go to top
Palestinian security forces participate in a drill at the International Police Training Center in al-Muwaqqar, Jordan Palestinian security forces participate in a drill at the International Police Training Center in al-Muwaqqar, Jordan, a country that receives U.S. support for key counterterrorism training programs, Mar. 17, 2018 (AP photo by Raad Adayleh).

Militarized Policing Is a Global Problem With U.S. Roots

Tuesday, Nov. 16, 2021

In May of this year, thousands of Colombian citizens took part in weeks of widespread protests against a newly proposed tax reform plan and, more generally, the country's growing economic inequality. The demonstrators included teachers, doctors, students and labor union members, as well as many who were new to protesting. But instead of allowing them to peacefully express their opinions, the Colombian National Police cracked down, killing at least 24 people in clashes that resembled their fights against criminal organizations and insurgents. 

Of course, Colombia’s police are not unique in their heavy-handed approach to law enforcement. In 2019, police violence became a central concern of protesters in Hong Kong’s pro-democracy movement, following violent crackdowns by the once-esteemed Hong Kong police. In 2020, the killings of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, among many others, at the hands of police in the United States brought massive attention to the issue not just in that country, but around the world. Later that year, in October 2020, Nigerian protesters mobilized against abuse by the Special Anti-Robbery Squad—or SARS, a notoriously violent and corrupt police unit—only to be violently suppressed by the police and military.   ...

To read more,

enter your email address then choose one of the three options below.

Subscribe to World Politics Review and you'll receive instant access to 10,000+ articles in the World Politics Review Library, along with new comprehensive analysis every weekday . . . written by leading topic experts.