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After the attacks of September 11, 2001, it was pretty clear that everyone in government had to get into the counterterrorism game.
From the formation of the Department of Homeland Security from a multitude of separate law enforcement and police agencies, to the stronger role of the Joint Special Operations Command in hunting down terrorist bosses, the U.S. government has gone mobilized to ensure that another al-Qaeda attack would not happen again on American soil.
For years, the Coast Guard occupied a quasi-military role in the United States government, particularly after the “War on Drugs” transformed its national law enforcement work into a much more expeditionary and anti-war work. -drug.
But with the World Trade Center in ruins, the Coast Guard knew they had to step in.
This is why, in 2007, the Deployable Operations Group was established within the Coast Guard to be a kind of national maritime counterterrorism and counterterrorism force to deal with threats against the country and abroad. As part of SOCOM, DOG has trained and equipped Coast Guardsmen to do everything from demolishing a ship captured by terrorists to detecting and recovering dirty nuclear weapons.
For six years, the DOG carried out several missions around the world and prepared for security duties in the United States, including deploying for the 2010 earthquake in Haiti and assisting in anti- piracy off the coast of Africa (think Maersk Alabama). The DOG even sent two officers to SEAL training who later became frogmen on the teams.
But in 2013, the then Commander of the Coast Guard, Robert Papp, disbanded the DOG and expanded its organizations across the Coast Guard. And if they no longer intervene within the framework of SOCOM missions, the Coast Guard commandos are still stationed with the mandate to lead âPorts, Waterways and Coastal Safetyâ missions in the maritime domain.
âPWCS’s mission involves protecting the US maritime domain and the US maritime transportation system and those who live, work, or play nearby; the prevention and disruption of terrorist attacks, sabotage, espionage or subversive acts; and the response and recovery of those that do occur, âthe Coast Guard said. “The conduct of PWCS deters terrorists from using or exploiting MTS as a means of attacking US territory, population centers, ships, critical infrastructure and key assets.”
The main units that make up the Coast Guard commandos include:
1. Port security units
Boat crews from the Coast Guard Port Security Unit in Everett, Wash., Perform high speed boat maneuvers and safe zone exercises during an exercise at Everett Naval Base on 22 July 2015. The exercise was held with the aim of refining their capabilities in constructing and managing entry checkpoints, establishing perimeter security and maintaining safety and security zones at the Waterside. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Zac Crawford)
These Coast Guard teams patrol in small boats to make sure that nothing fun happens where the ships are stationed. PSU teams work to secure areas around major events on the coast or riverine waterways, including United Nations meetings in New York and high-level meetings and visits by foreign dignitaries to cities like Miami .
2. Tactical Law Enforcement Teams
These Coast Guard teams are an extension and formalization of the service’s drug control operations. TACLETs also perform the same types of missions as SWAT teams, responding to active shooter situations and arresting suspects. These teams have also participated in anti-piracy missions in the Gulf of Aden and in the Suez Canal.
3. Maritime safety security teams
US Coast Guard Maritime Safety and Security Team (MSST) 91114 patrols the shoreline of Guantanamo Bay, Jan. 14. (photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Elisha Dawkins)
When the security situation escalates – beyond a few lightly armed pirates or a deranged gunman – that’s when they call in the maritime security security teams of the Coast Guard. Think of these guys as the FBI hostage rescue or the Coast Guard LA SWAT team. They can shoot down a better armed ship full of pirates, can guard sensitive facilities like the terrorist prison at Guantanamo Bay, or control looters after Hurricane Sandy.
4. Maritime security response team
Tosca and her Marine Safety Response Team canine officer sweep the Mississippi Canyon Block 582 Bridge, Medusa Platform during a joint exercise May 21, 2014. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Chief Petty Officer Robert Nash)
Marine Safety Response Teams are about as close to Navy SEALs as the Coast Guard (and many of them are trained by SEAL instructors). The MSRT consists of snipers, dog handlers and explosive ordnance disposal technicians who are so highly trained they can detect and eliminate a chemical, biological or radiological weapon.
The MSRT Coast Guard is the counterterrorism force within the service (as opposed to an ‘counterterrorism’ which is primarily defensive in nature), with missions to shoot down terrorist infested ships, hit bad guys from helicopters, and attack. objectives like Rangers or SEAL. The force is also trained to recover valuable terrorists or release captured innocent people.
âIt is important to know that the MSRT is scalable in the size of its response to an event or mission,â said a senior commander of the Maritime Security Response Team. âDepending on the scope of the assignment or event, will determine the number of team members needed to deploy and their areas of expertise, in order to successfully complete the assignment. “