Pro-Government Militias

Pro-Government Militia Website

Documentation for State Defence Forces

Jan. 2, 1993
The Washington Times

Under current Department of Defense usage, these militias are generically termed "state defense forces." In actual practice, few of these state defense forces have weapons of any kind. Many of the members have purchased their own weapons, generally the civilian version of the U.S. Army M-16.


March 19, 1995
The Washington Times

What Mr. Meehan was referring to are State Guards, also known as State Defense Forces under the United States Code. These forces are intended to be similar to the National Guard, but have no federal (i.e., Army) missions, only state missions - such as emergency management, assistance with civil disturbances and the like. During Desert Shield-Desert Storm, many State Guardsmen assisted National Guard units to deploy, particularly by providing family and legal assistance.

Half-anonymous" they may now be to most civilians, but in many states they are not military nullities. In New York, Texas, Puerto Rico - among other jurisdictions - they are taken quite seriously by their local adjutant generals and train rigorously for their state missions. Since their training time is usually only half of the 38 days a year obligation of the federal reserve components (which is constantly under threat of being increased), they are often the only force that busy average citizens, particularly professionals, have time to join.


Feb. 20, 1997
The Washington Post

Although they looked like Army personnel, they were not. Nor were they members of the Army Reserve or National Guard. Instead, they belonged to a little-known, unpaid volunteer auxiliary of the state National Guard called the Maryland Defense Force.

The MDF and most of the 24 similar groups across the country were formed in the early 1980s amid fears that a state's entire National Guard could be sent to a conflict overseas, leaving the home front unprotected. The unarmed state "defense force" or "state guard" units were modeled after citizen brigades organized during the two world wars to patrol armories and handle the absent National Guard's duties in the event of a riot or natural disaster.

Their sizes range from several hundred members in Texas and Georgia to a mere handful in Rhode Island and Vermont, with about 11,000 members in all.


Sept. 8, 2003
USA Today

Some volunteers moved and sorted donated goods in New York City after the Sept. 11 attacks. Others collected debris after last winter's space shuttle disaster in Texas. When the Tall Ships visited Toledo last month, a third group secured the Maumee River.
In all three cases, the work was performed by state defense forces, little-known volunteer organizations that back up the National Guard. A quarter-million strong during World War II, the forces had become nearly non-existent in recent years. But after Sept. 11, the membership of state defense forces has grown by thousands to nearly 12,000 in 19 states and Puerto Rico.
State defense forces are growing because of security concerns at home and the deployment abroad of the highest percentage of National Guard troops since the Korean War. And they may be more important than ever, as officials warn of the possibility of more terrorist attacks on U.S. soil.
Typically, volunteers train at least one weekend day a month. They learn search-and-rescue techniques, traffic control and triage. They wear military uniforms, are given military titles and are subject to military discipline. They have training manuals and must be certified before they can be sent to a disaster. In Alaska, members carry guns, but in most states, they are unarmed.
Unlike National Guard troops who can be called to duty by the president and sent overseas, state defense forces can be called up only by a governor. They cannot be sent abroad or even out of state. Although they typically work with the National Guard, the volunteer groups are separate.
Volunteers range in age from 17 to 70. They include doctors, lawyers, military retirees, teachers, stay-at-home moms and more. In the absence of emergencies, they perform more mundane duties: guarding state armories, controlling crowds at parades, even drafting wills for deployed troops.

There are nearly 12,000 active members of state defense forces in 19 states and Puerto Rico.
State, Defense forces
Alabama 400
Alaska 267
California 492
Georgia 650
Indiana 315
Maryland 200
Michigan 17
Mississippi 300
New Mexico 300
New York 1,200
North Carolina 65
Ohio 629
Oregon 185
Puerto Rico 1,650
South Carolina 1,350
Tennessee 925
Texas 1,518
Vermont 300
Virginia 800
Washington 48
Total 11,611


May 23, 2005
The Washington Times

As an alternative to using existing powers and forces, the report said, a $2.5 billion annual initiative coordinated through the states for the issuance of Homeland Security grants could authorize and fund state militia, or state defense forces, to assist the Border Patrol.
State militia units already exist in 22 states, including Maryland and Virginia. Militia units also are located in the border states of California, New Mexico and Texas.


Aug. 13, 2007
The Washington Times

But Mr. Stone said the governors have full legal authority to deploy their National Guard and State Defense Forces "as they see fit to protect the citizens of their state." He said the only question is whether the states can force the federal government to pay their costs.