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Tag Archive: DoD


Military Hardware Still Flowing To Local Police After Ferguson

 

Military Arming Police

 

 

” The federal government shipped nearly 4,000 more assault rifles to local law enforcement agencies in the three months following the Ferguson riots, marking a huge surge in the amount of lethal firearms being doled out to police and sheriff’s offices.

  The Ferguson riots drew attention and criticism to the massive firepower state and local police are now able to bring to bear on their citizens, and earned scrutiny for the Pentagon project, known as the 1033 program, that helps arm many of those agencies by making surplus military equipment available to them.

  President Obama called for a review of the program, civil rights advocates said the local police had become indistinguishable from the military, and even some police departments questioned their own policies.

  But a Washington Times analysis of the first three months after the riots shows the program remains popular with law enforcement agencies throughout the country, though there have been some changes in the types of equipment that are now being offered.

  The 3,879 rifles the Pentagon shipped was an astronomical increase over the dozen rifles shipped during the same three-month period in 2013, with several police agencies taking delivery of hundreds of rifles soon after the Ferguson riots.

  Armored vehicles, which drew particular scrutiny in the riots in Ferguson and other cities, were less popular in the aftermath. The Pentagon shipped just 11 mine-resistant vehicles, or MRAPs, from Aug. 15 through Nov. 14, compared to nearly 180 in the same time period a year earlier.”

 

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The Pentagon Finally Details Its Weapons-For-Cops Giveaway

 

 

DoD Weapons Giveaway

 

 

Click image and scroll down for an interactive , state by state and 
county by county accounting of the DoD weapons giveaway

 

 

 

” You may have heard that the image-conscious Los Angeles Unified School District chose to return the grenade launchers it received from the Defense Department’s surplus equipment program. You probably have not heard about some of the more obscure beneficiaries of the Pentagon giveaway:

  • Police in Johnston, R.I., with a population less than 29,000, acquired two bomb disposal robots, 10 tactical trucks, 35 assault rifles, more than 100 infrared gun sights and two pairs of footwear designed to protect against explosive mines. The Johnson police department has 67 sworn officers.
  • The parks division of Delaware’s Department of Natural Resources was given 20 M-16 rifles, while the fish and wildlife enforcement division obtained another 20 M-16s, plus eight M-14 rifles and ten .45-caliber automatic pistols.
  • Campus police at the University of Louisiana, Monroe, received 12 M-16s to help protect the 8,811 students there (or perhaps to keep them in line).
  • The warden service of Maine’s Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife received a small aircraft, 96 night vision goggles, 67 gun sights and seven M-14 rifles.

  For more than 20 years, the Pentagon program that distributes surplus weapons, aircraft and vehicles to police departments nationwide received little attention or scrutiny. Defense Department officials closely guarded the details of which agencies across the country received which items.

  Then, events in Ferguson propelled the 1033 program, as the surplus distribution is called, into the public eye.”

 

Total Value of Tactical Items Distributed by Department of Defense 1033 Program

 

 

    Readers should take note of when this program really took off … 2010 . It comes as no surprise that this disastrous policy truly came into it’s own during the current administration .

 

 

 

” Flooded with calls for greater transparency, in late November, the Pentagon quietly released data that details all tactical equipment distributed through the program, and for the first time identified the agencies that received items. The data is a national gift list of high-caliber weapons, armored vehicles, aircraft and similar military equipment, all delivered for the price of shipping and often with little civilian oversight.

  The program has doled out $5 billion in equipment since 1990. Most of it was general office and maintenance equipment – shovels, copiers, computers – but the Pentagon largesse included tactical military equipment worth more than $1.4 billion, disseminated in 203,000 transfers to about 7,500 agencies. Even after Ferguson, the program continues to chug along, transferring $28 million in tactical equipment in the past three months.”

 

 

     Read the entire accounting and be sure to click the interactive link to see exactly what type of military firepower that your local authorities have received from the Feds .

   See also , The Marshall Project’s companion piece, A Department Of Defense 2014 Gift Guide : 

 

 

” Shopping for holiday gifts for your local police department, park ranger or campus security team? How about an “interim fast attack vehicle”? Or a nice grenade launcher? These are just a few of the $5 billion dollars worth of surplus items that the Defense Department has distributed to law enforcement agencies and others in its Excess Property Program, also called the 1033 program. Below is a list of gifts culled from records that the department quietly made public last month. The values are based on what the Pentagon paid when it acquired the equipment. The recipients paid only shipping.”

