 1980s. But federal officials
say that under plans being worked out
right now, they would almost certainly
be able to protect enough key officials
to insure the continued, democratic
functioning of the United States govern-
ment-even with a few short minutes'
Under Presidential Directive 58,
issued earlier this year, the gover-
nment is working out new procedures,
, for evacuating government officials in
the event of a nuclear attack.
RESPONSIBILITY for the planning
is in the hands of the Federal Emergen-
cy Management Agency, which coor-
dinates federal efforts to cope with all
manner of disasters, natural and man-
made. Its director, John Macy Jr.,
spoke with reporters yesterday about

Directive 58 sparks
review of procedures

his agency's efforts.
The revamping of the government
mobilization plans is "the largest con-
ducted in decades," said Macy. He said
the last major overhaul had taken place
in 1964, "and many of the documents
still bear the '64 date."
Macy and other federal officials
naturally are unwilling to provide
details of the government survival
program. The agency's budget, known
to be in the tens of millions of dollars, is
carefully hidden in the labyrinth of the
federal bureaucracy.t
BUT MACY DID say the evacuation
plans "emphasize multiple locations to
protect government officials." He said
these officials would be evacuated and
later reassembled-either in person or
by means of some communication
device-to resume whatever functions
of government they could.
The officials covered by the program
include all those specified by the 25th
amendment to the U.S. Constitution as

being in line to succeed to the presiden-
cy, along with key members of
Congress and the executive departmen-
THE EXACT NUMBER of officials
that could be saved would depend on
how much waring there is of an attack.
There is a good deal of debate as to
just how long that would be, but Macy
said he doubted any nuclear attack
"would come out of the blue."
"What we believe we can assume is
that there would be an atmosphere of
rising tension" during which the
emergency management agency would
begin as a precaution to sequester
needed government officials at various
bunkers and shelters scattered around
the country, he said.
MACY SAID A central office keeps
track of all those covered by these con-
tingency plans, and the officials are
required to check it regularly.
A number of rehearsals of the
evacuation process, known as "disper-

sal," have been conducted over the
years, according to Macy. There has
even been a practice evacuation of
President Carter, he said, though he
would not disclose when or how it had
been conducted.
AND WHAT about the rest of us?
The government says it is doing what
it can, but the plans for protecting the
average citizen are much less elaborate
than for the president and his en-
The current annual budget for the
agency's civil defense programs is-$100
million. Under an appropriations
measure that has been passed by the
House and by a Senate committee, the
funding would increase to $120 million
next fiscal year.
BUT THE U.S.,right now is spending
about 50 cents per person on civil defen-
se, whereas U.S. intelligence agencies
estimate the Soviets are spending $8
per person.
According to Macy, a civil defense
program that would protect each and
every U.S. citizen would cost upwards
of $70 billion. And despite the recent in-
crease in East-West tensions, Macy
said there is little chance Congress or
the administration would ever approve
that much money.

What Macy's agency is pushing in-
stead is a seven-year program of
upgrading civil defense preparedness,
concentrating in what are termed
"counterforce areas"-51 population
centers around the country adjacent to
missile sites, air bases, and other key
defense installations.
THIS SEVEN-YEAR plan calls for
expenditure of $2 billion, which means
civil defense spending would have to
top $40 million by fiscal 1987. But even
this much more modest goal has yet to
receive the approval of administration
budget planners.
The agency's designs for the counter-
force areas depend heavily on
evacuation, largely through the use of
private automobiles. The evacuees
would flee to so-called "host areas,"
outside the radius of the expected

nuclear blast, where they would be
given food and shelter.
ASSUMING THEY receive enough
warning, federal officials say they
could protect 50 million people in the
counterforce areas, along with about
100 million others throughout the coun-
try. The total population of the U.S. is.
estimated at 240 million. :(
Federal officials concede many of the
emergency shelters they have set up
since the dawn of the nuclear age are in
poor condition. And they admit that
plans that assume enough warning'
from a potential enemy to evacuate.
tens of millions of Americans might ba;
wishful thinking.
But they say it has been hard to main-
tain public interest in civil defense
programs, and lacking that interest,
they're doing the best they can.

