Tuesday, March 05, 2013

Let me hit you with a hypothetical situation.

Jay posted a comment on a blurb about drones being seen over New York that leads me to believe that he's unconcerned about it.
UPDATE:  The administration has said that drone strikes on US citizens inside the US IS legal.  Read it here.
That's his right, but the loss of civil liberties and constant spying on US citizens I believe should concern us all.

Let me hit you with a hypothetical situation.

Suppose you have an actual bad guy operating inside the borders of the US.  Suppose Law Enforcement gets info on a plot to bomb a federal building.  Information also leads them to believe that the bad guys will suicide themselves and hope to take out as many LEO's as possible if they are confronted.

Law Enforcement USES drones to spy on their location and determines that the threat is real.

Heavy hitters from the US Marshals Service Special Response Team are brought in (these guys are SHIT HOT...great shots, in great shape and can go hands on....if you go up against them just surrender....it'll be alot less painful) and they determine that there are no good ways to do an assault.  The bad guys have good discipline and security and they're in the active phase of their plan so they aren't leaving the compound.  Additionally they have a reinforced semi-truck and it is estimated that its been armored to shrug off rifle fire and maybe even light anti-tank rocket hits.

In this case would you allow a drone strike?

On US soil?

Against US citizens?

Without trial?

If I can think of this type of scenario then surely someone that is in high places has also.

This is an extreme situation and I could understand if they did launch a strike.


The fact that information about drones is cloaked in secrecy is the issue.  Anyone with grey matter knows that any weapon that can be used against the enemy can be used against citizens.

The secrecy is the real crime...at least in my opinion.


  1. I wouldn't get hung up on whether it's a bomb or missile dropped from a drone or manned aircraft. Does it matter if they do it with a drone, B-52, or AH-64? For that matter how about a guided artillery round?

    They can ignore Posse Comitatus if it's a sufficient emergency or they use the National Guard. I just don't see this type of thing happening absent some very extreme event.

    Assume we "know" someone has a highly lethal biological agent in a large amount and wired for airborne distribution and the experts say the only way we can be sure it doesn't get loose is we incinerate the entire area and the only way to do that is with at least 10KT. Guess what we're dropping a nuke on US soil.

    How about a location that's fortified where the guys inside are in the process of hacking into our electrical distribution system? JDAM to the rescue.

    However, absent an immediate threat to the nation I just don't see dropping bombs within the US. It's just not good public policy, violates due process, etc. That said even if was entirely illegal if it had to be done one hopes it would get done and then the person who ordered it is arrested and see if a jury will convict them.

    In the scenario listed where a terrorist has an armored vehicle I don't personally see a big difference between a national guard ATGW or M1 round and a JDAM but the public won't see it that way and public relations wise far better to use a Javelin than a Predator or F-16 JDAM.

    All this aside does any law enforcement agency have anti armor weapons including all the Federal ones or do the state national guards always have to be used in this scenario?

    1. and that's my point. the federal government isn't treating its citizens like adults.

      in my scenario i said that the feds would be right to vaporize the bad guys. in your scenarios you agreed.

      i don't have a problem with the policy. i do have a problem with secrecy surrounding it. i know for a fact that the US Secret Service has anti-tank weapons...heck they have gatling guns in those suburbans. no worries. i'm sure certain elements of the US Marshals have them. it wouldn't surprise me if elements of the FBI did too.

      anti-aircraft missiles also. again that doesn't worry me. they're set up to either protect the president or go up against real deal 100 percent bad guys.

      but tell me this. why does Homeland Security (or as they really should be known Immigration and Customs Enforcement) being armed like that? they were once the ass wipes of Federal Law Enforcement and now they're lead dog....and they have the lowest standards. the only agency more hated than ICE was the ATF and they attracted the same types of people. little Hitlers that want to be worshiped.

      i hate those fucks...but that's a different story. back on topic. local law enforcement shouldn't be militarized.

      ICE isn't the agency to be the lead in protecting the homeland.

      and policies that are reasonable to protect the homeland are cool as long as they aren't cloaked in secrecy.

  2. I tend to agree we want to limit secrecy but at the same time do we need to list the TO&E for everything? I'm fine with it being public knowledge agency X has "anti armor capability" without it being known what exact weapons are employed, how many are trained, etc.

    Personally I entirely don't understand how DHS is supposed to make sense when DOJ has about half the budget and personnel of DHS? DOJ still has the FBI, ATF, DEA, etc. DHS and DOJ are in some ways competing agencies. Compare this to the intelligence community where we actually have everyone, in theory, operating under DNI.

    Roughly 1/2 of DHS are in the 3 custom and immigration agencies and another 1/4 in TSA. They simply consolidated a bunch of vaguely related functions to little purpose.

    1. i think the very name of the organization indicates its real purpose.

      we created a massive security force to operate inside US borders. by any other name it should be called a national police force. and thats what really kills me. the other agencies have real functions from the US Marshals to the FBI to the USSS everyone has roles. but not DHS. they simply crash around looking for a reason to be.

      the worst part of it? they were once simply Immigration and Customs...basically the bastard step child of federal law enforcement...well mostly Immigration. Customs was respected.


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