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NEWS: Bush Suspends Posse Comitatus, Active Military Pour into New Orleans

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posted on Sep, 4 2005 @ 12:33 AM
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What really strikes me about the 'containment of New Orleans' is the reports given by Geraldo and Shepard Smith last night on Fox. Geraldo was in the convention center, nearly in tears as he watched the suffering entering its fifth night. He was pointing out the infants and babies going without food and water. He kept saying "get them out of here!" over and over, it was very compelling.

Fox then cut to Shepard and he was outside the center saying "the government" had just set up a check point closing the only exit from the city and was turning everyone back to be processed for evacuation. He seemed somewhat incredulous at this, and questioned why "the government" would cordon off the devastated city and turn back those attempting to evacuate on their own. Both reporters were obviously upset and angry at the way the disaster relief was being conducted.

Its almost as if there is a subplot to the evacuation aimed by law enforcement and the military at identifying and detaining the individuals behind the rampant criminal activity that has reportedly overwhelmed the city in the wake of the flood disaster. Something is going on behind the scenes, I'm almost sure of it.




posted on Sep, 4 2005 @ 01:04 AM
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Hobson's Choice


Originally posted by BaastetNoir
LOL...Bush just cant win... If he doesnt send troops to help he hates balck people, if he does, he is doing illigal things and should be impeached... go figure

I try to be reasonable about things like this and not jump on the hindsight bandwagon. Fiery rhetoric notwithstanding, this is not at the top of my list of concerns right now, just one of them.

I'm more concerned about my fellow Americans who are abandoned, starving, dehydrating, succumbing to exhaustion and disease and being terrorized by both criminals and government alike in the disaster area.

Maybe I'm wrong to criticize such things as the extensive overseas deployment of National Guard troops at a time like this -- although my concern didn't start with Katrina and it doesn't end with it -- but the irony is inescapable that what we call the “National Guard” spends so much time so far outside our borders.

I don't think the Katrina Fiasco is “all Bush's fault”, but we pay good money to our federal government to handle things like this which overwhelm state and local governments.

We pay people like FEMA to work full time on nothing other than preparing for and handling this stuff, and we pay them well.

Maybe my traditional American concern about posse comitatus and the issues surrounding it is outdated, I don't know. It's a disaster after all. Fair enough, but still, there's some bitter history there, that's for sure.

I imagine this will all get sorted out, but my point is that it is not only reasonable for Americans to ask hard questions of our leaders, but our duty.



posted on Sep, 4 2005 @ 01:11 AM
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I see what you're saying Majic. National guard! Why aren't they at home? Helping out in the homeland.



posted on Sep, 4 2005 @ 01:19 AM
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With a reduction in the active armed forces after the end of the cold war, the reserves / NG became a much more intergal part of the US military than before. In fact the force structure depends upon them. NG units fly B-1's to driving Bradleys and M1's, to provideing specilized medical and ancillary services during a war and need to be called up to faciliate this.



posted on Sep, 4 2005 @ 01:38 AM
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Originally posted by The Vagabond
I'm really more anxious to hear from those who are sure that we are with holding aid so that the "concentration camps" which don't exist will remain secret, especially those who implied by the use of words like fuhrer that this heralds a declaration of martial law.

I beg you to take no personal offense
.


No offence taken, personal or otherwise.

Yah, that Fuhrer comment toward Bush was mine. I still wouldn't change it either since I see him as fitting that definition perfectly. (Fuhrer: An absolute ruler, especially one who is harsh and oppressive.) I think my opinion is justified in many ways, one of which comes from his own mouth. "If this were a dictatorship, it'd be a heck of a lot easier, just so long as I'm the dictator." —Washington, D.C., Dec. 19, 2000

Now the part about the camps and all that didn't come from me and I can't say one way or the other if they exist or not or for what purpose.

The Marshal Law issue is somewhat sticky IMO. Officially, No Marshal Law and Posse Comitatus is still intact. However, there are still Military Soldiers on Duty with authority to "Shoot to Kill" American people if needed. Again in Bush's own words, "“The main priority is to restore and maintain law and order and assist in recovery and evacuation efforts,”. So even though it's officially called a "Relief Effort" it is also unofficially a situation under "Marshal Law" where the Active Military Soldiers are enforcing Law and Order.

