Small Town Militarization: Keene, NH Gets a Freaking Tank• Jason Ditz
Readers may already be familiar with the tiny town of Keene, NH despite its population of some 20,000 people in rural New Hampshire. The town has been a major site for the Free State Project and radio advertisements mentioning Keene are heard regularly when listening to Antiwar Radio on LRN.
You may or may not be familiar with Lenco Industries, a Pittsfield, MA-based company that manufactures heavily armored vehicles for government agencies. But even if you are familiar with both, you might not have imagined that the twain should ever meet.
But the Department of Homeland Security is seeing to it that they have, throwing $285,933 in grant money at the Keene city government to buy what their mayor referred to as “our own tank.”
Not exactly a tank, the Lenco Bearcat is a Armored Personnel Carrier marketed to city SWAT teams, and which comes complete with gun ports, battering ram and “tear gas deployment nozzle” with an eye toward “riot control.”