Figure 7-A.



Army forces may conduct missions in direct support of US federal, state, or local law enforcement agencies. Counterdrug, civil disturbance, and terrorism operations are missions that typically require such support. This chapter addresses the tasks necessary to plan for and provide this support.


Army support to the counterdrug effort requires the sustained commitment of trained and equipped soldiers.

Directives from the President, Congress, and the DOD have resulted in an expanded role for military forces in attacking illegal drugs in every phase of their flow: at the source, in transit, and in the US.

While this manual focuses on Army domestic counterdrug support and operations, a major portion of the DOD and Army counterdrug effort is conducted OCONUS, particularly in Central America and South America under the supervision of the CINC US Southern Command (USSOUTHCOM). The Department of State has primary oversight responsibilities for all support provided OCONUS. The CONUS Drug Law Enforcement System is depicted at Figure 7-1.


Military support to the national counterdrug effort requires sustained deployment of appropriately trained and equipped members of the armed forces. The effort also requires continuing cooperation and coordination among the military and federal, state, and local drug law enforcement agencies (DLEAs).

The DOD counterdrug support organization that receives and validates requests from LEAs and considers the actual resources to support those requests is illustrated at Figure 7-2.

The Army's counterdrug support program includes operational support provided by active and reserve component forces and nonoperational support such as the provision (loan or transfer) of military equipment and facilities and training in formal schools.

Figure 7-1. CONUS Drug Law Enforcement System

The Army also plans and executes programs to reduce demand for illegal drugs. The Army executes its counterdrug missions with the same dedication, skill, and professionalism that it applies to all national security missions. The Army's organization for counterdrug support is illustrated in Figure 7-3.


The Army conducts counterdrug support operations that generally fall within 11 DOD counterdrug mission categories. A critical factor in the program is that the Army provides support, rather than taking a lead role or directly participating in civil law enforcement activities such as performing searches or seizures or making arrests. The DOD counterdrug mission categories are illustrated in Figure 7-4.

Figure 7-2. Present DOD Counterdrug Support Organization

Figure 7-3. Army Organization For Counterdrug Support

Detection and Monitoring

DOD is the lead agency for the detection and monitoring of the air, sea, and ground transit of illegal drugs bound for the US. The Army supports these missions with ocean-based aerostats, land-based aerostats, land-based radars (such as air defense radars), and OCONUS reconnaissance and surveillance activities. Responsibility for the subsequent interdiction (arrest and seizure) of suspects and contraband remains with LEAs.

On 20 May 1991, a California National Guard counterdrug task force in Oakland, CA, was assisting the US Customs Service in inspecting warehouse cargo. While examining plastic produce bags from Taiwan, a task force member noticed inconsistencies in packaging and weight. A thorough examination of the complete shipment uncovered high-grade Southeast Asian heroin. The nearly 1100 pounds, the largest seizure in US history, reportedly had a wholesale value of more than $2 billion.

Command, Control, Communication, and Computers

Army personnel and equipment may assist LEAs in designing, implementing, and integrating C4 systems. Army personnel support national and departmental drug operations and LEA analytical centers. In addition, the Army provides liaison to LEAs to facilitate the smooth and successful integration of military support.


The DA Deputy Chief of Staff for Intelligence (DCSINT), establishes policy for use of Army intelligence personnel or material. The DCSINT receives approval of policy statements and guidelines from the Secretary of the Army General Counsel. Commanders should ensure all use of Army intelligence personnel or material is in accordance with established policy and guidelines coordinated through the DCSINT and approved by the Secretary of the Army General Counsel.

Army personnel can provide multidiscipline support to joint task force intelligence organizations or to individual drug enforcement agencies. Types of support normally provided are basic and advanced techniques used in the intelligence-preparation-of-the battlefield process; linguists to translate counterdrug materials; and imagery collection, processing, and analysis. Also, the Army provides and participates in LEA intelligence training to facilitate an understanding of the military capabilities and support relationships.

Commanders must ensure that Army personnel are aware of and comply with legal and policy restrictions. Military personnel performing domestic counterdrug support duties are generally prohibited from collecting information on specific individuals. The supported LEA must retain data processed by intelligence augmenters. Army personnel will not maintain or store gathered counterdrug information files on specific individuals in military facilities or data bases. Additionally, Army intelligence personnel can provide assistance to LEAs by providing operations security (OPSEC) evaluations and training.

