Sunday, September 28, 2008

What I'm paranoid about

[I was originally going to title this post, "Why I'm paranoid," but that may not be the same question.]

Via Millard Fillmore's Bathtub:
Brigade homeland tours start Oct. 1

The 3rd Infantry Division’s 1st Brigade Combat Team has spent 35 of the last 60 months in Iraq patrolling in full battle rattle, helping restore essential services and escorting supply convoys.

Now they’re training for the same mission — with a twist — at home.

... snip ...

The package includes equipment to stand up a hasty road block; spike strips for slowing, stopping or controlling traffic; shields and batons; and, beanbag bullets.

Now put this side by side with this event from Inside Iraq:
Yesterday, a force from the Iraqi army came to my neighborhoods to evacuate the governmental flats where about 600 families live in. One of my neighbors tried to inquire about the evacuation order. He asked the army force "why does the army implement the evacuation orders? This is not the duty of the army". The question developed into an argument and the soldiers lost their mind because they didn't use to listen but they used to beat, fight and kill. They beat my neighbor violently to give a lesson to others to obey and execute only "Execute and then discusses"

I know, I know, I shouldn't be comparing the American army to the Iraqi. But I keep seeing (and I'll continue posting) too many similar events from American police who react with only moderately more restraint if they're asked to explain their actions and commands. "Execute and then discusses." When authorities don't believe they should be bothered with questions, violence isn't far behind.*

And now we're going to have Army brigades especially trained to operate in US cities the way they operated in Baghdad. If I'm supposed to sleep better at night, it isn't working.

* And, yes, there are extreme cases when this has to be done. Army authority is built on the needs of the battlefield, where committees might not live long enough to pass a resolution. But dealing with reporters or escorting a student out of a library just aren't that kind of emergency.

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