Article: Military-style guns for police to fight terrorists

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Article: Military-style guns for police to fight terrorists

Post by TC » Sat Apr 17, 2010 4:35 am

Thought this might be of interest:
The Times wrote: Military-style guns for police to fight terrorists on the streets

Britain’s top counter-terrorism officer has called for armed police across the country to be equipped with high powered assault rifles to cope with a Mumbai-style terrorist attack.

Assistant Commissioner John Yates of the Metropolitan Police, said there could be “a lot of dead people” within the first hour of an attack if officers did not respond quickly enough.

He said his colleagues at other forces saw any move to increase armed patrols and provide better weaponry as a “fundamental change in mission.”

But he said it was necessary to cope with the threat from armed terrorists on the rampage of the kind seen in India in November 2008 who killed more than 200 people and wounded more than 700.

Unarmed officers are likely to be first on the scene and would be putting their lives at risk.

Mr Yates said: “Our response from a traditional unarmed police service comes at a high cost to us.”

He said the risk to the “unarmed bobby on the street” means that armed officers should be given “heavier ballistic weaponry and heavier ballistic ammunition.”

“Some of my colleagues from across the country see this as a fundamental change in mission, yet we will be the first there, the first in the line of fire,” he added.

The first hour of any attack would be critical, he said, adding: “During the first hour there are going to be a lot of challenges, a lot of dead people.”

The Specialist Firearms Command of the Metropolitan Police, known as CO19, has trained officers in armed response vehicles to use the Heckler and Koch G36 assault rifle.

They are already equipped with MP5 carbines, and Glock pistols.

A spokesman for the force said the G36 was “only deployed in specific circumstances based on a fast time assessment of the risk the officers are facing” and added: “The decision has been taken based on information and learning from terrorist attacks around the world.”

It is understood that senior officers at Scotland Yard believe other forces should also have access to such weapons and also to ammunition such as expanding hollow point “dum dum” bullets which are better at stopping targets.

Mr Yates, who was speaking at the Counter-Terrorism Expo in central London, said al-Qaeda was “mutating” and there was now a greater risk from affiliates in Somalia and Yemen than from the “core” in Pakistan and Afghanistan.

He said the attempted attack by London-based student Umar Farouq Abdulmutallab on an airliner over Detroit on Christmas Day was a success for the terrorist group.

“It failed, yes,” Mr Yates said. “But it qualifies as a success for terrorists in terms of the fear it caused and the economic impact.”

The attack, in which Abdulmutallab tried to blow up a bomb in his underpants, marked a move away from the carefully planned attacks of the London and Glasgow car bombings of 2007 and previous plots such as the trans-Atlantic airlines plot and the July 7 bombings, he said.

“We are looking at operations which are smaller and quickly pulled together, although we are not quite at the Irish ‘10p terrorism’ yet,” Mr Yates told the conference, referring to cheap attacks planned by the IRA.

Mr Yates said he did not want to get into a debate on public sector finances but added that it was “inevitable” that counter-terrorism funding would be affected.

Nevertheless, he said, the “operational challenges remain huge” and the police would have to be “flexible and nimble” in order to cope.

Success in fighting terrorism, he said, would be an “absence of attacks” but that had to be delivered at an acceptable cost.

Mr Yates also said there was a danger that the balance between security and freedom was getting “out of kilter.”

Without referring to a possible July 7 inquiry or the inquests to be held later this year, he criticised the expense of the Bloody Sunday inquiry in Northern Ireland and said there was a “danger that we look at the past rather than look at the future.”
Not sure what to make of this, although there has been some discussion over at arfcom, where I saw this article first.
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Re: Article: Military-style guns for police to fight terrorists

Post by the_alias » Sat Apr 17, 2010 4:54 am

All I'll say within forum rules is that past incidents involving table legs does not lead me to have great faith in British Police armed with guns :evil:
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Re: Article: Military-style guns for police to fight terrorists

Post by Svothe » Sat Apr 17, 2010 11:21 am

I think it would probably be better to simply mobilize The MDP (Ministry of Defence Police) and give them power's on the streets as well as MOD locations. Would mean we would have fully trained armed police available for all situations in 100's of locations around the UK without having to worry about the death's of innocent unarmed police officer's or the need to wait for the special forces to move in.

Just my personal opinion though, obviously more armed beat cop's wouldn't be bad.

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Re: Article: Military-style guns for police to fight terrorists

Post by Czechnology » Sat Apr 17, 2010 12:13 pm

The United States Capitol Police (Who exist specifically to protect the US Congress in D.C. and wherever it goes within US borders) have been wearing full tactical rigs and carrying G-36C's for at least 6 years now. I recall probably 3-5 incidents in the decade I lived there, where they wound up shooting someone. No incidents involved terrorists, but 2 officers did die in '98.

*ETA: You'd see them in patrolling in Metro Stations near or on Gov't property, all tac'ed out.

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Re: Article: Military-style guns for police to fight terrorists

Post by K9medic » Sun Apr 18, 2010 12:46 pm

I have seen Police up here armed with H&K rifles (took them to be G3 family by the length of the weapon and the size and shape of the magazine). I live in the borders which means more rural than urban so 7.62 would defiantly have a place with the local forces.

Last time I was on a military base with armed MoD Plod, they were H&K G36’s and a Glock. If I remember correctly the MoD Plod can work something like 20 mile of military establishments, military recruitment centres count as a MoD establishment, so that’s a fair bit of the UK covered.