Commanders and analysts must ensure that Army personnel comply with legal and policy restrictions.


Planning support consists of planning and coordinating counterdrug operations, determining resource requirements, and gathering information for operations financial support. Planning support can range from assisting a multiagency task force with developing long-range strategy, to facilitating campaign planning between LEA jurisdictions, to helping to write an operations order (OPORD) for a specific operation or mission.

Early planning is critical prior to missions using military operational support. Many LEAs are unfamiliar with military capabilities and limitations. Therefore, early coordination and liaison are vital to ensure maximum effectiveness of joint military-LEA efforts. Because military and law enforcement communications systems are often incompatible, extensive communications planning is usually required prior to conducting joint military-civilian operations.


Logistics support includes loaning equipment; providing engineering, air, and surface transportation; providing maintenance; and providing facilities. Loans and transfers of equipment are arranged through the four DOD regional logistics support offices (RLSOs). Army personnel may be tasked to provide MOS-related maintenance support on LEA equipment. Engineer operations can include construction of roads or structures, repairs, or terrain denial operations.


Military vehicles and aircraft can be used, with some legal constraints, to transport personnel, cargo, or equipment. If evidence, seized property, or contraband is transported, a law enforcement officer must be present at all times to maintain the chain of custody. Precautions must be taken to ensure that Army aircraft and personnel are not placed in situations where they are likely to be fired upon.


Army personnel may be tasked to train LEAs. This will often involve the use of mobile training teams (MTTs). As their title suggests, MTTs provide military trainers to instruct LEAs on-site. Subjects trained may include common soldier skills (especially field craft), planning, analysis, maintenance, languages, and physical security. For example, military police can provide training in counterdrug, civil disturbance, terrorism, and mass immigration operations.

In fiscal year 1991, DOD trained 1471 military personnel and 253 police personnel, primarily in riverine operations, operational missions planning, intelligence management, communications planning and support, and civic action.

DOD continues to be the government leader in drug testing. The department certifies the operations of nine DOD and two civilian drug-testing labs.

Figure 7-4. DOD Counterdrug Mission Categories


Commanders may support LEAs by providing soldiers to conduct militaryspecific tasks that would otherwise require civilian law enforcement personnel. Law enforcement officers freed from this requirement can devote their efforts to arresting growers or collecting evidence.

Soldiers may also provide clerical and administrative support. National Guard personnel in state status may be used to assist the US Customs Service with inspections of cargo, vehicles, vessels, aircraft, baggage, and/or mail at ports of entry.

On 28 October 1991, combat divers from the 3rd Battalion, 20th Special Forces Group, conducting ship-bottom inspections in support of the US Customs in Florida, discovered an unusual package behind an intake grate of a 600-foot banana freighter from Turbo, Colombia. The divers ascertained that the package and grate were not booby-trapped and assisted customs agents in its recovery. Customs inspection revealed 75 pounds of cocaine packaged in an exceptionally waterproofed container.

Army personnel may also provide military skills such as diver, EOD, linguist, dog team, and chemical support. Divers may visually inspect subsurface hulls of vessels but may not enter, search, or alter them. EOD teams can be called on to disarm explosive booby traps placed to protect contraband or equipment. Linguists may be used to translate documents or taped conversations. They may not conduct real-time translations of wire or oral intercepts.

Army forces may provide military dog teams to assist LEAs in detecting illegal drugs and contraband. Chemical liaison teams can advise on the use of defoliants and identification of drug-producing hazardous chemicals.

Research, Development, and Acquisition

The Army Counterdrug RDA Office provides technical liaison between the Army development community and the counterdrug community. The purpose of the office is to define technical requirements and facilitate technical transfer within the counterdrug community. The efforts of the Army counterdrug RDA office help to provide LEAs access to new and emerging technologies and equipment. This office may also assist LEAs with contracting and procurement.

