Brother, Can You Spare A Drone?

So Homeland Security has been “quietly” loaning drones to local law enforcement. This reminds me of that great milestone in Homeland Security we now recognize by the place name, “Waco.” BATFE (before they added the E) and the FBI had a major standoff owing to the fact that the BATFE wanted to turn allegations about weapons laws violations into a major raid for the sake of PR. Naturally, since they wanted to raid the compound rather than simply arrest David Koresh on his own, they tried to get every advantage they could in terms of Firepower.

So, according to Wikipedia:

“ATF made a claim that David Koresh was operating a methamphetamine lab, in order to establish a drug nexus and obtain military assets under the War on Drugs. However, the evidence was stale, partly based on an unreliable “hot spot” detected by infrared radar, partly based on disgruntled ex-members who had left six years earlier, and it ignored all the evidence that the lab had been dismantled by Koresh when he took charge and had been given to the Sheriff for destruction. The commander of the Special Forces detachment questioned the request, and the ATF obtained only a training site at Fort Hood, Texas, February 25 though 27, safety inspections for the training lanes, and was given only medical and communications training and equipment.”

If memory serves, the BATFE or FBI were able to get more dangerous toys after the standoff, but my point here is that there were rules for obtaining “military assets.” At one time, local law enforcement simply did not have access to them. Later, an exception was made for the War on Drugs—a rather elastic exception.

The point here is that we don’t seem to have even a hint of such restrictions today. The drones were developed more military missions. Yet they are not only being used by Homeland Security, but are even being given to local law enforcement in a “loan-a-drone” program.

“In one of the first known instances of domestic drone use, in 2011 DHS loaned one of its unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to police in North Dakota in order to spy on a farmer, Thomas Brossart, who had refused to give back some cows that had wandered onto his property. The Brossart case was the first known drone-aided arrest. The Washington Guardian reports that since then, DHS and Customs and Border Protection (CPB) have deployed drones several other times to help local law enforcement and other federal agencies. The problem with the loan-a-drone program, according to critics, is that it is being operated on an ad-hoc basis with no established regulations for how and when to use them, or how to protect Americans’ privacy, or how to make sure taxpayers are reimbursed for the loaners. After all, CPB’s drones can cost between $15 million and $34 million each to purchase, not to mention their hourly operational costs. Between loan-a-drone and DHS giving out $4 million in grants to help police buy their own drones, good government groups are concerned that homeland security is subsidizing the militarization of local police forces.”

I know here in St. Louis, now that the city is moving to improve police accountability (a good idea, I think) every time they mention it, it makes me wonder if they aren’t amplifying the problem: The say they want to establish “a civilian review board.” But the police are not military. They are civilians too!

American culture is changing rapidly and the Federal Government is encouraging it. Back in the nineties there was, as I remember it, a much greater awareness of the distinction between law enforcement and the military. Now, under Homeland Security, I wonder how many of us are left who view the distinction as important. Whether it is through Federal Weaponization or just a use of terminology, the change is not a good idea.

We need to stop taking “free loans.” The interest our country pays is more than any republic could afford.







Comments

comments

Mark Horne was born in Melbourne, Florida, but has also lived in Liberia, West Africa, and Kwajalein, Marshall Islands before graduating from high school. He is an experienced editor and freelance writer, working with Gary DeMar, George Grant, Chuck Colson, and many others. He earned a Master of Divinity from Covenant Theological Seminary and has pastored in Washington State, Oklahoma, and St. Louis, Missouri. Mark is a prolific writer and the author of a layperson's commentary on the Gospel of Mark, a tract on baptism, and a biography of J.R. R. Tolkien. He currently resides in the St. Louis area.

Posted in Big Brother, Corruption, Military, National Security, Police State, Terrorism Tagged with: , , , ,
  • agbjr

    Yeah, Waco. Remember it well. Janet Reno should have been arrested and tried for violation of the Fourth Amendment and murder of United States Citizens. Clinton should have been impeached for his duplicity and attempts to cover-up White House involvement.

  • 2centsbutitsmine

    I don’t have a problem with law enforcement using airplanes, helicopters or remotely piloted flying cameras. None should be capable of weapons or cost millions of dollars. The first rule of law enforcement should be to deescalate all situations, not try to show who is the “biggest and baddest”, as seems to be the policy now. Also drop the military garb and act like civilians.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Billy-Whitfield/100002738915761 Billy Whitfield

    The Administration that is now in charge is the one that our Founding Fathers knew would come sooner or later, filled with nothing but Tyrants who will turn on their fellow Americans for a buck. That is why we have the Bill of Rights and the Right to Bear Arms, which Obama and his Legion of Demonrats are trying to destroy! I am all for Law Enforcement, worked in it a lot of years, but I am not for pulling crap and Lies like the Feds did in Ruby Ridge and Waco. That was completely overstepping their authority and abuse of power! As long as Obama is in the Oval Office, we have a Tyrant in charge, who should be forced from office by our military and Law Enforcement, but first Congress should make the first move to get rid of him and we have seen what testicles they have – None!

  • Don39

    Fellow Patriots, anti-drone weapons are perfectly legal under the Second Amendment, the invasion of drones is not! Lets protect out air space! Anyone know where I can get a good anti-drone weapon. We have a right to protect against warrantless search and to be safe in our domains. We all know who is the target of these domestic weapons. IT IS NOT THE FOREIGN TERRORIST THREAT, IT IS WE PATRIOTS, according to the fraud regime, the real domestic threat, . and maybe it is time for that to become true, since we all know they, the fraud regime, are the real threat to the Constitutional Republic and have been for several years! I tell you it is time to put a stop to this corrupt and invasive anti Constitution federal government. Are you ready? THE FULL PROTECTIONS OF THE CONSTITUTION MUST BE RESTORED! Current politicos and courts are not capable of doing so, it is up to the citizenry!

