Military Police


Military Police contains information about military police functions in maneuver and mobility support, area security, law and order, internment/resettlement, and police intelligence operations.

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29 Spring 2016 By Lieutenant Colonel Matthew A. Mertz T he terrorist attacks on 11 September 2001 signif- cantly changed the priorities of the U.S. Border Pa- trol (USBP) due to a renewed focus on immigration enforcement. 1 In 2003, USBP became part of the newly es- tablished Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which was tasked with securing the Nation's borders. In 2004, USBP issued its frst strategic guidance as a DHS component. The resource-based guidance was designed to apply resources to border areas that were identifed as pri- orities. 2 This strategy continued through 2010. During this time, USBP experienced growth in manpower and resources and expanded its operational partners outside the DHS to the Army Natiional Guard. 3 Before 11 September 2001, the USBP had 8,619 agents assigned to the southwest border of the United States. That number has more than doubled and continues to grow today. In addition to the enormous person- nel growth, the agency has increased its operational capa- bilities and capacity by adding extra border fencing, under- ground sensors, aircraft, unmanned aerial systems, water vessels, mobile surveillance systems, and remote video sur- veillance systems. 4 In the last 15 years, during the William J. (Bill) Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack H. Obama presidencies, the U.S. government invested more resources in USBP than during any other time in the Nation's history. Using the resource-based strategy, USBP experienced great success in reducing the number of illegal immigrants. However, the strategy did not address the source of the problem, and when Chief Michael J. Fisher took command of the USBP in 2010, he shifted the strategy to a risk-based approach. 5 The shift was made as a result of the changing operational environment in which USBP agents worked. Lately, transnational criminal organizations have become more sophisticated and elusive. USBP agents can no longer apply additional resources and boots on the ground to com- bat an enemy that is agile and intelligent. 6 Chief Fisher's new strategy contained two goals: • Goal 1. Secure the Nation's borders through the applica- tion of information, integration, and rapid response. • Goal 2. Strengthen USBP through an investment in the workforce and expansion of organization capabilities, in- cluding personnel. 7 USBP recognized that adopting a doctrinal approach to planning was required as the agency continued to ma- ture and grow in the 21st Century. 8 To establish the risk- based approach strategy, the USBP developed a three-prong design: • Threats, targets, and operations. • Intelligence preparation of the operational environment. • USBP planning process. The three prongs were developed from numerous previ- ously established sources, but were mostly by the Department of Defense (DOD). 9 USBP agents are required to complete the Border Patrol Academy, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, before as- signment to a USBP station. It takes 66 days to complete the academy, which encompasses immigration and nationality law; statutory and criminal law; USBP operations; frearms care and use; physical training; motor vehicle operation; antiterrorism training; Spanish language courses; and the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center course on ethics, report writing, computers, fngerprinting, and U.S. Consti- tutional Law. 10 If a USBP agent is selected for a frst-line supervisory role, he or she is also required to attend super- visory leadership training and the USBP technical training class—each 2-week courses—in addition to the Border Pa- trol Academy. Agents learn about their next higher positions through on-the-job training or mentorship by senior agents as opposed to an academic environment. 11 To build on the USBP planning culture foundation, CGSC interagency fellows perform a 1-year tour of duty with the USBP headquarters. These Army fellows serve as fully integrated USBP staff offcers, flling positions while senior USBP agents attend CGSC. While assigned to the USBP headquarters, Army fellows employ their talents in the military decisionmaking process to assist the USBP and learn the dynamics of an interagency environment. Army fellows directly contributed to the development of the USBP planning process manual, which is the doctrinal foundation of USBP operational planning. The efforts provided by the Army fellows signifcantly contributed to Chief Fisher's frst strategic goal to secure the Nation's borders through the ap- plication of information, integration, and rapid response. In an effort to meet the second strategic goal of strength- ening USBP through an investment in the workforce and expansion of organization capabilities, agents attend cours- es offered by the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College (CGSC). 12 CGSC has provided senior USBP agents with the necessary skills in campaign planning, leadership, critical thinking, problem solving, and operations to perform their duties in a complex operating environment when they return to the feld. These agents also pass along lessons learned at CGSC to subordinates to establish basic planning

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