Capitol police feared an attack by counter-protesters on January 6, plan reportedly revealed
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An internal Capitol Police document reveals officials were concerned on Jan.6 about the wrong group of people: counter-protesters who would oppose Donald Trump supporters who ultimately stormed the U.S. Capitol and attacked law enforcement officials, Politico reported on Friday.
“[C]Counter-protesters are expected to attempt access by entering shrubs and other natural features, ”read the 17-page report,“ The Civil Disturbance Unit Operational Plan, ”which describes the police strategy for the day of certification of the electoral vote by Congress. .
In fact, one of the five “mission objectives” listed was “to establish and maintain a fixed walking route while excluding access to counter-protesters in order to minimize the potential for violent interactions,” he said. said the report, which was viewed by Politico.
The plan was for the police to accompany the protesters to the “Stop the Steal” rally, which was led by the then president to spark outrage over his electoral defeat, and to take steps to prevent them. – Protesters entering the march route and into destinations west of the Capitol, according to Politico.
Instead, violent chaos erupted as Trump supporters stormed police barricades into the Capitol.
Days before the insurgency, Trump ordered then-Acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller to “respond” to a request for the National Guard to be deployed on Jan.6 by the mayor of the District of Columbia – but again, to guard against the wrong group of people.
“Do whatever is necessary to protect [pro-Trump] protesters… executing their constitutionally protected rights, ”Trump said, quoting Trump, in testimony to Congress earlier this year.
Trump, in a Jan.6 video message on Twitter, told rioters, “We love you. You are very special.
The failure of the police in their assessment of the threat from the counter-protesters, who were not a notable presence that day, was just one of the main misconceptions by those responsible. The internal report also boldly stated: “At the moment, there are no specific known threats related to the certification of the electoral college vote of the joint session of Congress,” according to Politico.
An unidentified whistleblower and former Capitol police officer earlier this month criticized the failure of department heads to accurately judge the Jan. 6 risk as “the department’s biggest intelligence failure in history.”
The whistleblower said he watched senior officials “mostly sitting there, watching TV screens showing live footage”. (See the video above.)
A Capitol Police spokesperson told Politico on Friday: “As the department has said publicly on numerous occasions, we knew some people were preparing for violence. No law enforcement or intelligence agency predicted the large-scale attack that ended up happening. ”
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