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Politics Latest Messages: Again, most places do not separate them and thats ..

Posse Comitatus --- military in wrong - Venue

Posted: Aug 11th, 2019 - 11:18 am

Posse Comitatus prevents use of US troops on US soil.

 

 

HE POSSE COMITATUS ACT: A PRINCIPLE IN
NEED OF RENEWAL
I. INTRODUCTION
In response to the military presence in the Southern States during the
Reconstruction Era, Congress passed the Posse Comitatus Act' ("PCA" or the
"Act") to prohibit the use of the Army in civilian law enforcement. The Act
embodies the traditional American principle of separating civilian and
military authority and currently forbids the use of the Army and Air Force to
enforce civilian laws.2 In the last fifteen years, Congress has deliberately
eroded this principle by involving the military in drug interdiction at our
borders This erosion will continue unless Congress renews the PCA's
principle to preserve the necessary and traditional separation of civilian and
military authority.
The need for reaffirmation of the PCA's principle is increasing because in
recent years, Congress and the public have seen the military as a panacea for
domestic problems.4 Within one week of the bombing of the federal building
in Oklahoma City,' President Clinton proposed an exception to the PCA to
allow the military to aid civilian authorities in investigations involving "weapons of mass destruction. ' In addition to this proposal Congress also
1. Army Appropriations Act, ch. 263, § 15, 20 Stat. 145, 152 (1878) (codified as amended at 18
U.S.C. § 1385 (1994)).
2. See 18 U.S.C. § 1385 (1994).
3. See generally Jim McGee, Military Seeks Balance in Delicate Mission: The Drug War,
WASH. PosT, Nov. 29, 1996, at Al. The military has become "embedded" in the drug war and
performing domestic police missions traditionally belonging to civilian law enforcement. Id.
4. Charles J. Dunlap, Jr., Welcome to the Junta: The Erosion of Civilian Control of the U.S.
Military, 29 WAKE FOREST L. REv. 341, 342 (1994); see also McGee, supra note 3; Editorial, A Hasty
Response to Terrorism, N.Y. TIMES, June 9, 1995, at A28.
5. On April 19, 1995, a fertilizer bomb in a parked truck destroyed the federal office building in
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. David Johnston, Terror in Oklahoma City: The Investigation, at Least 31
Are Dead, Scores Are Missing After Car Bomb Attack in Oklahoma City Wrecks 9-Story Federal
Office Building, N.Y. TIMES, Apr. 20, 1995, at Al, B8. At least 165 people were killed. See Terror in
Oklahoma: The Victims; 165 People Who Were Killed in the Oklahoma City Explosion, N.Y. TIMES,
May 7, 1995, at 36 (list of those killed).
6. Todd S. Purdum, Terror in Oklahoma: The Overview, Clinton Seeks More Anti-Terrorism
Measures, N.Y. TIMES, Apr. 27, 1995, at Al, A21. "Weapons of mass destruction ... are generally
considered to be nuclear or massive chemical or biological weapons." Id The exception to the PCA
would have been enacted in the Counterterrorism Act of 1995, S. 735, 104th Cong., 1st Sess. § 908
(June 5, 1995) (version 4) (the House version was H.R. 1710).
The House of Representatives later deleted this provision from their version of the bill to gain
Washington University Open Scholarship

 

THE POSSE COMITATUS ACT: A PRINCIPLE INNEED OF RENEWAL

 

I. INTRODUCTION. In response to the military presence in the Southern States during the Reconstruction Era, Congress passed the Posse Comitatus Act' ("PCA" or the"Act") to prohibit the use of the Army in civilian law enforcement. The Act embodies the traditional American principle of separating civilian andmilitary authority and currently forbids the use of the Army and Air Force to enforce civilian laws.

In the last fifteen years, Congress has deliberately eroded this principle by involving the military in drug interdiction at our borders This erosion will continue unless Congress renews the PCA'sprinciple to preserve the necessary and traditional separation of civilian and military authority.The need for reaffirmation of the PCA's principle is increasing because in recent years, Congress and the public have seen the military as a panacea for domestic problems. Within one week of the bombing of the federal buildingin Oklahoma City,' President Clinton proposed an exception to the PCA toallow the military to aid civilian authorities in investigations involving "weapons of mass destruction.  The military has become "embedded" in the drug war and performing domestic police missions traditionally belonging to civilian law enforcement.

 

Washington University Open Scholarship





LINK/URL: Posse Comitatus

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