The Department of Homeland Security has expanded it’s authority within the national arena at an alarming rate in recent years. No wonder the original intent of Barack Obama’s ‘Civilian National Security Force’ is now being interpreted with whole new meaning.
Despite an economy that remains sluggish at best, the DHS shopping list has been interesting to some and distressing to others. In particular, ammo shortages in both the civilian market, as well as vast regions of local law enforcement (LE) sectors have raised questions about the activity of DHS purchases of what appear to be large quantities of ammunition. Combine this with the President’s focus on gun control rather than any real pressing concern about the economy and it is easy to see the problem. Is DHS stockpiling ammunition? Some say yes. Some say no. Are accusations against DHS as a threat to the homeland an unsubstantiated myth or are recent reports that defend DHS, a misdirect?
Federal non-military agencies have bought two billion rounds of ammunition in the last 10 months.
In the article, Stilson refers to a letter sent to Senator Coburn (R-OK) from the Department of Homeland Security that backs the DHS narrative. The letter lists seven departments under the umbrella of DHS, they are:
- CBP = U.S. Customs and Border Protrol
- FLETC = Federal Law Enforcement Training Center
- NPPD/FPS = National Protection and Programs Directorate/Federal Protective Service
- ICE = U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement
- TSA = Transportation Security Administration
- USCG = U.S. Coast Guard
- USSS = U.S. Secret Service
Fine, but why aren’t the Social Security Administration (SSN)
and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) listed. After all, SSN solicited a request on 7 August for 174,000 rounds, but any actual contract award remains to be seen. In fact, DHS insists that SSN and NOAA must also maintain firearms readiness and that as Federal Officers, these agents could also come under attack in the course of their duties. Ok, can someone please tell me of an incident when anyone working for the SSN department has ever had to use a firearm in the course of carrying out their duty? That being said, if these two agencies are not listed because contracts have not yet been awarded for the current year, then surely previous years must reveal some kind of history?
Next, take a look at the approximate number of rounds that DHS and its component agencies have used for training and operational purposes during the past three fiscal years.
Notice the USCG has a quota of 28,853,241 rounds for both training and operational purposes from FY 2010 thru FY 2012 and their duties are as follows:
- Ports, waterways, & coastal security
- Search and rescue
- Drug interdiction
- Marine safety
- Aids to navigation
- Migrant interdiction
- Living marine resources
- Ice operations
- Defense readiness
- Marine environmental protection
- Defense readiness
- Other law enforcement
It appears that the USCG certainly can use some fire power, outside of the ships resources. Yet, with all the duties USCG faces, it is the only agency whose ammo allotment is supposedly not included under DHS. In a Military Times article, published by Andrew Tuohy on 15 March 2013, general confusion is addressed in reference to an Inforwars article that refers to a “750 million round purchase” link to a PDF that contains line items which add up to only 63,256,000 rounds. DHS spokesperson Marsha Catron clearly states,
This contract is intended to be used by all DHS components, except the U.S. Coast Guard, who uses U.S. Department of Defense ammo contracts.
Add to that the voice of Perry Chiaramonte, 29 March 2013, FoxNews.com,
During the fiscal year 2012, DHS purchased nearly 94 million rounds of ammo for use across the department except for the U.S. Coast Guard.
Well and fine, if the Department of Defense (DOD) covers the USCG, no problem. Then why in the letter that Senator Coburn received from the Department of Homeland Security do we see the USCG as included for FY 2010, FY 2011, FY 2012 and budget estimates for FY 2013?
Next lets take a quick look at the numbers. Lets add all the DHS ammo purchases from FY 2010 – FY 2012, the graph was too large to fit so the link is provided here:
148,314,825 + 108,664,054 + 103,178,200 = (360,157,079) Now subtract – 263,733,362 The Total Remaining Inventory
Total Ammo Used = 96,423,717 between all DHS departments from FY 2010 – FY 2012?
