>FINAL UPDATE 2355 est 21 Feb 09: Watch this YouTube video of Alex Jones’ interview with LTC Hapgood. Pay especially close attention to how LTC Hapgood answers Jones’ direct question as to whether he would obey an order to confiscate Americans’ firearms:
Part 2 of that interview is here.
Listen and draw your own conclusions.
UPDATE 1015 est 21 Feb 09: A message dropped over on Sipsey Street reads as follows:
Since Iowa HAS a dedicated MOUT / city warfare training compound already built on camp Dodge, why are still they insisting on this “door to door” public training event?
This dog doesn’t hunt.
Link to the base compound order sheet is here.
Those wishing to push the issue further with LTC Hapgood, the Governor of Iowa, and that state’s Senators and Congressmen should save a copy of the Camp Dodge MOUT materials at:
For the record, Google Maps shows that it is 80.2 miles from Carroll, Iowa (the planned exercise site) to Johnston, Iowa (where the Camp Dodge MOUT facility is located).
Draw your own conclusions re LTC Hapgood’s veracity.
UPDATE 0955 est 21 Feb 09: See this story from WND re the “scale back” of the ING’s plans.
Note the time of the WND story. Note next the timestamp (in est) of the email below from LTC Hapgood.
Funny how he didn’t mention the “scale back” in either my conversation with him, the subsequent conversation with Stewart, or the email itself…
My fave part of the WND story? This quote:
And while Hapgood confirmed the Guard had been inundated with objections from citizens concerned about soldiers patrolling the streets of an American town, he said most came from people out of state and unfamiliar with the operation. Iowans, he explained, typically cooperate with the Guard. The change in plans was based on troop evaluation, he said, not public outcry.
Shades of the old “outside agitators” cry raised by the old segregationists.
Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?
See the attached email received this evening from LTC Gregory Hapgood of the Iowa National Guard:
RE: Guardsmen to conduct weapons confiscation drills in Iowa
From: Hapgood, Gregory (IA) (email@example.com)
Sent: Fri 2/20/09 6:08 PM
Peter: It was a pleasure talking with you this afternoon.
Per our conversation, theCarroll, Iowa-based Company A, 1st Battalion, 168th Infantry, Iowa ArmyNational Guard, working in cooperation with city leadership and residents of Arcadia, Iowa, has tentatively planned to hold a training event in Arcadia April 2-5.
After a review of the training plan by battalion and companyleadership, the unit will focus on squad and platoon tasks, which will shiftthe actual training to the unit’s armory in Carroll and away from Arcadia.The proposed training event simulates several combat tasks our Soldiers perform in Iraq and Afghanistan, including cordon and search, which is used to locate weapons caches and also persons of interests. By conducting the training in an urban environment close to where the Soldiers live, this enables our Soldiers to gain proficiency in the exact tasks they will be conducting in combat but without having to travel several hours to Camp Dodge, which is the only military training facility in Iowa. All private citizens who will participate have volunteered to be part of the training event-our unit has a great relationship with the unit’s hometown of Carroll and also with surrounding towns, including Arcadia, and we have conducted other training events in the area with outstanding cooperation by the localcitizens, law enforcement personnel, and first responders. The bottom line is that this training event is designed to build combat proficiency while maximizing training time and resources.
Peter, you will not find greater patriots or more committed defenders of theU.S. Constitution than the men and women of the Iowa National Guard. Don’t hesitate to contact me if you have additional questions.
Lt. Col. Greg Hapgood
Public Affairs Officer
Iowa National Guard
Sent: Thursday, February 19, 2009 6:43 PM
Subject: Guardsmen to conduct weapons confiscation drills in Iowa
To: IA National Guard, Public Affairs Officer
From: A Deeply Concerned American Citizen
Re: Confirmation/Denial of the Referenced Media Story/Iowa Guard to Practice Weapons Confiscation
1) Will you confirm or deny the substance of the below media story as linkedathttp://www.carrollspaper.com/main.asp?Search=1&ArticleID=7451&SectionID=1&SubSectionID=&S=1 ?
2) Who is your commanding officer, and what is his/her contact information?
3) Who is the commanding officer of the Iowa Guard, and what is his/hercontact information?
Your prompt attention to this inquiry is appreciated.
In my brief call with LTC Hapgood earlier today, he confirmed that this story was accurate in its substance, and he promised to send me the email above.
Stewart Rhodes also spoke today with LTC Hapgood; his blog entry follows:
I just had an interesting and rather emotional phone call with Col Hapgood, Public Affairs Officer, of the IA National Guard (Pete of WRSA sent me his phone number).
I introduced myself as a veteran and a writer for S.W.A.T. Magazine, and said I needed confirmation and clarification on the planned house to house search exercise scheduled for Arcadia Iowa for April 2-5, 2009 because people were very, very concerned.
