Martial Law is the suspension of civil authority and the imposition of military authority.
They act as the police, as the courts, as the legislature.
Martial law can be used by governments to enforce their rule over the public.
What Could Happen Under Martial Law?
U.S. Constitution would be suspended
Suspension of habeas corpus
Suspension of civil rights
Suspension of civil law
No freedom of the press
No freedom of assembly
No freedom of speech
Curfews enforced on the people
Troops in the streets for enforcement
Checkpoints would be set up for control
Ability to hold a person without charge
Potential arrest of anyone who is a ‘suspect’
Imprisonment without representation or due process
Potential house to house confiscation of firearms, ammunition, food supplies
I describe the various scenarios under which Martial Law might be declared in the following article: Martial Law: Could It Happen Here?
A question that often arises during a related discussion is that of adequate personnel to actually enforce Martial Law. Would ‘they’ have the resources available for this?
First, Who Enforces Martial Law?
After Martial Law has been declared, the military and/or subsequently those sworn in law enforcement would theoretically enforce it.
So the numbers we’re looking at are those from the military and law enforcement.
A Modern Survival Blog contributor, “Anony Me”, has kindly researched the raw numbers of sworn military / law enforcement. A detailed table is shown further down the page.
Here’s a summary:
Total ACTIVE DUTY Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard
1,330,832 (13% overseas)
Total Air & Army National Guard and Reserves of Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines
707,762 (3% overseas)
Total Federal Law Enforcement Officers
State & Local full-time and part-time LEO’s
Population of the United States (2018)
I wonder to what extent folks in these professions would follow orders?
What if the underlying reason for declaration of martial law was on shaky Constitutional ground (or could be interpreted as such)?
I wonder what effects might result from attitudes of military and nonmilitary LEOs toward political powers-that-be?
Would they be kept in the dark as the rest regarding what’s really going on?
What percentage of them might be living the preparedness lifestyle?
What about LEO’s within Oathkeepers?
MSB reader “Anony Me” recently said the following:
“Many of the military I’ve known over the years were going to head for the countryside and live the preparedness lifestyle.”
Some of the scenarios presented in the novel (series) “299 Days” by Glen Tate felt right as he described them.
I have a prepper friend who lives not far from a base. She constantly debates whether she is safer, or less safe, being that close to an Army/Air Force stronghold.
If TSHTF would they be peacekeepers or marauders?
It’s certainly not a primary strategic target, like the silos would be.
Does the military stockpile in place sufficient resources for its military members and their families? Even the ones who do not live on base?
The Extent of Martial Law
Whether they could actually effectively enforce Martial Law will also depend on its extent.
If it’s one city, they could do it. And they have done it.
Look at Boston following the Boston Marathon bomber event. While it was essentially undeclared marital law, how many people were ‘locked down’ in their homes while untold numbers of federal, state, and local law enforcement swarmed the area with house-to-house searches… Ironically in the end a civilian discovered Dzhokhar Tsarnaev hiding in their trailered boat in the yard.
Look at what happened following hurricane Katrina disaster. There was a State of Emergency declared while the mayor of New Orleans made a public statement declaring “nominal martial law”. One thing they were actively doing was confiscating firearms door-to-door, and apparently not allowing people to leave their homes with curfews and other restrictions.
What if it’s two cities? Could they do it?
What about three? Etc..
At what point does control of the masses break down?
It Takes A Willing Public To Control Them
If ‘authority’ tells you to stay in your house, it’s up to you to stay in your house. What if you don’t? Will someone be outside your door ready to arrest you? Maybe they will if 99.9% of everyone stays in their house.
What if 50% come out of their house? Could they arrest everyone?
See where I’m going with this? If most people do not resist (depends on the reason for Martial Law, right?) then it’s easy for a small force to maintain control.
This is why if Martial Law is ever declared by .gov, the-powers-that-be will need to control the public narrative (which they do – although threatened by alternative news these days).
They will need the majority of the public to believe that the reason for Martial Law (whatever it is) is right and just.
If the fear level is high enough, the majority of the population will give up their rights for so called perceived ‘safety’. So that’s part of the ‘trick’ for willing compliance.
How Many Of All Federal, State, Local LEO’s Will Enforce Martial Law?
So the thrust of this article is to present this notion / questions:
How many (percentage?)
Under what circumstances?
Will any question the rationale?
How many will ‘show up for work’?
How many (and who) will be ‘hard core’ enforcement (The Military vs. LEO’s ?)
Source material sites:
March 2018 Military and Civilian Personnel by Service/Agency by State/Country
DoD Personnel, Workforce Reports & Publications
Federal, nonmilitary, sworn (able to carry and arrest) employees
Federal Law Enforcement Officers, 2008
Census of State and Local Law Enforcement Agencies, 2008
Data for tribal resources (not complied since 2002)
Census of Tribal Justice Agecies in Indian Country, 2002
Note: Only used data regarding sworn staff; did not include non-sworn.
|Air Force Active Duty||319,010||52,843|
|Army Active Duty||464,458||47,791|
|Marine Corps Active Duty||184,940||31,833|
|Navy Active Duty||321,260||36,119|
|Coast Guard Active Duty||41,164||1,204|
|Army National Guard||336,619||7,978|
|Marine Corps Reserve||38,262||3,423|
|Air National Guard||10,631||1,600|
|Air Force Reserve||68,182||849|
|Coast Guard Reserve||6,123||85|
|120,000||* not broken out|
|State and Local full-time||765,000|
|State and Local part-time||44,000|