08/14/2014 07:28 pm ET Updated Aug 14, 2014

Ferguson Police Look Like Forces In These Conflict-Filled Countries

One of the most striking realizations to come from the tense standoff in Ferguson, Missouri is just how closely the scene resembles images of crackdowns on protests in conflict-filled countries around the world. Seeing police officers in full military gear, firing teargas and rubber bullets at crowds of protesters, is something that western audiences expect from the streets of Kiev and Cairo, but not a St. Louis suburb.

The armored officers in Ferguson are indicative of the growing trend of militarization in America's police forces, one that Alec MacGillis of the New Republic reports has put hundreds of millions of dollars and substantial military equipment into state and local law enforcement. Another investigation by the New York Times found that there have been over 93,000 military machine guns received by state and local law enforcement since 2006. Filled with weapons of war, it's no surprise that Ferguson looks like a conflict zone.

The WorldPost presents a series of images that show just how closely police in Ferguson resemble forces in regions of unrest and conflict across the globe. Each of these conflict situations is unique and has its own distinctive history. Yet as people around the world have noted, the parallels to Ferguson are powerful, and deeply troubling.

  • 1. Egypt
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    LEFT: An Egyptian riot policeman secures a street in front of burning tyres thrown by supporters of Muslim Brotherhood movement during their rally to mark the first anniversary of the military ouster of president Mohamed Morsi on July 3, 2014 in Cairo's Ain Shams district. RIGHT: A police officer patrols a business district on August 13, 2014 in Ferguson, Missouri.
  • 2. Venezuela
    Getty Images / AP
    LEFT: National Police members run during clashes in an anti-government protest in Caracas on March 22, 2014 in Caracas, Venezuela. RIGHT: Police wearing riot gear walk toward a man with his hands raised Monday, Aug. 11, 2014, in Ferguson, Mo.
  • 3. Pakistan
    Getty Images
    LEFT: Pakistani policemen carry riot gear as they gather at a roadblock in Islamabad on August 14, 2014. RIGHT: Police stand watch as demonstrators protest the shooting death of teenager Michael Brown on August 13, 2014 in Ferguson, Missouri.
  • 4. Israel
    Getty Images / AP
    LEFT: Israeli police set up barricade for under 50 year-old Muslim worshippers entering the Al-Aqsa Mosque for friday prayer on July 25, 2014 in Jerusalem. RIGHT: Police in tactical gear stand in a street Tuesday, Aug. 12, 2014, in Ferguson, Mo.
  • 5. Ukraine
    Getty Images
    LEFT: Ukrainian soldiers and police take position at a checkpoint near the eastern Ukranian city of Slavyansk on May 15, 2014. RIGHT: Police stand watch as demonstrators protest the shooting death of teenager Michael Brown on August 13, 2014 in Ferguson, Missouri.