Summary: Since 1995, police have been receiving federally funded Defense Department Equipment. This exchange seems to violate the Posse Comitatus act of 1878 and 1981. Local municipal and state police agencies are being outfitted with armaments and equipment used to invade and colonize foreign nations. These attacks on our citizenship and rights are gross and unjustified.
IN THE NEWS WE SEE RIOT POLICE, and mass protests around the modern western world, from the world cup to most recently Ferguson, Missouri, USA. The militarization of state and local police is not a coincidence. What began in 1995 with the creation of the Defense Agencies Law Enforcement Support Office, blew up in 2001 as a product of “the war on terror”; federal resources have “trickled down” to state and local law enforcement departments like never before.
This process, once outlawed, by the Posse Comitatus Act of 1878, which was updated in 1981, prohibits congress from providing Federal Military forces to enforce state laws. While not in direct legal conflict, the spirit of the law however has been lost. Today the Department of Defense, not congress, provides state and local law enforcement agencies with resources that had previously been purchased with congressional approval. What may have begun as a legal directive for the proper use of human forces; (i.e soldiers) has however, not kept time with the evolved landscape of our modern military. Today, state and local law enforcement agencies compete to be the next recipients of unusable, out of date defense equipment designed and meant to be used by international troops sent to war zones in the middle east. Clearly the spirit of the Posse Comitatus Act is violated.
This trickle down of federal funds comes from the Department of Defense Law Enforcement Support office or LESO. Police departments work with LESO state coordinators to secure new toys for the boys in blue to play with. Browsing the site you can see how any local agency can become the proud owner of a tank or special body armor. Local law enforcement agencies can increase their standing with the LESO by attending the yearly training , known as Urban Shield. A 50 hour tactical training session and vendor symposium, designed to ready “first respondents” for war in Urban America. With such training simulations as airplane hijacking, hostage takeover, and crowed control. The graduating agencies are effectively vetted to be outfitted with the latest and greatest from the DOD.
At the height of the Occupy Movement Oakland, California became a focal point for activist activity after the near murder of an honorably discharged Iraq Veteran by police use of non-lethal weapons. A rubber bullet to the temple can damage you for life, rather than put you out of your misery. The 2016 edition of Urban Shield was held in Oakland, California, this training ground offers much in the way of advanced techniques to stomp the rebellion, anti-protest tactics. The recent history of Oakland, the lessons of that scrimmage await eager law enforcement officers from around the nation, relishing the comradery associated with war stories of how they almost got away with it and how your city can too.
No doubt, when Urban Shield holds it’s masturbatory practice, resistance is sure to follow. In response to the September, 2016 event Occupy Oakland said, “All out against Urban Shield, Shut Down the Warrior Cops“. And that’s just what they did.
For a complete list of your states Law Enforcement Support Office Coordinators visit: State Coordinator Contact List
Suggested Reading: Rise of the Warrior Cop