With political, economic, and racial tensions taking on a violent hue, it’s no wonder the federal government is securing riot gear. But who is getting paid and where is the money coming from?
By David Icke Turner
Photo by Flavio Gasperini
Protests in Minneapolis are growing. It’s an election year and we are not sure our standing President will acquiesce to election results not favorable to him. Our nation is exhausted with culture wars and quarantine. The prospects of widespread civil disruption in the United States are suddenly very real and could be violent. It appears the federal government is prescient and could be preparing for the worst.
Federal funds have recently been allocated for large-scale purchases of disposable cuffs, gas masks, ballistic helmets, and riot gloves according to recently made published disclosures.
Purchase orders for riot gear for both federal and local law enforcement have been recently published by the Federal Procurement Data System. Also ordered were additional protective equipment for federal police directed to protect the nation’s many Veterans Affairs Offices. The ‘urgent’ purchases were allegedly made “in response to Covid-19 outbreak.” The Veterans Affairs department manages nearly 1,500 health-care facilities throughout the U.S.
A private security firm, Redcon Solutions Group, was awarded $1.6 million in bids to provide armed guards onsite at Covid-19 screening locations. The company was founded by Iraq War veterans and provides services to FEMA as well as insurance giant CIGNA.
In recent years, the VA has had help from the Department of Justice and Homeland Security in militarizing police forces in townships across America. The provision of military equipment to police forces has been blamed for increased police violence and lethality.
According to ProPublica, “States received at least $34 billion in federal grants to purchase military grade supplies in the decade after 9/11.”
The Intercept recently reported “Between 2005 and 2014, VA police departments acquired millions of dollars’ worth of body armor, chemical agents, night vision equipment, and other weapons and tactical gear.” You read that correctly: the administrators of the Veterans healthcare need ‘chemical agents.’
With political, economic, and racial tensions taking on a potentially violent hue, it’s no wonder the federal government is securing riot gear. But who is getting paid and where is the money coming from?
You guessed it. The federal coronavirus stimulus funds have a hefty portion earmarked to prepare for civil disruption. The $2.2 trillion CARES Act, stimulus legislation passed in late March, authorized $850 million for the Coronavirus Emergency Supplemental Funding program. These are grants to prepare local law enforcement agencies for any potential civil crisis. Naturally, others want in on the gravy train.
Motorola Solutions is calling on local governments to use the fresh funds to purchase command center software and ‘video analytics systems.’ These machine learning systems are capable of facial recognition, emotion detection based on movement and gait, object detection and counting, and detailed history of human traffic patterns. The social consequences of an automated video system that can find you, see how you feel, count the objects in your hands, and map all of your movements is a giant leap towards dystopia.
The question has to be asked as to whether law enforcement uses their military hardware simply because they now have it. In the early ‘80s, police conducted 3,000 SWAT raids a year. That number is now up to more than 80,000 per year despite steady decreases in violent crime.