Why Did Republican and Loyalist Paramilitary groups declare ‘ceasefires’ in 1994?
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This term paramilitary can take in a wide range of organizations, but is usually applied to forces formed by a government. Groups opposing a government, even when organized along military lines, are more often referred to as guerrillas or insurgents.
In countries with weak central governments warlords may form their own forces and take over all local police and military functions. Paramilitary often has a sinister sound today, often at night, with the quiet support of a government. since it’s also applied to groups of off-duty military or police personnel who carry out illegal violence.
In the early 1980’s, such laws were used against extremist and Klan-related groups engaged in training in Texas, North Carolina and Florida. But the recent growth of these groups and the attention given them have given the issue particular urgency. particularly since the bombing of the Federal building in Oklahoma City.
Some experts who follow extremist groups say states have been lax or timid about enforcing laws already on the books.
The Southern Poverty Law Center of Montgomery, Ala., which follows hate group and activity. sent letters this week to attorneys general around the country urging them to enforce existing laws more aggressively.
The center estimates that 190 paramilitary groups now operate in 36 states and that at least 37 have ties to white-supremacist organizations.