“Active Shooter” Training Now Massively Federalized

shooter-drill1DOJ and FBI Figure Centrally in Mass Shooting Drills

By James F. Tracy

As mass shooting events become ever more common throughout the United States, so too has their direct coordination under Department of Justice and FBI auspices. Aggressively publicized by a submissive corporate news media, the continuum of such incidents over weeks, months and years is an essential socialization process for the public’s unquestioning acceptance of the growing police state.

[Image Credit: Hawai’i Army Weekly]

An under-examined facet of this broader trend is how “active shooter drills” have become massively federalized in the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre. Alongside the militarization of police under the Pentagon’s 1033 Program, which provides high-powered weaponry and armored vehicles to state and local law enforcement agencies, officers are receiving military-style training funded and supervised by the US DOJ and government subcontractors.

Since 2002 “active shooter training” has been conducted by a project called ALERRT—Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training—housed at Texas State University in San Marcos. Over 60,000 police have been instructed by ALERRT-trained personnel, and over the past 12 years the entity has received over $30 million of funding from the DOJ’s Bureau of Justice Assistance, the Violence Against Law Enforcement and Ensuring Officer Resilience and Survivability program “VALOR”), Texas’ Office of the Governor, and the Department of Homeland Security.[1]

The money for such training is merely a small portion of almost $290 million in DOJ munificence distributed to 56 states and territories, and over 1,000 local jurisdictions in 2014 alone. “These resources are helping to spur innovation and drive evidence-based policing in countless communities,” Attorney General Eric Holder recently remarked.[2]

In March 2013 the Dees_HolderFBI sent 100 of its agents to receive instructor training at ALERRT’s Texas State headquarters. In June of that year Vice President Joe Biden recognized ALERRT “as a primary source for national law enforcement training and response to active shooter events.”[3]

[Image Credit: David Dees]

Within weeks of Biden’s announcement FBI personnel fanned out across the US to conduct ALERRT-approved training to local law enforcement officers. In August 2013 drills were taking place in seemingly every police jurisdiction throughout the US.

“Since these exercises are designed to be as realistic as possible, students, school personnel, and the broader public may be unsuspectingly caught up in the contrived terror, unable to distinguish whether the ‘actors’ alongside the accompanying gunfire and explosions are real or fake.” This essential interpretive element is left up to the relevant local, state, and federal agencies to explain, or “spin,” to the media. Inevitably the implications of federal sponsorship and/or supervision in such maneuvers goes unexamined.[4]

After the 1960s a wealth of compelling research has established that federal law enforcement involvement in violent and controversial events such as assassinations frequently undermines the integrity of serious law enforcement work conducted by those familiar with the given community. As the aftermath of the Oklahoma City bombing, 9/11, and the more recent Boston Marathon bombing event all but confirm, federal “response” to such mass casualty events is now a carefully-honed procedure. Add to this the allure of federal cash and the broader parameters of mass shooting events reported become even more uncertain.

Equally concerning is the fact that up until the mid-2000s the location and date of active shooter drills were a matter of public record, being noted in a freely-accessible federal registry.[5] Now with mass shooter training almost entirely outsourced to ALERRT, such statistics no longer exist. This lack of accountability gives federal agencies free reign in terms of how such events might be used.

“’It’s not capability—it’s capacity,’” one FBI official involved in ALERRT training told the Associated Press. “’Every police department, sheriff’s department has the ability to do interviews and to do evidence collection … But we can bring capacity. We can bring 100 agents to a scene in a day and do hundreds of interviews, and have done that time and time again.’”[6]

With the exception of this in-depth Associated Press article, corporate news media don’t consider the massive federalization of active shooter drills an item worthy of close attention. A LexisNexis search of print news for the terms “ALERRT” and “Department of Justice” or “Federal Bureau of Investigation” between March 1, 2013 and December 22, 2014 yields just a handful of items, most of which are US government press releases.

This crucial omission in reportage serves as an oblique form of propaganda, giving the impression that every mass shooting incident is genuine, when in fact some may be the outgrowth of a drill combined with federal law enforcement and/or intelligence sleight of hand.

