"We understand the exercise conducted caused concern for many within our community and surrounding areas... For that, we apologize," said a statement posted late Thursday on the Fort Bragg Facebook page.
"However, we had to identify ways to keep #FortBragg mission capable," the post said. "Department of Defense requires military installations to conduct readiness exercises on an annual basis. The intent is to determine the readiness and resiliency of the installation in a real-world scenario."
The apology was accompanied by a photo of Dr. Evil from the Austin Powers spy movies.
Fort Bragg is spread across 163,000 acres and is home to more than 52,000 active duty service personnel, the Army says.
Post officials shut off the electricity for the entire post overnight Wednesday, including military facilities, businesses and homes.
The tens of thousands of people who live in barracks and post housing were given no warning so the Army could "replicate likely real-world reactions by everyone directly associated with the installation," said post officials.
Residents of the post reported on Facebook that their power was out from four to 12 hours. Post officials said operations returned to normal around 4 p.m. Thursday.
Reaction to the surprise blackout ranged from ardent support to complaints the outage caused refrigerated foods to spoil in thousands of homes.
Among the conspiracy theories was a suggestion that the post had tried to open a Stargate space portal, a reference to the popular science fiction movie and TV series about space traveling scientists.
"So is it true the power outage was Fort Bragg attempting to dial the 2nd Stargate?" asked someone named Bet JL. "I'm not buying this whole it was a training exercise thing."
Others reacted more angrily, claiming post officials "endangered the people you are supposed to protect."
"Does DOD standards recommend killing power to civilian housing?" asked Andrew Diaz in the fort's Facebook page. "How many people on CPAP machines could have suffocated because you targeted an area normally off limits for that very reason. How many carbon monoxide and fire detection systems were knocked offline?"
(Reuters) - A former National Security Agency contractor was sentenced in Maryland to nine years in prison on Friday for stealing huge amounts of classified material from U.S. intelligence agencies over two decades though officials never found proof he shared it with anyone.
DUBAI (Reuters) - Iran's ambassador to Britain warned against escalating tensions on Sunday as a UK official declined to rule out sanctions in response to Tehran's seizure of a British-flagged oil tanker.
Britain has called Iran's capture of the Stena Impero in the Strait of Hormuz on Friday a "hostile act".
(U.S. Geological Survey Astrogeology Science Center via Associated Press)
Step through the Cinder Lake Crater Field roughly 12 miles outside Flagstaff, Ariz., and you might encounter a white crystal-filled rock that has absolutely no business being there.
The chunks of anorthosite weren't deposited there by nature — they were trucked in from the mountains around Pasadena, Calif. And the craters were carved not by meteors, but by fertilizer and dynamite.
Before the first man landed on the moon, NASA dispatched the Apollo astronauts to this volcanic field to search for these and other faux moon rocks.
A soldier who died in Camp Buehring, Kuwait, from a non-combat related incident on July 18 was identified by the Pentagon as Sgt. William Friese, a West Virginia Army National Guard soldier assigned to the 821st Engineer Company, 1092nd Engineer Battalion, 111th Engineer Brigade.