Polish labor unrest continues

From AP and UPI
New strikes erupted in several cities
yesterday as workers sought solutions
to local grievances in the aftermath of
Poland's big labor crisis. Workers,
teachers and technocrats-among
others-also began organizing indepen-
dent trade unions.
Poland's First Deputy Premier Miec-
zyslaw Jagielski and a delegation of
Polish economic officials flew to
Moscow for talks on "a number of im-
portant questions related to Soviet-
Polish economic relations," the Soviet
news agency Tass said.
Although, the government hoped its
agreement to allow independent trade
unions would resolve the three-week
labor rebellion sparked by meat price
hikes, many workers struck for local
demands including removal of some
managers and improved working con-

walkouts in and around, the nor-
theastern city of Bialystok, about 30
miles from the Soviet border, and in the
southeastern city of Mielec, where
authorities had reported a settlement.
They also reported strikes at a textile
plant in Lodz, a furniture factory in
Radomsko, various enterprises in
Radom and a coal mine in Sosnowiec.
In Mielec, workers at an aircraft fac-
tory resumed their strike to demand the
dismissal of the local Communist Party
leader for anti-union activities.
WARSAW RADIO reported an end to
strikes in several areas, including
Prudnik, Glucholazy, Dzielaki, and in
the Opole region.
Polish leaders fanned out across the
nation to meet party members.
Premier Jozef Pinkowski visited the
Cegielski metal works in Poznan where
he stressed the need for "economizing,
reducing superfluous expenditures,
modesty and good examples in the

field." President Henryk Jaglonski met
party workers in the southern city of
Krakow on a similar mission.
Earlier this week new Communist
Party First Secretary Stanislaw Kania
visited the strike centers in Gdansk and.
Katowice to appeal for unity in the
trade union movement. He said the
issue must be treated with "calm and
Tass said in Moscow that the Polish
delegation met with top Soviet
economic planning officials.
Diplomatic observers speculated the
talks would focus on increased Soviet
economic aid to Poland.
AT THE HEIGHT of the labor unrest
the Soviets provided the Poles with new
long-term credits to help them meet in-
terest payments on an estimated $20
billion debt to Western banks and
promised new supplies of oil, natural
gas and other raw materials.

Jagielski was also expected to
discuss the Polish government's un-
precedented pledge to allow indepen-
dent trade unions free of Communist
Party control.
Formation of such unions was the
subject of meetings Wednesday in-
volving academics and technocrats in
the capital, city of Warsaw. More than>
27 delegates and 100 observers from
Warsaw University, the Polish
Academy of Sciences, high schools and
research institutes met to organize an
independent union of scientists,
technicians and educators.
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AR 101

Chileans go to polls
*voting on constitution


SANTIAGO, Chile (AP)-President
Augusto Pinochet's right-wing military
regime marks its seventh anniversary
today with a national vote on a con-
stitution that eventually would restore
All Chileans over 18 are required to
vote "si" or "no" on the proposal, ex-
pected to pass despite widespread
briticism that it could keep the 64-year-
old strongman in power until 1997.
THE DOCUMENT would grant
Pinochet, who toppled the elected
government of the late Marxist
President Salvador Allende in 1973, ab-
solute rule until 1989 when the four-man
junta he now controls would propose the
next president subject to another.
Critics say Gen. Pinochet could be the
junta's candidate in 1989, but he denied
that yesterday. He has said the long
* transition to free elections, which would
follow in 1997, is necessary to stamp out
communism and finish rebuilding the

The government has mounted a
massive propaganda campaign finan-
ced from the public treasury to assure
passage of the constitution.
PINOCHET HAS toured the country
plugging the proposal, on which he had
the final say.
Billboards, leaflets, electrified signs,
newspaper ads and radio and television
spots urge Chileans to "Vote Si for the
Freedom Constitution."
For the first time since the coup there
have been opposition street demon-
strations while numerous "Vote No"
leaflets are scattered on Santiago
Most of the demonstrators are young
people who shout anti-Pinochet slogans
and move on as police approach.
Nearly 100 persons have been
arrested in demonstrations this week in
Santiago and other cities and there
have been scattered clashed with

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