The violent state of US policing cannot be understood apart from the country’s Cold War crusade. During those decades, cops at home and military personnel abroad exchanged techniques and tactics to mete out repression and thwart leftist insurgencies.
Kyle Burke is assistant professor of history at Hartwick College, where he also directs the Peace and Conflict Studies Program. He is the author of Revolutionaries for the Right: Anticommunist Internationalism and Paramilitary Warfare in the Cold War.
In the 1970s American mercenaries traveled to Angola and Rhodesia, seized by racist, anticommunist dreams and delusions of grandeur.