Revolution #012, August 21, 2005, posted at revcom.us
The Pentagon's "Northern Command" (Northcom) is preparing plans for sending U.S. military forces into action within the borders of the United States.
Buried in deep secrecy within Colorado's Cheyenne Mountain, this military headquarters has considered all of North America as its "battle space" since it was created for that purpose in 2002. It has developed a chain of command over both National Guard and regular troops, and it has been sifting through huge streams of information from federal agents and local police.
Now, two leaked Northcom documents reveal classified plans that include sending many thousands of troops to multiple places around the U.S., prepared to take over control from civilian forces.
One document (called CONPLAN 2002) is over 1,000 pages of plans and orders. The second (called CONPLAN 0500) envisions 15 different scenarios where these plans could go into operation.
CONPLAN 2002 has been approved by the military command at the Pentagon, and is on Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld's desk for final approval. CONPLAN 0500 is still undergoing final drafting at Northcom headquarters. (The Pentagon term CONPLAN means "concept plan." CONPLANs are the basis for making OPLANs, or "operations plans," that move specific troops into specific combat areas.)
From its founding in 2002, the Pentagon's Northcom was constructed to be able to take command over every National Guard unit in the country and wield them together with regular troops into a unified, internal military force. Northcom's command structure is now larger in personnel than the notorious Southcom (the headquarters the Pentagon uses to monitor and suppress the people throughout Latin America).
Historically it has been illegal for the federal government to use regular army troops for "policing" within U.S. borders. However, these new leaked plans show that all 50 states of the U.S. are treated as potential combat zones of an already ongoing war and, according to the Washington Post, Pentagon officials argue that President Bush (acting as commander-in-chief) can order regular troops into domestic operations, despite the fact that it is illegal under the Posse Comitatus law. Four active-duty Army battalions are now immediately ready to be deployed inside the U.S. on Northcom's command.
What is particularly ominous is not just that such armed forces are at the disposal of Northcom, but also what Northcom is empowered to do: These newly leaked documents show that Northcom is developing plans for dispatching troops to several different parts of the country at once and take over from civilian government.
Several senior military officers told the Washington Post that these new plans assume that the military might need "to take charge in some situations." Admiral Timothy J. Keating, head of Northcom, explained to Washington Post reporter Bradley Graham that the involvement of National Guard troops (which are exempt from the Posse Comitatus law) would give the combined forces a legal loophole for extraordinary actions. Graham reported that Admiral Keating "cited a potential situation in which Guard units might begin rounding up people while regular forces could not."
In other words, these plans are not just about using the Pentagon's chain-of-command to use armed force within U.S. borders in many areas at once, but they include preparations for imposing martial law (rule where the military commanders take control of cities and are empowered to shoot anyone who opposes them). A command structure is moving into place that could give full military backing to major grabs for power within the U.S. or to suppress opposition of the people (or even local governments) to those who currently have central power.
On paper, all this is described as preparations against "terrorist attacks," and the plans state that the military would only take over if civilian forces were "overwhelmed." A number of the "scenarios" described in Northcom plans include so-called "high-end" incidents like the release of biological agents. (And it is worth noting that the only known release of biological war agents within the United States--which happened in the fall of 2001--was then traced back to the U.S. military's own laboratories.)
However Northcom does not assume that its troops will only act after some event. Its plans and preparation include "preventive" actions taken without any specific disturbance actually taking place, and the Washington Post reports that Northcom's scenarios also include troop deployment for "low end" events, described as "relatively modest crowd-control missions."
Northcom's CONPLAN documents can clearly be used to prepare, deploy and train a backbone force for a Pentagon-supported coup d'état or a major attempt to drown popular protest or upheaval in blood.
And with that in mind, it is worth soberly noting that the Northcom Command organizing all this is headquartered on an Air Force base just outside Colorado Springs. And that there have been well- documented exposures in the mainstream media of the high-pressure Christian fascist indoctrination and recruitment now being carried out among Air Force officers in that area (including especially at the national Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs).
All this points to the extreme character of these times--the ruling class takes very seriously the possibility of jolts and ruptures, and are preparing very extreme measures to deal with them. This has to be fully confronted.
The USA PATRIOT Act was rushed into law quickly after the September 11 attacks. It contained major police powers that powerful forces had long wanted in place. It was all justified as a way of protecting the people from future attacks, and the public was told that its most disturbing provisions would only be temporary--and would expire in December 2005.
Many people (and even many city governments) have loudly expressed their opposition to the Patriot Act. And it even looked like it might become hard for the Bush White House to push the Patriot Act back through Congress and make its provisions permanent.
But then came the London events of July 7. And suddenly, the House rushed to approve the Patriot Act on July 21. And days later, the Sanate again rushed to approve that Patriot Act, unanimously, without a single dissenting vote--making most of its provisions permanent and extending two of the most controversial ones for four years. This passage sets the stage for all this to become law this fall.
The police powers granted by this renewed USA PATRIOT Act are dangerous. Here are things promoted by its provisions:
FBI wiretapping of telephones and cell phones in new ways, along with the grabbing of voice mails and widespread monitoring of e-mail.
Police wiretappers following a targeted person through their life and tapping the phones in every place they visit.
Government agents going to libraries and bookstores and demanding lists of who has been reading particular books (while they can prosecute librarians who tell people about the police spying).
Federal agents breaking secretly into houses to steal papers, computer hard drives, and anything else they want--often without judge-approved search warrants.
Government prosecutors pressing charges against all kinds of people for supposedly providing "material support for terrorism"--which can include lawyers who defend "terrorist suspects" or people who manage certain web sites, or charity organizations that the government considers "linked" to terrorism.
These provisions have been shocking to almost anyone who learned about them. And millions of people sharply opposed this law--including many librarians and lawyers. And now the re - passage of this law, unanimously by the Senate (with the support of leading Democrats) is a slap in the face for all these people and a serious threat to the future.
And there is every basis to reach out to and win over those millions to take action to DRIVE OUT THIS REGIME!
This whole experience -- which took the Patriot Act from a so-called "emergency move" to its current status of permanent police powers -- drives home this important lesson:
That which you will not resist and mobilize
you will learn--or be forced--to accept.