Wake up America!

October 14, 2008 at 2:00 am 4 comments

I blogged the other day about the death of Posse Comitatus and how the US Army 3rd Infantry Division’s 1st Brigade Combat Team returned to the US and as of October 1st is effectively a standing army within US borders. We’re talking around 4,000 troops. If you missed this post, I urge you to read it.

I’ve been investigating further. Mainly, because I simply cannot believe the audacity of Bush and his gang. The US Prez can now command an army. Something Posse Comitatus was designed to stop happening. Now, a Vietnam veteran, a retired US Air Force Colonel no less is on record as saying that Bush should be impeached for striking down Posse Comitatus.

I have not been able to find out where exactly the brigade has been deployed within the US. But wherever they are, their weaponry includes both lethal and non-lethal weapons and they will have access to tanks. The brigade has been named the chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear or high-yield explosive Consequence Management Response Force. The acronym, CCMRF, pronounced “sea-smurf”, is now used for this brigade, which spent 35 of the last 60 months in Iraq in a combat zone. I’ve also heard them referred to as The Raiders. Apparently, they have been very good at suppressing resistance in the city of Ramadi, Iraq.

Now, if this bunch of troops has been brought back to the US (as the official mantra says) for some R&R and be part of an on-call Federal response to natural disasters or emergencies, why the need for heavy artillery? This is not a bunch of boy scouts being deployed – it’s a unit experienced in fierce combat and trained to kill. Unless of course you are expecting a mass civilian meltdown to accompany the financial meltdown. If the economic crisis becomes grave, then people may not be able to get money out of an ATM. Civil unrest ensues and an army is needed to subdue the populace.

The really scary bit is that the Sea Smurfs are not answerable to Congress. They are at Bush’s command. The Vietnam veteran calling for Bush’s impeachment painted this scenario:

  • if Bush commanded the brigade to arrest Congress, they would have to obey
  • the brigade could arrest any voters (because the Act that killed off Posse Comitatus, HR 5122, loosely defines “insurgents” and “insurrection”. So a bunch of voters putting up a mild protest could be arrested and hauled off)
  • if Bush directs the brigade to kill US citizens, they would have to obey (and if they refused, they would be treated as deserters and face up to 5 years’ imprisonment)

Did I fail Politics at University? Since when does “democracy” equate with having troops in the streets armed with lethal and non-lethal weapons and at the disposal of a President? Have the Americans lost what was once so dear to them – their fear and loathing of standing armies? British troops in colonial America was the very thing they stood up against.

There are some serious questions that need to be asked:

  • under what circumstances exactly could the Sea Smurfs be ordered to act against US citizens?
  • what would constitute unruliness, insurgency, unrest? Would a bunch of peaceful protesters hanging around a building with a few pathetic placards and chanting a protest slogan be defined as “insurgents”?
  • what are the rules of engagement?
  • how would a “public emergency” be defined exactly?
  • what weaponry will the Sea Smurfs have at their command? How will the weaponry be used?
  • why has the US Army been given what is (let’s be honest here) law enforcement duties?
  • and if it came to the crunch, would US troops REALLY act against their own citizens?

Wake up Americans! This is surely not a path you wish to go down – a military state replacing a democracy.  Am I the only one worrying about this? I’ve only seen a few other bloggers talk about this but that’s about it.

Image credit. Inteldaily

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Entry filed under: Politics, United States. Tags: , .

Nothing more to say Man and bird together

4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Metro  |  March 24, 2009 at 4:09 pm

    I replied to your other article only to find this after my response. I answered the “Where are they stationed at exactly” when I said they are at their assigned duty station, Ft. Stewart. They have access to “heavy artillery” because thats how their brigade is set up. Divisions within the Army are set up to fit an overall need the Military has in order to be effective. 1st Brigade is considered a (HBCT) heavy brigade combat team because of the tank battalion they have assigned to them along with their Scout and Infantry units having access to M2A3 Bradleys, which is a heavier, more armored vehicle than a HMMWV…. none of which would be used if they were called upon to respond to a CCMRF recall. Again they would only feel a support role and use vehicles specific to that task i.e LMTVs, HMMWVs, Fuel tankers and the like.

    I like how you question whether they would act upon the very people they took an oath to protect. Makes me feel real great bout being in the Army and serving to protect you while you sit back and write such awesome articles questioning our honor and integrity.

    My guess on way you’ve only seen a few other bloggers write on this topic is because everyone else must still have an inkling of faith in those that swore to protect you and ensure you enjoy the freedoms you are afforded. Freedoms that allow you write these type of articles.

    Reply
  • 2. thinkingshift  |  March 24, 2009 at 9:04 pm

    well, Metro you don’t actually protect me as I’m not an American citizen. I don’t live in the US. And I am never going to question the honour and integrity of those in the armed forces (after all my own father was in the Air Force) – you simply do your duty. But you are commanded not by yourselves, but Commanders, and your President ultimately. And you do what you are asked to do. You carry out orders.

    I just think that democracy requires us (any citizen in the world) to question what is going on – when information is presented and leads to questions. We should ask questions – whether those questions turn out to be right or wrong, we must ask. And I don’t think we have as many of the freedoms you suggest in this world- that is another reason anyone should be able to ask questions.

    Reply
  • 3. Metro  |  March 25, 2009 at 9:19 pm

    I never said you shouldn’t ask questions. I was simply replying to certain questions that seem to bring our integrity and honor we all uphold into a bit of a dark light. Im speaking on my own behalf but Im pretty assured that 99% of the rest of my fellow soldiers would agree when I can tell you we wouldn’t act upon civilians that are doing nothing more than what the Constitution allows them. I say that because we have minds of our own, contrary to popular ideas we aren’t machines that follow commands at the drop of a dime. We have a system of checks and balances to prevent a President/Commander from going off the deep end with troops.

    Okay you aren’t an American citizen, you don’t live here…. I get that but its still dishearting when you realize that there are Americans that belive the idea that our Armed Forces would potentially act on them; when our entire goal and essentially the reason we signed that dotted line was to protect them from harm. Patriotism is the love one has for his/her country and fellow countrymen, no matter the circumstances.

    Reply
  • 4. thinkingshift  |  March 25, 2009 at 11:55 pm

    okay so we are in agreement Metro. As I said before in a previous comment, my own father was in the Air Force, so it’s not about honour and integrity. I get that – I know why you’re in the Forces. Posse Comitatus is your check and balance to stop a standing army ever being in the Continental US – that is what your Founding Fathers wanted to make sure never happened again. As long as this remains intact, then things will be fine. Should Posse Comitatus be eroded, then I think there are real dangers. And I do not like what I’ve been seeing lately that potentially threatens Posse Comitatus. And this is how dangerous things were getting:
    http://www.alternet.org/rights/133273/do_the_secret_bush_memos_amount_to_treason_top_constitutional_scholar_says_yes/

    I remain confident that people like yourself and your fellow soldiers would not act against your own citizens. But to keep that from ever happening, we all must ask questions, US citizens or otherwise. Keep the Government understanding that it is there to serve the people and uphold democracy. I do not doubt your patriotrism and I trust the American people appreciate the work you do for your country.

    Reply

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