Gangs in the Military

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Quigley_Sharps, Mar 6, 2008.

  1. Quigley_Sharps

    Quigley_Sharps The Badministrator Administrator Founding Member

    <TABLE width=1000 align=center border=0><TBODY><TR><TD>[​IMG]</TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE><TABLE width=1000 align=center border=0><TBODY><TR><TD width=10>[​IMG]</TD><TD width=186>
    Day 1 ​
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    </TD><TD width=27>[​IMG]</TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE><TABLE width=1000 align=center border=0><TBODY><TR><TD></TD><TD vAlign=top></TD><TD></TD><TD vAlign=top></TD><TD></TD><TD vAlign=top></TD><TD></TD><TD vAlign=top></TD><TD></TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE><TABLE width=1000 align=center border=0><TBODY><TR><TD width=25>[​IMG]</TD><TD width=950><TABLE width=920 align=center border=0><TBODY><TR><TD vAlign=top width=521><TABLE width=520 border=0><TBODY><TR><TD colSpan=2>Gangs in the Military: How much do we know?</TD></TR><TR><TD colSpan=2>[​IMG]</TD></TR><TR><TD width=470>For several years, there have been allegations among law-enforcement officials and in the media of a strong presence of street gangs within the U.S. military. Military officials acknowledge that gang members can be found in the services, particularly the Army, but insist that gang membership does not pose a serious problem.

    Stars and Stripes set out to explore the issue. Reporters interviewed dozens of military officers, police officials, military and civilian investigators, former gang members and ordinary servicemembers. This is what they found:</TD><TD width=40> </TD></TR><TR><TD></TD><TD> </TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE><TABLE width=520 border=0><TBODY><TR><TD colSpan=3>Reports show increase in gang-related crimes</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top colSpan=3>[​IMG]</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width=375>Gang activity in the military is increasing, and the number of gang-related crimes involving soldiers and their families nearly tripled from fiscal 2005 to fiscal 2006, according to a pair of new reports.

    Both studies note that gang members represent only a small fraction of the total force, but say that gangs have become a bigger presence — and a bigger concern — in just the last few years.
    “Gang-related activity in the military is increasing and poses a threat to law enforcement officials and national security,” according to the FBI’s National Gang Intelligence Center report, released in January.
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    Reports (PDF) ​
    The 2005 National Gang Threat Assessment
    The Army Criminal Investigation Command’s FY 2006 Gang Activity Threat Assessment
    A January, 2007 FBI report on gang-related activity in the Armed Forces
    </TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE><TABLE width=520 border=0><TBODY><TR><TD colSpan=3>PowerPoint presentation educates leaders about gangs</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top colSpan=3>[​IMG]</TD></TR><TR><TD vAlign=top width=375>A 1st Armored Division soldier in Germany flashing a gang sign while on guard duty.

    Gangster Disciples graffiti scrawled near the helipad on Leighton Barracks in Würzburg, Germany.

    Wine glasses decorated with Gangster Disciples symbols that soldiers had made at a German-American festival.

    The pictures are in a 2006 PowerPoint presentation on criminal street gangs in the military by Kenneth Ferguson Kelly, a former military police investigator in Germany. Stars and Stripes obtained a copy of the presentation.
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    PowerPoint ​
    A 1st ID-sponsored report on criminal street gangs in the military

    </TD><TD> </TD><TD> </TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE></TD><TD vAlign=top width=10> </TD><TD vAlign=top width=375><TABLE width=375 border=0><TBODY><TR><TD class=sideheadline colSpan=2>Officials: DOD monitoring gangs</TD></TR><TR><TD class=sidetxt colSpan=2>Military officials say they are carefully monitoring gang
    activity in the services and don’t see any signs of an upswing of gang members among the ranks.

    Officials are aware of law enforcement reports and an Army Criminal Investigation Command report distributed late last year showing that gang-related incidents among soldiers nearly tripled from fiscal 2005 to fiscal 2006.</TD></TR><TR><TD> </TD><TD></TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>
    </TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE></TD><TD width=25>[​IMG]</TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>
    PowerPoint presentation educates leaders about gangs

    By Steve Mraz, Stars and Stripes
    Mideast edition, Thursday, February 8, 2007

    <TABLE id=Table13 style="BORDER-RIGHT: #ccc 1px solid; BORDER-TOP: #ccc 1px solid; MARGIN: 10px 0px 10px 10px; BORDER-LEFT: #ccc 1px solid; BORDER-BOTTOM: #ccc 1px solid" cellSpacing=15 cellPadding=0 width=200 align=right border=0><TBODY><TR><TD vAlign=top align=left width="100%">View the presentation ...
    A 1st ID-sponsored report on criminal street gangs in the military

    (You must be able to view PowerPoint files on your computer to view this.)

