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Smithsonian Gets Command and Control System Artifact

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, July 16, 1997 – A terminal once part of the World Wide Military Command and Control System was added July 16 to the Smithsonian Institution's historical collection here.

Army Lt. Gen. David J. Kelley, director of the Defense Information Systems Agency, presented the terminal to officials of the National Museum of American History for inclusion in the armed forces history collection.

The first of its kind, the command and control system went on line in 1972 at Strategic Air Command headquarters, Offutt Air Force Base, Neb. It gathered information using an automated data processing network of communications links and satellites. Delivering that information quickly, it improved military leaders' ability to coordinate personnel and intelligence.

The network was first used to plan military and support operations in response to the 1978 mass suicide of the Jim Jones cult in Jonestown, Guyana. It was also used to help plan operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm in 1990-91. The system was replaced last year by the Global Command and Control System. (From a Smithsonian Institution press release)

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