Operation Dark Winter

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Event.png Operation Dark Winter (Terrorism exercise,  Biological weapon/Preparation,  Planning exercise)  SourcewatchRdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
Dark Winter.jpg
Date22 June 2001 - 23 June 2001
LocationWashington DC,  Andrews Air Force Base
PlannersJohns Hopkins Center for Health Security, Analytic Service, Tara O'Toole
ParticipantsRobert Kadlec, Sam Nunn, David Gergen, R. James Woolsey, John White, John Tilelli, Margaret Hamburg, Frank Wisner II, George Terwilliger, Jerome Hauer, William Sessions, Frank Keating, Dan Mahoney, Jim Miklaszewski, Mary Walsh, Sian Edwards, Judith Miller, Lester Reingold, Tara O'Toole, Tom Inglesby, Randy Larsen, Mark DeMier, Sue Reingold, Dennis Reimer, John Hamre
SponsorsAlfred P. Sloan Foundation, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Interests • “Terrorism”
• Smallpox
• 2001 Anthrax attacks
• Event 201
• Crimson Tide
• Atlantic Storm
• “War on Terror”
DescriptionAn exercise where senior former officials would respond to a bioterrorist induced national security crisis. Uncannily predicted the 2001 anthrax attacks and other narratives. Held June 2001.

Dark Winter was an "exercise" on 22-23 June 2001 "wherein senior former officials would respond to a bioterrorist induced national security crisis"[1], where "terrorists" started a smallpox outbreak in the US.

Dark Winter not only predicted the 2001 anthrax attacks, but some of its participants had clear foreknowledge of those attacks.”
Whitney Webb (1 April 2020)  [2]

The simulation eerily predicted the 2001 anthrax attacks that happened just 3 months later, and also the initial government narrative of those attacks. It also reinforced other narratives, such as an imminent threat from international supervillain Bin Laden, that Saddam Hussein's Iraq had "WMDs", and that the two had joined forces.


The name for the exercise derives from a statement made by Robert Kadlec, who participated in the script created for the exercise, when he states that the lack of smallpox vaccines for the U.S. populace means that “it could be a very dark winter for America."[3]


The two day exercise simulated a bioterror attack in the form of aerosolized smallpox targeting 3 shopping centers in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. By the end of the second week, there were 2,000 cases in 15 states, then turning into a pandemic killing millions. The panic and hysteria in the ensuing national crisis causes food riots and National Guardsmen firing on citizens.[4][5]

The culprit of the attack in this imaginary scenario was Bin Laden’s Al Qaeda network, but one of the very last lines of the scripted drill is a fake broadcast reporting ‘there is a very high probability this attack was conducted by either state or a state sponsored international terrorist organization’ and that ‘A prominent Iraqi defector is claiming that Iraq arranged the bioweapons attack on the US through intermediaries’.


Robert Kadlec in Operation Dark Winter 2001.jpg

The participants in Dark Winter not only had deep ties to U.S. intelligence services and the Pentagon, but also later became key leaders in similar exercises, like Event 201 and Crimson Contagion. [6]

Some of these same individuals would also play a role in the FBI’s “sabotaged” investigation into the subsequent Anthrax attacks and 19 years later, are handling major aspects of the U.S. government’s response to the Covid-19 situation.

One of the participants, Robert Kadlec, was put in charge of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) entire Covid-19 response efforts, while other major players in Dark Winter are key drivers behind the “biodefense” mass surveillance programs being implemented.

Media participation

A news broadcasts set up for dramatization,[7] in which shoots are fired at the border between Texas and Oklahoma during a time when travel has been stopped by the governor of Texas.

The simulation seeded the idea of an anthrax threat in the national imagination. For ecample, Judith Miller of the New York Times soon after co-authored an article on Pentagon plans to develop a more potent version of weaponized anthrax, titled “U.S. Germ Warfare Research Pushes Treaty Limits”[8], and in October a book, “Germs: Biological Weapons and America’s Secret War".[9]

As part of Dark Winter, corporate media outlets, including the New York Times and others, were sent anonymous letters that threatened renewed attacks on the U.S., including anthrax attacks, if the U.S. did not withdraw its troops from the Middle East. In this simulation, those letters contained “a genetic fingerprint of the smallpox strain matching the fingerprint of the strain causing the current epidemic.”

During the - real world - Anthrax attacks that would occur just a few months after Dark Winter, Judith Miller and other U.S. reporters would receive threatening letters with a white powder presumed to be Anthrax. In Miller’s case, the powder turned out to be harmless.

Censorship and Martial Law

Dark Winter warns of “dangerous misinformation” spreading online selling “unverified” cures and making similarly “unverified” claims, all of which are deemed as posing a threat to public safety. It further discusses the suppression and removal of civil liberties, such as the possibility of the President to invoke “The Insurrection Act”, which would allow the military to act as law enforcement upon request by a State governor, as well as the possibility of “martial rule.”

The Dark Winter script also discusses how options for martial rule “include, but are not limited to, prohibition of free assembly, national travel ban, quarantine of certain areas, suspension of the writ of habeas corpus [i.e. arrest without due process], and/or military trials in the event that the court system becomes dysfunctional.”


Dark Winter was the first in the series of events which included Event 201 about a novel fast spreading fatal coronavirus.

External links


Known Participants

15 of the 25 of the participants already have pages here:

David GergenWhite House insider since the 1970s. Two Bilderbergs in the 1990s. Operation Dark Winter
Margaret HamburgUS physician and expert in pandemic preparedness. Board of the Council on Foreign Relations.Operation Dark Winter, Clade X, GAVI, CFR, Wellcome Trust,Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Rockefeller Foundation
John HamreUS MICC insider
Jerome HauerA deep state actor with multiple connections to the 9-11 event who appeared on television to promote the 9-11 official narrative.
Frank Wisner IIFormer US Secretary of State, son of Frank Wisner of the mighty wurlitzer
Robert Kadlec"Vaccine mafia" spook with doomsday speculations about biological weapons attacks
Frank KeatingUS lawyer who attended Operation Dark Winter as Governor of Oklahoma, a job he also held at the time of the Oklahoma City bombing
Randall LarsenMilitary/Homeland Security WMD expert.
Jim MiklaszewskiJournalist who in June 2001 attended Operation Dark Winter. The first to report the Pentagon had been attacked on 9-11.
Judith MillerCarried the can for the fraudulent story about Iraq's WMD
Sam NunnUSDSO? Chair of the Senate Armed Services Committee, founded the Nuclear Threat Initiative, 2 Bilderbergers, participated in both Operation Dark Winter & A Spreading Plague
Tara O'TooleA fellow bioweapons expert stated 'she makes Dr. Strangelove seem sane'.
Lester ReingoldUS journalist who attended Operation Dark Winter. Guest lecturer in the graduate writing program at Johns Hopkins University
William SessionsFBI director dismissed by Bill Clinton, Operation Dark Winter
James WoolseyEx CIA director still (per 2020) very active in deep state networks.


Related Document

TitleTypePublication dateAuthor(s)Description
Document:All Roads Lead to Dark Winterreport1 April 2020Whitney Webb
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