Police Militarization In Ferguson, Missouri

Tyler Durden's picture

By Walter Olson of Overlawyered

Police Militarization In Ferguson, Missouri

Why armored vehicles in a Midwestern inner suburb? Why would cops wear camouflage gear against a terrain patterned by convenience stores and beauty parlors? Why are the authorities in Ferguson, Mo. so given to quasi-martial crowd control methods (such as bans on walking on the street) and, per the reporting of Riverfront Times, the firing of tear gas at people in their own yards? (“‘This my property!’ he shouted, prompting police to fire a tear gas canister directly at his face.”) Why would someone identifying himself as an 82nd Airborne Army veteran, observing the Ferguson police scene, comment that “We rolled lighter than that in an actual warzone“?

As most readers have reason to know by now, the town of Ferguson, Mo. outside St. Louis, numbering around 21,000 residents, is the scene of an unfolding drama that will be cited for years to come as a what-not-to-do manual for police forces. After police shot and killed an unarmed black teenager on the street, then left his body on the pavement for four hours, rioters destroyed many local stores. Since then, reportedly, police have refused to disclose either the name of the cop involved or the autopsy results on young Michael Brown; have not managed to interview a key eyewitness even as he has told his story repeatedly on camera to the national press; have revealed that dashcams for police cars were in the city’s possession but never installed; have obtained restrictions on journalists, including on news-gathering overflights of the area; and more.

The dominant visual aspect of the story, however, has been the sight of overpowering police forces confronting unarmed protesters who are seen waving signs or just their hands.

If you’re new to the issue of police militarization, which Overlawyered has covered occasionally over the past few years, the key book is Radley Balko’s, discussed at this Cato forum:

Federal grants drive police militarization. In 2012, as I was able to establish in moments through an online search, St. Louis County (of which Ferguson is a part) got a Bearcat armored vehicle and other goodies this way. The practice can serve to dispose of military surplus (though I’m told the Bearcat is not military surplus, but typically purchased new — W.O.) and it sometimes wins the gratitude of local governments, even if they are too strapped for cash to afford more ordinary civic supplies (and even if they are soon destined to be surprised by the high cost of maintaining gear intended for overseas combat).

As to the costs, some of those are visible in Ferguson, Mo. this week.

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lolmao500's picture

What do you slaves dont understand in SHUT THE HELL UP AND LICK BOOTS???

El Oregonian's picture

It only gets bitter from here...

Now that explains the almost two Billion rounds of ammo, including Hollow-points that, BTW is outlawed for use by the Hague.

BaBaBouy's picture

Apherguson Missouri, Bitchez...

Anusocracy's picture

As one wise ZH commenter posted a couple years ago:

The Soviet Union didn't die, it moved to North America.

Keyser's picture

What we are witnessing in the US today is nothing short of the type of fascism displayed in 1930's Germany... Chapter and verse... 


AssFire's picture

Keyser, You make some good points and stand head and shoulders above some of the newer posters here.
I salute you my fellow Texan.

Richard Chesler's picture

Yes we can!

...destroy the country through corruption.



Bilderberg Member's picture

Let's just let OJ out of prison and call it even.

SilverIsKing's picture

All this news is taking away from the real news story. Why did Obama cut his vacation short to come back to DC? To meet with Biden? Gimme a break! Reggie Biden maybe.

Transformer's picture

I'll tell you what I'm worrried about.  Sooner or later, one of these incidents like Ferguson or the Bundy Ranch is going to happen, and somebody or several somebodies are going to want revenge big time, for their brother being killed, or something like that.  They are going to take their AR15's and head down to the demonstration and take out a few cops, armor or not, and all hell is going to break loose.  It will be Martial Law and it will spread quickly.  The Civil War will be on, and it aint gonna be pretty.  All our lives will turn to shit.

markmotive's picture

Now you see why the NSA needs to spy on us?

We're bad, bad people that can't be trusted.


Bendromeda Strain's picture

The "Revenge of Chris Krispy" was way worse. Punishing a politico by harming the citizens. But yeah, this stinks too. The R's have a doppelganger in Angela Corey, maybe we can get these "ladies" together for a surprise party...

SWRichmond's picture

VA code for "brandishing" a firearm:


Selected VA case law for use of deadly force in self defense:


The jerk sitting on top of the police van pointing his rifle at unarmed people demonstrating, or standing in their yards / on their porches, clearly was "brandishing" under VA law.  If I reasonably fear for my life as a result, can I shoot him?

See where this goes?

California Nightmares's picture

When that time comes, if you are white, you'll be glad that the cops are ready for civil war.

Headbanger's picture


Be glad when YOU are ready for civil war.

Cause the cops will be protecting their own at that point.

Miles Ahead's picture

Let's just let OJ out of prison and call it even.


 Even for what?  400 years of Slavery?  Or post slavery? (ending only about 1945 or so when lesser forms of slavery such as "peonage" finally ended in the South)

Even for what, dropping incindiary devices on Greenwood, the "Black Wall St." in Tulsa, OK. 1921? Burning down hundreds of business and thousands of homes?  Rosewood?  White Race Riots in Detroit, et. al.?

