Friday, February 20, 2009

What Are They Training For?

Arcadia, Iowa is a tiny community of 434 souls. It is situated about 100 miles northeast of Des Moines. This little population blip came up on my radar when Charlie the Cop sent me an article from the Carroll Daily Times Herald that describes how a unit of the Iowa National Guard will be conducting urban enforcement exercises this April.

The Carroll National Guard unit will train on urban military operations by holding a four-day exercise at Arcadia.

The purpose of the April 2-5 drill will be to gather intelligence, then search for and apprehend a suspected weapons dealer, according to Sgt. Mike Kots, readiness NCO for Alpha Company.Citizens, law enforcement, media and other supporters will participate.

Troops will spend Thursday, April 2, staging at a forward operations base at Carroll. The next day company leaders will conduct reconnaissance and begin patrolling the streets of Arcadia to identify possible locations of the weapons dealer.

The primary phase will be done Saturday, April 4, when convoys will be deployed from Carroll to Arcadia. Pictures of the arms dealer will be shown in Arcadia, and soldiers will go door to door asking if residents have seen the suspect.

Soldiers will knock only at households that have agreed to participate in the drill, Kots noted.

I was somewhat conflicted about this announcement. At first it sounded ominous, posse comitatus and all that. But why in a town that may not even have a traffic light? But a town this size is perfect if you want to keep a low profile and not alarm many people when you train troops in the touchy art of civilian firearms confiscation.

I have worked with National Guard troops, coordinating patrols during a natural disaster. We also use National Guard specialists to participate in local drug intervention efforts (commos mostly for multi-jurisdictional short term details) but nothing ever like this Arcadia exercise.

"Once credible intelligence has been gathered," said Kots, "portions of the town will be road-blocked and more in-depth searches of homes and vehicles will be conducted in accordance with the residents' wishes."

There is intelligence and, then again, there is intelligence. How is this information vetted? Road blocks? In-depth searches of homes and vehicles? What happens when the owner of the vehicle or residence refuses to grant permission for a consensual search? It sounds like they will be evacuating entire areas in order to isolate specific undesirables - weapons dealers.

Having troops ask if they can search you vehicle for "public safety" is a very intimidating measure. If you refuse permission are you now a suspect because you do not want to participate in a public safety initiative?

"One of the techniques we use in today's political environment is cordon and knock," Kots explained. "We ask for the head of the household, get permission to search, then have them open doors and cupboards. The homeowner maintains control. We peer over their shoulder, and the soldier uses the homeowner's body language and position to protect him."

This is absolute crap. It is nothing more than a consent search "sweep" looking for firearms, a federal fishing expedition

There are several things, harbingers, to look for:
1) Changes to federal criminal code changing the definition of a "weapons dealer." This will involve much broader guidelines where the definition may fit just about any gun owner. Two or more guns may qualify you for this definition, the supposition being that any one with more than one weapon can be "predisposed" to selling one of them. Anyone selling any kind of firearm without a FFL permit will be an unauthorized (illegal) weapons dealer.
2) It looks like posse comitatus may be going out the window; look for changes in existing State laws or authorizations regarding the National Guard. These troops are normally under the control of the Governor.
3) Unless the troops are "federalized" they will remain under command of the Governor. There must be laws or statutes regulating the circumstances under which this transfer can occur. Look for changes in federal regulations controlling such authorizations.

A meeting to give residents more information and accept volunteers will be held 7 p.m. Monday, March 2, in the Arcadia American Legion hall.

Kots said the exercise will replace Alpha Company's weekend drill for April."We have a lot of extended drills this coming year," he added.

In addition to surveillance, searching and apprehension, the exercise will also give the troops valuable experience in stability, support, patrol, traffic control, vehicle searches and other skills needed for deployment in an urban environment

Surveillance, searching and apprehension of civilians by the National Guard? This is very ominous. Stability? Support? This would indicate large scale unrest or other societal disorder. Perhaps the Obama administration is really unnerved by the recent demonstration at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange by Rick Santelli.

One other aspect of this training may be to learn how to develop an informant base within the civilian population. This is how they will develop their "intelligence," via your neighbors ratting you out. The troops may be asking for information regarding anyone who has any kind of firearm or who is seen performing other "proscribed" activities.

"... and other skills needed for deployment in an urban environment."
Why is this experience needed in American urban environments? This must be in response to large scale civil unrest or new federal law enforcement initiatives that will require the deployment of troops to our cities. Or large scale unrest following new laws that infuriate an entire segment of our population.

It does not bode well, for this deployment will not be in response to traditional law enforcement needs but to something else.

"The unit will use a Blackhawk helicopter for overhead command and control, and to simulate medevacs."

Airborne C&C may be a part of all NG operations, but in a civilian application is it really needed unless there are pursuits or if monitoring large formations of .... what? Rioters? Prisoners? And it appears that they anticipate injuries if the medevac simulation is any indication; fairly large scale operations with anticipated hostilities.

Is the National Guard preparing to initiate operations against American gun owners?

And another troubling account is reflected in the words of the Obama's Chief of Staff, Rahm Emanuel: “Never Allow a Crisis to Go to Waste.”

If you cannot find a crisis, then fabricate one.

In response to the current fiscal nightmare, disastrous economic legislation has already been railroaded through Congress and the Democrats never even read the bill before voting it into law. If a similar nationwide crisis in social order hits our nation, they most likely will follow suit and do the same thing.

The socialists will not stop until they make slaves of us all. That's just how they roll.

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