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Machine Gun Fire From Military Helicopters Flying Over Downtown Miami 1130

Okian Warrior writes with word that, as of Monday evening, multiple police agencies and the military were "conducting training exercises over Miami and elsewhere in the county. The exercise includes military helicopters firing machine-gun blanks while flying over highways and buildings. This YouTube video shows helicopters strafing highways with blank rounds near the Adrian Arts center. There are reports of similar actions in Houston From the Houston article: 'if you see the helicopters or hear gunfire, it's only a drill.'" Note: this time, it's not in The Onion.
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Machine Gun Fire From Military Helicopters Flying Over Downtown Miami

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  • Don't Worry (Score:4, Insightful)

    by PlusFiveTroll ( 754249 ) on Tuesday January 29, 2013 @09:52AM (#42725109) Homepage

    Don't worry, we're the government, we're here to help.

    Private Joker: How can you shoot women or children?
    Door Gunner: Easy! Ya just don't lead 'em so much!

  • Really? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 29, 2013 @09:53AM (#42725115)

    Who the hell thought this was a good idea?

    • They were going to hold the exercises at a military base, but when they heard they could be TV stars on the season finale of Burn Notice, well they just couldn't turn down such an opportunity.

  • waste of money (Score:4, Insightful)

    by C0R1D4N ( 970153 ) on Tuesday January 29, 2013 @09:56AM (#42725151)
    Right, lets waste money prepping for Red Dawn. The US has not been at risk of invasion for two centuries.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by SJHillman ( 1966756 )

      We haven't been at risk even though we were invaded in the 1940's?
      Granted, it was a remote part of Alaska, but it's still enemy troops on our soil.

      A Soviet invasion was also not that far out of the questions in the decades following WWII either.

      • A Soviet invasion was also not that far out of the questions in the decades following WWII either.

        Only if you consider an alien invasion not too far out of the question. The Soviets never really had any significant long range sealift or logistics capability*, or the aircraft carrier capability to provide the cover and support such an invasion would require.

        * They pretty much had just enough to support a proxy war so long as they had access to an unopposed port (I.E. Haiphong), and that's about it.

      • Not so much because of the military, but because of the 2nd amendment. There are a ton, like 300 million, firearms in civilian hands in the US. What's more, many of these aren't little .25 purse guns, or break action hunting shotguns, they are weapons with military value. As many people have cried about in the press recently, AR-15 variants are quite popular, but they are hardly the only ones.

        Well, that makes for a rather bitch of a civilian resistance to overcome. An external invader is going to be pretty

    • Ever hear of the Zimmerman Letter? [wikipedia.org]

  • by bhartman34 ( 886109 ) on Tuesday January 29, 2013 @09:57AM (#42725155)
    Okay, so you have helicopters buzzing around and strafing highways with blanks in Die Hard-esque fashion, in highly populated areas.

    Oh, yeah. Nothing could possibly go wrong there, right?
  • by alen ( 225700 ) on Tuesday January 29, 2013 @09:57AM (#42725163)

    if you watch the video, RTFA, the trailblazers were in town. the cops were just shooting their fans

  • by lemur3 ( 997863 ) on Tuesday January 29, 2013 @10:00AM (#42725179)

    This reminds me of the 2004 incident where the bullets were live.

    somehow the pilot was miles off course when he started shooting...

    http://www.nytimes.com/2004/11/05/nyregion/05strafe.html [nytimes.com]

    The Air National Guard warplane, flying a night training mission out of Andrews Air Force Base near Washington, fired a burst of 27 rounds from its 20-millimeter cannon shortly before 10:15 p.m. as it streaked over Little Egg Harbor Township, 20 miles north of Atlantic City, New Jersey military officials said last night

  • by VinylRecords ( 1292374 ) on Tuesday January 29, 2013 @10:18AM (#42725409)

    Our military has enormous lands throughout the U.S. including large areas of forest and desert and even uninhabited towns and cities built specifically for training exercises. The government was building lots of little makeshift towns just to blow them up with nuclear weapons during the cold war. You can find lots of videos of the government testing bombs in massive stretches of the desert. I've taken weapons training on SWAT courses that are like little ghost towns where the instructors have makeshift bridged built all over the course where they can walk above you and take notes on where you messed up something.

    It's one thing to have military planes fly over civilian airspace. You have to test these planes traveling for hundreds of miles so of course they'll eventually have to fly over some commercial airspace. Or to have security training exercises be done and rehearsed at an event before it happens. Like the security teams that are not rehearsing the Super Bowl security at the actual stadium. But low flying helicopters? Shooting blanks at civilians and civilian vehicles? What possible reason could there be for that?

    What's next? Armed soldiers patrolling the streets shooting blanks at people on the sidewalk? Why not? It's a perfectly safe exercise that won't cause panic at all.

    "Hey it's just a training exercise...now put that cellphone camera down or we'll have to detain you. Now go home and watch American Gladiators and go back to bed".

    Imagine the fun it's going to be when armed soldiers start firing blanks and some civilian has no idea what is going on and fires back. Or when people start panicking and cause a riot. I'm all for keeping a well trained military....but using our own people as the targets? What kind of self respecting soldier went on this mission without protesting it?

    • Well, the TSA tries the 'FREEZE' tactic in ariports. It sure feels like obedience training.

    • by thepike ( 1781582 ) on Tuesday January 29, 2013 @12:24PM (#42727187)
      If it brings back American Gladiators I might have to allow it
  • by fafaforza ( 248976 ) on Tuesday January 29, 2013 @10:22AM (#42725463)

    what is the point of this? Does the guy with the gun not know what will happen when he pulls the trigger, or not know how to aim? I'm sure they have target practice So why do this in public, without notifying everyone ahead of time? To scare some old timers into cardiac arrest? To force some return fire?

    This is just so bizarre.

  • For the folks who have always believed in Trilateral Commission, who had seen UN insignia wearing officers in Oklahoma city bombing scene and among the wreckage inspectors of WTC, who had seen Chinese character instructions at the back of highway signs, the government + UN conspiracy to subdue the local population after disarming them, especially for the people who believed in black helicopters, Christmas came a little late. Enjoy the gifts folks.
  • by funkboy ( 71672 ) on Tuesday January 29, 2013 @11:27AM (#42726317) Homepage

    Did any of the news organizations offering this reactionary reporting actually check with the local authorities to see if the helicopters were being used in for a movie shoot?

Forty two.