Operation Steel Box
Operation Golden Python
In 1990, the Technical Escort Unit conducted a historically significant project called Operation Golden Python. The project, also known as Operation Steel Box, was the movement of over 100,000 toxic chemical artillery projectiles from the Federal Republic of Germany to Johnston Atoll. Secondary Steel Containers (SSC) were used to overpack the toxic chemical munitions (TCMs) that were removed from the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) to Johnston Island (JI) during Operation Steel Box.
The actual operation started on 26 July with the beginning of 28 road convoys that moved the munitions 30 miles from the Clausen storage depot to the railhead at Miesau Army Depot. The last road convoy to Miesau was 1 September. Starting 12 September, the unit supervised the rail movement of the munitions to Nordenham where they were loaded on two container ships by 19 September. The ships departed from Germany on 22 September with 12 Army Technical Escort personnel on each ship. After experiencing several severe storms while passing around Cape Horn, the first ship arrived safely at Johnston Atoll on 6 November. Both ships were unloaded by 18 November.
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