Or for systematic lynching of black soldiers when they returned from WWI, WWII, many while still in uniform, for crimes such as "reckless eyeballing", walking on the sidewalk.  Or many "Even" for decades of terror reign of the (still active) KKK?  Perhaps you mean for the now popular "stop and frisk" human rights violations of male Negros in New York City.

Oh I know, Even for decapitating any and all leadership that may have contributed to righting the ship; Malcolm X, MLK, the Panthers, even the Cribs (originally) and the Bloods, who were trying to be positive forces in the community until infiltrated by decent white folks (DWF).

Oh, perhaps Even for systemic discrimination in the workplace, in Education, institutes of higher learning, in Government jobs and appointments, redlining, predator lending in places like Baltimore, Cleveland, decades ago.

No, I know what you mean.  "Even" for shipping in all that coke via Mena, Ark. into L.A. and other urban areas, starting and fueling the Crack epidemic, then the onerous sentencing laws to make possession of this form of coke 10 times the crime of the form of coke used by DWF.

Most of you have somehow forgotten all this, conveniently I'm sure.  Or maybe these things were never discussed in DWF homes and schools.

Oh well, as Malcolm X said when DWF killed the only Prez. who was trying to make things right - JFK: "never feel sorry for the country boys when the chickens come home to roost."

Now cometh the "other" kind of reparations.  Bon appetit (ebonics for, "enjoy your meal")


MeMadMax's picture

Gov'ment sets up a central banking system that results in the theft of untold amounts of money being stolen right out of your pocket, a government paralyzed to do the right thing, and the eventual downfall of the country...


But nary a whimper on that...


Guess it's too complicated...


Oh but some drugged up thug finally gets removed from the DNA pool and its A BIG FUCKIN DEAL...


You people need to get your priorities straight...

Drunk In Church's picture

How should a police force stop the looters?  Should they just give up until the criminals tire themselves out?  I dunno.  Bitchez.

Miles Ahead's picture

@MeMadMax:  Nary a whimper?  Blacks should be more concerned over these years about Greenspan, Bernanke, and Yellen rather than David Duke, Nathan Bedford Forrest, and Joe Sixpack (not for his abs!)??

Hey, no it's not "too complicated" (racist!) but it looks like you got that (complaining about the FED) covered.  By the way, how's that working out for you?  And complicated... don't get me started here fella...

"You People" are more concerned about catching a bullet from outta control cops more than insidious depletion of our balance sheets.  Sorry; rather be a dead broke nigga than a dead nigga.  By the way, Trayvon Martin was a drugged up thug too eh? How about Amadou Diallo?  Timothy Stansbury?  Sean Bell?  Do we really need to go here?

You're a credit to the human DNA Max baby.  I can tell by your name and your sense of reasoning.  We need more like you.  Keep the FED and other insights coming mate.

Bendromeda Strain's picture

Sure, let's go there. I am not aware of anything coming out concerning Amadou Diallo that would make him anything more than a victim of vicious, racist cops. It is real convenient for you to lump Martin in with him, but it is your credibility that takes the hit when you do so. Why not throw Crystal Mangum in there as well, you get tired or something? Now we hear that the most racist AG in our lifetime is ordering a third autopsy on Brown (in order to "get it right", I'm sure). Several shots in the right arm and a kill shot in the top of the head as he rushed the cop - according to a black witness not named "Brown's friend who would have no reason to lie". But then again, it doesn't matter whether the facts paint things in a different light, it only matters whether we can find someone to get their court nails on and get on the stand and tell us that facts "are retarded, sir".

PS - your reparations are out there in a field in Gettysburg.

DullKnife's picture

That 6'4" 300 lb "kid" can't have been all too bright.


I'd a stopped when the cop pulled his piece and said "stop".

Or if it was a decaf day and I shoulda had regular coffee, at least I'd a stopped after his first shot.

No need to wait for 6 shots to get the message.

Or course, we must allow for the possibility the cop should have said, "Chill you mutherf..." instead of "Stop Sir, least I ...."

Cops need to speak the language of the perps better.

Low probability the "kid" had high scholastic scores.

He seemed to be more interested in vocational training.




DullKnife's picture

p.s. Cops also need to have rapport with the community for best law enforcement.

Coming geared up for a 3rd World firefight is not the right way.

But admittedly having military as police is popular with despots and tyrannies.

Tyranny would never happen here.

We have the Constitution?

See it...over there...the paper that Black guy living in that White House, is wiping his butt with.


goldsansstandard's picture

I was on the air on kpoo, black public radio in the Filmore explaining to the hostess the fraud of fractional reserve banking and the Fed.

She summarized for the audience, "It's like steeling the bread without breaking the crust."

Brave lady Pam Pam. She would put her body between warring gangs in Hunters Point.

goldsansstandard's picture

I was on the air on kpoo, black public radio in the Filmore explaining to the hostess the fraud of fractional reserve banking and the Fed.