Demand Reduction

Prevention or reduction of drug abuse requires a combination of education, deterrence, and treatment or rehabilitation. Drug abuse awareness education includes programs for all the DOD schools and DOD civilian personnel. Also, to the maximum extent possible, the DOD provides drug education assistance programs to local community organizations. Drug deterrence for DOD personnel is provided through scheduled and random urinalysis testing. The DOD treatment and rehabilitation program is designed to diagnose, treat, and return to full productivity as many people as possible.

Land Reconnaissance

While reconnaissance is an essential aspect of the DOD detection and monitoring mission, land reconnaissance refers specifically to support provided to US LEAs inside the US. This distinction is made due to legal and policy restrictions concerning the use of the military within our borders.

Army forces may execute a variety of aerial-based and land-based counterdrug reconnaissance missions. These can include the use of fixed wing aircraft, rotary wing aircraft, and unmanned aerial vehicles. Groundbased reconnaissance operations can be accomplished through establishing listening posts and observation posts, on foot or mounted patrols, operation of ground surveillance or air defense radars, and the emplacement and monitoring of remote sensors. Thermal images and other night vision devices may be used to conduct these missions.

US Army, Pacific and Hawaii Army National Guard soldiers combined to provide support to Hawaii and federal DLEAs during Operation Wipeout in the early 1990s. Working together, these forces succeeded in eliminating more than 90 percent of Hawaii's visible marijuana crop, valued at more than $6 billion.


Law enforcement agencies may request support through either the state National Guard counterdrug coordinator, the appropriate CONUSA, the FORSCOM counterdrug support cell, the National Guard Bureau counterdrug task force, or the DOD coordinator for drug enforcement policy and support. The preferred method for requesting support is through the state NG counterdrug coordinator. If the NG is unable to provide support, the request will be passed to the appropriate CONUSA. Requests for CONUS military counterdrug operational support are illustrated in Figure 7-5.

Figure 7-5. Requests for Military Domestic Counterdrug Operational Support


Within the United States, the National Guard is the primary source of military support to federal, state, and local LEAs. Support is also provided to LEAs by both USAR and active duty units. This Army support to counterdrug operations is another aspect of the Army's traditional role of providing military support to civil authorities. Army National Guard forces execute these missions under control of the governor, while USAR and active duty units operate under the control of a regional joint task force, for example, JTF 6 in the US southwest, or in support of a CONUSA.

Each state or territory has a National Guard counterdrug coordinator to receive LEA requests for support and coordinate the execution of support as directed by the state adjutant general (or commanding general). Army National Guard counterdrug operations are conducted in accordance with state law and applicable National Guard regulations. Drug interdiction and eradication operations are conducted in all 54 states and territories. In fiscal year 1992, the National Guard helped confiscate drugs with a street value of $69 billion.

The National Guard has categorized its support into 16 missions (approved by SECDEF) that are essentially subdivisions of the eleven DOD categories. These missions are depicted in Figure 7-6.

Coordination Requirements

The Joint Staff reviews all DOD operational support requests and the Secretary of Defense or delegatee approves them. The CINCFOR coordinates counterdrug land operations in CONUS. Figure 7-7 illustrates the counterdrug operational support approval process.

Nonoperational Support Requests

In accordance with current DOD policy and service regulations, the appropriate regional logistics support office will process LEA requests for equipment, facilities, and formal school training. The Director of Operations, Readiness, and Mobilization, in coordination with the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Installations, Logistics, and Environment, administers such actions for the Department of the Army.



Whenever possible, Army support will be packaged to provide a complete stand-alone capability. Units tasked with providing counterdrug support should perform a mission analysis to ensure the requested forces or capabilities are sufficient to meet requirements.


Planning for a counterdrug support mission entails the same decisionmaking process as any other military operation. The conduct of counterdrug operations should be consistent with Army doctrine. Unlike combat operations where the massing of firepower is appropriate, however, the guiding principle for Army personnel during counterdrug operations is to avoid contact and use minimum necessary force.

Leaders at the lowest echelons will perform troop-leading procedures and analysis based on the factors of METT-T. Leaders at higher echelons will perform command and staff estimates. To the greatest extent possible, estimates should be coordinated with the supported LEA.


In developing a threat estimate, the military counterdrug planner may have to rely heavily upon law enforcement sources for information. IPB should be performed before each mission but must be modified to account for less predictable drug traffickers, rather than for a doctrinally rigid threat. Also, planners must consider legal as well as tactical aspects when developing courses of action.

