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Military experts: Dallas police attackers appeared 'tactically professional' and 'focused'

July 08,2016 16:07

Military experts have taken to Twitter to dissect footage captured of one of the Dallas shooters as he ambushed police officers during a protest in the city's center on Thursday night. In the deadliest day for US law enforcement since 9/11, five police ...and more »



Military experts have taken to Twitter to dissect footage
captured of one of the Dallas shooters
as he ambushed police officers during a protest in the city's
center on Thursday night.

In the deadliest day for US law enforcement since 9/11,
five police officers were shot and killed by snipers during an
otherwise peaceful demonstration to protest this week's
police-shooting deaths in Louisiana and Minnesota. 

Seven other officers were injured:
Two underwent surgery and three are in critical
condition, according to police. 

Malcolm Nance, a combat veteran and retired US
Navy Intelligence official, tweeted an analysis
of one of the attacker's tactics, caught on video, as he
opened fire.

In the graphic video, the suspect can be
seen firing on an unknown individual who had been
hiding behind a pillar.

 

Nance continued:

"Shooter not using off-hand shots, but good use of cover
alternating engag. side. Mainly Double taps
... Shooters intent on surviving. Had escape &
evasion plan. Feels militia or Domestic terror grp trained in
USA. Initial fusillade was numerous 4-6 shot groups.
Mainly 4 shot. Several weapons. Not gang
style."

He added: "For anyone who thinks I'm calm. I'm VERY
VERY upset. Went to SWAT school with civilian cops. This designed
to incite civil war."

Sean Parnell, an Army Ranger and combat
infantryman who was embedded with the 10th Mountain Division
in Afghanistan, said that the ambush appeared
"sophisticated."

"Heard 3 semi automatic rifles from 3 separate positions,"
Parnell tweeted. "Coordinated ambush. Fire was synchronized &
focused. This was sophisticated."

He added that the attack "definitely takes
coordination. If I'm a betting man, they had egress routes pre
planned."

Another law-enforcement analyst told CNN: "These were not
amateurs."

Dallas
police officers stand in a line near the site of shootings in
downtown Dallas, early Friday, July 8, 2016.
(AP Photo/LM Otero)

Alex Horton, an Iraq veteran-turned national reporter for the
military news site Stars and Stripes, tweeted a similar analysis.

"Smooth footwork, uses pillar as cover during movement,
assaults through, pivots back to previous targets. Takes a cool
head," Horton said. "That aggression though, choosing to
quickly close the distance to a threat to create a buffer from
the video camera's 9 o'clock."

Thomas Gibbons-Neff, a US Marine Corps veteran who now
writes for The Washington Post, also weighed in.

"All you can tell is that the shooter appears comfortable
doing what he's doing. Controls the weapon, deliberate
aiming/firing," Gibbons-Neff noted on Twitter. 

He added: "I guess what jumps the most is his assault on
the officer. In combat, it's called a close ambush. If you're
engaged from within 25 yards, you establish fire
superiority and assault through the objective. Something —
training or no training — this guy clearly
did." 

Dallas
police stand watch near the scene where four Dallas police
officers were shot and killed on July 7, 2016, in Dallas,
Texas.
Ron Jenkins/Getty
Images

Dallas Police Chief David O. Brown said the officers were
shot by two snipers in "elevated positions" near the protests and
said the department believes the attackers coordinated the
ambush. 

They “planned to injure and kill as many law-enforcement officers
as they could,” Chief Brown said. “Some were shot in the
back. We believe that these suspects were positioning
themselves in a way to triangulate on these officers.”

He added that the suspects — three of whom are now in custody,
and the fourth who was killed by police, though earlier reports
stated that he died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound — may
have had some prior knowledge of the route the protesters were
going to take.

“How would you know to post up there?” he said, referring
to the elevated position the snipers were in. “We have yet to
determine whether or not there was some complicity with the
planning of this, but we will be pursuing that.”

Brown noted, however, that the suspects in custody
were not being very cooperative: "We just are not getting the
cooperation we’d like, to know that answer of why, the
motivation, who they are."

President Barack Obama addressed the shooting in a press
conference from Warsaw, calling it a "vicious, calculated and
despicable attack."

At least 11 officers and one civilian were shot. Four of
the deceased officers were from the Dallas Police Department. One
deceased officer was from the Dallas Area Rapid Transit
agency.

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