Trouble is in a situation like Mumbai if the local ARV cannot handle it then half a dozen better armed MoD Plod won’t really help either. We are taking military style FIBUA here, not a hostage situation or armed bank robber. This is something that takes a different mindset as well as totally different team training to accomplish.

It’s ok giving the Police bigger riffles and the training to use them, but they better have a military unit on standby to retake the area.
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Re: Article: Military-style guns for police to fight terrorists

Post by sheddi » Tue Apr 20, 2010 4:19 pm

Last time I was at Heathrow, the police had the G36. I don't think it was solely because they knew I was coming. Something like this:
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The MDP, while not a regular police force, are able to assist the Home Office police upon request (or so Wikipedia would have me believe). The ones I've seen round here have either the MP7 or the L85A2.
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Re: Article: Military-style guns for police to fight terrorists

Post by Svothe » Wed Apr 21, 2010 11:29 am

Yeah the MP7 is the supposed standard Issue weapon of the MDP, the L98/SA80 being a primary firearm when on Army bases as they already have a armoury full of them, no point in stacking in less powerful firearms if you've got assault weapons to hand. I've seen police around London on my journey's with G36c's, H&K MP5, MP7 and Glocks, really I just guess they use what they can get there hands on.
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Re: Article: Military-style guns for police to fight terrori

Post by Motor_Oil » Sat Sep 25, 2010 12:07 pm

Sorry to post on an old thread but i had a few thoughts on this.

The police moved to 5.56mm due to the number of drug dealers and other low lifes wearing body armour, i assume non of it full CBA as that would make 5.56mm fairly useless too. They still have and use the MP5 9mm in cases where shooting through a wall or person would cause an issue for civilians.

MOD plod have the right to act anywhere same as any other plod however they must as soon as is practicalble inform the local civpol commander. So if a mod plod is on his way to work and sees a crime he can stop and arrest the person. basically mod plod are 'proper' (trying for a better word) police unlike RAFP and RMP i think CNC also have the same restrictions as RMP. Remember the mod plod provide the special escort group which operate all over the country.

As for calling in SF that is not usually allowed unless very tight requrements are met ie. explosive entry is required, its is a terrorist incedent or such like and outside of london there response times would be very long. However in a Mumbai style attack or worse it is worth remembering there is a large-ish garrison in london including HAC and IIRC 21SAS so i think they could get enough high powered rifles on the ground if needed.

I wonder if we need to consider arming some motorcycle officers as during a Mumbai style attack a city like london would gridlock very quickly and movement of response teams would be slowed.

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Re: Article: Military-style guns for police to fight terrori

Post by Gingersam » Sat Sep 25, 2010 2:37 pm

I'm confused on the issue here. How likely is it that the terrorist would have assault rifles in the UK.

I thought gun crime in the UK was predominately with pistols, so if I was a johnny terrorist it would be easier to get hold of several pistols that are more easily concealable than say an assault rifle.

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Re: Article: Military-style guns for police to fight terrori

Post by K9medic » Sat Sep 25, 2010 2:48 pm

Sam I have a few mates who now work in Border control, they reckon there is more than enough “assault rifles” hidden in this country that we can all have one and a few to spare.

Ok most of them are older models such as the AK47, but still capable of getting the job done. They work on the 7 rule, for every one they find at the docks 7 got past them.
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Re: Article: Military-style guns for police to fight terrori

Post by Motor_Oil » Sat Sep 25, 2010 3:05 pm

The police move to rifle rounds had nothing to do with the size of the weapon the bad guys had and was more to do with them having body armour. Pistols plus body armour would still require a 5.56mm resolution not withstanding headshots.

The parts about the Mumbai style attack are because that is what is in the artical also lets say the IRA or one of there ilk get in a boat and speed for the mainland, i dont think any one would say that they could not come armed with assault rifles or battle rilfes, and the police preparedness for such an event is most likly "it could happen so we better have a plan and forces to deal or it will be our asses." I was pointing out that a Mumbai style attack given its small chance for occurance could be delt with boots already on the ground. Military or MOD.

I would also bet on there being a few IRA weapons caches still on the mainland and as K9medic say there are i'm sure plenty of other people bringing in AKs and alike.

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Re: Article: Military-style guns for police to fight terrori

Post by Ad'lan » Sun Sep 26, 2010 3:12 am

Gingersam wrote:I'm confused on the issue here. How likely is it that the terrorist would have assault rifles in the UK.

I thought gun crime in the UK was predominately with pistols, so if I was a johnny terrorist it would be easier to get hold of several pistols that are more easily concealable than say an assault rifle.
I recall a minor news report from when I lived in manchester, that a wall just outside the city had been shot up by 7.62 rounds, and the locals described hearing the shots as very rapid, like in a film, making it likely the weapon was operating on full automatic. It is very possible for terrorist's to get assault rifles in the UK, even if they don't import them themselves.
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Re: Article: Military-style guns for police to fight terrori

Post by Svothe » Thu Sep 30, 2010 11:52 am

Yeah, actually thinking about it I really doubt it would be much of a challenge to bring in AK's or other assault rifles from around europe and just drive them in. I've come through france to the UK a couple of times by ferry and not once had anything of mine searched. Couple of suitcases of rifles and ammunition could probably be pretty easily driven right in.
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Re: Article: Military-style guns for police to fight terrori

Post by stu_wat » Thu Nov 11, 2010 1:24 pm

Look at the IRA about how easy it is to weapons in the UK, and blame the break up of the Eastern Block for the flood weapons into the euro black market.

Back on topic.

I dont understand why when the threat level increases and it is justified then why not have the Army on the streets in hot spots?

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