Legal constraints are a major concern in planning counterdrug missions.


Legal constraints constitute a major concern during counterdrug mission planning. Use of military support may require special procedures to ensure that legal proceedings resulting from joint military-LEA counterdrug operations can be effectively prosecuted in court. Counterdrug plans should be reviewed by a staff judge advocate. The supported LEA is responsible for obtaining any required warrants or determining instances in which warrants are not required.


Rules of engagement (ROE) and use-of-force policies will usually be detailed and restricted by US law. Soldiers conducting counterdrug support missions must be familiar with and completely understand the ROE. Commanders routinely provide a precommitment briefing outlining the mission, legal considerations, and ROE to soldiers engaging in counterdrug operations.


OPSEC during counterdrug support operations cannot be overemphasized. The mere appearance of military personnel or strangers in an area can cause drug traffickers to alter or delay their activities. Planners must identify security vulnerabilities and implement measures to protect weaknesses. Commanders must take steps to preserve counterdrug force intentions and capabilities.


Command and control relationships must be clearly established. The relationship between a military unit providing counterdrug support and the supported LEA is similar to a unit providing direct support (DS) and a supported unit. However, the military chain of command must always be maintained. US soldiers will not be placed under the command of law enforcement officers.

Figure 7-6. National Guard Counterdrug Support Categories

Figure 7-7. Counterdrug Operational Support Approval Process

On 15 December 1992, members of the Oregon National Guard (ORNG) Counterdrug Support Program assisted the DEA, BATF, US marshals, and two IRS criminal investigation divisions in executing a search warrant in Hermiston, Oregon. With the support of the ORNG, the agencies seized a number of fully automatic weapons, 42 other weapons, and more than 3000 rounds of ammunition, including .50-caliber armor-piercing rounds.

LEA arrested four individuals and seized illegal drugs, $115,000 cash, a 48-foot yacht, eight vehicles, military explosives, grenades, and booby traps.

From 1 to 19 June 1991, the New York National Guard counterdrug program was responsible for seizing $24,589,110 in illegal drugs and $3,192,106 worth of cash and travelers checks.


Communications plans must be detailed. Since military and civilian systems are often incompatible, military and supported LEA communications planners must coordinate as early as possible.


The lead for public affairs rests with the supported LEA. Army public affairs officers will coordinate any release of information with the supported LEA. Commanders should ensure their public affairs officers are included in the planning process for all counterdrug operations. Unwanted disclosure of operations by the media can render a plan ineffective. It can also negate the favorable results of an operation such as arrests and seizures.

A good public affairs plan can minimize these risks by providing the media with only the information the operational commander wishes to release. A good public affairs plan will serve the public's right to know while minimizing risk through effective security at the source and OPSEC awareness. The identity of soldiers providing counterdrug support will not be released to the media.


Commanders should perform a risk assessment prior to the deployment of troops. Threat awareness and risk assessments are a critical part of counterdrug planning. While soldiers should not be placed in situations where they will likely be fired upon or come into direct contact with suspected drug traffickers, such a possibility always exists. Units and soldiers may face an armed adversary. They should be prepared for actions related to combat, even when conducting training or other noncombat operations. Commanders should also be aware of the chemical hazards associated with drug production.


Civil disturbances may range from unruly demonstrations to widespread rioting with looting and arson. In extreme cases, civil disturbances may include criminal acts of terrorism and violence. Civil disturbances in any form are prejudicial to public law and order. The Army has a role in assisting civil authorities to restore law and order when local and state law enforcement agencies are unable to quell civil disturbances.


The National Guard, as a state organization, responds to the governor in accordance with state law for civil disturbance operations. National Guard regulations direct planning and training for the civil disturbance mission. During most civil disturbance situations, the National Guard will be the first military responder and will usually remain in state active duty status throughout the operation. The National Guard can be brought on federal service for civil disturbance operations when so ordered under appropriate federal statute by the President. This will normally be done at the request of the state governor.