She summarized for the audience, "It's like steeling the bread without breaking the crust."

Brave lady Pam Pam. She would put her body between warring gangs in Hunters Point.

BrosephStiglitz's picture

@Miles Ahead

Well if it is that bad in the US, you could always go back to Africa right?  I mean, Liberia is a paradise right now I hear.

I am glad you have such a strong sense of racial identity and understand the history of your race, but as far as I am concerned, the world has no place for people who cannot cooperate with one another.  I say that in a completely non-discriminatory sense.  That means any arabs, jews, blacks, whites, gays, lesbians, or any other radical demographic that is intent on killing another demographic off.

As far as I am concerned THEY (and by "they" I mean people who spew hate and vitriol specifically) can fuck off and attempt to colonize some other planet, or the Antartic.

Hate breeds hate.  So retain your racial identity, if you wish, but the past should be let go and moving forward with the future should be the predominant focus, because ultimately times are tough for most right now.  I would (as a white male) personally give you the clothes off my back if your heart was in the right place.  Race is not an issue.

Rakshas's picture

...AND ... AND its brought to you by the very same financiers.....


OT - is it me or did Jimmy Carter have the same dentist as JFK/RFK, Willy Clinton looks familiar too, then there's all those bushes - from Prescott/Adolph to GHW - Zapatta (the operation not the oil ex company) to Bin Lyin its been one big ol' circle jerk for more than a century - CIA=WALL STREET = MIC = WYSIWYG.....what did you think was going to happen?? 

carlnpa's picture


It WAS  moved here chapter and verse by Operation Paperclip (think tens of thousands of valuable Nazi war criminals relocated to the US after WWII, this is fact and well documented).

It has just take a while to manifest itself.  

The Nazis just relocated and set up shop here.

Whoa Dammit's picture

Ferguson totally out of control now. So far tonite 1 shooting, 1 stabbing, Mc Donald's  & Papa John's wrecked. 

SilverIsKing's picture

Do you think they cooked the Big Macs before they stole them?

Freddie's picture

Liberal Democrats voted for this twice.  They want Bundy droned.

StychoKiller's picture

Hmm just WHO is Ernst Rohm (and his SA brownshirts) in this scenario??

Grumbleduke's picture

Given that Röhm was a closeted homosexual, ... I believe there are more than one in the current admin (male and female), so take your pick

MFL8240's picture

And what group of people were in charge of Germany at that time? Yup the same lineage controlling the banking a corporate sewers of America.  

sleigher's picture

Something they were pointing out on I think it was Sean Hannity.  (Not a listener but caught it in car while driving).  Some guest was pointing out how Putin is sounding almost Reaganesqe while Obama sounds like a communist leader.  They talked about it for a minute before I arrived and turned that globalist mouth piece off.

kchrisc's picture

Actually, Nazi Germany moved to a new home on the Potomac and to a land between the sea and river.

An American, not US subject.

hairInTheSoup's picture

i'd replace soviet union by nazi (they didn't lose the war, in fact usa came to europe because the banksters back nazi were losing the war to the soviet, certainly not to defeat them, but save what could be)

kchrisc's picture

First, there were several tweets and photos from a witness across from where he was shot who basically had the same story as the other kid with Brown. Also the dispatch recording indicates the reluctance of the thug to reveal his murder on a channel that he knew was being recorded.

Second, even if the killing is somehow "justified," the whole thing highlights the treasonous war that the DC US and their gun and badge thugs are waging against the American people.

An American, not US subject.

Urban Redneck's picture

Even if we round down the number of American people that the gun and badge thugs kill every day to one... unless there have been well over half a dozen other victims of homicide by law enforcement in the past week, this shit storm is probably saving more lives then it is costing so far.

Bendromeda Strain's picture

Yeah, maybe so but the autopsy is apparently not "going well" if we are to surmise that Holder's demand for a THIRD exam of the body means something. For the record, I am 100% against the militarization of the police, and believe they should be held personally liable for all misconduct - no suing the taxpayers when they throw a flashbang into a baby's crib. GO TO JAIL.

booboo's picture

"Now that explains the almost two Billion rounds of ammo, including Hollow-points that, BTW is outlawed for use by the Hague."

Silly, The Hague ban on hollow point, expanding and frangible rounds only apply to war. Shooting unarmed americans is a peace keeping mission.

Bangin7GramRocks's picture

Hague Schmague! They have a lawyer that says it's all perfectly legal. So fuck you hippie!

Rootin' for Putin's picture

Thats only for armed forces.  What you will be dealing with will be civil, therfore no such rules (Hague/geneva)  apply.

Headbanger's picture

Fucking idiots!


Modern hollow points stay in one piece  versus fragmenting years ago.

Full Metal Jacket (FMJ) or "Ball Ammo" will penetrate multiple organs and keep going (over penetration) to hit somebody else.

FMJ ammo is used in military weapons mainly because THEY DON'T JAM  like hollow points and because they will better penetrate clothing, cars, walls, multiple bad guys.

So get it right that hollow points are NOT evil ammo used by police, you mooks!