As 2011 comes to a close, this would be a good time to reflect on SWAT's past, present and future (apologies to Charles Dickens). While we can't accurately predict the future, we can trace the evolution of tactical units from yesteryear, understand today's challenged, and perhaps glimpse tomorrow's trend.
December 15, 2011
So what can SWAT do to help? For the answer, we should look at SWAT's role in diffusing two of the deadliest threats to society in modern times: snipers and active shooters.
February 2, 2010
With active shooters, and snipers before them, time is on the bad guys' side, not ours. With lives on the line, every second counts. This lesson about time wasn't fully learned until the deadly Columbine High School attack.
June 9, 2009
For two days I found myself totally immersed in tactical operations, and emerged with newfound tactical knowledge learned from the “best.” I’ve been in the SWAT business in various capacities for many years, yet continue to have a thirst for tactical knowledge that will never be quenched.
April 29, 2009
The lesson all of us must learn from the Oakland and Pittsburgh tragedies is to honor our fallen brothers in blue by doing whatever it takes to not only survive, or even to win, but to prevail.
April 15, 2009
The Mumbai terror attack was a basic raid. It was a version of the same highly effective tactics employed by most SWAT teams, especially for multiple, simultaneous raids and searches. It was a testament to the devastating and deadly effects of stealth, surprise, shock, and speed.
December 9, 2008
Every tick of the clock means more victims. The faster the response, the fewer the victims.
October 1, 2008
With the school year barely begun, there has already been another school shooting to report. This time, at South High School in Willoughby, Ohio. Fortunately, this time, no one was shot. However, the close call sent shockwaves of fear throughout this suburban Cleveland community.
September 12, 2008
In Columbine’s wake, the National Tactical Officers Association (NTOA) developed the rapid deployment first-responder team tactic currently in use throughout the nation. But in many, if not most, departments, officers from the SWAT team conduct the active shooter training program.
June 11, 2008
After Columbine, American law enforcement was forced to take a long, hard look at active shooter response. Now a new report challenges our current thinking on response to such incidents.
May 28, 2008
The active shooter phenomenon has a certain "copycat" quality to it — a deadly game won by causing the highest body count in the shortest amount of time before police can stop them.
February 28, 2008
"When you aren't practicing somewhere someone is and, when you meet him, he will win." This thought-provoking saying was passed along to me many years ago by Terry Thorpe, a warrior friend who lost his courageous final battle with Agent Orange.
May 30, 2007