The Colonel told me it is only to prepare them for Afghanistan and Iraq.He said that there are no full time military in Iowa, and therefore no place to train in the state to get them ready for MOUT and that is why they used local towns.He said they were baffled by all this [uproar] because it is just routine training to prepare them for deployment to combat in urban environments overseas.I asked him why that particular scenario was picked – of having NG troops searching for a “weapons dealer.”He said that in Afghanistan and Iraq, they have to do searches for weapons caches and need to train for it, and it has nothing whatsoever to do with domestic deployment or any plans for domestic.
I asked him that question twice – “so, it is not for domestic use or training for future domestic use?” And he said no, not at all. I told him, in no uncertain terms, that Americans, especially gun owners, were extremely concerned because of the current political climate and because of the potential for civil unrest in the future because of the economy – we hear all manner of rumors about preparations for such disturbances – and the use of a scenario of searching for a gun dealer seems aimed at gun owners – and in particular we are concerned because of who is now in power.
As an example of why we are concerned, I told him how Rahm Emanuel, who is called “the second most powerful man in America” gave a speech before the Brady Bunch in 2007 advocating that anyone on the no-fly list be stripped of their right to keep and bear arms, and anyone can be put on that list at any time.I told him that we know they want to disarm us.And that is why folks are so very alarmed by this exercise.I also told him that there were people planning on going there to protest.
He responded by saying that while he did not want to get into politics, he could assure me that all of the people in the Iowa National Guard are the most dedicated supporters and defenders of the Constitution and also of the right to bear arms.And I responded by saying yes, I took that oath too – most of us did – and we just want to be sure that oath is kept, and the very last thing we ever want to see in this country is it being veteran against veteran (and this is where my voice cracked and I got rather emotional), but, I told him. we are very concerned and our radar is up because the people in power in DC have no respect for the Constitution or our rights and that is why folks wanted confirmation and clarification of this story.
I was going to remind him of what happened during Katrina, to let him know how disturbing that was to many patriots, but because he was so frank, and sounded so sincere when he said that the people in the Iowa NG are dedicated defenders of the Constitution and of the right to bear arms, I did not do that to him.
MY THOUGHTS AFTER THE PHONE CALL:
That was a tough goddamn phone call for me. I truly hope that all men and women in uniform remember, and keep, their oath. I never, ever want to see in my lifetime veterans having to fight against our own troops in defense of our rights. God forbid it.I still have some serious concerns about this kind of training going on – especially when it is not made clear to the public that it is for training in preparation for overseas, and the “civilians” are supposed to be Afghan villagers and Iraqis.
But even with those qualifications, I still don’t like it, since the troops are still going door to door, in America, searching for weapons, and that is still conditioning them for that very act, regardless of the intent.And I don’t think the Colonel or the National Guard troops understand fully just how on edge people in this country are, and how suspicious we are (for very good reason) of anything the government does that even hints at martial law or going house to house in America looking for weapons.
And however sincere the Colonel or the rest of the troops in the NG, we still DO NOT trust the politicians in DC, who have already demonstrated that their oath to support and defend the Constitution was some damn joke, since they violate it all the time.The forked tongued bastards in DC cynically roll their eyes and mouth the oath with a bored expression on their faces because it is a mere formality before they get power and perks. They don’t mean it. They have nothing but contempt for the restraints in the Constitution.
But when us veterans took that oath to defend the Constitution and this Republic against all enemies, foreign and domestic, we MEANT IT with all our heart and soul, ready to give our lives to keep it. And we still mean it, because that oath was for life. I sure hope to hell that what the Colonel said about the NG troops’ commitment to defend the Constitution is true, and I hope that if/when The Day comes, they will side with the people, and not the politicians.
But I still feel like something else is needed to express to these troops our concerns, and our resolve, and to remind them of their oaths, and of our oath. It is just too important and vital an issue to leave to chance. We need to be sure they will be oath keepers when the chips are down.
I agree with Stewart that LTC Hapgood seemed to be an earnest and sincere professional.
Nonetheless, the ultimate question remains: what will LTC Hapgood, the Iowa National Guard, and the rest of America’s vaunted military machine do when (not if) they are ordered by the National Command Authority to collect, whether directly or in support of .gov forces such as the BATFE and their superiors in the FBI, firearms from American citizens?
I, like LTC Hapgood, “don’t want to get into politics.”
I and every other freedom-loving American simply wants to be left the hell alone by a grasping Leviathan that recognizes no bounds on its authority or power.
On that awful day, when the President as Commander-in-Chief orders LTC Hapgood and the rest of the good men and women of the US military into action against “gun terrorists” and “weapons dealers”, we will all be plunged hip-deep into the cataclysm that inevitably results when politics are divorced from morals and ethics.
The hard truth is that many military men and women will obey those orders, and many others will not.
Welcome to the jungle, now known as the “polygonal battlespace”.
Audentes fortuna juvat.