Jun 1, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Military helicopters use "show of force" vs. D.C. protesters

Protests in D.C. on Monday. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Police presence during protests in Washington, D.C. on Monday. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Military helicopters in Washington, D.C., on Monday used a wind-blowing tactic to disperse protest crowds, and videos posted to Twitter showed civilians shaking beneath the gusts.

  • The "show-of-force" involves lowering a helicopter so close to the ground that it kicks up dirt and debris, driving targets away from the area. The N.Y. Times notes that it's often used by low-flying jets in combat zones.

The state of play: D.C. is under a 7pm curfew amid continuing protests over the death of George Floyd. Tensions have risen in the nation's capital in recent days as law enforcement has deployed tear gas and physical force to disperse often-peaceful crowds.

Go deeper