Maj. Gen. James Hoyer, West Virginia adjutant general, says there’s no truth to the rumor that Guard and Department of Homeland Security planned the training to disguise an attempt by the government to use the Jamboree as a vehicle to expand its power.
One of the places the allegations appear is on the web site of David Lory VanDerBeek, who identifies himself as an Eagle Scout, a veteran of the Idaho Army National Guard, a licensed professional marriage and family therapist in Las Vegas and a candidate for Governor of Nevada.
VanDerBeek outlines his theory in a video on his web site, where he also says there is evidence the Boston Marathon bombing was staged by the FBI.
“My objective here is to share knowledge about this drill because what our government does is they stage false flag terrorist drills,” VanDerBeek says, “then they make them go live, people die and they use that as a justification to expand government, to grow DHS, to set up more police state, that’s how wicked and evil and grotesque our government has become, it’s a Nazi police state.”
Hoyer called internet postings like VanDerBeek’s non factual. Hoyer finds it disturbing that folks from outside West Virginia would distribute information claiming there’s a conspiracy behind the training exercises.
“They don’t know what they’re talking about and they don’t know the relationship that we the National Guard have with the citizens of this state both in good times and times of disaster and our opportunities that we try to create, to create jobs for West Virginians,” Hoyer said.
Aside from helping with the Jamboree at the Summit Bechtel Reserve near the New River Gorge, the National Guard will be involved with three training exercises over the next two weeks. The drills will bring in National Guard and regular military personnel from across the country.
“There are actually additional training events that are going on in addition to our support of the Jamboree, they’re running simultaneously but they’re not associated,” Hoyer said. “You have Air Guard exercise, SENTRY STORM, Army exercise, Ridge Runner, and a disaster response training exercise that we haven’t given a specific name to that is going on at the tunnel and at Camp Dawson.”
Hoyer was referring to the National Guard training tunnel in Kanawha County. Camp Dawson is in Preston County. He said SENTRY STORM will take place in 10 counties across the state, including at some reclaimed mine sites.
“In those particular cases we’ve got units from five different states practicing parachute operations and supply drops and short field take off and landing,” he said.
One of Hoyer’s goals is showcasing the state’s ability to provide military and national security training.
“And all the while generating opportunities in our state’s economy which clearly we need because look at how we’re dealing with and having to address revenue shortfall issues so why not generate opportunities in the West Virginia economy,” he said.