Chicago – Blackhawks and A/MH-6 Little Bird helicopters used by special forces circling low through downtown Chicago skies made for a scary scene along the Chicago River, as they rattled windows flying among the city’s skyscrapers.
The training exercise comes as the city found out some of the details of what the Secret Service wants for security at next month’s summit at McCormick Place. It was frightening,” Jessica Hill said. “I was definitely alarmed.”
At least three Blackhawk helicopters flying at time in close order formation – at other times separating fairly widely – zoomed around office and residential towers for several hours.
“I was pretty amazed,” Felise Llano said, “because they were definitely military.”
Witnesses described three to four very heavily armed men in each chopper. Several said some of the men appeared to be tethered and were at times literally hanging out of the choppers, and looked ready to jump.
Calling it routine training, city officials said in a statement such exercises are conducted by military personnel in various cities around the country. They say the exercises are designed to improve the military’s ability to operate in urban environments.
Emergency management officials said the training sites have been selected to minimize the impact on residents’ daily routines.
The timing of the drills led some to wonder if they’re in preparation for next month’s NATO summit. But officials said that the summit and the drills are unrelated. source – Fox Chicago