In 1968, after the assasinaton of M.L. King, my unit was in Baltimore with unloaded rifles and pretty much ignored other than the areas where they were not looted after deployment. Fires were still set in projects and looting moved to other areas. We all know what happened shortly there after at Kent State. Much training was put forth in the 70's to improve readiness for these situations but was dropped, for the most part. I can see using the Guard on the border, but in a city to stem violence?
Is the Guard ready/prepared for such a deployment?
I have been in the military (army-armor) and in civilian law enforcement, and my opinion is that the guard probably should not be used in Ferguson unless the situation becomes more than all the local and state agencies can handle. Putting the guard on the border is absolutely the right thing to do, as we did here in Texas, since the southern border is actually being invaded, but I do believe that the founders wanted the military to handle security of the nation, and that states would handled their own internal security with their police power, so Ferguson should be handled by the state. From what I can see, the state police have done a good job so far. Adding military personnel and hardware to the scene just escalates the problem and makes it seem like the federal government is getting way too involved in local matters.
A use of force continuum was never taught when I was in the Marine Corps. Maybe the MPs had that training. There is no verbal challenge given in combat before you shoot. CQB is the norm for law enforcement.
“ A Mounted Officer's first duty is to his horses.”
I will not be wronged, I will not be insulted and I won't be laid a hand upon.
I too was in Baltimore at the same time Tom was. My unit was evidently more active than Tom's as I was in the downtown and "projects" area. One project, The Flag House was of particular concern. During the day my unit and others kept things under control by presence. At night though, it was a different story. Fires and gunfire were an every night event, and it was a very difficult proposition to get the mission accomplished, without escalating the situation by adding violence to violence.
In those days we were trained in crowd control, spent a great deal of time training for it and were rather proficient. We had a chance to employ our skills frequently, at the University of Maryland. I was there so often I thought I should get some sort of degree out of it. I was there the day Kent State happened and it heightened tensions considerably. It was not an easy task, but nothing like Baltimore in either scope or mission. A riot on campus is easily within a well trained Guard units capability. Baltimore was an escalation beyond the campus, but not quite combat in cities either.
Tom might also remember that in Baltimore, the Maryland Army and Air Guard was taken away from state control and placed on Federal active duty, under command of XVIII Airborne Corps. We also had a brigade of the 82nd Airborne Division and some Corps units in there with us as well. Federalization changes the game somewhat and the rules of engagement are different. In the instance of Baltimore, Governor Agnew had issued what amounted to shoot on sight orders, and Federalization orders were issued within hours. Damned good thing, as that one act, Federalization toned down the level of violence, but not completely within 24 hours or so.
So what I would say then is that law enforcement should be left in the hands of the State in most circumstances. Calling the National Guard should be the States last resort in events like Ferguson.
Another couple of factors must be considered. How well is the Guard trained for the type event. All civil disturbance is not alike. One is not an identical situation to the other. Training is like a loaf of bread. It grows stale and covered with mold if it is not used. Just because a Guard or any military unit performed well yesterday does not mean it will do as well today or tomorrow. Another is the local nature of the Guard itself. They are all hometown boys and girls with an individual dog in the fight one way or the other. Federal troops, or Federalized status of the Guard is warranted on a situation by situation basis.
The Guard in State status in my opinion should NEVER be used in places like the Mexican Border to enforce Federal Law, without being in Federal status. If Federal forces are prohibited by Posse Comitatus in enforcing state law, then the reverse should also be true. As far as I know Guard units on the border were in Federal status.
Federal equipment, surplus to Federal requirements is not the problem. How that equipment is used is the potential problem. Here in CS we have been fortunate enough to pick up a lot of equipment made surplus from, in most instances Fort Carson. Equipment like OH58A's for instance are a great aid in events ranging from traffic control to fugitive pursuit. I heard a comment the other day from a liberal nitwit on one of the national cable networks saying he did not understand why MRAPS were being used in Ferguson, as there were no land mines there. Totally idiotic. I wonder if he understands that the A stands for armor, and that armor protects people under fire or who could potentially be under fire. If that MRAP had been an M-1 tank I could see his point. I for one want my police well armed and equipped at all times, but particularly when the level of violence calls for it or potentially calls for it. When you have to face down someone's widow, we did not have is no excuse.
The appropriate equipment must be available when required not sitting in some depot. Going back to the U of M again, some of the "students" had the quaint habit of launching large balls of wax studded with broken glass with Lacrosse sticks. I had one man hit, unprotected by a flak vest, and he was cut very badly and hospitalized. We had vests the next day provided us from a warehouse where they were stored, along with the excuse - We didn't think you would need them. Whomever WE is should have just said We didn't think.
It's not the equipment. It's how appropriately the equipment is used.
Last Edit: Aug 19, 2014 11:27:44 GMT -5 by quincannon
Chuck, a buddy of mine from Annapolis Unit did U of M and had issue's in that he was enrolled. I don't know if you remember business owners in Little Italy sitting on their roofs with rifles protecting the local business operations.
The border thing I was talking about was Perry, just recently calling out Texas as he feel the Feds are not doing their job.
Post by quincannon on Aug 19, 2014 18:29:32 GMT -5
I had nine or ten guys in my company that were going to school there, the last trip on campus.
