It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.


Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.


Did the government use SWAT teams to bypass the Posse Comitatus Act?

page: 1

log in


posted on Jun, 15 2011 @ 06:32 PM
The Use of SWAT teams to terrorize the American people has reached epidemic proportions. It used to be that they were meant for confrontations with armed suspects and hostage situations but, today, they are used routinely for warrant services against non-violent criminals, routine drug searches and, maybe tomorrow; jaywalking if things keep going the way they are going.

How did we get this way? Back in the good old Clinton days, it was decided to give our local police forces access to military weaponry to fight the "war on crime".

SWAT Team Mania: The War Against the American Citizen

Frequently justified as vital tools necessary to combat terrorism and deal with rare but extremely dangerous criminal situations, such as those involving hostages, SWAT teams – which first appeared on the scene in California in the 1960s – have now become intrinsic parts of local law enforcement operations, thanks in large part to substantial federal assistance. For example, in 1994, the U.S. Department of Justice and the Department of Defense agreed to a memorandum of understanding that enabled the transfer of federal military technology to local police forces. Following the passage of the Defense Authorization Security Act of 1997, which was intended to accelerate the transfer of military equipment to domestic law enforcement departments, local police acquired military weaponry – gratuitously or at sharp discounts – at astonishing rates. Between 1997 and 1999, the agency created by the Defense Authorization Security Act conveyed 3.4 million orders of military equipment to over 11,000 local police agencies in all 50 states. Not only did this vast abundance of military weaponry contribute to a more militarized police force, but it also helped spur the creation of SWAT teams in jurisdictions across the country.

In one of the few quantitative studies on the subject, criminologist Peter Kraska found in 1997 that close to 90 percent of cities with populations exceeding 50,000 and at least 100 sworn officers had at least one paramilitary unit. In a separate study, Kraska determined that, as of 1996, 65 percent of towns with populations between 25,000 and 50,000 had a paramilitary unit, with an additional 8 percent intending to establish one.

Blacklisted news

It seems to me that they found a sneaky way to get around the requirements of the Posse Comitatus Act by arming the local police forces with military weapons and military training.

Why was this done? To scare the BeJesus out of the average American and create the oppressive atmosphere we have today in which people feel that resistance is futile.

While the frequency of SWAT operations has increased dramatically in recent years, jumping from 1,000 to 40,000 raids per year by 2001, it appears to have less to do with increases in violent crime and more to do with law enforcement bureaucracy and a police state mentality. Indeed, according to Kraska’s estimates, 75-80 percent of SWAT callouts are now for mere warrant service. In some jurisdictions, SWAT teams are responsible for servicing 100 percent of all drug warrants issued. A Maryland study, conducted in the wake of a botched raid in 2008 that resulted in the mistaken detainment of Berwyn Heights mayor Cheye Calvo and the shooting deaths of his two dogs, corroborates Kraska’s findings. According to the study, SWAT teams are deployed 4.5 times per day in Maryland with 94 percent of those deployments being for something as minor as serving search or arrest warrants. In the county in which the Calvo raid occurred, more than 50 percent of SWAT operations carried out were for misdemeanors or non-serious felonies.

It is getting to the point where many people have more to fear from the police breaking into their homes than they ever have to fear from lawless gangs running rampant in the streets.

Botched Paramilitary Police Raids

The purpose of the Posse Comitatus Act was to ensure that military trained soldiers were not employed in the policing of American civilians in the belief that police officers would receive better training for dealing with civilians and would be more restrained in their use of violence but, unfortunately that is not turning out to be the case. With the mentality that comes with belonging to a para-military unit comes the proclivity for using the violent tools they have at their disposal. In fact, it seems that police units have less restrictions on them regarding the use of military-style raids than the armed forces.

Ironically, despite the fact that SWAT team members are subject to greater legal restraints than their counterparts in the military, they are often less well-trained in the use of force than are the special ops soldiers on which they model themselves. Indeed, SWAT teams frequently fail to conform to the basic precautions required in military raids. For instance, after reading about a drug raid in Missouri, an army officer currently serving in Afghanistan commented:

My first thought on reading this story is this: Most American police SWAT teams probably have fewer restrictions on conducting forced entry raids than do US forces in Afghanistan. For our troops over here to conduct any kind of forced entry, day or night, they have to meet one of two conditions: have a bad guy (or guys) inside actively shooting at them; or obtain permission from a 2-star general, who must be convinced by available intelligence (evidence) that the person or persons they’re after is present at the location, and that it’s too dangerous to try less coercive methods.

With police like these, who needs a military to oppress the civilian population? There are many who think that soldiers in the military would not turn their weapons against civilians in their own home towns in order to put down civil unrest. It has already been proven during the G8 summits and through the blatant over-use of SWAT teams in routine police functions that many police officers wouldn't think twice before using military methods against civilians, they have been conditioned for this for years.

Perhaps the reason for all of the wars across the world is to keep the military away from America so they cannot interfere when the local police forces are turned against the people in the name of national security during massive rioting in the event of a full-scale financial disaster.

If the people of this country ever wish to regain control from the ever encroaching police state, they must demand that military weapons be only used by the military and that local and federal law enforcement have their military weapons taken away.

Can you tell which one is the military and which is the police?

edit on 6/15/11 by FortAnthem because:

posted on Jun, 15 2011 @ 06:42 PM
reply to post by FortAnthem

I believe the answer to the question posed in the title is a stern "yes." The use of "military" force on U.S. soil on American citizens has gotten way out of hand.

edit on 15-6-2011 by kaiode1 because: (no reason given)

posted on Jun, 15 2011 @ 06:48 PM
in the uk we have an ever incresing armed response sevice, ther used to be hardly any and you wud only ever see them now and again but now warever u go u see them

if guns were legel in the and with only a small minority in possesion of firearms i dont see the need for them and is it just a slow progression into a police state


log in