 

 

 

MRAP Giveaway

 

 

God save us from our own government …

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How The Obama Administration Gives Away Military-Grade Weapons To Local Police

 

 

 

 

 

” In the weeks after the death of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo., images of officers training rifles on crowds of protesters from the turrets of armored vehicles became a potent symbol of the distrust between law enforcement and citizens in Ferguson — and elsewhere.

  Now, civil rights and civil liberties advocates are calling on the Obama administration to respond to the events in Ferguson by discouraging police from relying so heavily on military equipment and tactics.

  Several federal programs are helping local law enforcement to acquire heavy weapons, either by making funds available or by providing the equipment directly. One program at the Pentagon transferred surplus military equipment worth nearly half a billion dollars to local police last year. Grants provided by the Department of Homeland Security total another $1 billion, and Holder’s department provides hundreds of millions more.

” We do not condition that money on requiring real change in policing,” said Sherrilynn Ifill of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People in a press conference on Tuesday. “Taxpayer money to local police departments should come with the condition that the police take responsibility for improving.” “

 

 

Washington Post has more on the burgeoning American Police State . Read it all .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pentagon Scraps Afghan Air Fleet For Pennies On The Dollar

 

 

 

” After spending nearly half a billion dollars on 20 planes to outfit the Afghan Air Force, the Defense Department turned around and scrapped 16 of the aircraft for 6 cents on the pound—just $32,000, the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction has learned.   

  The Defense Logistics Agency carried out the planes’ destruction at Kabul International Airport as the SIGAR was investigating the Defense Department’s failed program to outfit the Afghans with a fleet of twin propeller military transport aircraft. The G222 aircraft, manufactured in Italy, proved impossible for the Afghan military to maintain and the Pentagon terminated the program in March 2013, three months after the SIGAR initiated its investigation. By then, the department had spent at least $486 million on the aircraft.

  SIGAR determined that the aircraft flew only 234 hours out of 4,500 required from January through September 2012. “

 

More here and here

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Schools Stockpile Grenade Launchers, M16 Rifles, Armored Vehicles And Other Military Equipment

 

 

 

 

 

” Nearly two dozen legal, civil rights, and education advocacy organizations recently sent a letter to the U.S. departments of Defense, Justice and Education to plead with federal officials to stop sending military equipment, weapons and armored vehicles to public schools.

  The move comes as an increasing number of school districts across the country take part in the Department of Defense’s Excess Property Program, commonly known as the 1033 program. The Huffington Post reports that at least 20 schools have taken in military-grade equipment, from grenade launchers to laptops, since the program started in 1997.

  The equipment is given to schools, public university police forces and local police agencies free of charge, but is considered to be on indefinite loan from the government.

“ The recent events in Ferguson, Missouri, demonstrate the tensions that invariably develop between local law enforcement and the community when military equipment is unnecessarily deployed against citizens,” according to the letter submitted to Mark Harnitchek, director of the Defense Logistics Agency that oversees the program.”

 

EAG News

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GAO: Pentagon Broke Law In Bergdahl Case

 

 

 

 

 

” The Defense Department violated the law when it didn’t tell Congress before transferring five Taliban detainees from Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, to Qatar in return for the Taliban’s release of captured Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, the Government Accountability Office said in a legal decision made public Thursday.

  Pentagon officials “did not notify the relevant congressional committees at least 30 days in advance of the transfer,” as required by law, GAO General Counsel Susan A. Poling said in a letter to nine Republican senators who had sought the analysis.

  What’s more, Poling said, “because DOD used appropriated funds to carry out the transfer when no money was available for that purpose, DOD violated the Antideficiency Act,” which “prohibits federal agencies from incurring obligations exceeding an amount available in an appropriation.”

  The GAO ruling provides legal backing for the position that the administration flouted the notification requirement — a view held by most Republicans and more than a few Democrats. The GAO does not address other issues that many lawmakers have raised about the merits of the exchange. “

 

Read more at Roll Call 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pentagon Funds ‘Cold War-Style’ Science Study To Track Mass Civil Unrest

 

 

 

 

 

 

” The Pentagon along with the Minerva Research Initiative, appears to have resuscitated and partially reconstituted a 60′s Cold War-era social science program used to detect political protest… 

  The controversial program called Project Camelot had been operational nearly a decade into the Vietnam war, as the Special Operations Research Office (SORO) located at American University had received millions in funding from the US Army to conduct a six country study on civil unrest. The current social science program directed by Minerva and the Department of Defense (DoD), appears to have also partnered with some of the most well-known universities in the United States by studying the behavior of peaceful activism and how political ideology shapes protest movements in the world at large.