Finally, the whole Posse Comitatus issue apparently was totally incorrect in the first place and I admit I took djohnsto77's claim as being true, officially that is. Once again, while it is officially a false claim, it remains an unknown unofficially the way I see it. So I hope that helps explain a little better where I'm coming from on this issue.

EDIT: Just a quick addition. I'm thinking what Majic is thinking. I don't know exactly what it is and I can't put my finger on it but something just seems fishy.

[edit on 4-9-2005 by mOjOm]



posted on Sep, 4 2005 @ 01:49 AM
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Majic makes his point very well.
The fact that the national guard is overextended is valid. I have criticized the undermining of the national guard's viablity by the constant deployment in Iraq myself.
I'm glad to see that the thread has taken this tack as opposed to a discussion of the validity of Iraq, which I felt was invited by the phrasing of the Indy's post with which I took issue. But at any rate, no harm no foul, I was wrong. The trolls didn't come out of the wood work in response to it, and the discussion is relevant, so let's continue it.

FredT is dead on when he points out that force reduction after the cold war has made the National Guard a much more integral part of our deployable force structure, which infact they always were in theory, with the exception that when they were born as state militias the United States was a relatively small country with relatively localized military interests, and it was to be presumed that most conflicts would be fought near home. They were never the less deployable, infact before the advent of a standing army they were our only force and they were certainly deployable if the absolute need to fight on a foreign front had arisen.

I find it interesting that we can supposedly have the Ready Brigade of the 82nd airborne on the ground and firing anywhere in the world in 18 hours, but it took the better part of the week to send them to New Orleans to join a police force in security operations.

This tells me that one of two things must be happening here.
1. We have a major disparity between stated and actual readiness which must be addressed immediately by the Department of Defense.
OR
2. The problem in New Orleans is not one of readiness but one of administrative incompetence which strongly suggests that major shakeups in staffing and interagency proceedures between state and federal organizations, as well as between organizations in the respective departments of State, Justice, Homeland Security, and Defense.

I favor number 2. I believe that state and local government in Lousiana need to hang high for this, as do several officials within the cabinet and the agencies which answer to them, and ulimately of course also the Chief Executive who was as their superior was responsible for overseeing their readiness and cooperation.

In short, I don't feel that this is a problem stems primarily from the situation in Iraq (unless of course it turns out that there is not currently a brigade on 18 hour alert anywhere in the US military as the result of our engagement in Iraq), but instead that the problem is one of leadership and administration. I do not believe that this would have happened with experienced and capable administrators in charge, as opposed to well connected politicians and bureaucrats who sometimes seem to see their offices as positions of prestige rather than positions of grave responsibility to the American people.

As I said in my first post, I believe that it's good that the military is there and finally getting things sorted out. I also believe that there are cleary big problems highlighed by these events, and that the symptoms are being given more consideration than the disease.
I wonder if things would have been so bad if strong and compitent local authorities had been in place, rather than a strong, overpowered, and apparently inept system based on an alphabet soup of agencies born from the deterioration of local authority in what is nominally a federal system, but is slowly deteriorating toward unitarianism.



posted on Sep, 4 2005 @ 01:55 AM
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I agree w/ Vagabond.

More than likely the U.S. has all the resources as was proved after the fact.


We just got a lousy implementation regime!









[edit on 9/4/2005 by bodebliss]



posted on Sep, 4 2005 @ 02:01 AM
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Problems At Home


Originally posted by The Vagabond
In short, I don't feel that this is a problem stems primarily from the situation in Iraq (unless of course it turns out that there is not currently a brigade on 18 hour alert anywhere in the US military as the result of our engagement in Iraq), but instead that the problem is one of leadership and administration. I do not believe that this would have happened with experienced and capable administrators in charge, as opposed to well connected politicians and bureaucrats who sometimes seem to see their offices as positions of prestige rather than positions of grave responsibility to the American people.

I think you're right. In fact, I think you hit the nail on the head.

It is tempting to want to blame the War in Iraq for troop shortfalls, but the truth is that we have the troops. There are enough National Guard troops nationwide to handle this. Heck, I'm pretty sure there are enough NG troops in neighboring states to handle it, frankly.

But I am admittedly talking off the cuff. I don't have the facts and figures in hand.

Vagabond's point still stands, however, as one which rings true.

The bottom line is the bottom line. America has more than enough resources to deal with this crisis, and deal with it swiftly.

And as I noted before, we pay thousands and thousands of people full time to prepare for and manage emergencies exactly like this one. That's their job, and all they do, day in and day out, week after week, month after month, year after year.