A seemingly endless stream of federal aid and oversight makes local, regional and state law enforcement highly dependent on the DOJ—an entity capable of deceptive and lethal maneuvers such as “Fast and Furious”—which is now increasingly looked to for such handouts.

In this manner, local and regional law enforcement are potentially compromised toward acquiescing to federally-coordinated active shooter training drills which are then presented via news media as genuine events—a situation that apparently unfolded in Newtown Connecticut, and perhaps in numerous other locales. Without honest policing and competent, impartial journalism the public has no way of discerning reality from what amounts to military training and the manipulable artifice inherent in such exercises.


[1] Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training Media Information, “Boilerplate Language,” http://alerrt.org/Media, accessed December 21, 2014.

[2] “Remarks by Attorney General Holder at the International Association of Chiefs of Police Annual Conference,” US Official News (Press Release), October 27, 2014.

[3] “ALERRT Names Primary Source for National Active Shooter Response,” ALERRT (Press Release), June 18, 2013, http://alerrt.org/Media, accessed December 21, 2014.

[4] James F. Tracy, “Nationwide Post-Sandy Hook Terror Drills,” GlobalResearch.ca, August 23, 2013.

[5] Personal Communication with Jason Kissner, Associate Professor of Criminology, Fresno State University, December 18, 2014.

[6] Eric Tucker, “FBI Works to Train Police on Mass Killing Response,” Associated Press, August 20, 2013.

32 thoughts on ““Active Shooter” Training Now Massively Federalized”

  1. Of note in the 2013 AP article (footnote #4): “The goal [of ALLERT] is to promote a standardized strategy…” This is again about building the hive society and hive mind, discouraging individual decision-making regardless of expertise or experience. We must all become robots and follow government procedure. I wonder what the penalty is or will be for acting otherwise (e.g., on instinct) in these situations — “against” training?

    1. There’s also an eerie look to the two cops against that green background. Their features seem oddly smoothed. They seem to have come from the same virtual reality I noted in the picture of Officer Sean Collier, supposedly shot by the Tsarnaev’s at MIT. The plethora of pictures of the two NYPD cops’ killer was also odd – like the pile of pictures an actor creates when they want casting people to imagine them in a lot of different parts.

      Some papers noted that the cops were sitting where they were because taking part in an anti-terror drill. Other papers left that out. But drills imply control of the scene (extreme control with BMB hoax, but perhaps full control anywhere they are going on, or what is the point).

  2. Very important information.

    It’s now up to the City of Winter Haven, and its school district, to pass legislation forbidding further “drills”–such as this one, which involved the brandishing of DEADLY WEAPONS–on their property. They should, in no uncertain terms, make “law enforcement” aware that any such entries onto school property or public property anywhere in their community will be dealt with in the most severe way possible, as a trespass–which it is; as an unauthorized assault–which it is; and as menacing, since children and staff were threatened with deadly weapons.

    There is no source of law anywhere that permits such activity to take place without the school’s consent. They need to get these goons.

    1. I very much agree with you. Who is to predict the reactions of children? But of course some of these drills involve no children, and the children are only reported afterwards.

      I will say that shortly after 9/11, my son told me that a military helicopter was allowed to land on the soccer field at his school, and that students were encouraged to – well greet them as liberators I suppose. It was a shocking thing, really, and yet I was so stunned by that recent event that I had no idea where the country was going next and I really believed this kind of thing might be necessary if we were under attack. I have now got more of an understanding of what was really happening, but I fear my kids were caught up in it and make certain assumptions based on these types of events, which in their late 20’s they have incorporated in their world view, with their contrarian mother being very un-influential about changing that view. “It has to be carefully taught.”

  3. Another clue that the ongoing rash of hyped mass shootings in the USA would largely be a federal job…Is anyone still counting?

    I’ll respectfully add the very important point that the mass media do not bear the entire responsibility for not properly informing the public of it. Much responsibility falls on the watchdogs that do not bark: the countless congress(wo)men who claim to champion gun rights, the National Rifle Association, the Oathkeepers, the Libertarian Party, etc. By publicly warning against leveraging shootings into calls for gun control without publicly affirming the existence of evidence that these events are staged, they provide an indispensable contribution to the success of these operations.