    • vladilyich

      I am in the process of finalizing a web page with the design of an anti-drone EMP weapon. You can’t shoot them down easily, they are much too high. However, an electronic pulse is effective at over 10,000 feet and doesn’t have to be a direct hit. My device can be built in a garage for under $1000 in readily available off-the-shelf parts. They lose three or four $35-million drones and they will learn that you can’t screw with the public. It is perfectly legal to run a microwave pulse into the air…if a drone happens to be there, too bad.

  • http://twitter.com/cmdorsey cmdorsey

    It’s great. It goes along with article in #OATHKEEPERS – Gun shops stop sale of Aks to PRIVATE CITIZENS – sales ONLY TO GOVT. OFFICIALS. So our time is drawing near I guess. I hope every person who had ANY hand in ANY of this burns in hell.
    SELLS AKs ONLY TO GOVT OFFICIALS-DANA SAFETY SUPPLY+ LIST OF OTHERS: >OathKeepers»GA Sheriff Stands forCitizenGunRights http://oathkeepers.org/oath/2013/01/05/georgia-sheriff-stands-tall-on-citizen-gun-rights/#.UOhDmdDOgjo.twitter

  • Mudpuppy

    In the old Soviet Union, there was no distinction between the police and military. That’s where we are headed.

    • vladilyich

      That’s why the Russian word for police is “Militaritsa.”

  • Jaime Cancio

    Don’t not report this fact and televised the world over and told with an outright lie to every person who saw that video; first raiding officers on a second story roof of the Waco building threw smoke gernades into an upstairs room prior to making an assault entry through two windows on either side of the room. In their own confusion, dense smoke in the room, in this situation officer seeing armed individuals carrying assault weapons that appeared to be automatice weapons engaged with automatic fire in a firefight that left officers dead and wounded. Outside the room on the roof was shown one officer being shot and bullet holes from automatic weapons fire coming through the walls behind him. The room was empty no persons in it, officer shooting other officers is what happened and no member of the compound were involved; but, that is not the what Janet Reno told the world and she knew the truth – and remember that raid killed 88 people and many of them were innocent small children. And of all the weapons found at the compound, not many, not a single firearm was automatic nor had they been fired. And that is information BATFE and FBI don’t want you to know. And no, David Koresh was criminal scum and deserved to be arrested and put behind bars in prison; to get Koresh why was it necessary to kill 88 defenseless others? Those others killed by overt concentration of CS gas or machined gunned to death while defenseless and unarmed and purposely directionally motivated into a killing area/field of awaiting automatic fire while fleeing the compound wanting only safety.

  • rwhawk

    “…No question now what had happened to the faces of the pigs. The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which.”

    And poor Winston Smith in his squalid existence, finally understanding that FREEDOM IS SLAVERY and IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH, just stared at the bottom of his glass through the Victory Gin as Big Brother peered down on him.

  • I_P_Frehley

    When will the gutless repubes (and others) en masse defund and ultimately disband these worthless (and useless) departments/agencies?

  • http://www.survivingurbancrisis.com/ Silas Longshot

    The militarization of local police forces has been a goal of the government for years now, and is pushing the timelines to ever expand this idea. When it all comes crashing down, the militant cops will cheerfully fire on any civilian daring to oppose the government, say for example a few million who refuse to disarm or surrender their heritage to some govt ‘gun buy back’ program. Thousands of ‘swat’ teams? Millions of us.

  • Greg137

    Tyranny is a drug unto itself… Many get addicted to it and they never stop pursuing it… They only care about their next hit.. All they want is power… The power to control another person by any means necessary, and they even have with drawl symptoms… Politicians need to be put into drug rehab, so we can try to break them of their addiction to government power…

  • ShoeFlyShoe

    “But the police are not military. They are civilians, too.” So let me
    see if I’ve gotten this right: M-16 assault weapons, machine and
    submachine guns, grenade launchers, flash-bang grenades, armored
    vehicles, drones and other “weapons of war” which need to be gotten off
    our streets (See: Obama, Barack H., Oct 16, 2012 “…weapons that were
    designed for soldiers in war theaters don’t belong on our streets.” See
    also: Mikulski, Barbara A., Dec 19, 2012 “Weapons of war have no place
    on our streets, in our schools or in our homes.”) are legally available,
    but only to “certain” civilians? These are the same weapons which were
    used by those self-same “certain” civilians under color of law to attack
    and kill other civilians for alleged possession of same. (See Ruby
    Ridge, near Naples, Idaho Aug 12 – 31, 1992.)(See also Waco siege, Waco
    massacre, Mount Carmel Center, near Waco, Texas Feb 28 – Apr 19, 1993.)
    And now, hollow-point ammunition, which the military doesn’t use for
    warfare because under international law it is considered “inhumane”,
    (see Hague Convention of 1899, Article 3) is being purchased by these
    self-same “certain” civilians in quantities numbering in the
    millions/billions for…what? Target practice?
    Houston, we have a credibility problem!

  • VeeDub57

    TSA forcing women and babies to be legally groped and ogled by perverts….

    Drones spying on and killing Americans….

    CONgress pushing to ban guns….

    CONgress openly against the U.S. Constitution (the only thing that give them their power)

    LEOs armed with machine guns and full military combat gear and weaponry….

    ONLY a moron would expect something good to be next! Yeah that includes liberals, progressives, sociailsts, democrats, gays and atheiests who voted for obama.

  • ounbbl

    Liars, liars, liars; excuses, excuses, excuses; blames, blames, blames; what else? O, yeah, promises, promises, promises – these are staples of politicians and krooks.