by Susanne Posel
May 26, 2012
Thanks to Posse Comitatus, the US military are forbidden from responding on
the streets of America whenever the whim is announced.
Posse Comitatus Act, Section 1385, states that only under “circumstances
expressly authorized by the Constitution or Act of Congress” can the
military presence on American streets is allowed.
Yet, if the Defense Department has their way, a
new authorization act will
give them the power to order the armed forces to be used against the
Air Force reservists are slated to be the new response team for domestic
disturbances. Disseminated from Air Force Reserve Command (AFRC) and other
reserve agencies, these men and women could be called to be first response
to natural disasters within the US. The legislation would extend
mobilizations for indeterminate periods of time.
The AFRC affirms that reservists are traditionally not used in “homeland
The governors of individual states can request
the National Guard’s assistance during a natural disaster when local law
enforcement becomes overwhelmed.
"Our reservists have been asked and often
volunteer to assist after disasters hit the homeland,” said Lt. Gen.
Charles E. Stenner Jr., chief of Air Force Reserve and AFRC commander.
“Mobilizing needed reservists will help sustain their support for longer
periods and make operations more efficient. We mobilize reservists to
handle contingencies overseas, so it makes sense that we do that to take
care of our own country.”
Because of the specialized training that
reservists are given in dealing with disasters, the US government has
decided they would be perfect as a first response team.
Earlier this month, in Crookston Minnesota, there were armed US National
Guardsmen that were
patrolling a residential neighborhood .
These functions are called “urban operations training” where military
personnel carry armed weapons with the command not to “utilize armory or
Within the Air Force Reserve, there are other specialized units such as
response personnel, supplies and equipment focused on disaster scenarios.
As recent as 2008 saw our National Guard unit in America under
Stenner proclaims that this new authority will allow the armed forces to
make greater contributions to Americans should there be a natural disaster.
He is referring to the frustration chiefs of reservist experience because
they are “unable to help their communities.”
The push for over-reaching authority allocated to the armed forces will
negate local reservist’s purpose by
Title 10, which gives them federal power
that supersedes state authority in Title 32.
"Armed Forces chiefs claim that there were
reserve-component Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines who were close
at hand with the capabilities needed, but they didn’t have the authority
to act,” said Army Lt. Gen. Jack C. Stultz, chief of Army Reserve.
“Finally, we got the law changed. This new legislation says that now we
can use Title 10 reserves.”
Without a declaration of emergency or disaster
from the President, these armed forces could not act. With this new ability,
they can... whenever and for whatever purpose they are ordered to.
The law specifies that local law enforcement is still mandated to provide
initial response; yet if needed, the National Guard will become the first
step requested by a state governor.
And then there is the matter of scenario that allows reservists to be
deployed for a promised 120 days, which could be extended based upon
“We just have to make sure we have the
procedures and processes worked out,” Stultz remarked about the
specifics that are now being worked out to avoid confusion of authority
Stultz is very anxious to have this power at his
“Let’s not wait until a hurricane hits to
say, ‘How do we do it?’”
These reservists are going to be the response
team for any future (and assured) “overseas contingencies”.
As operations in the Middle East are winding down, Stultz can now refocus
his attention on militarizing America...