    In fact, these organizations could effortlessly produce this article long before James Tracy did. Still more troubling is their predictable failure to bring it to their members’ attention.

    On the plus side, activists who are concerned at staged shootings will find these watchdogs’ mendacity much easier to expose than the mass media’s.


    1. Very good points, Dan. The fact that none of these groups (you forgot to list the Tea Party) has not spoken out on the other events (BMB, Sandy Hook, etc) either says a great deal about their legitimacy.

    2. One only has to subscribe to the federal employment job line to see they are hiring in FEMA and other agencies more than ever at very high salaries. In some cases, some very weird positions are being offered. It’s all about the money and building their own little fiefdom.

  4. Meanwhile, this social media analysis pre-crime division has landed charges on Charlie Dirosa. A full-blown Orwellian nightmare with Philip K. Dick overtones is manifesting, methinks.

  5. Yes, it is troubling just how easily people come to accept these centralized efforts to control the masses as “normal”. It is very much like “Mary’s” tale from the lectern at St. Rose. “We were in lockdown, so, of course we ‘sheltered in place”.

    The implication left unsaid is that “the authorities” have “ordered” it, so it shall be done. So the feds come with sacks of money and equipment and train the locals what “their roles” are in the great suppression.

    I read today where there is funding to train 30,000 “responders” and the FBI is in charge of that. How Hegellian can you get? We have “shootings”, we have an antithesis, we have a synthesis.

    In all this training conducted in public schools there seems to be an absence of emphasis on the Ninth and Tenth Amendments. These powers that they arrogate to themselves are not legally available to them.

    There is nothing subtle about this. It is as clear as a mountain stream for anyone with eyes to see. Obongo said he wanted a “civilian army” to rival the military one. Looks like he’s well on his way.

    1. Yes, I was surprised, when I saw an official local police car with the words “volunteer” logo on it. What kind of powers are they being given? Are we going to become a nation of “snitches”, large billboards are being posted, “See something, say something” alluding to terrorism.

      .I’ve also noticed, that community neighborhood meeting signs have been popping up all over each neighborhood. What exactly goes on at these meetings, I’ve not yet discovered. But the signs are all from the same maker, same font, etc. So it is a well organized effort above the “community level”.

  6. A total of 35 police officers were killed in the line of duty last year, but it is estimated that as many as 50,000 ordinary people were killed by police officers (in the line of duty, the number is not known, because they have just stopped reporting those statistics.)

  7. Do not think this propaganda is working as planned. It is clear the protesters carry professionally printed signs and thus we know they are being paid, why else would you waste this normally joyous and busy week disrupting Christmas shoppers as in NYC or in the Mall of the Americas?

    My hometown, witnessed in disgust, the black mayor’s decision to bulldoze a homeless tent site, under a bridge that had 40 high tech tents donated by an organization concerned about the homeless.

    These poor folks were enticed with a promise of a hot meal and a warm bed, only to find their only worldly possessions were now in a garbage dump. Homeless shelters do not address the real need in these freezing days of winter, drug addicts or alcoholics are not allowed, and they kick your but out at 6 am everyday. Just what the he!! are you supposed to do at 6 am? And then you have to return at the allowed time to stand in line for the limited beds.

    They would prefer they all die of natural causes, as in freezing to death.


    1. Well said, they are trying so hard to “stir the pot” when everyone would rather have peace on earth. It’s just frustrating to the warmongers who have all this weaponry and technology at their disposal that we are not “taking the bait”. I fear Obama is a Judas lamb being brought to slaughter, we have already seen the “overshadowing” of false attempts to breach the security at the WH and his usefulness is nearly over for the puppet masters.

    1. Possibly because so many of them actually just “kill” themselves. Multiple cops reported “Lanza” in handcuffs; NPD’s Vanghele himself asked, when returning to the scene and seeing the perp, “Who shot him?” If you watch Ed Benecchi’s soundless tirade outside the school (it’s in a YouTube vid) it’s possible to make a case for him describing an execution. State cops off the record have described the perp having wounds to the chest and head. It’s not to hard to put the pieces together–especially the part where the timeline of NPD’s activity in the affected hall goes completely dark from 9:47-9:51…the exact length of time between a loud gunshot almost certainly fired by NPD, and the announcement (twice) “We have a suspect down.”

