In April of 2013, politicians were strongly considering limiting gun ownership as a response to the Sandy Hook Elementary School atrocity of December 14, 2012. In that same month, the International Law Enforcement Educators and Trainers Association (ILEETA) was looking at the meaningful interdiction and prevention of such events.
Retired police chief Jeff Chudwin, president of the Illinois Tactical Officers Association, led a training block on MACTAC, or Multiple-Assault Counter-Terrorism Action Capabilities. MACTAC was conceptualized to deal with such atrocities as Case One, the 2008 attack in Mumbai, India, in which a handful of terrorists armed with AK-47s and hand grenades killed 166 people before being stamped out, and Case Two, the Beslan massacre of 2004. In Case Two, 334 hostages—almost 200 of which were children—were murdered before Russian Spetznaz forces wiped out the Chechnyan terrorists responsible.
MACTAC essentially anticipates all of the police in the area working together with urban warfare infantry tactics against organized, heavily armed, multiple opponents. Obviously demanding intensive training and prior planning, the MACTAC concept follows a principle of “Four A’s”: Assess, Announce, Assemble and Act.
While the attendees and instructors recognized that horrors such as Beslan and Mumbai could happen here, all were at least equally concerned with the patterns of mass murder that had happened in the United States. As a result, not only is there the concern of organized attacks on a mass scale, but also the risk of lone shooters with a gun attacking innocent civilians.
Don Alwes, a 30-year cop and a lead instructor for the National Tactical Officers Association (NTOA), led a panel discussion on responding to active mass murder in the U.S. There was agreement that armed police at schools were an excellent solution, but that funds did not exist to assign them to every school in the country. All agreed with panelist Jeff Chudwin that retired police officers would make excellent volunteer guards at schools…