Trump to Lift Restrictions on Militarizing Police
by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.org – Home – Stephen Lendman)
Dark forces run America, not Trump. He’s hostage to Wall Street and America’s military/industrial complex – powerless doing their bidding, taking orders, not giving them.
Ignore his bravado, creating the illusion of a leader in charge. Like the Clintons, GW Bush and Obama, he’s a prop serving powerful interests – weak, isolated and disposable at their discretion.
Total subservience to dark forces running things alone might save his presidency. Even then, he’s on shaky ground, vulnerable to be toppled if that’s the plan, a deplorable situation for him and the nation – junta power and monied interests in charge.
It’s clear evidence that democracy in America is pure illusion, nonexistent now or earlier – things on track toward stripping off the mask entirely, constitutional order losing to tyranny.
Trump intending to lift restrictions on militarizing local police is more evidence. The FY 1997 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) authorized supplying local police with excess military equipment.
As of 2014, 8,000 state and local law enforcement agencies are participating in the program – receiving billions of dollars worth of military weapons and related equipment, not free but cheap.
The so-called 1033 program supplies armored personnel carriers, assault rifles, submachine guns, ammunition, bayonets, helicopters and planes, flash-bang grenades, grenade launchers, sniper rifles, and other militarized equipment.
In May 2015, Obama restricted or banned transferring some of the above, following sharp criticism of the militarized response to Ferguson, MO street protests after police officer Darren Wilson murdered African American Michael Brown in August 2014 – including instituting de facto martial law based on exaggerated state of emergency conditions.
According to USA Today, Trump intends lifting Obama’s restrictions, saying:
“On Monday, Attorney General Jeff Sessions is scheduled to address the annual meeting of the Fraternal Order of Police, the nation’s largest police union, and he may outline the program changes there.”
“The administration’s action would restore ‘the full scope of a longstanding program for recycling surplus, lifesaving gear from the Department of Defense, along with restoring the full scope of grants used to purchase this type of equipment from other sources,’’ according to a administration summary of the new program recently circulated to some law enforcement groups.
” ‘Assets that would otherwise be scrapped can be re-purposed to help state, local and tribal law enforcement better protect public safety and reduce crime.’ “
Militarizing local law enforcement agencies is what police state governance is all about – along with legislation undermining constitutional rights, others guaranteed under international law, and operating the world’s largest gulag prison system.
The 1033 program originally was intended to help local police conduct illicit drug investigations, later expanded to counterterrorism.
Trump’s proposal lied, claiming “(m)uch of the equipment provided through the 1033 program is entirely defensive in nature…protect(ing) officers in active shooter scenarios and other dangerous situations.”
Transforming local law enforcement agencies nationwide into virtual combat troops is intended for crushing dissent – the highest form of patriotism. Trump, like his predecessors, wants it suppressed.
In 2014, an ACLU report titled “War Comes Home: The Excessive Militarization of American Policing” strongly criticized the 1033 program, saying:
“(L)ocal ocal law enforcement agencies have amassed military arsenals” able to turn communities into battlegrounds, disproportionately harming people of color.
“(U)se of hyperaggressive tools and tactics results in tragedy for civilians and police officers, escalates the risk of needless violence, destroys property, and undermines individual liberties,” the ACLU added.
America is a plutocratic police state – at war on humanity at home and abroad.
Fundamental freedoms are disappearing in plain sight, most people distracted, ignorant and indifferent to what’s going on.
The nation’s founders never could have imagined the depths of today’s deplorable state, increasingly getting worse.
My newest book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”
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