  8. I’m sure this post will never see the light of day but here goes. And don’t hate on me either. I’m trying to say something that I may not articulate well…

    Well get ready people. I stated here before I was a little worried when that Sony movie was going to play on Christmas day. They cancelled it and now it’s back on.

    Obama has contacted the ATF to tell them its back on and we need an “Auroua” kinda thingy.

    This is Obama’s favorite time to attack us because he and the TPTB want to divide us. It’s true, nothing racist.

    Every Christmas we get either the Underwear bomber or the Christmas Tree Bomber or the NYC Bomber or some crazy E.O. signing…get it.

    The Germans are Protesting against all the muslim’s destroying their country and sharia law. MEDIA BLACK OUT. The Top German Elite are fighting their own people and calling them Nazi’s!! Really?

    The poor battered English, French, Dutch, Finish, Italian and the Swedish are quietly backing them because they know in their countries islam is the best thing since sliced bread to their leaders because it gives the elites power over their own strong people who can not be defeated by a police state alone. As here in the USA we are starting to see through open borders. It’s a Demonrat and RinoRat Neocon thing.

    In our country, as in Europe, Obama is using the illegal aliens and the 100’s of thousands of peoples from the middle east that are coming across our Mexico border to out number us as in Europe to defeat us.

    TPTB, which I hate that term because they are the worst of the human worth, are doing this across all the Western World to take us all over without a fight with us directly.

    I have never have gone off and expressed here before. But before I go on let me say that we ALL American’s FIRST. That’s what THEY don’t want. Divide. Balkanize.

    America is:

    American Indians, American European Whites Caucasians, American Blacks, American Mexicans and American Latin’s. American Aisians

    Always say American FIRST!
    American Black, American German, American Japanese, American Irish, American English..you know what I’m saying

    We have ALL been here for a long time since the inception of America.
    This is OUR Country.

    Don’t let The Demon-rats and NeoCon Rino’s, bankers, elites, TPTB destroy us for their own interests! We are 5 Billion. They are about Seven thousand but own all the cash and assets and EURO Union and Congress and…..you fill in the blanks.

    We can say and believe what we want here without anybody saying we are wrong because we are ONE Nation Unified.

    So here I go,
    Merry Christmas to all of you and a Happy New Year. God Bless….

    1. Ric– I don’t think I disagree with a thing you said (I only add the qualifier in case I misunderstood something).

      Of course this is a case of “divide and conquer”; when the idea of the American “melting pot” became a BAD thing, and we were instead encouraged to embrace “multiculturalism”, more of us should have fought back. Some did, to no avail, but more of us should have done…more. Damn that hindsight! But we can see that it was all implemented through the schools, exactly as planned.

      For those who aren’t yet familiar with the real history of public schools, I would wholeheartedly recommend reading or watching anything by John Taylor Gatto and/or Samuel Blumenfeld. When you see how (and by whom) this was set up–all by design–so many of the pieces come together. Forget Common Core; it goes so much deeper and further back than that.

      Back to Ric’s point: being an “American” used to mean something; skin color and country of origin was incidental. No more. Perhaps, though, we need to find something new to rally around, a new name, if you will. “American” has lost its meaning, and what’s left has been bastardized and perverted. Maybe “American Reactionary”? Without the hyphen, of course ;).

      In any case, I dug your heartfelt post, and I’d love to read more of them.

      Finally, a very Merry Christmas to all my dear friends here at MemoryHoleBlog. One of the greatest joys in life is spending time with the likeminded. You have all enriched my life immeasurably, and I thank you! May the New Year be good to us.

    2. Perhaps the illegals are more widespread throughout the country, but having grown up in Southern California, I can tell you they have been coming for a long time indeed. In fact half the population of my elementary school classroom was Hispanic, and with the exception of some who lived in a village nearby and whose lives were more stable, a great many of them were totally lost in the classroom, dirty and tired from working in the fields since dawn, and requiring a lot of ingenuity on the part of the teachers to both include them and keep up the goals for each grade, which they did well.