Yes I remember and they were not the only ones. Jewish owned businesses were particular targets. Got to know Jack down on Lombard Street fairly well. Every time I got down that way I would stop in for a Corned Beef sandwich. I don't think he ever let me pay for one, but then again he was most generous to our patrols that ran through his area. I had a heavy mortar platoon in those days and we reorganized ourselves into a motorized rifle platoon and ran patrols from the Inner Harbor ten blocks north and from Pratt (I think that was the name of the street, anyway a main drag north-south) to Fells Point. Big area.
From the Gulf to the Pacific is a long way, and would take darn near every division in the Army including the NG to do the thing right and prevent leakers. Don't think an effort like that is in the cards.
I really hate those kind of disturbances, we had the same over here once (2011 City Riots, caused by the Police shooting of Mark Duggan), if people have a beef with the establishment then fair enough, but to destroy innocent peoples shops, businesses and livelihoods just for the sake of it, is not on in my book, thousands of teenagers took to the streets apparently organised on social media and the level of chaos it caused was disgusting. Most of these yobs had no interest in what caused the riots in the first place, they just wanted to jump of the band wagon, at the height of the London Riot one shop was set on fire and the two storeys above were apartments were normal families lived, which to me showed that these rioters were just thugs. I remember the Mayor of Moscow mentioning about the riots after a visit over here, and he said that once they started to set buildings on fire he would have ordered his men to clear the streets and if that meant opening fire then so be it, as innocent lives were at stake.
Ian: What may be the cause of legitimate protest by some, is used as an excuse for criminal activity by a few. It is the manner in which you go after the few that must be careful and measured, so as not to further inflame the some or possibly the many. It must be firm, measured, and a no nonsense tolerated approach.
You also must have fresh people out there doing this at all times which means there is a considerable manpower requirement that is a great drain on available resources. Police, Guard, or Federal troops that are tired and under great strain from prolonged exposure, tend to make bad decisions in some cases which throws gasoline on an already burning situation. Kent State was a very bad black mark on the Guard for instance. Those troops had just come from a tour quelling a prison riot. The levels of force used in that prison situation were at a much higher level that what was found on the Kent State campus. They were jaded and tired and it was a poor command decision to employ them directly from one very violent situation to one of lesser intensity. They reacted to the lesser in the same manner they would have treated the greater. The better decision would have been to accept the time delay, and bring in fresh troops and given these tired troops time to wind down before being used for any further deployment. They were a cavalry unit by the way. Maybe we can chalk it up to cavalry mindedness.
Back in the day they used to turn the Cossacks loose on rioters in Russia. I think we know how all that turned out.
Last Edit: Aug 20, 2014 6:36:51 GMT -5 by quincannon
And we have too, and some of ours would make Peterloo seem like Aunt Diana's quilting party. The bottom line though is the lessons learned. Right here in Colorado we had the Ludlow Massacre. All this though is man's forward movement, and often it comes with violence. That does not make the violence on either side right. Hopefully both our countries have learned from mistake and misadventure. It does seem that our Russian friends have not, but then they are emerging from a long history of Czars and Commissars, and they will either adapt or die.
To all, great discourse. I wonder how tough it will be to find an unbiased jury, as people will become jaded and their positions hardened. The killed young man may have been a thug, witness video taken shortly prior to incident. Which should have no bearing on the officer's actions, as it seems he would have had no knowledge of what went down in the store. The officer was veteran of 6 years, I think and should have known all rules of engagement. Where are video cams when you need them. Maybe would not have a wide enough field of vision.
I believe any comment on anyone's actions are premature. That is what investigations are for. Further, if the investigation cannot be fairly made locally, then it should be done at a higher level. There is a system in place for all these things. That system should be allowed to work, and it does not, and cannot work, unless all the nonsense stops and the investigatory process is allowed to proceed. We are a nation of laws and procedure, and thuggery has no place.
I may have noticed that one of the Cops has been arrested for the shooting, but don’t take my word for it as I only saw a line running at the bottom of the screen while the BBC news was running, and I was in a hurry to leave for work.
One of the concerns being voiced is military type equipment used by the police. The majority of the equipment is defensive in nature and used to protect the police officer so he/she goes home every day at the end of the shift. Over time the minimum standard for a police officer has changed. Regardless if the minimum standard changes are good or bad the officer can use deadly force if in fear of his/her life or others. That threshold changes with the individual officer. An officer at 5'6" and 110 pounds may be in fear of their life sooner than an officer at 6' 2" and 210 pounds.
Is it that someone wants their rock or bottle throwing more effective?
Police actions are not sports where each side should be equal.
When our military or police go into harms way we should provide protective equipment for them.
“ A Mounted Officer's first duty is to his horses.”
I will not be wronged, I will not be insulted and I won't be laid a hand upon.
Post by Yan Taylor on Sept 11, 2014 9:18:04 GMT -5
I hold our police men and women in high regard, as the level of abuse they have to take is really bad, years ago when I was a kid, a policeman would rather give you a crack across the head and take you home hoping that your parents would punish you further, rather than arrest you and give himself an afternoon of paper work, we never gave the coppers any lip, not like now were the young ones laugh at them (they do seem rather small now compared with the well-built six footers from years ago), but if someone pulls a knife or even worse a gun on them, the only weapons they have to defend themselves is a night stick or pepper spray, now that is not equal.
Having said that the ambulance workers and firemen also get abused, many a paramedic gets punched, the firemen have become a sport to some kids, they set a bin on fire and wait for the fire truck to arrive and then stone the firemen, its true they treat it like sport or some kind of amusement.