Defense Secretary Dick Cheney’s declaration of an “airlift emergency” is an order for civilian airlines to provide planes to help ferry supplies and equipment to the Middle East. Officials said 17 planes will be pressed into service. No passenger planes are affected.
Northwest Airlines said it is adding one Boeing 747 freighter to five 747s loaned to the government.
United Airlines is participating but declined to specify.
It was unknown if Eastern Airlines’ now-idle 155 planes would be used.