Source: Fox News
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is deploying a special federal unit across the country for the July 4 weekend in order to protect federal monuments and statues from a possible fresh wave of vandalism.
“The upcoming July 4th holiday weekend has the potential for increased disruptive activity at specific locations across the country that could threaten our personnel and the Federal facilities and property they protect,” a soon-to-be-released memo penned by acting DHS Secretary Chad Wolf, and obtained by Fox News, says. “DHS will be forward leaning in preparing to protect federal facilities and property.”
Rapid Deployment Teams (RDTs) from the Protecting American Communities Task Force (PACT), and consisting of law enforcement officers specially trained in areas such as crowd control and riot control, will be dispatched to Portland, Seattle and Washington D.C.
Additional RDTs will be dispatched regionally so that they can be flown into any other area within a few hours should unrest spark up in other cities across the U.S.
This is on top of Federal Protective Service (FPS) presence being ramped up higher than usual for a weekend in response to the potential challenge. Hundreds of FPS officers will be protecting facilities, and DHS has identified an hundreds more in case they need assistance.
The move marks an aggressive response by the Trump administration to push back against the violence and vandalism seen aimed at monuments in recent weeks, an offshoot of the initial protests in response to the death of George Floyd in police custody in Minneapolis.