    A 1st Armored Division soldier in Germany flashing a gang sign while on guard duty.
    Gangster Disciples graffiti scrawled near the helipad on Leighton Barracks in Würzburg, Germany.
    Wine glasses decorated with Gangster Disciples symbols that soldiers had made at a German-American festival.
    The pictures are in a 2006 PowerPoint presentation on criminal street gangs in the military by Kenneth Ferguson Kelly, a former military police investigator in Germany. Stars and Stripes obtained a copy of the presentation.
    The 43-slides offer insights into why gang members join the military; comments from a former gang member in the Army; instances of gang activity in the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines; analyses of gang symbols; and proactive responses with which military leaders can combat gangs.
    The slide show, titled “Criminal Street Gangs In the ‘MILITARY,’ ” was a compilation of material gathered over several years, said Maj. Thomas Acklen, whose name appears on the brief’s title page. He now works at U.S. Army Garrison Schinnen, Netherlands. He didn’t put the presentation together all on his own, he said, and the briefing is constantly being updated.
    The presentation and others like it around Europe are used as educational tools for commanders at all levels — from company level on up to division, Acklen said.
    “Throughout Europe there was kind of a directive,” he said. “There’s several people throughout Europe that give these briefs.”
    The slide show could be considered a wake-up call to anyone who thinks the military is immune to gang infiltration. “There is ample evidence that members of the Armed Forces have had previous, or have current and active contact with criminal street gangs and extremist groups,” according to the presentation.
    Gang members join the military for a number of reasons, including recruiting dependents and soldiers, acquiring weapons, learning tactics and trafficking drugs, the presentation states.
    “There is a felony waiver process for joining the military so not all soldiers that come into the Army have a clean past,” according to notes in the presentation.
    “Some are trying to leave the gangs, but others are using the military job as a cover. Joining a gang requires being beat into the gang. Leaving a gang requires the same,” the presentation also said.
    The presentation lists several examples of gang activity in the military, including the death of Sgt. Juwan Johnson in Kaiserslautern, Germany. Johnson was severely beaten July 3, 2005, during an alleged initiation ceremony into the Chicago-based Gangster Disciples. The 25-year-old soldier was found dead in his barracks the next day.
    Soldiers need to be educated about the dangers of joining gangs and extremist groups or associating with them, the presentation says.
    “Some of the signs are a sudden change in routine, new larger groups of friends, sudden change in dress or similar appearance to others in peer groups, increase in money with no viable source, drug abuse and or trafficking, alcohol abuse or a rebellious attitude toward work or others,” the presentation states. “New tattoos or brands, the displaying of graffiti or gang signs in drawings or pictures, even a sudden interest in knives and guns can be a tell-tale sign of an interest in becoming a member of a group.”
    Proactive responses listed in the presentation include avoiding denial of gang dynamics, knowing and enforcing policies and regulations, and initiating legal actions for violations of military law.
    One of the last slides calls for sharing information:
    “Making sure the leadership is aware of the issues is key to this and of course sharing the information with others.”
  2. Quigley_Sharps

