Friday, March 8, 2013

There's A Lot of Paranoid Black Helicopters Crap Floating Around

Most of the time I can pretty quickly identify serious factual or logical flaws in it. For example, during the Bush Administration, various leftists were ranting and raving about how the government was setting up enormous concentration camps in Alaska, big enough to hold 2 million people. Within a couple years of Obama getting elected, I was seeing the same ranting and raving about these to the in-person concentration camps in Alaska. My first question was: if you are with the lock up 2 million political dissidents, why would you build the camps in Alaska? The sheer cost of flying that many dissidents to Alaska would be insane, and transporting them by train across Canada has its own set of absurd problems. If our government was actually doing something like this, with some nefarious motive, the place to set up such camps would be Wyoming or Nevada. There's plenty of unused federal land, and you could transport all the political dissidents to those places in a day or two by train.

There were people here in the Boise area hollering up a storm about how FEMA was setting up concentration camps just east of Boise to hold political prisoners. My response was always this: so, why haven't you taken some pictures of these FEMA concentration camps just east of Boise? It's not that far away.  Dead silence.

Here is something pretty scary that isn't quite so easy to demolish with factual or logical flaws, and I would like to hear from my readers what I am missing on this.  It purports to be a discussion of a U.S. Army Field Manual 3– 39.40 which is titled Internment and Resettlement Operations. (And yes, there is a US Army Field Manual by this number and title that I can see at the U.S. Army's website, but for some reason I am unable to download it.)  Most of it is material that would be appropriate in any theater of war where you have refugees, enemy combatants, unlawful combatants, and other persons who would need to be either housed or at least temporarily imprisoned. What changes this from a very detailed discussion of something that would be appropriate to overseas setting is Chapter 7 "Confinement of U.S. Military Prisoners."  On page 7 – 4:

7-16. Individual identification photographs are taken of all prisoners. The prisoner’s last name, first name, and middle initial are placed on the first line of a name board, and the prisoner’s social security number is placed on the second line. A prisoner registration number may be added on the third line. Two front and two profile pictures are taken of the prisoner. Fingerprints are obtained according to AR 190-47.
The Social Security number tells us that these are not foreigners, but American citizens and residents. If this chapter is about confinement of US military prisoners, meaning members of the US military, then wouldn't they be using the soldiers military ID number, not a social security number?  I'm absolutely sure that all members of the US military are fingerprinted on induction. Why would they need to fingerprint them again?

UPDATE: A number of readers tell me that Social Security Number was, until 2011, the military ID number, and this manual is dated 2010.  Fingerprinting makes sense to verify identity.  Perhaps this isn't quite as bizarre as it seems.


  1. The manual loaded fine for me from the link in your post. Section 7, which the segment above is from, is titled "CONFINEMENT OF U.S. MILITARY PRISONERS" relates ONLY to US military personnel being processed for conduct violations:

    "The FCF/FDF provides a uniform system for incarcerating and providing correctional services for those who have failed to adhere to legally established rules of discipline."

    Earlier in the manual (page 1-4) it states that individuals that are subject to the internment/resettlement operation are to be assigned "an internment serial
    number (ISN) (which) provides the only authorized serial number to be used to track detainees and their property, evidence, and related documents."

  2. For some long period of time, beginning around the late 70s, I think, the SSAN -was- the military ID; 2007 Defense Authorization Act seems to have changed direction on that, and beginning 2011 SSAN won't be on ID cards.

    So, a manual written before 2007 might reasonably use SSAN and Mil ID number interchangeably.

  3. Military personnel are identified by their Social Security number - we don't have unique service numbers any more (since the 80's I think). So recording a Soldier's SSN is standard practice for identifying him or her. Also, while we all have our fingerprints recorded when we enter the military, you do have to be fingerprinted again when detained, as a verification of identity (same reason civilian criminals get fingerprinted each time they get arrested - have to be sure they are who they say they are). That manual will need to be updated soon, though, as we are in process of transitioning to new Service numbers (the military is only now catching on to the concept of identity theft, and realized that having your SSN printed on everything you own might be a bad idea...).

  4. the soldiers military ID number IS their social security number. Fingerprinting WAS NOT a part of the process when I went in, 1993 and 1998. There is usually a version date in all manuals so you know what one you should be using. What is the date on the one you are reading. Also the manuals are written to encompass all situations that the soldier could encounter, and detaining a US Citizen is possible. Look at the one that was captured in Afganistan.

  5. It was only in 2011 that the U.S. Army made the change to Electronic data interchange personal identifier [EDIPI] on ID cards, and older cards still have the SSN printed on them even today. That FM was published in 2010, prior to even the beginning of the EDIPI being published on ID cards.

    Additionally, other paragraphs in that chapter, such as 7-14, do make reference to confined officers and NCOs, which would imply U.S. Military personnel.

  6. Honestly, this isn't simply provocative. It's really just another item in a long list of things the "larger" left of this country (lead by this admin, Democrat party AND some establishment Republicans) puts out there.


    I have a feeling that it's simply spiteful. A way to poke a finger in the eye of 1/2 of this country. Not real sure what the end result of this would be or how this benefits them other than just another attempt to galvanize their base.

    In any event, this is about a much grander goal: transforming the US into something 1/2 of this country doesn't want.

  7. Actually the US military used ssn's as a serial number until recent concerns of id theft prompted them to scale back and remove it from ID cards. Socials are still used in quite a few DOD records that haven't been converted back to dedicated service numbers.

  8. The SSAN is the military ID number, and has been used as such since the 1970s.

    Fingerprints are probably taken in order to confirm identities. If you're picked up for a crime by the MPs and/or the folks from CID, you'll get fingerprinted just to confirm that you're who your ID card says you are.

  9. There probably ought to be a field manual on the setting up of internment camps within U.S. borders, though it might date back to the 1940s.