Ten Years Ago Today


The Houston Chronicle takes an interesting look at some of the pilgrims gathered in Waco to mark the day Janet Reno and a legion of federal agents liberated the abused children of the Branch Davidian compound. One of the observers—who works at the Mount Carmel museum—nicely connects the militarization of domestic police work with the militarization of foreign policy:

Ron Goins lived in Philadelphia and served in the Army Reserves in 1985 when military action was taken to remove Gen. Manuel Noriega from power in Panama and imprison him for drug trafficking. [Sic: George Bush's glorious victory over Pineapple Face took place in 1989, not 1985.]

"My reserve unit was called up for that," he said. "I didn't have to go, but when they got back, I heard all their stories. Then, when this happened, I saw the government using the same procedures against its own citizens."

Coming this summer: Samuel Jackson and Colin Farrell star in the movie version of S.W.A.T.