Vargas: Police prepared to confront terrorists


It has now been a few days since the tragic terrorist attacks in Paris killed 129 innocent people and injured hundreds more.

This was a simultaneous and horrific attack on multiple venues by a small group of terrorists armed with automatic weapons and explosives.

The response by French law enforcement was swift and sure.

In the Bataclan Theater, elite police units made a dynamic entry fairly quickly and ended the hostage situation.

At the Stade de France stadium, at least one suicide bomber was unable to enter the stadium and ran away when security officers responded. Their actions greatly minimized the carnage.

I have every reason to believe any terrorist attack in America would be met with a swift and dynamic response by our police forces. They have been well trained and equipped to respond to these acts of terror – and they have coordinated with the security teams to harden potential targets.

Those who cringe at the militarization of police should take note. Law enforcement is only responding to the changing world we live in. They didn’t create it; they just have to police it.

Every law enforcement officer in the United States is thinking the same thing. Are we ready for the next one?

Already, we have seen additional deployment of police officers across the country. From sporting venue sites to tourist attractions, the presence of security has been increased.

The terrorists have accomplished one of their major goals. Our fear levels have been raised worldwide.

We are more likely to question our safety of every sporting event we are going to attend, movie we are going to watch and restaurant we are going to dine in.

We have started to revaluate our intelligence capabilities and question if they are effective enough to deal with today’s new reality.

Hyper vigilance has become our normal.

I am certain American law enforcement is prepared to respond to any incident.

But we should all ask ourselves, “Is it enough?”

Joe is a retired Anaheim Police Department captain. You can reach him at