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Sun Aug 17, 2014, 03:29 PM

Iraq Vet: Small-Town Cops Have Better Armor and Weaponry Than We Carried in a Combat

In my year in Iraq, I lost track of how many times my guys asked me why so many Iraqis viewed us with distrust when we were trying to help them. The question would arise while we were walking the beat with Iraqi police officers, manning checkpoints, or in our forward operating base after we went off-duty.

Invariably, my response went something like this: “Imagine that you’re back home, OK? Suddenly, you got a whole mess of Iraqi soldiers in your town. They’re all over the place, doing the same things we’re doing right now. How do you think you’d react? You’d probably get pretty hot, right?”

The notion that my illustration would become anything other than that scarcely crossed my mind. Yet, here we are in August of 2014, 10 years after I got back from Iraq, and the police agencies that have patrolled the streets of Ferguson, Missouri – until they were relieved of duty on Thursday amid public outrage over their heavy-handed tactics — have the kind of armor and weaponry that my men and I would have envied in the performance of our duties in an actual combat zone.

Let me repeat that: the police in Ferguson have better armor and weaponry than my men and I did in the middle of a war. And Ferguson isn’t alone — police departments across the US are armed for war.


http://billmoyers.com/2014/08/15/iraq-vet-small-town-cops-have-better-armor-and-weaponry-than-we-carried-in-a-combat/

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Reply Iraq Vet: Small-Town Cops Have Better Armor and Weaponry Than We Carried in a Combat (Original post)
cal04 Aug 2014 OP
cantbeserious Aug 2014 #1
Politicalboi Aug 2014 #2
rudolph the red Aug 2014 #3
IronGate Aug 2014 #4
KoKo Aug 2014 #5
NutmegYankee Aug 2014 #6
KoKo Aug 2014 #7
NutmegYankee Aug 2014 #9
KoKo Aug 2014 #15
NutmegYankee Aug 2014 #17
KoKo Aug 2014 #19
NutmegYankee Aug 2014 #21
KoKo Aug 2014 #23
former9thward Aug 2014 #8
NutmegYankee Aug 2014 #10
former9thward Aug 2014 #11
NutmegYankee Aug 2014 #12
pinboy3niner Aug 2014 #13
NutmegYankee Aug 2014 #14
KoKo Aug 2014 #16
NutmegYankee Aug 2014 #18
KoKo Aug 2014 #20
NutmegYankee Aug 2014 #22
KoKo Aug 2014 #24

Response to cal04 (Original post)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 03:32 PM

1. To "Protect And Serve" The Oligarchs, Corporations And Banks

eom

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Response to cal04 (Original post)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 03:37 PM

2. Ask Rumsfailed

 

We go with the army we got, and if your parents sent you better armor, you can't wear it. It's not fair, and it shows others how little Bush/Cheney cared for their lives.

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Response to cal04 (Original post)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 03:40 PM

3. Yep, I'm a multiple Iraq/Afghanistan vet

 

We didn't roll that heavy unless we expected major contact.

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Response to cal04 (Original post)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 03:47 PM

4. Amen.

 

The equipment I saw deployed in Ferguson made me ask, where was that type of personal equipment when I was in Iraq?
That type of armor/equipment has no business being in the hands of police forces or being on American streets.

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Response to cal04 (Original post)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 03:55 PM

5. If our troops didn't have this sophisticated equipment then where

is it coming from? Is it overproduction that wasn't shipped and so it stayed here?

Wouldn't it have been expensive to ship helicopters, MRAPs back from Iraq/Afghanistan? What about the wear and tear from the desert sand and such.

Are we still producing this equipment and it's just a boondoogle for the manufacturer to call it "excess" when it's still being produced to provide jobs here?

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Response to KoKo (Reply #5)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 04:03 PM

6. Given that the author got back from Iraq in 2004, a lot of the equip wasn't available at the time.

MRAPs didn't hit Iraq till 2007.

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Response to NutmegYankee (Reply #6)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 05:00 PM

7. When I checked the NYT Interactive Map for Counties

I was going by the NYT report that that counties had started receiving the equipment since 2006. But, then I remember that the MRAPS were specially designed because the soldiers weren't being protected ...so they wouldn't have had them then and that soldier wouldn't.

But, there is an awful lot of equipment coming in. BTW if you are still in CT (due to your DU handle) it was surprising to see how much in tiny CT. I checked it out because I used to live there. Chris Christie didn't seem to have NJ load up, though. Which was surprising.

My Southeastern County has:

168 Assault Rifles, 18 Helicopters, 4 Grenade Launchers, 4 Night Vision Pieces and 2 Armored Vehicles. Other smaller counties also have surprising sampling of armored vehicles and helicopters.


Random checking around the map it looks like Assault Rifles, Helicopters, Grenade Launchers and Armored Vehicles are all over the country now.


Mapping the Spread of the Military’s Surplus Gear

State and local police departments obtain some of their military-style equipment through a free Defense Department program created in the early 1990s. While the portion of their gear that comes from the program is relatively small (most of it is paid for by the departments or through federal grants), detailed data from the Pentagon illustrates how ubiquitous such equipment has become. Highlighted counties have received guns, grenade launchers, vehicles, night vision or body armor through the program since 2006. AUG. 15, 2014

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2014/08/15/us/surplus-military-equipment-map.html?smid=pl-share&_r=4

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Response to KoKo (Reply #7)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 05:28 PM

9. Conn. has 169 independent towns and cities to divide the equipment between them.

Most of the Equipment is in Hartford, New Haven, and Fairfield Counties, which contain 77% of the state population. I live in a more rural town, so we don't even have an independent police force. We are still under the resident State Trooper system.

