- By Robbie GramerRobbie Gramer is a staff writer at Foreign Policy. He writes for The Cable, FP’s real-time take on all things, well, foreign policy. Before he joined FP in 2016, he used to think in a tank, managing the NATO portfolio at the Atlantic Council for three years. He’s a graduate of American University’s School of International Service, where he studied international relations and European affairs. He has lived in both Washington and Brussels, though he grew up in Idaho and Oregon, so he’s a West Coaster at heart. When he’s not busy reporting, he’s probably busy starting three new books before he has finished the last one or planning a trip to a national park he hasn’t visited yet., Emily TamkinEmily Tamkin is a staff writer at Foreign Policy. She writes for FP’s The Cable, a real-time take on the news in Washington and the wider world. She has been at FP since the fall of 2016, before which she was an associate editor at New America, a nonpartisan think tank in Washington. She has a B.A. in Russian literature from Columbia University, an M.Phil. in Russian and East European studies from the University of Oxford, and studied Soviet dissidence in archival centers in Moscow, Tbilisi, and, on a Fulbright, in Bremen — all of which means that at FP, she writes when she can on Russia and Central and Eastern Europe.
Hillary Clinton’s campaign canceled a “Get Out the Vote” event with vice presidential nominee Tim Kaine and former President Bill Clinton in Des Moines, Iowa, after two local police officers were ambushed, shot, and killed while sitting in their police car Wednesday.
Authorities quickly apprehended the suspect, 46-year-old Scott Michael Greene. In a YouTube account reportedly belonging to him, Greene appeared to confront police after they asked him to leave a high school premises in a video titled “Police Abuse, Civil Rights Violation at Urbandale High School 10/14/16.” Greene appeared in another video to be holding a Confederate flag and American flag at a high school football game.
Below the video, an account reportedly belonging to Greene commented, “i was offended by the blacks sitting through our anthem. Thousands more whites fought and died for their freedom. However, this is not about Armed forces, they are cop haters.” The Des Moines Register also reported that Greene was arrested in 2014 after an alleged combative encounter with police officers involving racial slurs, death threats, and resisting police pat-downs.
“There is a clear and present danger to police officers right now,” Des Moines police Sgt. Paul Parizek told reporters in the wake of the shooting.
The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund (NLEOMF), which tracks police shootings, says there has been an 11 percent uptick in police fatalities in 2016 from 2015. Some 111 police officers died in 2016, of which 49 were firearms-related, according to NLEOMF. These numbers didn’t include Wednesday’s shooting in Iowa.
Shootings of law enforcement officers have been a dismal fixture this year, with deadly sprees in Dallas, Texas, and Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The shootings in Iowa, though, don’t appear to have any link to the Black Lives Matter movement and the broader concerns about police brutality, which have animated past collisions.
In response to the shootings, Republican nominee Donald Trump tweeted: “Praying for the families of the two Iowa police who were ambushed this morning. An attack on those who keep us safe is an attack on us all.”
Photo credit: MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images