WASHINGTON D.C: Today at noon it was reported that the US President, Barack Obama declared martial law in all fifty states.
This dramatic development follows the failure of Congress yesterday to guarantee continuity of government following the economic crisis that has gripped the country.
The H.R.5122 Act was implemented as angry mobs took to the streets throughout several states, torching cars and protesting the move.
Earlier in the week, the US Treasury defaulted on its $14.3 trillion debt, creating a political crisis that culminated today when Congress was dissolved.
Defence Secretary Robert Gates was appointed interim Commander-in-Chief aboard Air Force One shortly after midday.
In an emotional televised address, President Obama called on Americans ‘not to fear’ and to ‘keep the torch of liberty burning’ amid the national crisis.
“This is a historic day, perhaps for all the wrong reasons,” said a grim-faced Obama. ”While many of us are in a state of disbelief, sadness and even anger, we must remember who we are, not fear and keep the torch of liberty burning amid the storm”.
The announcement by US President Barack Obama had an immediate polarizing effect around the world.
The embassies of Canada, Britain, Australia and Italy remained open but other foreign embassies announced that they had closed ‘for security reasons’.
Tanks could be seen moving into Capitol Hill as trucks and armored personnel carriers took up position around the White House.
Mexico’s president, Felipe Calderón made a televised address two hours later at 1400 GMT to announce that the armed forces had been given control over the executive.
Seen largely as a temporary and precautionary measure, the implementation of martial law in Mexico is expected to be lifted once a new government in Washington D.C is sworn in.
However, Canadian PM Stephen Harper expressed strong concern over the developments, saying that martial law was ‘totally unnecessary in either country’.
“What we’re seeing in the United States and Mexico is a result of irrational decision making,” Harper said. “This is a case of unjustified panic”.