Monday, February 27, 2017

Should Brazil's Military Police be disbanded?

Luis Felipe Moraes asks here whether the time has come to abolish Brazil's Military Police. Excerpt:
Currently, the Brazilian police is divided into two groups: the Civil and the Military, with the former holding the same rights and duties as the rest of the general public once it is a civil institution, and the latter following a specific pattern of rules once it is linked to the Armed Forces. 
The problem is that the Armed Forces are trained for war, that is, for killing. Unless the police is at war with its own people, it is not necessary for the agents to be inserted inside a rigid hierarchy, being subject to violent training, ill-treatment, and unreasonable punishment, as typical within the army; in accordance to the Military Justice, military soldiers can go to jail for merely being late, and are also not allowed to go on strike and fight for their rights — which is why it is not the own police who is blocking the corporation buildings, but their family members. 
The lack of rights and the violent training explains why Brazilian military police is the one which most kills and is most murdered in the world — according to a survey revealed by the 2016 edition of the Brazilian Yearbook of Public Security, 9 people were killed due to police intervention everyday in that year in the country; this means that in six days, the Brazilian police killed the same amount the British police has killed in 25 years
In fact, demilitarization means abolishing the warfare mode within which the police force operates, which stems from the Armed Forces and its hierarchical action; it means ceasing the training of security agents based on the idea of a war against an enemy.

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