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The Justice Department has finally gotten around to doing the legwork
WorldNetDaily began several years ago — chronicling the increasing number
of armed federal law-enforcement officers in the United States.

In a report made public late last month, the Justice Department disclosed
there were 83,000 federal law-enforcement officers at work in the country in
1998.

You might think most of those would be in agencies with familiar initials
– the FBI, DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration), INS (Immigration and
Naturalization Service) or the U.S. marshals service. If so, you’d be wrong.
Only 33,000 of that total figure into the ranks of those agencies.

Since Bill Clinton took power in 1993, the number of federal cops has
risen steadily. Back then, there were a total of 69,000 federal law
enforcement officers.

What we’ve witnessed is the biggest arms buildup in the history of the
federal government — and it’s not taking place in the Defense Department.
No. The kind of arms that are proliferating in Washington these days are the
kind pointed at our own civilian population and carried by a growing number
of federal police forces with ever-larger budgets and ever-deadlier
arsenals.

But if most of the growth is taking place outside of traditional
law-enforcement agencies such as the FBI, who’s carrying the other guns? The
answer is, simply, everyone from the postman to the Environmental Protection
Agency field worker to agents of U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Army
Corps of Engineers.

Back when we first began reporting this trend in 1997, Secretary of the
Interior Bruce Babbitt tried to arm the Bureau of Land Management, thus
forming yet another division of enviro-cops. Only a flurry of
controversy sparked by one man, Tom McDonnell of the American Sheep Industry
Association, stalled the move.

Ironically, in justifying its need to carry weapons and exert police
authority over its 268 million acres of land in the western states, the BLM
had cited the long and growing list of other federal agencies –
like the EPA and Fish and Wildlife — with criminal law enforcement powers.
Following such logic, it’s only a matter of time before officials at the
National Endowment for the Arts are authorized to carry guns.

But the arms proliferation at the federal government level is no joke.
People are dying because of it — innocent people. Constitutional rights are
being violated — right before our eyes on television. Where is the American
Civil Liberties Union when you need it?

The founders of this country never envisioned the need for a federal
police force. They saw the inherent dangers in such ideas. Leaders like Bill
Clinton, however, have no respect for the Constitution and the limited
powers of the federal government. As a result, what we have today is a
virtual standing army of armed federal cops.

So much so that the Justice Department is confident enough to begin
boasting about the numbers, whereas, just a few years ago, it required a
massive amount of digging to discover how many federal cops there were. Two
trends are simultaneously obvious to us — that the domestic police forces
are being federalized and the federal government is becoming increasingly
militarized.

Where does all this lead? Experts who have been watching such
developments over the last few years say all this is leading one place — to
the establishment of a genuine national police force. You can see it in the
way the FBI now routinely interferes in local law enforcement affairs. You
can also see it in the way big-government architects, like Vice President Al
Gore, urge that Treasury Department police agencies — such as the Secret
Service and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms — be placed under
the control of the Justice Department.

I’ve got a better idea. Let’s disband BATF and as many other federal
agencies as fast as we possibly can.

Government is always telling citizens to give up their weapons. Maybe the
citizens of this nation should turn the tables on government. Maybe you’re
right, Mr. Clinton. Perhaps it is time for gun control. Let’s start by
disarming your rogue federal cops.

Previous related stories:


Federal agencies expand use of firepower


National police force in training?


The secret national cops


Even feds can’t count hired guns


Feds want to recruit foreign cops


Domestic rapid deployment forces


The militarization of the domestic police

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