Well, the official, original justification for bringing in the NG was a lack of police. Some of them fled the city (many were just looking after
their families), a few were killed, and I think many of them were displaced by the flood and transfered to other departments.
The police force is short 300 bodies, or thereabouts, compare that to the population of the city, which is estimated at 50% of pre-Katrina levels.
So, the city loses half its population, and just a bit more than 15% of its police force, and suddenly it warrants tanks on the streets, Blackwater
mercenaries, and a semi-permanent National Guard presence?
The logic doesn't wash.
More info, old, but very relevant:
Anyone remember this? Notice the wording I've highlighted...
We waited until we had enough force in place to do an overwhelming force. Went in with police powers, 1,000 National Guard military policemen
under the command and control of the adjutant general of the State of Louisiana, Major General Landreneau, yesterday shortly after noon stormed the
convention center, for lack of a better term, and there was absolutely no opposition, complete cooperation, and we attribute that to an excellent
plan, superbly executed with great military precision. It was rather complex. It was executed absolutely flawlessly in that there was no violent
resistance, no one injured, no one shot, even though there were stabbed, even though there were weapons in the area. There were no soldiers injured
and we did not have to fire a shot.
Some people asked why didn't we go in sooner. Had we gone in with less force it may have been challenged, innocents may have been caught in a fight
between the Guard military police and those who did not want to be processed or apprehended, and we would put innocents' lives at risk. As soon as we
could mass the appropriate force, which we flew in from all over the states at the rate of 1,400 a day, they were immediately moved off the tail gates
of C-130 aircraft flown by the Air National Guard, moved right to the scene, briefed, rehearsed, and then they went in and took this convention
Those that were undesirable to re-enter the convention center were segregated from the people that we wanted to provide water, shelter and
food. Those people were processed to make sure they had no weapons, no illicit dugs, no alcohol, no contraband, and then they were escorted back
into the building. Now there's a controlled safe and secure environment and a shelter and a haven as they await movement out of that center for
onward integration to their normal lives.
What are we talking about here? Are we talking about Iraq or New Orleans, I'm confused...
Here's testimony from the ground - it's supposedly been confirmed, though I haven't vetted it myself. This is an incredibly gripping tale, I think
everyone should read it and carefully consider what this portends. It was written by paramedics attending a conference in town (I think) trying to
survive the fallout, banding together with others, who found that the police presented a greater threat than the criminals. What's going to be
different in your town?
We waited late into the night for the "imminent" arrival of the buses. The
buses never arrived. We later learned that the minute the arrived to the City
limits, they were commandeered by the military.
Unfortunately, our sinking feeling (along with the sinking City) was correct.
Just as dusk set in, a Gretna Sheriff showed up, jumped out of his patrol
vehicle, aimed his gun at our faces, screaming, "Get off the #ing freeway".
A helicopter arrived and used the wind from its blades to blow away our flimsy
structures. As we retreated, the sheriff loaded up his truck with our food
Once again, at gunpoint, we were forced off the freeway. All the law
enforcement agencies appeared threatened when we congregated or congealed into groups of 20 or more. In every congregation of "victims" they saw
"mob" or "riot".
We felt safety in numbers. Our "we must stay together" was impossible because
the agencies would force us into small atomized groups.
In the pandemonium of having our camp raided and destroyed, we scattered once
again. Reduced to a small group of 8 people, in the dark, we sought refuge
in an abandoned school bus, under the freeway on Cilo Street. We were hiding
from possible criminal elements but equally and definitely, we were hiding from
the police and sheriffs with their martial law, curfew and shoot-to-kill
This situation has not gotten the attention it deserves.
New Orleans appears to have been a test case and I, for one, do not like what I'm seeing.
I really appreciate you adding your perspective to the thread.
If I was in your shoes, I would be tunneling to Mexico, I think, and cursing the high water table.
Seriously, I don't envy you. I was in Manhattan for 9/11, and seeing troops with rifles on the street corners felt like a punch in the gut to this
American boy. This is not America. The fact that Americans are the ones screaming for these measures makes me so ashamed and afraid for the future.
We seem to have become a nation of weak, terrified children, suckling at the glass teat and depending on big brother for every little thing.
What happened to the soul of this country? At one time this rag-tag band of rebels held off the greatest empire in the world with a little hep from
the French. Now we're so afraid of each other, and the weather, we're willing to give up the freeom we fought for and won?
It just saddens me...