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Home / Tips and Tricks / The Major in the Army National Guard told the government in Congress that it had requested heat rays and supplies of ammunition before clearing the DC protest

The Major in the Army National Guard told the government in Congress that it had requested heat rays and supplies of ammunition before clearing the DC protest



Maj.Adam DeMarco described such preparations – including officials’ failure to purchase a loud announcement device to warn protesters to disperse – in an August letter responding to follow-up questions after speaking to the House Committee in June The officers’ efforts earlier this month testified for natural resources across the federal government. DeMarco, who described himself as a senior national guard officer, ran for Democrat for Maryland’s 3rd Congressional District in 2018.

News of the contents of DeMarco’s letter was first reported by NPR.
In the letter, DeMarco wrote that the Department of Defense chief military policeman for the National Capitol region emailed him and others on the day of the protests if the DC National Guard had “a long range acoustic device”
; that would blow up baffles could in demonstrators or “the active denial systems”, which “have a directed energy beam that gives a feeling of intense warmth on the skin surface”.

DeMarco wrote that he replied that the DC National Guard had no device and that, to the best of his knowledge, no such acoustic device was used in Lafayette Square. The next day, when he was looking for an acoustic device, the DC National Guard told him “they are no longer looking”.

Therefore, the US Park Service’s “diversion warnings” did not come from this system, but from a “red and white megaphone” that DeMarco saw, he wrote. In his personal testimony, he referred to the fact that even 30 feet from the megaphone, “warnings to disperse were barely audible and I could only make out several words” – while the front line of protesters was even further from the warning.

He also referred to a weapons transfer to the DC National Guard on the afternoon of the protest, which he later learned contained “approximately 7,000 rounds of ammunition”.

Federal agents have been criticized for using smoke canisters and rubber bullets to evacuate peaceful protesters who were protesting institutionalized racism and police brutality in Lafayette Square following the police death of George Floyd. The move sparked an outcry from lawmakers and public figures, including former Secretary of Defense James Mattis. Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser slammed the incident as an attack on protesters.
Law enforcement dispersed the crowd shortly before President Donald Trump’s controversial photo op at a nearby church where he was holding up a Bible after declaring himself president for “law and order”. The incident epitomizes Trump’s stance on widespread national unrest, which he sought to address in a key principle of his re-election campaign.

A Defense Department official who was briefed on the matter minimized DeMarco’s account, reported the Post, claiming that emails asking about specific weapons were routine in assessing available inventory. The official told the newspaper that the federal police had not acquired a heat emitter in the early days of the demonstrations in the city.

DeMarco attorney David Laufman denied this characterization on Wednesday, saying that “there is no” routine “asking about the availability of a heat jet that can be used against American citizens exercising their First Amendment rights. “

When he appeared before the committee in June, DeMarco testified that tear gas was actually used – contrary to an official report by federal officials.

“I could feel irritation in my eyes and nose. Based on my previous exposure to tear gas in my training at West Point and later in my army training, I recognized this irritation as effects compatible with CS or tear gas,” DeMarco said Panel. “And later that evening I found tear gas canisters on the street nearby.”

Conversely, acting chief of U.S. park police, Gregory Monahan, testified at the time that tear gas was not used, but his testimony suggested that he defined tear gas as a specific type of gas known as CS gas.

This story has been updated with additional details.

CNN’s Manu Raju, Gregory Wallace and Jamie Crawford contributed to this report.


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