  The Minerva Research Initiative has been conducting its studies with the sponsorship of the Department of Defense and its university partners since 2010. This new program has prompted a rebirth of the militarization of social science and in the process has undoubtedly opened a floodgate of ethical concerns. The creation of this partnership was born out of a speech by former Secretary of Defense as well as past Director of the CIA, Robert Gates. In April of 2008, Gates delivered a speech at the Association of American Universities, there he provided a vague outline for research that worked in conjunction with academia and other Pentagon affiliated agencies such as the DoD :

What we are considering is based to some degree on the success we had in the Cold War. During that period, we built up the Department of Defense’s – and the nation’s – intellectual capital with new research centers such as RAND and new mechanisms like, as I mentioned, the National Defense Education Act. With the Minerva initiative, we envision a consortia of universities that will promote research in specific areas. These consortia could also be repositories of open-source documentary archives. The Department of Defense, perhaps in conjunction with other government agencies, could provide the funding for these projects.”

Read more at 21st Century Wire

Report: Pentagon Paid $150 Per Gallon For Green Jet Fuel

 

 

Corn v Ethanol

 

 

 

” The Department of Defense (DOD) paid $150 per gallon for alternative jet fuel made from algae, more than 64 times the current market price for standard carbon-based fuels, according to a report released on Wednesday.

  The Government Accountability Office (GAO) noted in its report that a Pentagon official reported paying “about $150 per gallon for 1,500 gallons of alternative jet fuel derived from algal oil.”

  GAO’s report examined the financial challenges facing increased purchases and use of alternative jet fuels by federal agencies. “Currently, the price for alternative jet fuels exceeds that of conventional jet fuel,” the report noted.

  The price for conventional jet fuel is currently $2.88 per gallon. GAO’s report reveals that federal agencies have paid significantly higher prices in an effort to promote biofuels in commercial and military aviation.”

 

 

    To who’s benefit might it be for the Feds to “promote” biofuels use ? Any guesses on who might own/have stock in these companies ?

   For those interested in further reading on the big players in the biofuels industry this article may be of interest , as might the GAO report itself (PDF here) which will avail one of the huge effort being undertaken to send billions of tax dollars into the hands pockets of private investors by way of mandated biofuels purchases from many Federal agencies … all under the guidance of that most upright of government entities , the EPA .

     Below we present the viewer with the introduction to the aforementioned GAO report that makes plain just how large is the concerted effort now underway to require federal agencies to purchase ever-increasing percentages of their fleet fuels at prices way beyond market value from select manufacturers …

 

 

 

” The federal government supports the development and use of alternative jet fuels through both broad and targeted initiatives. Broad national strategies promote the development of a variety of alternative fuels—including alternative jet fuel—to help achieve national goals, such as securing energy independence, fostering economic development, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. In addition, the renewable fuel program—established by law in 2005 to encourage greater use of renewable fuels and administered by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)—requires that U.S. transportation fuels contain certain amounts of renewable fuels annually, increasing from 9-billion gallons in 2008 to 36-billion gallons in 2022. The other four federal agencies that GAO reviewed—Department of Transportation‘s (DOT) Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Department of Agriculture (USDA), Department of Energy (DOE), and Department of Defense (DOD)—directly support alternative jet fuels through targeted goals, initiatives, and interagency and industry coordination efforts. For example, FAA set a goal for the U.S. aviation industry to use 1-billion gallons of alternative jet fuels annually by 2018. The four agencies also sponsor research that specifically targets alternative jet-fuel development or provide direct support for its future commercial production, or both. For example, FAA and DOD support research to determine the technical feasibility of using new alternative jet fuels on aircraft and in existing infrastructure. Also, USDA, DOE, and DOD have coordinated their activities to support the future construction or retrofit of multiple domestic commercial- or pre-commercial-scale production facilities to produce alternative fuels, including alternative jet fuels. Specifically, in May and June 2013, four private fuel producers received awards totaling $20.5 million in federal funds, with private industry paying at least 50 percent of the cost.
  Achieving price competitiveness for alternative jet fuels is the overarching challenge to developing a viable market. No alternative jet fuels are currently commercially available at prices competitive with conventional jet fuels. The 23 stakeholders that GAO interviewed most frequently cited high development costs and the uncertainty of federal regulations and policies as primary reasons why alternative jet fuels are not priced competitively and believe that federal activities are needed to help advance the alternative jet-fuels industry. For example, according to 10 stakeholders, fuel producers face difficulties in obtaining private investment to help construct commercial-scale fuel production facilities, in part because of concerns about the supply and high cost of feedstock (the source used to produce the fuel, such as crops) and high capital costs.