      Why was no one protesting these disruptions? The general understanding in those days, even among Republicans, was that cheap labor was a huge benefit to the country. I still think it is, but of course the way it is obtained is very clandestine, involving probably high finance.

      The thing which has changed since those days is the whittling away of the American middle class.

      I have practically no fears about A-rabs sneaking over our southern border. I am convinced that 9/11 was a fake, the anthrax was domestic, and the A-rabs are characterized as monsters for primarily the benefit of Israel’s past and current ambitions. So don’t fall for that one. If anything, hell-bent jihadis are more likely to slip in through the slicker path, if and when they do, which is Canada where so many of them live middle class lives pretty much impossible to pull off in Mexico (starting with all the bribes and hassles they’d have to deal with there).

      Is there deliberate splitting of the American public? Well, “Divide and Rule” is as old as the Caesars. It’s what empires do.

    3. Always suspected the Sony takeover of the news media, was just another hoax. It is advertised as a very lame movie, what are the chances more folks are going to see it because of all the false advertising on the news? Let’s just throw in some more ‘proof’ that America is a racist country and bring in Al Sharpton to fix it.

      So our Christmas surprise this year is all the supposed riots, but do not believe they are real events, only more paid players.

      Am very concerned about the weather manipulation that is bringing a massive fog over most of the country, just what are they spraying on us and why are so many so sick for so long? There is a putrid stench in the air I’m breathing and suspect the forecast of sunshine tomorrow will once again be a lie.

      Will have to admit, when getting quotes for a new roof, one contractor came in at a very low price and admitted, he contracts the work out and while that contract states, only legal workers are permitted, he could not attest that they were and he could not find a crew that were as efficient as them. Those Spanish speaking workers hammered that roof out in a few hours, always running and clearly focused on getting the job done. Their boss spent a lot of time singing, but absolutely commanded his crew to perform with amazing energy. Our local contractor, who is also a friend, quoted a full week to do the job!

      Merry Christmas to all of you and a Happy New Year. God Bless….

      1. I surely agree with your sentiments. I have been trying to avoid the computer lately but decided to see if anything was happening on christmas morning. I clicked on infowhores to see they are feigning another fake event as real. Even the NY Post admits that the “assassination” of the cops happened during a terror drill but all the commenters can write about is nigg this nigg that. I know that no one wants to pick fights in the alt press but this is insane how AJ gets a free pass when his site is pretty much 100% bullshit. All I want for christmas is a roundtable discussion about the bs they are pulling over at infowars and why it is better for the alternative media to just ignore him rather than point it out(while pointing it out).

    4. ric – excellent post. its too bad you have to preface it that way considering this use to be a forum for free speech. aye my grandpa always said – “be ye moderate, yea, even in your moderation.”

  9. A few threads back James suggested that the cops shooting Black youths might have been a staged attempt to create racial conflict. This is still happening, and now White cops have been killed, continuing to polarize the country racially. Obama has stated he is going to continue to militarize the police. If Washington wanted to create some reason for increasing despotic power, this would be one way to do it.

    In Mexico, the neoliberal president, along with the Federales and military, appears to be involved in the ambush-massacre of 43 students.
    Why would he do that? He is privatizing the oil company to turn it over to the big US and other oil companies, but why massacre the students.
    The US does not have military bases in Mexico as occurs in Colombia, but American military and police are there, sometimes disguised as Mexico police. There appears to be a lot of killing going on for apparent reason, and on wonders what may be staged as a consequence.

  10. We just couldn’t live without B.M.


    Merry Christmas folks.

    Remember to follow ALL rules and regulations. Even when they conflict and tear you and your family/loved ones; and all your lives, apart. Even when they impoverish you and make you into a weakened and dumbed down, slave.

    Pay your fines and taxes; membership dues, costs and expenses; in an orderly and totally compliant fashion, be grateful for the privilege of having ‘management’ rule over you.

    It is necessary.


    Ned Lud

  11. I find it very interesting that this training was established in the immediate wake of Sandy Hook; FBI Dir Comey hinted in Feb 2014 that lives were lost in Newtown due to road blockage, and the ALERRT assistant director in Texas recently blurted out that the reason for the rush to train people nationwide after 12/14 was because “If we don’t get the initial response right, it’s always going to be a train wreck.”

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