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NCJ Number: 165860 Find in a Library
Title: Street Gangs: Future Paramilitary Groups?
Journal: Police Chief  Volume:63  Issue:6  Dated:(June 1996)  Pages:54-59
Author(s): R J Bunker
Date Published: 1996
Page Count: 6
Type: Issue Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Although street gangs do not fit the stereotypical terrorist group's commitment to planned violence in order to achieve a political end, they do perpetrate violence and terror in their communities in an effort to dominate the community's social organization and supplant a community life based in democratic values and dominant social values reflected in law.
Abstract: Major Ralph Peters, U.S. Army, who is responsible for evaluating emerging threats for the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Intelligence, has identified a threat he calls "The New Warrior Class." This is a new form of soldier with no allegiance to the nation-state. Such a soldier operates in subnational groups such as armed bands, private armies, crime networks, and terrorist organizations. Debate in professional U.S. military and affiliated journals over the past two years has dealt with concerns that this new form of soldier may be developing within the United States. Of all the domestic concerns related to street gangs, probably the one that should be most closely watched is the interrelationship of street gangs to the U.S. military. Street gang members with military training would bring a whole new dimension to law enforcement's struggle with these criminal groups. This article cites anecdotal incidents that suggest gang members both bring their gang orientation into the military and use their military training in gang life after discharge from the military. Law enforcement officials and scholars must begin to establish closer ties to their counterparts in military and national security studies to develop a coordinated monitoring of street gangs to ensure that the new form of soldier is not allowed to function in the Nation's neighborhoods. 17 notes
Main Term(s): Gangs
Index Term(s): Domestic terrorism; Juvenile gang behavior patterns
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