So what the bloody hell happened?

We have the resources, but it is not clear to me that we have the leadership necessary to use them competently, and that really, really bothers me.



posted on Sep, 4 2005 @ 08:19 AM
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It appears one of the main problems with the slow deployment was in the initial response planning on Monday. New Orleans didn't flood until Tuesday morning, and by then relief efforts were underway and units assigned accordingly. The situation in NO deteriorated rapidly, trapping thousands of people who went to bed Monday night thinking the worst was over. The worst, in fact, was just beginning for them.

The city, parrish, and state levels of government failed miserably to do their share in the preparedness and early stages of this disaster. The mayor didn't impress me with his laissez-faire attitude and seeming lack of concern prior to the flood. He changed his tune and passed the buck real quick when the scope of the disaster and complete lack of services for the thousands of evacuees became dreadfully apparent. Get them to the Superdome and Convention Center, and then what, mayor? Leave them to swelter and die in squalor while mob rule takes over? Good job!

Governor Blanco was just as bad or worse, quickly turning on the remaining good citizens of the Crescent City, failing miserably to take up the slack and provide any kind of disaster relief while FEMA scrambled to get re-oriented and apply its efforts to the stricken city, instead threatening to employ 'battle hardened troops' to 'shoot on sight' anybody attempting to loot, lumping those searching desperately for food and water and baby supplies in with those wantonly stealing and looting for gain and pleasure. Yes, there is a relatively small undesirable criminal element at work exploiting the disaster and terrorizing survivors. The state is mandated to protect its good citizens in times of crisis from those that would seek to harm or exploit them. The Governor basically labeled them all criminals, and sent in the shock troops to enforce their suffering. Way to go! Send them to a place with no resources to support them, then criminalize them for doing what they have to to survive, and instead of sending supplies to relieve their suffering, send the military with orders to 'shoot to kill'. Governor Blanco should resign.

I know this was a massive storm, like a 90,000 square mile F2 tornado. It did incredible damage over a widespread area, crippling infrastructure and cutting off countless people from help. Thousands have undoubtedly been killed, and 100s of thousands are without homes and jobs. The area has been completely devastated, and it will take years to rebuild. Two months just to drain NO. Can you imagine what that place will be like once they pump the water out? Nearly everything will have to be rebuilt.

I'm curious from a conspiracy standpoint about the delayed flood, levee failure scenario. When exactly, and how and where did the levee system fail? Why did it take until Tueday morning for the flooding to become severe, and why was everyone so surprised by it? Weren't they monitoring the levee system and the water level? The breaches I saw on TV looked awfully large for gradual flooding, and it was funny, but the water actually seemed to be flowing out of the city through one break, maybe after sea and lake levels had subsided.

A lot of things about this disaster and the way it was handled just don't add up. I can only hope the relief and recovery effort is more organized and effective from this point forward. Maybe once everything gets dried out and put back in place, the inquiry into what happened will provide some answers and new methods for better handling future disasters.



posted on Sep, 4 2005 @ 10:05 AM
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Originally posted by Majic
The bottom line is the bottom line. America has more than enough resources to deal with this crisis, and deal with it swiftly.


At this point last week I would have never doubted that statement. Today though I am not so sure. Until this past week I had never doubted our ability to handle a natural disaster of any size. That confidence no longer exists.

Who here would have thought a week ago that we'd be discussing whether troops were more important in Iraq or New Orleans? It is honestly quite amazing.



posted on Sep, 4 2005 @ 12:47 PM
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Smoke And Broken Mirrors


Originally posted by Indy
At this point last week I would have never doubted that statement. Today though I am not so sure. Until this past week I had never doubted our ability to handle a natural disaster of any size. That confidence no longer exists.

The word "disillusioned" comes to mind.

And that means what we had before was nothing more than an illusion.

Half a million people waking up without a home to go back to are stuck with the grief of knowing that no matter how beautiful the dream was, the morning after is a cold, hard nightmare.



posted on Sep, 4 2005 @ 06:27 PM
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Majic,

I might add that all Americans had their dream of the Bush admin. coming to their aid in a time of need seriously damaged.

Yet, we still see "YAHOOS" on this board stick up for a corrupt Bush administration.

Pray not just for New Orleans, but for all Americans as long as this regime is still in power.

