How America’s Police Became an Army: The 1033 Program

English: Structure of the United States Depart...
English: Structure of the United States Department of Defense. Source: DoD Organization and Functions Guidebook, Jan 2008. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

How America’s Police Became an Army: The 1033 Program
As many have noted, Ferguson, Missouri, currently looks like a war zone. And its police—kitted out with Marine-issue camouflage and military-grade body armor, toting short-barreled assault rifles, and rolling around in armored vehicles—are indistinguishable from soldiers.


America has been quietly arming its police for battle since the early 1990s.
Faced with a bloated military and what it perceived as a worsening drug crisis, the 101st Congress in 1990 enacted the National Defense Authorization Act. Section 1208 of the NDAA allowed the Secretary of Defense to “transfer to Federal and State agencies personal property of the Department of Defense, including small arms and ammunition, that the Secretary determines is— (A) suitable for use by such agencies in counter-drug activities; and (B) excess to the needs of the Department of Defense.” It was called the 1208 Program. In 1996, Congress replaced Section 1208 with Section 1033.
The idea was that if the U.S. wanted its police to act like drug warriors, it should equip them like warriors, which it has—to the tune of around $4.3 billion in equipment, according to a report by the American Civil Liberties Union. The St. Louis County Police Department’s annual budget is around $160 million. By providing law enforcement agencies with surplus military equipment free of charge, the NDAA encourages police to employ military weapons and military tactics.

[link to www.newsweek.com]

1033 Program – Background & Information
1033 Program Overview: The National defense Authorization Act authorizes the Secretary of Defense to transfer excess Department of Defense (DoD) personal property to Federal, state and local Law Enforcement Agencies (LEA) with special emphasis given to counter drug and counter terrorism. The 1033 Program (formerly the 1208 Program) allows LEAs to receive DoD excess property. If you qualify and choose to participate, your organization will become one of over 13,000 local LEAs who have taken advantage of this unique program.
[link to www.calema.ca.gov]
[link to www.dps.mo.gov]
[link to www.txdps.state.tx.us]

Who participates in the 1033 program?
Over 8,000 federal and state law enforcement agencies from all 50 states and the U.S. territories participate in the program. A law enforcement agency is a government agency whose primary function is the enforcement of applicable federal, state and local laws and whose compensated law enforcement officers have the powers of arrest and apprehension.
Why is Hazardous Material not authorized for transfer from the DLA Disposition Services Field Activity?
Answer: LESO handles this on a case-by-case basis. Hazardous Materials require special handling, licensing, and transportation.
[link to www.dispositionservices.dla.mil]
[link to www.dispositionservices.dla.mil]

 

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