|Quoting NoUFO (Reply 1):|
Using the military internally to provide security always feels wrong.
Though not formally military, the para military GSG-9 formed after the Munich Olympics in 1972, when the police really could not cope with the unfolding horror, particularly the marksmen at the airfield.
But it IS
an anomaly in the mainland UK at least, the 2012 games are just such a potential security nightmare.
Since the attack in Mumbai in 2008, UK Police firearms units and the military, (special forces presumably) have adjusted their contingency plans.
In 1969, the government agonised over the deployment of troops to Northern Ireland even as the province was consumed by anarchy.
In 1980, when the SAS were deployed to end the siege at the Iranian Embassy, for the duration of this 'Operation Nimrod' the police commanders stepped smartly aside for the, around 20 minute duration, of the op.
Then resumed control as soon as it was over.
Since Sept 11th 2001 most major summits and Olympics have had fighter cover on standby, wherever they've been held.
A contingent of battle hardened troops, even without their rifles, would likely have brought the rioting in London to a halt much quicker.
But that would
be politically unacceptable, unless things really escalated hugely beyond modern experience. To a state where the all the available police were exhausted/overwhelmed. This was the tipping point in N.I. in 1969.