Sunday, August 10, 2008

Those Wacky Italians

Italy has come up with a rather curious way of dealing with what it considers its crime problems. It has decided to deploy its army in various cities throughout the country to assist the regular police in protecting the people. Around 2000 soldiers will be deployed in Rome, Naples, Milan, Turin and other locations.

I just want to say that I consider this to be a bad decision. Using the military as a police force is a dangerous idea that has a number of drawbacks. The biggest of which is the vast difference in the culture and procedures of the two different organizations. The police are intended to protect the people while the military is intended to protect the state. This difference in focus causes a great number of differences in how the two groups act. A soldier is trained to use their weapon as a standard procedure, while for the policeman a weapon is a last resort. Policemen are trained to deal with witnesses, suspects, crime scenes and due process, soldiers are not.

This plan is really just an attempt at a quick fix to solve a bigger problem. The ideal solution would be to improve the police force so that the soldiers aren't considered necessary, but that would be more expensive and take longer than putting soldiers on the streets.

There's a reason you separate military and the police. One fights the enemies of the state, the other serves and protects the people. When the military becomes both, then the enemies of the state tend to become the people. - Commander Adama

End Post
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