"Don't the armed forces agencies already use deadly force within the bounds of the US? Or is NCIS just fiction?" As explained to me, the US has a bit of a different legal setup to European countries like the UK when it comes to using military power at home. In the UK, suppose a group of armed terrorists are holed up, then the Government has a very simple means to call in troops such as the SAS to mount an assualt. The SAS always has a team ready to go 24x7x365 for just situations as us Europeans have learnt from bitter experience with people like the IRA, PFLP, PLO, ETA, Red Army Faction aka Baader-Meinhoff Group, Black September, etc, etc. In the UK, the Police maintain armed units for dealing with armed criminals, but the real anti-terror situations like hijackings and sieges such as the Iranian Embassy affair in 1980 get dealt with by military units like the SAS, and it is up to the Cabinet as to when they get called in.
As I understand it, in the US the law does not allow such a simple process, instead there are limits on the delpoyment of troops such as special forces inside US terrirories, even the National Guard needs a declaration of an emergency, and they are not specialist troops. Usually it is crime-fighting agenceies like the ATF and FBI arguing with local and state Police over whom has jurisdiction and control of a situation, and they are primarily trained for dealing with armed criminals. Waco illustrated just what a mess this can result in, and that was against half-trained but determined fanatics. Imagine if they had been properly trained and well-armed fanatics like the kind that attacked Mumbai.
Fortunately for Americans, domestic terror attacks in the US have been rare, something even the loudest Obamatron will have to admit is largely due to Dhubya. As I understand it, Bush was looking for a means to quickly deploy and use US special forces for Waco-like situations should AQ go to a similar hijackings and sieges commited by numerous Palestinian terror groups in Europe and the Middle East. At the moment, any such attack would be dealt with by the local police, state police and FBI, and it could be quite a while and q big body-count before a real anti-terrorist team gets to the scene. As the recent attack on Mumbai illustrated, even armed police can be overcome by well-trained, well-armed and determined fanatics, and holding back to discuss which government agency does what just gives them more time to kill innocents. In the UK we have a set of quick response guidelines which enable the use of troops such as the SAS very quickly if required - at the moment, in the US, Im told you don't, which means more people could die.
I know the Obamatrons like to hold such examples up as "Bushitler fascist tyranny", but the reality is burying your head in the sand just makes you an even easier target. Just ask the people of Mumbai.