How to stop an assassination

How to stop an assassination
What happens if they tell you to stop,
and you don’t.

An article in The Atlantic explains the inner workings of the United States Secret Service. What’s their secret? They spend lots of time preparing for rare events.

The day before, in the late afternoon, the motorcade belonging to Israeli President Shimon Peres had arrived near the Carlyle hotel on the Upper East Side. French President Sarkozy and his glamorous wife, Carla Bruni, were staying at the hotel and, as a result, French and American paparazzi were staked out across the street. As Peres’s limo arrived, a photographer bearing a black backpack hopped over a barricade fence and began walking quickly toward it. Agents described the subsequent events as if they happened in slow motion.

Perimeter agents and officers immediately called on the photographer to halt: Stop stop stop! But he continued crossing the street, readying his camera for a picture and, in the process, swinging his backpack forward. Under the circumstances, both items had to be viewed as potential weapons.

Two things happened at almost the same instant: an NYPD intelligence officer leapt from the lead car of the motorcade and drew his Glock, and a bulky man in a polo shirt and shorts pulled his own weapon, a SIG-Sauer P229, shouting, "Get to the ground! Get to the ground!" The latter agent was a member of a Secret Service counter-surveillance team, breaking cover to intercept the potential threat.

Read the article: Inside the Secret Service, When President Obama and two-thirds of the world’s leaders gather in New York City, it is up to the U.S. Secret Service to keep them all safe. Granted unprecedented access, our author tells the story of how the agency pulls off the most complicated security event of the year, from counter-surveillance to counter-assault, hotel booking to event scheduling. The Atlantic>>
-The photographer incident: A’jad is on the edgy of town Tensions flare with streets on lockdown, New York Post>>
– An account written by the photographer the Secret Service thought might be an assassin: How I was almost shot for being a ‘suicide bomber’ Paparazzo Diary, The Villager>>
– United States Secret Service>>

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