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U.S. Capitol Becoming an Armed Camp

Jan. 14 , 2021 (EIRNS)—As images of National Guard troops flooding the Capitol building yesterday were going viral, news articles were appearing on what federal and D.C. officials were stating about the threats for which they claimed the troops had to be on guard. Politico reported yesterday afternoon that National Guard troops were being briefed to expect the possibility that individuals plotting to attack the Capitol might use improvised explosive devices (IEDs). “The briefings indicate that Washington, D.C.-area law enforcement believe the IEDs planted last week at the Republican National Committee and the Democratic National Committee headquarters were not an isolated incident,” Politico reported. It also said that Guard troops were being told to expect armed protesters and that Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy had authorized Guard troops to be armed with M4 rifles and M9 pistols. A spokesperson for the D.C. National Guard said that 6,600 troops were on Capitol Hill by yesterday afternoon. According to other news reports, that number could grow to 20,000 by Jan. 20.

Politico reported that an unclassified intelligence bulletin compiled by the U.S. Secret Service warned that at least one right-wing extremist group, Patriot Actions for America, “is organizing and encouraging a violent demonstration” on Jan. 16 at the Capitol. The bulletin said law enforcement is also tracking a separate “Million Militia March” being planned by two other groups for the Jan. 20 Inauguration Day itself, warning that “although no civil disobedience has been confirmed, organizers have encouraged attendees to bring weapons to the event through the use of images of weapons on promotional materials for the event. The group claims they will not attack, but defend.”

Time, in its own report on the threats, went further, to suggest that the “enemy” might already be inside the house, in the form of police and military members who support the “insurrection” in favor of Trump. There are repeated assertions throughout the Time report that there might be large numbers of military and law enforcement members who hold “extremist” views on which they might be willing to act. The term “extremist” is never defined, but the implication is clear. The Anti-Defamation League, not surprisingly, is one of the sources that is cited. Another source on these “extremists” is a private intelligence firm called Treadstone 71 run by an Army veteran by the name of Jeff Bardin, who is identified as the Chief Intelligence Officer.

One Defense Department official told the New York Times that law enforcement agencies are planning for a range of outcomes, including a worst-case scenario in which people with firearms try to attack dignitaries, “suicide-type aircraft” try to fly into the capital’s restricted airspace, and even remote-controlled drones could be used to attack the crowd. While those scenarios are among the more extreme, the officials said they were particularly worried about the possibility of multiple, violent confrontations, including with firearms, simultaneously flaring up around the inaugural dignitaries.

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