The LA riots of 1992 were unquestionably the most costly civil disturbance in US history ($800 million plus). At 2230 on 29 April 1992, as part of the response to this disorder, the 3d Battalion, 160th Infantry (Mechanized), 40th Infantry Division, California National Guard, was ordered to mobilize. Between 2100 and 2400 the following day, all 3d Battalion companies deployed to their assigned areas. It was the first tactical battalion to be mobilized, the first to deploy to the streets of LA, and the last to redeploy.

The role of federal Army forces is to assist civil authorities in restoring law and order when the magnitude of the disturbance exceeds the capabilities of local and state law enforcement agencies, including the National Guard. Under the provisions of the Constitution and selected federal statutes, the President may order the employment of the federal armed forces to aid local and state civil authorities to protect the Constitutional rights of citizens. Federal military forces may also protect federal facilities and installations in any state, territory, or possession. The Department of the Army civil disturbance plan, nicknamed GARDEN PLOT, provides direction for Army forces directed to quell civil disturbances.


Requests for federal military assistance normally originate with the state and are forwarded to the President of the United States. The Attorney General is responsible for coordinating and managing all requests for federal military assistance for civil disturbance operations. The Attorney General advises the President whether and when to commit federal military forces. The President orders the employment of federal military forces in domestic civil disturbance operations.

The Attorney General, as the head of the lead federal agency responsible for law enforcement, will appoint a senior civilian representative of the Attorney General (SCRAG). The SCRAG is responsible for coordinating federal civil disturbance operations and assisting the state civil authorities.

The SCRAG has the authority to assign missions to federal military forces. The SCRAG exercises this authority in coordination with the commander of the federal military forces committed to civil disturbance operations. Civilian officials remain in charge of civil disturbance operations.

The Secretary of the Army is the DOD executive agent for federal military operations in response to civil disturbances. Within the Department of the Army, the Director of Military Support coordinates the functions of all the military services when federal military assistance for civil disturbances is required. The executive agent, through DOMS, serving as a joint staff, publishes an execute order designating a supported CINC for civil disturbance operations. This execute order also designates the supporting CINCs, services, and agencies (see Figure 7-8).

The CINC will determine the organization and forces required to accomplish the civil disturbance mission. The CINC may establish a joint task force in order to make best use of the forces available for the mission.


The JTF commander exercises control of all federal military forces (including National Guard in federal status) committed to assist civil authorities. Federal military forces remain under the military chain of command during civil disturbance operations. Federal forces will not be placed under the command of either civil officials or National Guard commanders in nonfederal status. Civilian authorities retain control of their state and local law enforcement agencies. The JTF commander establishes liaison with the SCRAG and other appropriate federal, state, and local civil authorities.

Federal military forces must be tailored to the specific civil disturbance situation. Sufficient combat support and combat service support units will be required to sustain the force throughout the deployment. Coordination with civil officials may allow the force to draw on resources available from state and local agencies. Close and continuous coordination between the federal military forces and the LEAs will protect the commander the detailed information required to employ and protect the force effectively.

In supporting OPLAN GARDEN PLOT, intelligence personnel may conduct close and continuous liaison with LEAs and the military police to ensure that their units receive the information needed to allow the commander to adequately protect the force. The JTF commander should staff intelligence support missions with his senior intelligence officer and legal counsel prior to approving the mission.

Federal military forces remain under the military chain of command during civil disturbance operations.

Federal military forces must be employed in tasks or missions appropriate to their organization and training; they must not be employed in ways that violate the legal restrictions in effect. Military forces may be used to disperse unlawful assemblies and to patrol disturbed areas to prevent unlawful acts. They may be used to assist in the distribution of essential goods and the maintenance of essential services. Forces may also establish traffic control points, cordon off areas, release smoke and obscurants, and serve as security or quick-reaction forces. Certain types of missions are always inappropriate for military forces during civil disturbance operations, for example, gathering intelligence on civilians.

Requests for the conduct of specific military missions are typically passed through a single state or federal law enforcement coordinating officer, as approved by the SCRAG. Validated requests are transmitted to the JTF commander and his headquarters for staffing and coordination. Approved missions are assigned through the military chain of command to the appropriate element or unit for execution. Units and soldiers will not accept taskings or missions directly from law enforcement or civilian officials, except in a direct support relationship as approved and ordered through the military chain of command.

