National Guard Investigating Medical Helicopter Used Against DC Protesters

The Washington DC National Guard is investigating the use of a medical evacuation helicopter used against protesters in the city on Monday, Politico reports.

The military helicopter was seen descending to rooftop level over DC streets in an attempt to chase away protesters.

"As scores of protesters made their way into Washington D.C.'s Chinatown district, a Blackhawk helicopter with U.S. Army markings descended to rooftop level, kicking up dirt, debris, and snapping trees that narrowly missed several people," The New York Times reported. "The maneuver, often conducted by low flying jets in combat zones to scare away insurgents, is known as a show of force."

National Guard investigating:

The DC National Guard said on Tuesday that it will investigate the use of the helicopters.

"I hold all members of the District of Columbia National Guard to the highest of standards,” Maj. Gen. William Walker, the commander of the DC National Guard, said in a statement.

"The civil unrest mission is one of the most difficult and dangerous missions that we do here in our domestic portfolio," added Gen. Joseph Lengyel, chief of the National Guard Bureau. “Generally, this mission is an uncomfortable mission. They don’t like doing it."

Army investigating too:

Defense Secretary Mark Esper said that he instructed the Army to investigate the use of the helicopter on protesters.

"When you're landing that low in the city, it looks unsafe to me," he said during a news briefing on Wednesday, adding that the probe will “determine what happened and why.”


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