Rafael Rivera – who served in the U.S. Army for seven years – writes:
The police in Ferguson have better armor and weaponry than my men and I did in the middle of a war. And Ferguson isn’t alone — police departments across the US are armed for war.
The Hill notes:
[Senator] McCaskill pointed out that in some places local police departments are more heavily armed than the National Guard.
Business Insider points out:
Someone identifying himself as an 82nd Airborne Army veteran, observing the Ferguson police scene, comment[ed] that “We rolled lighter than that in an actual warzone”
Constitutional and civil rights lawyer John Whitehead notes that homeland security officers within the U.S. have three times as much ammunition as front-line soldiers in Afghanistan (and possess a type of ammunition that is banned in war zones).
Huffington Post reports:
Many combat veterans have since pointed out that the SWAT officers are more heavily armed and outfitted than they themselves were while patrolling the streets of Iraq or Afghanistan.
Indeed, many veterans have noted that American police are more heavily armed than they were when serving on the front lines:
Indeed, the extreme militarization of American police is as anti-American as it gets.