    Quigley_Sharps The Badministrator Administrator Founding Member

    LA street gangs infiltrate US army: The


    <BASEFONT>[FONT=Arial,helvetica]<!---------------------------add text here------------------------>
    [SIZE=+2]LA street gangs infiltrate US army: The[/SIZE]
    [SIZE=+2]Crips and the Bloods have[/SIZE]
    ( Weekly Journal, The ) July 27, 1995
    LA street gangs infiltrate US army: The Crips
    and the Bloods have been. uncovered within
    the US military, and linked to drive-by
    shootings and organised drug trafficking.
    Vivienne Francis and Gregory Vistica
    investigate ALLEN KING and his three children - aged
    18-months and four and seven years old - were
    hacked to death by a man who believed King
    had told the police about a crack house he
    operated. A gang killing in an American
    inner-city ghetto? No. These murders took
    place on an American army base and their
    killer was an army specialist.
    According to a special investigation in
    American magazine Newsweek, street gang
    activity, once confined to places like
    South-Central Los Angeles, Chicago and New
    York, has reared its ugly head in the US
    Notorious LA street gangs such as the Crips,
    the Bloods and Chicago' s Folk Gangsters are
    now active in all four branches of the armed
    services and at more than 50 military bases
    around the United States.
    Although most gang crimes - which include
    drug trafficking, robbery, assault and at
    least 10 murders to date - have taken place
    off-duty and off base, there are signs that
    the problem is growing.
    Army-enlisted men have been photographed
    flashing gang signs in the middle of the Gulf
    War. Some gang members have also staked out
    their "turf" on aircraft carriers at sea, and
    the navy was recently forced to build a wall,
    1,000 foot long, to protect residents of one
    of its housing complexes in California after
    a spate of drive-by shootings.
    So far, the gang-related activities - fights,
    shootings, small drug trafficking - have been
    relatively minor crimes, but some
    investigators fear notorious gangs, like the
    Crips, have a bigger goal in mind.
    According to Newsweek, the US Justice
    Department produced a report in 1994 that
    warned some gangs had access to grenades,
    [Image] machine guns, rocket launchers and military
    explosives. It added that members who are or
    have been in the services are teaching others
    military tactics, and that "with arms,
    weapons proficiency and tactics, some street
    gangs now have the ability to effectively
    engage in terrorist activities" .
    Newsweek believes "the US military is
    inevitably affected by all the problems of
    society at large - including the spread of
    gang-related crime and violence". Though they
    add "it is still surprising that the
    military, supposedly a bastion of good order,
    is being shaken by gang activity in the
    "The navy doesn't like to admit [its gang
    problem]," Sergeant Wes McBride of the Los
    Angeles Police Department, himself a former
    marine, told the magazine, "because it
    destroyed the image of discipline." But
    Newsweek said it had obtained confidential
    documents suggesting that the forces were
    taking steps to control the problem.
    It said that the commander of the navy's
    Pacific Fleet, which supervises navy bases
    all along the West Coast, warned commanders
    about rising gang four years ago, and the
    investigative Service had begun a
    computerised system to report and track
    gang-related incidents.
    In addition, the army and air force manuals
    warn: "The influence of gangs appears to be
    growing and the frequency of gang violence
    related to the USAF will likely increase.
    There is no such thing as a `wannabee' . If a
    person wants to be a gang member, acts and
    dresses like a gang member, he is a gang
    member and just as dangerous."
    The manual now also lists descriptions of
    gang hand signs and gang colours to help
    criminal investigators spot covert gang
    Ethnic NewsWatch ) SoftLine Information,
    Inc., Stamford, CT Gregory Francis, Vivienne; Vistica, LA street
    gangs infiltrate US army: The Crips and the
    Bloods have., Weekly Journal, The,
    07-27-1995, pp PG.
    <!------------------------end of text------------------>[/FONT]</BASEFONT>
  3. Quigley_Sharps

    Quigley_Sharps The Badministrator Administrator Founding Member

    FBI Probes Military Gangs
    Chicago Tribune | May 03, 2006
    <!--- End Article Title/Source/Date ---><!--- Start Article Content --->[​IMG]The FBI has assigned an agent to monitor any connections between U.S. Soldiers and a Chicago-based gang alliance, federal agents said.

    Of particular concern are reports that the Folk Nation, consisting of more than a dozen gangs in the Chicago area, is placing young members in the military in an effort to gather information about weapons and tactics, said FBI Special Agent Andrea Simmons, who is based in El Paso, Texas.
    "Our understanding is that they find members without a criminal history so that they can join, and once they get out, they will have a new set of skills that they can apply to criminal enterprises," Simmons said. "This could be a concern for any law enforcement agency that has to deal with gangs on a daily basis."
    Chicago gang symbols can be found amid other graffiti, mostly in latrines on U.S. military bases such as Camp Fallujah in Iraq's Anbar Province.
    Yet military investigators say the Soldiers who left those symbols had no gang affiliation and little knowledge of how gangs operate.
    "In nearly every one of the cases that we have looked into, it is a young man or woman who thought that the symbol looked cool," said Christopher Grey, spokesman for the Army's Criminal Investigation Command. "We have found some people even get gang tattoos not really knowing what they are, or at least that they have not had any gang affiliation the past."
    Still, Army investigators have opened 10 cases in the last year in which evidence of gang activity was found, he said.
    Some of those cases have since been closed, but no further details were released by the military.
    "We're looking at a million-plus people in the Army," he said. "Any suggestion that this is rampant, we just don't see that."
    Grey acknowledged that there are gang members in the military, but he said their presence has not become a problem.
    The FBI, however, has two agents looking into gang affiliations in Texas in anticipation of a major realignment of military bases that is about to shift as many as 20,000 Soldiers to Ft. Bliss near El Paso, Simmons said.
    One of those agents has been assigned to look at affiliations with Folk Nation, she said.
    Police departments around Ft. Hood, near Austin, about 600 miles away, have reported some gang-related incidents, and the FBI will monitor whether there is an increase in such crimes near Ft. Bliss over the next two years, Simmons said.
    A number of Soldiers transferred to Ft. Bliss are expected to come from Ft. Hood, Simmons said.
    Military recruiters are trained to spot gang tattoos and affiliated clothing, said Maj. Nathan Banks, stationed at the Pentagon.
    Membership in a gang does not automatically exclude individuals from the military, he said.
    "There are people who want to become Soldiers because they want something better," he said. "That's a fact, and people do join gangs, but they also leave that behind in some instances to serve."
    <!--- End Article Content ---><!--- Begin Additional Article Features --->
  4. Quigley_Sharps

    Quigley_Sharps The Badministrator Administrator Founding Member

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