This is a sad, sad wake-up call to All Americans who have loved ones who might be in harms way today, tomorrow, or ever. The current admin. in the White House, and Congress does not care about you. It does not care about those who do not have $millions, $billions to be fleeced.



posted on Sep, 4 2005 @ 09:31 PM
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Originally posted by mOjOm
The Marshal Law issue is somewhat sticky IMO. Officially, No Marshal Law and Posse Comitatus is still intact. However, there are still Military Soldiers on Duty with authority to "Shoot to Kill" American people if needed. Again in Bush's own words, "“The main priority is to restore and maintain law and order and assist in recovery and evacuation efforts,”.


I'm late in responding because I had a post in progress when you posted yours, so I never even realized that I had missed your post.

Anyway, although I would take issue with the idea of Bush being any different than Clinton who threatened to rule this country by executive order if congress failed to adopt his agenda, I suppose that's something to leave for another time. I'll home in on the martial law part.

The military can not engage in search, seizure, arrest, etc of criminals, this is true. On the other hand, as I have pointed out previously, the War Powers Resolution names 3 circumstances under which the president may commit US forces to combat. Two of them involve authorization by congress. The final one is in the event of an attack on US territory.

Rioters who take up arms against local governments are rebels, legally speaking. They are engaged in an attack on US territory and the military can be employed against them. There is precedent for this in the Civil War, the use of the US army on the American frontier, and finally in the Los Angeles Riots of 1992.

Indeed it is legal to open fire on rioters and shoot to kill, infact MORE legal than if they were arrested, because to arrest them would imply law enforcement against individuals who were not fighting.

I do not have any reliable information at this time on the rules of engagement, and therefore I can not comment explicitly on my support or lackthereof for any shootings which have occurred thus far in New Orleans, although I can say that since police have been fired upon there are infact some people in New Orleans who are legally classifiable as an armed insurrection, and thus the shoot to kill order is not without merit, if applied specifically to their case.



posted on Sep, 8 2005 @ 07:02 AM
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A little late or not? I am not saying I support this view or not. Even though I am in the military and I know how quick a "certain" response time should be versus how it really turns out to be are indeed two completely different aspects about how it ALL spans out in a basic timed interval. We'll see if this article further clarifies your current Pro or Anti-Bush/Military bashing or not. You be the judge...

~ Eric ~
--- U.S. Air Force ---

ARTICLE

USA Today | September 07, 2005

Top Pentagon Brass Defend Response Time

WASHINGTON - The Pentagon's top officials said Tuesday that the military responded quickly to Hurricane Katrina, although it took nearly four days for troops to begin delivering large amounts of food and water to storm victims.

"Not only was there no delay, I think we anticipated in most cases -- not in all cases, but in most cases -- the support that was required," Gen. Richard Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said at a Pentagon news conference.

Storm victims in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama complained bitterly that the military didn't start large-scale delivery of provisions until Friday. Some military helicopters began search-and-rescue operations Aug. 30.

Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said he had appointed Navy Adm. Edmund Giambastiani to study the military's response to Hurricane Katrina to determine whether any mistakes were made. Giambastiani, a close Rumsfeld ally, is vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

The commander of the first large Navy ship to participate in relief efforts said last week that she was notified the night of Aug. 28 -- the day before the storm hit -- that her vessel might be needed to provide relief. But she wasn't told to do so until late Aug. 30, the day flooding started in New Orleans, she said.

"I've got sailors I could send to the beach, but I can't force myself on people," Capt. Nora Tyson said Friday in an interview on the bridge of her ship, the USS Bataan.

Myers said military officials worked from the afternoon of Aug. 30 through the morning of Aug. 31 to assess the situation in New Orleans and decide what to do.

Myers and Rumsfeld said the military had planned its hurricane response but was caught off guard by the flooding. Experts, including those from the Army Corps of Engineers, have predicted for years that a hurricane as large as Katrina could cause widespread flooding in New Orleans.




[edit on 8-9-2005 by 2Super7E123]



posted on Sep, 8 2005 @ 11:33 PM
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Originally posted by Off_The_Street
Of course, I'm sure that the military can return fire if attacked, and, given the exigencies of the situation, probably have an 'understood' permission to hold people if the situation warrants (however you'd care to define that).


I believe a simple citizen's arrest would be enough to cover it until duly authorised law-enforcement arrived. After all, the National Guard are citizens, not soldiers...And the military could simply supply a lawyer to represent the arresting "citizen" at any legal action at a later date.



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