So DHS used approximately .27% of the number of rounds purchased from FY 2010 – FY 2012. That also means from FY 2010 – FY 2012 DHS had a surplus of .73% remaining in its inventory. Yet, they want $37,263,698 more for ammo purchases for FY 2013?
Now that is not a 1.6 to 2 billion ammo dump, but it is a nice little pile of bullets, which I would be fine with except for the fact that,
60,000 federal employees responsible for securing the nation’s borders and facilitating trade will be furloughed for as many as 14 days starting next month because of $85 billion in cross-government spending cuts. Todd Beamon, 07 Mar 2013, http://www.newsmax.com
Using the sequester as an excuse, Janet Napolitano of Homeland Security warned that wait times at Customs would most likely increase anywhere from 150 to 200 percent. The release of 2,000 illegal aliens held in local jails was almost immediate with a plan to release 3000 more to save money. So lets get this straight, to the Obama administration, bullets for (training ?) purposes are more important then paychecks for the men and women who risk their lives to secure our borders? The border that we share with Mexico is one of the most troublesome borders in the world!
This email was forwarded to Townhall.com, it was originally sent to Border Patrol agents stationed in the El Centro border sector by a supervisor:
Due to budget concerns and ammunition availability, we will not be getting issued any proficiency ammunition for next quarter. In addition to these reductions, we are also being limited to qualification ammo only. What this means to you is that you will not receive the normal 150 rounds for practice and we will not have any extra ammunition for a combat course following normal qualifications.
If you have the ammunition available and would like extra practice during your qualification day, the firearms instructors will have a training course available for Indio Station Personnel, keeping in mind basic marksmanship skills as well as tactical training with a limited amount of ammunition. You are not required to bring your own ammunition.
If you do not have extra ammo to bring, you will be given extra time to clean and maintain your issued handgun as well as station long arms.
If you have any questions about this quarters quals please feel free to send me your concerns.
150 rounds for training! I thought that it took at least 1000 rounds a year minimum for each agent to maintain standards!
DHS is a massive umbrella agency, with over 100,000 armed law enforcement personnel according to a DHS spokesperson. If we divide 90 million by 100,000, that means each agent gets 900 rounds per year to shoot. That isn’t a whole lot, considering that civilians going through handgun training courses sometimes shoot twice as many rounds – in a single weekend.
The Department of Homeland Security is not stockpiling ammunition for use against American citizens, nor are they buying excessive amounts of ammunition. If anything, I believe that 1000 rounds per year is not sufficient to maintain a high level of proficiency with a duty weapon. Andrew Tuohy, 03-15-2013, militarytimes.com
Furthermore, according to the letter that Senator Coburn received from DHS,
Approximately 70 percent of CBP ammunition is used for quarterly qualifications, mandated firearms training, advanced firearms training, as well as testing and evaluation. Twenty percent of CBP ammunition is allocated to maintaining CBP’s operational posture. This includes rounds for duty use, as well as for maintaining CBP’s special response teams. The remaining 10 percent is dedicated to maintaining ammunition reserves at both the national and local levels.
So lets do the math again with what we know from the letter that Senator Coburn received from DHS.
CBP ammo purchased from FY 2010 – FY2012
66,248,000 + 48,461,000 + 36,475,000 = 151,184,000
So total ammo purchased for CBP for FY 2010, FY 2011 and FY 2012 was 151,184,000. With .70% set aside for quarterly qualifications, mandated firearms training, advanced firearms training, as well as testing and evaluation, that means from FY 2010 – FY 2012, CBP had approximately 105,828,800 bullets for these purposes.
Yet from FY 2010 – FY 2012 CBP actually used for training and qualification purposes: 42,616,129 + 33,380,176 + 23,358,285 = 99,354,590
Okie, dokie – 99,354,590 is approximately .66% of the 151,184.000 rounds ordered for CBP for those three years. The letter to Senator Coburn does grant .70% for that purpose, so if they can do it in .66% all well and good, this also gives a .04% margin surplus – bravo!