Figure 7-8. Decision Sequence for Law Enforcement Support

Military liaison should be provided to each LEA headquarters generating requests for support. This liaison can assist LEA officials in determining the types and quantities of military support to be requested. The JTF headquarters can facilitate this mission assignment process by providing LEAs with a detailed listing of the types of missions military forces may conduct.

A deployed unit's area of operation should coincide with the jurisdiction or subdivision boundaries of the law enforcement agency it supports. This arrangement facilitates liaison and coordination between law enforcement and military chains of command.



Antiterrorism is the term encompassing defensive measures, to include limited response and containment of a terrorist incident involving DOD personnel and facilities. Since the FBI has the lead role in most matters concerning terrorism in the US, the Army's function in AT is essentially to reduce the vulnerability of Army personnel and property to terrorist attack.

Selected Army and civilian personnel may attend established AT training courses. Additionally, Army organizations may develop memorandums of understanding with civilian agencies for mutual support in the event of a terrorist incident. Such agreements may include arrangements for firefighting or EOD support, providing assistance in site isolation, security engineering and assisting in hostage negotiation.


Counterterrorism includes means taken to prevent, deter, and respond to terrorism. Assistance provided in counterterrorism is essentially a subset of civil disturbance operations. The Federal Bureau of Investigation is the lead law enforcement agency concerning incidents of terrorism in the US. The Secretary of the Army remains the executive agent for the employment of military support.


Support provided by Army forces may include material, facilities, and personnel acting in an advisory capacity. Presidential authorization is required before military personnel can perform law enforcement functions outside the military installation. At the request of the director of the FBI or the senior FBI official at the scene of a terrorist incident, the Secretary of the Army and OCONUS CINCs may provide the FBI military resources (barrier materials, smoke and obscurants, body armor, protective masks, clothing, communications equipment, firefighting equipment and operating personnel, and explosive detection dog teams for the purpose of combating terrorism). The Secretary of the Army has delegated this authority down to installation commanders. The approval of the Secretary of the Army or his designated representative is required to authorize the provision of arms, ammunition, combat tactical vehicles, vessels aircraft, and personnel (other than firefighting and EOD personnel).

Explosive Ordnance Disposal

The EOD mission is to assist public safety and law enforcement agencies in developing a capability to deal with the improvised explosive device (IED) threat and, when necessary, to provide EOD service in the interest of public safety. Army EOD personnel will not participate in bomb or IED search operations (except to support the US Secret Service) or assist in the enforcement of civil law. Army EOD personnel will respond to requests when a suspected or actual device has been located and when the responsible agency has no EOD capability or its capability is overextended.

Army EOD personnel may support the US Secret Service or assist local law enforcement.

EOD personnel do not normally respond to incidents involving commercial explosives or chemicals but may be authorized to provide technical assistance to preserve life or to prevent severe property assistance to preserve life or to prevent severe property damage. Army EOD units may not transport, store, or dispose of commercial explosives or chemicals for agencies other than the DOD.

EOD personnel train military personnel, Defense Civil Preparedness Agency personnel, and civil authorities in--

Department of Defense Key Asset Protection Program (KAPP)

CINCFOR is designated the DOD executive agent for the DOD Key Asset Protection Program. CINCFOR develops and promotes the security of key assets within the US by providing to the owners or managers of such assets appropriate advice, guidance, and planning assistance on the application of physical security and emergency preparedness measures. Such assistance is designed to protect key assets from sabotage, espionage, and other hostile or destructive acts and to minimize the effect of attack damage.

USACE provides security engineering advice for government installations. Examples of facilities selected for this program include, but are not limited to, munitions plants, production facilities producing critical national defense items, communication nodes, and power plants.

The DOD will not replace the primary responsibility of others for the physical security of any privately owned assets; federally owned assets under the control of any other federal department, agency, or contractor; or assets owned by any state or political subdivision of any state. The DOD will ensure that actions to protect key assets are included in military contingency plans for CONUS security.


The US Army can perform many tasks in support of civil law enforcement. Efforts to combat the flow and use of illegal drugs in the US have shown that the Army can provide effective assistance to LEAS. Army personnel and equipment can also help civilian law enforcement authorities quell civil disturbances and terrorist activities. By providing both operational and nonoperational support to law enforcement, the Army can be a formidable force multiplier for civil authorities.