Army on Standby to Control Riots

Army on Standby to Control Riots

( – As rioting continues to spread across the US, the Department of Defence (DOD) has put active-duty soldiers on standby in case they’re needed to restore order. President Trump has warned that the Army will put down the riots if states won’t do it themselves; this is the first step in turning those words into reality.


Regular US Army troops are preparing to step in as violence ravages cities across the US.

  • A senior DOD official has revealed Defense Secretary Mark Esper has placed regular soldiers on standby as of midday Tuesday.
  • The troops involved so far are military police units from Fort Bragg, NC, and Fort Drum, NY, plus a battalion of paratroopers from the 82nd Airborne Division, also at Fort Bragg.
  • As an initial deployment, the units are moving to staging areas at Andrews AFB, MD, and Fort Belvoir, VA. Both these locations have military airfields, allowing for rapid troop deployment anywhere in the country.
  • President Trump said Monday that while he’s “an ally of all peaceful protestors,” violence will not be tolerated. He urged the governors of affected states to mobilize the National Guard – which 28 states and Washington, DC have already done – but warned that, if governors don’t bring the violence under control themselves, he’ll use the US Army to do it for them.
  • So far Trump hasn’t invoked the Insurrection Act of 1807, which empowers the president to use the US military and federalized Guard troops to suppress civil disorder on US soil. He stated this remains an option, if necessary.
  • However, legally speaking, it’s unlikely he would actually need it. Section 1076 of the Posse Comitatus Act authorizes the use of the military to “restore public order and enforce the laws of the United States” during an emergency where the president has determined that “the constituted authorities of the State or possession are incapable of maintaining public order.”
  • Trump’s warning to governors to stop the rioting or have the Army do it suggests that his plan is to use Section 1076 to determine states are failing to maintain order and protect the rights of their citizens.
  • Some governors have already pushed back against the move. Andrew Cuomo (D-NY) said “I say thank you but no thank you,” despite his state facing serious rioting, both before and after curfew. Cuomo has around 13,000 Army National Guard troops available but hasn’t activated any of them yet.
  • Governor JB Pritzker (D-IL) also refused military aid, saying “I reject the notion that the federal government can send troops into the state of Illinois.”

Whether governors like the idea or not, though, it’s clear Trump’s patience with the violence is at an end. He wants the riots to stop, one way or another, and he doesn’t look like he’ll back down from doing it himself.

Copyright 2020,