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Response to NutmegYankee (Reply #9)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 07:46 PM

15. If you look at NYT site it's Counties. Not how it's distributed, though.

The CT County can distribute the resources according to Homeland Security/State Designations if you have a Demonstration of National Impact. So the equipment is easily moved from "County to County" within your state according to what Dept. of Homeland Security for your state and your Governor Requires.

If a Riot breaks out in New Haven....then other resources will be employed. And where the most resources are will filter into your particular place. That's how what I've read lays this out.

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Response to KoKo (Reply #15)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 07:50 PM

17. There is no county government in Conn. It was abolished in 1960.

Counties exist in name only for census purposes. The equipment would have to be in the hands of town or city police departments.

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Response to NutmegYankee (Reply #17)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 08:23 PM

19. You are technically correct...but, Factually they Still Use Counties for Distribution

The New England "Township System" of Govt. is still there....but how the Federal Government Allocates is still by Counties and CT still has Counties. But, since I lived in CT it seems that two of the counties I lived in have changed their status.

Connecticut's court jurisdictions still adhere to the county boundaries, except for Fairfield, Hartford and New Haven, which have been further subdivided into several jurisdictions.

That still doesn't mean that if Hartford or New haven had Riots that other Counties wouldn't be called in to offer resources by the Governor or Dept. of Homeland Security, though.

That's why we ALL SHOULD BE WORRIED....not matter WHAT STATE WE LIVE IN...because our State/County Laws are subservient to US Govt. and Military Police State.

That's what I think that we are trying to be awakened to....with what's going on with the Militarization of our Police that's been uncovered in Full View in the Ferguson Situation which is getting to the level of what we lived with in the 60's and early 70's.


========
Connecticut Counties

List of counties in Connecticut
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
See also: List of United States counties and county-equivalents
Connecticut counties

This is a list of counties in Connecticut. There are currently eight counties in the U.S. state of Connecticut. Four of them were created in 1666, during the first consolidation of the colony of Connecticut from a number of smaller colonies. Two counties were created during colonial times, and two counties, Middlesex and Tolland, were created after American independence (both in 1785). Six of the counties are named for locations in England, where many early Connecticut settlers originated.[1]

Although Connecticut is divided into counties, there is no county government in Connecticut and local government consists of cities and towns.[2][3] County government was abolished in Connecticut in 1960, although the names remain for geographical purposes. Counties are, however, still used by the state to organize its judicial and state marshal system. Connecticut's court jurisdictions still adhere to the county boundaries, except for Fairfield, Hartford and New Haven, which have been further subdivided into several jurisdictions.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_counties_in_Connecticut

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Response to KoKo (Reply #19)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 08:28 PM

21. How long did you live there?

The towns love to bicker and poke each other in the eye. They won;'t share water half the time, let alone toys. I suspect that the equipment is already in the major cities where a riot most likely. The smaller towns just don't have the population or density to support a riot that would require much equipment to disperse.

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Response to NutmegYankee (Reply #21)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 08:41 PM

23. 10 years

in Fairfield and New Haven Counties. Was there when Joe Lieberman was a Dem Activist...early 70's and on.

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Response to cal04 (Original post)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 05:11 PM

8. The OP has a point about militarization but is inaccurate.

Cops are not strolling around with that type of equipment in their day to day business. It is only brought out in a special situation.

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Response to NutmegYankee (Reply #10)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 05:52 PM

11. I agree police are over militarized.

But you will not see a small town cop or a large city cop walking or riding around with that stuff on a normal beat.

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Response to former9thward (Reply #11)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 06:47 PM

12. While I agree on that, they do use it for other routine police tasks.

Gone are the days of an officer knocking on the door to serve a warrant. Now they bust in with flash bangs to "prevent evidence destruction".

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Response to NutmegYankee (Reply #12)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 07:23 PM

13. Cops in riot gear and armored vehicles were routinely used for intimidation at peaceful Occupy event

During a May Day march by Occupy L.A. in 2012, police made sure to provide an abundance of riot control protection for banks along the march route. At the Wells Fargo Bank...




A lone protester held a sign and shouted her 99% message at the bank. Does she look dangerous to anyone?





The BofA tower also had riot police posted there, and was surrounded by metal barriers for the day. Police in riot gear stationed throughout the L.A. financial district were just one part of the very heavy police presence that day...



L.A. County Sheriffs staged their armored vehicle and riot control deputies near the post-march Occupy rally at Pershing Square...

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Response to pinboy3niner (Reply #13)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 07:24 PM

14. Which leads us to a big reason they dress like that - Intimidation.

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Response to NutmegYankee (Reply #12)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 07:49 PM

16. Yes...that is what's happening.. "other routine police tasks"

and we lose the "officer knocking on door to serve a warrant."

That situation in Georgia where the Police through a Grenade into that Toddler/Babies Crip and maimed him for life for no justifiable reason..comes to mind. It was HORRIFIC.

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Response to KoKo (Reply #16)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 07:53 PM

18. 62% of all SWAT deployments are for drug searches. Searches - not raids.

The American Civil Liberties Union, of which I've been a member for nearly 2 decades, did a great report on it. https://www.aclu.org/war-comes-home-excessive-militarization-american-policing

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Response to NutmegYankee (Reply #18)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 08:26 PM

20. Agree but, it's going beyond that, these days!

I think we agree but are nitpicking?

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Response to KoKo (Reply #20)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 08:28 PM

22. we agree.

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Response to NutmegYankee (Reply #22)

Sun Aug 17, 2014, 08:45 PM

24. Okay...thought we did but wasn't sure .....

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