  Also, 13 stakeholders stated that continued uncertainty about the future of current federal policies—particularly the renewable fuel program—generally causes potential investors to discount the value of federal subsidies, discounting that, in turn, limits the support these policies may provide the industry. Stakeholders identified a variety of federal actions to advance alternative jet-fuels development, including continuing current federal research efforts, providing greater regulatory and policy certainty, and giving more direct financial support. However, even if the cost to produce alternative jet fuels is reduced, market factors may still determine the long-term success of the industry. The main market factors identified by stakeholders were (1) comparative value of competing end products, (2) feedstock prices, and (3) the costs of conventional jet fuels.”

 

 

 

     It’s also worth remembering that every gallon of biofuel produced increases the cost of our food from the grocery store . Read more

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Illegal Use Of DoD Communications Systems by Obama Administration

 

 

 

” The American Spectator has been provided with the text of a political message sent on Saturday evening, using Department of Defense communications systems, on behalf of President Obama and Secretary of Defense Hagel.

It is addressed to “all US government employees” and further specified by the DoD sender to go to “all subordinate commands,” in compliance with Hagel’s call for “the widest possible distribution.”

The message contains standard presidential lauding of public service, but goes on to attack the current government shutdown by specifically castigating the House of Representatives, saying that the House — which is unsubtle code for Republicans — should “follow the Senate’s lead…without trying to attach…partisan measures in the process.”

The Secretary of Defense, as a Senate-confirmed presidential appointee falls into a class of federal employees considered “further restricted.”

According to a Department of Defense ethics document (describing the application of the Hatch Act to further restricted employees), “political activity is defined as an activity directed toward the success or failure of a political party, candidate for partisan political office or partisan political group.” “

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fisher House Will Pay For Death Gratuities

 

 

” The Pentagon says families of fallen troops will begin receiving the $100,000 death gratuity that was suspended for more than a week due to the government shutdown.

On Wednesday, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said the department has forged an agreement with the Fisher House, a private charity organization, to provide payments directly to troops families during the shutdown. When the government resumes routine operations, the Defense Department will reimburse the Fisher House.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Federal Government Is Hiring … And the Pay Ain’t Bad!

 

 

27,000_Job_Openings

 

 

” Despite the sequester, the federal government is still hiring! They posted a whopping 27,000 job openings, some with pretty fat pay checks. The median salary for the openings tops out at $76,000 a year. The Defense Department is now recruiting dozens of bartenders and waiters, and if they work full-time, these employees could earn more than $3.4 million a year combined.”

 

Click through to watch the video … shameful .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Despite Sequester, DOD Signs Contract For $59/Gallon Green Jet Fuel

 

 

 

 

” Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel recently warned that sequestration would cause “suspension of important activities, curtailed training, and could result in furloughs of civilian personnel” but the spending cuts haven’t killed the green fuels program, as the Pentagon has continued purchasing renewable fuel at $59 per gallon

Conventional JP-8 jet fuel costs $3.73 a gallon, according to the Defense Logistics Agency.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

Top 10 Most Dangerous U.S. Government Agencies

 

 

 

 

 

” We have chosen to highlight United States agencies; however, this top 10 list has global impact, as the U.S. has now proven to be the enforcement division of the overarching globalist agenda of centralized control.

One could argue that every government agency serves the purpose of stifling freedom and wasting taxpayer money. Yet, the 10 listed below go the extra mile for their sheer corruption, draconian regulations, and ultimate impact upon the largest number of citizens.

The main criteria for inclusion in the top 10 is the amount of money spent by the taxpayer according to official budget declarations, and then attaining the highest level of doing exactly the opposite of their stated intentions.

Here is the countdown to the top 10 most dangerous U.S. government agencies to the freedom, prosperity and health of its citizens . . .

#10 – Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) – annual budget $8.5 billion: Their record of ignoring environmental damage and the health effects on humans from major events such as 9/11, the Exxon and Gulf oil spills to the worst case, Fukushima, is unparalleled. Rather than investigate and warn of real dangers, they have gone after farmers for dubious claims of water contamination, while treating milk spills as they should have treated oil spills.  Even worse, the EPA has concluded that there is no law preventing it from doing “research” on Americans. A recent lawsuit over the EPA’s work with airborne pollutants will put this claim to the test in Federal court. Their illegal human experiments could break the Nuremberg Code (source: The Washington Times).

