US cops use of military hardware to be reviewed

Edgartown - US President Barack Obama has ordered a review of the distribution of military hardware to state and local police out of concern at how such equipment has been used during racial unrest in Ferguson, Missouri.

A senior Obama administration official said on Saturday the president has ordered a review of federal programs and funding that enable state and local law enforcement to purchase military equipment.

Images of police wielding military-style guns and armor have alarmed many Americans following violence that was triggered by the fatal shooting of an African-American teenager, Michael Brown, by a white police officer in Ferguson.

Obama wants to know whether the programs, begun after the September 11, 2001, attacks, are appropriate and whether state and local law enforcement are given proper training, the official said.

The review will be led by White House staff including the Domestic Policy Council, the National Security Council, the Office of Management and Budget, and relevant U.S. agencies including the Departments of Defense, Homeland Security, Justice and Treasury, and it will be carried out in coordination with Congress.

Obama signalled that he would review the programmes on Monday at a White House news conference when he said he wanted to make sure police were purchasing equipment that they actually need because there is "a big difference between our military and our local law enforcement and we don't want those lines blurred".

- Reuters
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John Greystoke 2014-08-23 10:51:24 PM
These military hardware have a intimidation effect on strikers and it protect the cops. Does Obama want them to use pea shooters and wear pajamas? He is putting his cops in 'harms way', provide them with what is needed!
Brendon Cluta 2014-08-23 11:13:44 PM
Sure, but these are not strikers John. They are protesters and journalists.
Andre Krige 2014-08-24 12:03:41 AM
Marshal law Propoganda.
Hengu Willemse 2014-08-24 08:07:18 AM
No one says the police must be disarmed and equipped with 'pea shooters' but that there is a big difference between civilian policing and war and that police must maintain a balanced approach. If the police is unable to respond to the situation at hand with their means then, like they did the national guard and or other military assistance can be deployed to help stabilize the situation. The core value here is that police protect and serve and people should feel safe around police officers as opposed to fear them. I can't see that encouraging a 'rambo' mentality for civil servants is a good thing.
Marc Anthony Webb 2014-08-24 08:16:56 AM
Liberal democratic hogwash going to a gunfight with a pocketknife...Sometimes talking nicely and handing out flowers to violent criminal thugs is not the the correct way in dealing with them.When your very own life and that of innocent civilians is at stake appropriate measures and equipment need to be used!!!
Audrey Pearl Meyer 2014-08-24 09:11:47 AM
Oh and if people behave themselves like decent human beings then this will not be necessary
Jason Strauss 2014-08-24 09:35:58 AM
Why review police hardware as officers get attacked and shot dead. Even being targeted for their weapons.
JonasBarbarossa 2014-08-24 10:40:11 AM
Yes, police is failing and so is the police state.
Andrew John Becker 2014-08-24 05:29:04 PM
If you don't act like a useless c#nt, why should you be concerned about what equipment they are using. There are no "innocent" people during these sort of riots anyway. If you want to protest peacefully and you see people (it's always just a few) starting to act out. Leave. You don't want to be associated with violence and distruction if your intend is peaceful. If you don't leave chances are your are most likely going to get it. It's simple as that. If people remain peaceful and act in a civil manner the police won't need to react and hence they won't need all the gear.