Now for CBP operational purposes from FY 2010, FY 2011 and FY 2012, we have 13,888,595 + 13,830,548 + 14,550,803 = 42,269,946
So Let’s take the total bullets purchased for CBP from FY 2010 – FY 2012 = (151,184.000) and subtract total bullets used for training & qualification purposes from FY 2010 – FY 2012 = (99,354,590), then again subtract total bullets used for operational purposes from FY 2010 – FY 2012 = (42,269,946)
(151,184.000) – (99,354,590) – (42,269,946) = (9,559,464)
From FY 2010 – FY 2012 CBP shows a surplus of (9,559,464) remaining bullets! However, CBP is currently listing an inventory of 94,404,329 rounds and we know that number cannot possibly come from just the last three years. This begs the question, what was CBP ammo usage in prior years? In particular how does CBP ammo needs and surplus reflect in comparison with the Bush administration from the time DHS came into existence. A 94,404,329 inventory that cannot be accounted for by the math present should be explained. This is just one component of the Department of Homeland Security, how about the others?
Next lets consider the variety of ammo requested and purchased. Why does the Department of Homeland Security need crew-served machine-gun ammo? I am no expert on firearms and ammunition, but I did spend ten years in the military and as a result, came across a firearm from time to time. So when I saw .50 cal (BMG) and 7.62mm X 51 (standard NATO) M-60 Machine-Gun ammo listed, I had to wonder…Well that certainly would explain the need for a large number of bullets, as these babies will go through supplies in no time. Then again the need for more targets to replace the ones that get blown away in the first few rounds, more money, more bang-em-up-fun. It really would be good if a weapons expert, often found on forums like calguns.net, would take a look at some of these orders, as well as confirmed contracts and report back.
That the National Rifle Association (NRA) and the National Review stand behind DHS is a good sign. Yet, I still recommend that a firearms expert review these contracts. For now, it is pretty safe to conclude that mountains of bullets are not being set aside to kill American citizens, nor have I at any time, said they were. However, I do not give DHS a free pass and will continue to monitor the total picture of their activities and acquisitions. I am not against the Department of Homeland Security, but it is good to remember that DHS is basically a collective militarized national police force that is directed inward. This organization transcends any one Presidential administration and it has the potential to take on a life of its own. I will admit right now that I do not trust it in the hands of Barack Obama.
Now lets get to the issue of ammo shortages. Sure, when supply does not meet demand, some people will take advantage of the situation and make the problem worse, but that excuse can only go so far. It certainly does not explain why city, county and state law enforcements (LE) agencies are also having such a difficult time obtaining their own supplies. However, this audio recording from the Michael Savage Show, which aired on February 14, 2013 does!!
A US-based weapons manufacturer and defense contractor recently confirmed that this is, in fact, part of a broader gun control plan.
Following is the transcript:
What Homeland Security is doing here is they’re issuing a contract to buy up to that amount of ammo if they want it…
It’s a way to control the amount of ammunition that’s available on the commercial market at any time.
If they go to the ammo manufacturers and say give me 50 million rounds, give me another 30 million rounds… if they periodically do this in increments, they’re going to control how much ammo is available on the commercial market.
As part of their contract it stipulates in there that when the government calls and says give us another quantity, that everything they make has to go to the government priority one before any of it goes to the commercial market.
So, if they get nervous, all they have to do is use that contract that they have in place… and they just say ‘give us some more.’
In the contracting world it’s called an IDIQ contract… Indefinite Delivery, Indefinite Quantity… By issuing these contracts the government gets priority. All they have to do is call up…
In fact, the ATF and the State Department, they’re kind of jerking around with the importation of it too, so they’re making it difficult for it to come in from overseas.
Right now, all the domestic manufacturers are running at full speed. They’re running three shifts, they’re cranking it out as fast as they can.
Supply cannot keep up with demand.
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