 

Read it all . The links are invaluable . 

Jed Babbin

 

  ” Petraeus’s testimony on Benghazi would have been of much more value than any other witness’s, and thus more potentially damaging to Obama. We know that Americans were under attack, and that both the CIA and the State Department were aware of it in real time. We also know that U.S. aircraft stationed at Sigonella, Italy, could have flown to their aid in less than an hour to suppress the attack and possibly save American lives. And we know that Petraeus — a former top commander who knows how to use air power, special forces, and all the other tools of war — would have been pressed by the committee on why those aircraft weren’t ordered in during the course of a seven-hour attack.

In short, Petraeus was in a position to know more, and explain better than anyone else other than Hillary Clinton or President Obama, what precisely happened here while the Benghazi attack went on. If he were honest — and that has to be presumed — his testimony could have blown the Benghazi affair sky high.”

… PENTAGON BENGHAZI TIMELINE CONTRADICTS CIA

  ” The election may be over, but questions over the Obama White House’s handling of the Sept. 11 attacks in Benghazi, Libya remain. And now that CIA Director David Petraeus has resigned from his post citing an extramarital affair, those questions are likely to either get a lot more difficult to answer, or a lot less difficult to answer, as more information trickles out.

And indeed, some information already has. On Friday, the Pentagon released its official timeline of the response to the Benghazi attacks through an anonymous official. Fox News caught the release of this information, and has done the necessary job of comparing it with separate accounts of the attacks by other sources including the CIA.

The accounts diverge and discrepancies abound. From Fox News:

Right from the start, the Pentagon and the CIA timelines do not match. (The CIA timeline, which was released on Nov. 1, states that at 9:40 p.m., “A senior State Department security officer at the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi called the CIA annex and requested assistance.”)

A source at the CIA annex that night told Fox News that when they first asked to go and help, they were told to wait.[…] “

Via Michael Yon

 

 

 

 

 ” WASHINGTON, Nov. 10, 2012 – The Defense Department released a detailed timeline yesterday of the Pentagon’s response to the September attack in Benghazi, Libya, that left four Americans dead, including U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens.

 

A senior defense official, speaking on background with Pentagon reporters, emphasized the rapid consultation, planning and troop pre-deployment actions defense leaders undertook in the first hours following the attack.

 

“With naval, Marine, special operations and air forces either employed or en route to Libya during the attacks, we responded,” the official said. “We mourn the loss of four American heroes in Benghazi.”

 

The military’s initial response began within minutes of the first incident in Benghazi, the official said: the attack on the U.S. consulate began at 3:42 p.m. EDT [9:42 p.m. Benghazi time], and by 5:10 EDT an unarmed surveillance aircraft was on station over the Benghazi compound.”

DoD Seeks Corporate Sponsorship …

… Copenhagen, Budweiser Already On Board

 

 

 

 ” Washington, D.C. – As the Department of Defense budget gets slimmer each day, military and civilian personnel are getting creative with how to cover shortfalls. The Pentagon has already started using candlelight to save on energy, and they are back to notepads and pens instead of computers. Now, they are trying to get some help from the business community.

“It’s a real shame when we can’t spend all the money we want anymore,” said General Raymond Elliott, “so I figure, let’s try something different.”

Elliott proposed a novel idea to the Joint Chiefs and the President: Corporate sponsorship.

In a pitch to a joint conference of Pentagon officials and business leaders, Elliott laid out what he said was a “synergistic relationship.”

“Our troops use your products everyday, so why not use product placement and a little bit of advertising on the battlefield,” said Elliott.

Elliott says that many companies can benefit from sponsoring American soldiers. Chewing tobacco from U.S. Smokeless Tobacco, makers of Copenhagen, for example, is very popular with the troops. So why not put a Cope logo on every service cap?

“Cope can provide a free can a week to each military member, plus some money, and in exchange, we’ll place your logo over the rank insignia. It’s really a win-win.” “

“Federal agency lacks strategy for
catastrophic collapse of grid, society

Without taking adequate protective
measures between now and the time of the expected “severe geomagnetic storm scenario,” experts agree the cost from space weather-induced outages that in turn could cause “non-space-weather-related events” could run from $1 trillion to $2 trillion during the first year alone,with a recovery time taking anywhere from four to 10 years.

  Such a natural solar storm, and
especially an EMP from a man-made high-altitude nuclear explosion, has the potential of thrusting the United States back to the 19th century,cutting off access to the basic necessities of life such as water and food delivery for millions of people, resulting in massive starvation. “