Second Coming of Trump Doesn’t Happen, but National Guard Deployed in Washington, Anyway
March 5 , 2021 (EIRNS)—March 4 came and went in Washington, D.C. without Donald Trump riding back into town to retake the presidency. The warnings issued by the Congressional security apparatus and federal police agencies that right-wing cults, like QAnon and the Three Percenters, would launch an assault on the Capitol to put Trump back into the White House never came to pass—there were never even any indications that such plans were being put into action—but that hasn’t stopped talk of extending the National Guard presence surrounding Congress. The Department of Defense confirmed yesterday that the Capitol Police have requested that the Guard remain on duty for at least another two months. “We have indeed received a request and DOD is currently considering the request,” a defense official told the Washington Examiner without providing details about the number of troops and the length of time they might stay amid reports that the mission will stretch well into the spring months. “From our end, it’s pre-decisional,” the official said, stating that Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin ultimately has the power to authorize the extension.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said thousands of National Guard troops at the U.S. Capitol should remain “as long as they are needed,” when asked by reporters about the Capitol Police request. “We have to have what we need when we need it, and in the numbers that we need, but that’s a security decision.” The decision to retain the troops, she said, would be made by law enforcement. “Hopefully, next week, we will be able to have presentations,” Pelosi said. “The issue of the National Guard is one that will be made by the Capitol Police and the [U.S. Capitol] Police Board, and the rest.” Having the capital of the nation occupied by military forces, preventing anyone from petitioning the Congress or protesting, appears to be of no political concern to the good lady.
Later it emerged that acting Capitol Police Chief Yogananda Pittman sent a letter to Congressional leaders appealing to them to use their influence to keep National Guard troops at the Capitol. It seems that the Capitol Police Board, which consists of the House and Senate sergeants-at-arms and the Architect of the Capitol, which oversees the Capitol Police on behalf of Congressional leaders, don’t believe that the state of emergency needs to be extended, but the Pentagon won’t keep troops there without it. Pittman also indicated that there are other points of disagreement with the board, including on the fate of the 7-foot-high wall, topped by concertina wire. The board wants the wall partially taken down, but the police want it to stay as is.