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Kentucky State Police Quoted Hitler and Encouraged Cadets to be ‘Ruthless’ in a Training Program

The 33-page slide show used to train cadets for the Kentucky State Police encouraged ethical and moral decision-making, selflessness, pride and honor. But in doing so, the police also quoted Adolf Hitler and Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee and encouraged trainees to pursue violence at all costs.

“The very first essential for success is a perpetually constant and regular employment of violence,” Hitler wrote in his anti-Semitic manifesto “Mein Kampf,” which was included on a police training slide titled 'Violence of Action."

The line was one of three times the state police quoted the Nazi leader in the training material.

The slide show was first reported Friday by Manual RedEye, a student newspaper at Louisville’s duPont Manual High School. The students were given the documents by a local lawyer, who received them through an open-records request for a lawsuit against the police agency.

After the report published, state officials responded with anger and condemnation. In a statement to The Washington Post, Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear (D) called the materials “unacceptable."

“We will collect all the facts and take immediate corrective action,” Beshear said.

The report comes as hate crimes are on the rise and as law enforcement has been under intense scrutiny over claims of excessive force. Kentucky police have been in the national spotlight since the death of Breonna Taylor, a Black medical worker who was fatally shot in March by Louisville officers during a raid on her apartment. KSP assisted Louisville police during the subsequent protests and conducted a ballistics report in the Taylor investigation.


The rhetoric in the slide show is consistent with “warrior-style” police training, which teaches officers to dehumanize people to act aggressively and forcefully. It also trains officers to approach every encounter with citizens as having a possibility of becoming dangerous or fatal.

Read entire article at Washington Post