FBI: Murder rates rise as U.S. violent crime increases overall

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The number of homicides in the United States jumped for a second year in a row last year… according to the FBI’s annual crime statistics released Monday…

The spikes… raised questions about whether the United States is in the midst of a fresh violent crime spree after nearly two decades of declines…

The report showed that overall violent crimes increased by 4.1 percent in 2016, after rising by 3.3 percent in 2015…

Approximately 70 percent of American cities with at least 20 murders in 2014 reported increases during the two-year period…

“It’s not that crime rose across the United States,” he said. “It is that very small pockets in a lot of places saw a rise in homicide and other crime.”

President Donald Trump and U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, however, have pointed to the rise in violent crime over the past two years to argue for tougher policing and other law enforcement policies. Sessions has vowed to confront what he called “the rising tide of violent crime in America.” [source]

Most of the increases in violent crime come from “pockets” of cities where gang-related crime is traditionally bad, and it’s an indicator to me that city governments have lost or are losing further control over these areas.  That’s a “grey zone” for governance and it’s where irregular threats proliferate as competing tribes (in this case, gangs) can struggle to fill the power vacuum.  That power vacuum may be turf/ease of movement, control of drug trafficking and distribution, local authority or (probably not in most cases) policy making.

Bottom line: these types of gang wars, which undoubtedly drive the nation’s violent crime problem, are more characteristic of third world nations, not highly developed and wealthy ones. The evidence is clear that certain parts of U.S. cities are already home to small wars. Marked by deteriorating infrastructure, poor leadership, misappropriated funds, government corruption, disastrous government policies, and a gang culture that promotes violent crime, does anyone see any signs of these small wars ending?

The Low Intensity Conflict Blog chronicles the development of small wars and domestic conflicts already occurring in America.  Follow us on Twitter: @FOLICBlog

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