January 11, 2021 – In Breaking News – AP News
U.S. defense officials say they are worried about an insider attack or other threat from service members involved in securing President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration, prompting the FBI to vet all of the 25,000 National Guard troops coming into Washington for the event.
The massive undertaking reflects the extraordinary security concerns that have gripped Washington following the deadly Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol by pro-Trump rioters.
And it underscores fears that some of the very people assigned to protect the city over the next several days could present a threat to the incoming president and other VIPs in attendance.
(U.S. defense officials say they are worried about an insider attack or other threat from service members involved in securing President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration, prompting the FBI to vet all of the 25,000 National Guard troops coming into Washington for the event. Courtesy of Eyewitness News ABC7NY and YouTube. Posted Jan 18, 2021)
Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy told The Associated Press on Sunday that officials are conscious of the potential threat, and he warned commanders to be on the lookout for any problems within their ranks as the inauguration approaches.
So far, however, he and other leaders say they have seen no evidence of any threats, and officials said the vetting hadn’t flagged any issues that they were aware of.
”We’re continually going through the process, and taking second, third looks at every one of the individuals assigned to this operation,” McCarthy said in an interview after he and other military leaders went through an exhaustive, three-hour security drill in preparation for Wednesday’s inauguration.
He said Guard members are also getting training on how to identify potential insider threats.
About 25,000 members of the National Guard are streaming into Washington from across the country — at least two and a half times the number for previous inaugurals.
And while the military routinely reviews service members for extremist connections, the FBI screening is in addition to any previous monitoring.
Multiple officials said the process began as the first Guard troops began deploying to D.C. more than a week ago. And they said it is slated to be complete by Wednesday.
Continue reading… FBI vetting Guard troops in DC amid fears of insider attack
Who Dropped the Ball in Securing Capitol?
January 11, 2021 – In Breaking News – Boston Herald
The attack on the United States Capitol last Wednesday was a travesty and a national embarrassment by any measure, one that resulted in multiple unnecessary deaths and untold chaos and destruction at the very seat of American legislative power.
Fortunately for everyone involved, the infiltrators seem to have been for the most part a disorganized and unruly mob, focused mainly on taking irreverent selfies, live streaming their escapades to internet fans, and stealing and defacing property. A strategic attempt to overthrow the government this was not.
And we’re all very lucky that was the case.
The openness of the Capitol, the transparency with which Congress operates, the great freedom to protest and petition legislators, are all points of pride in the American system.
But the ease with which a violent mob was able to completely overrun the building containing several hundred of the most powerful people in the nation, and gain access to non-public documents and devices in congressional offices, is shocking and is sure to have been closely observed by foreign governments the world over.
(Disturbing new video shows a Capitol Hill rioter hurling a fire extinguisher at cops, striking one in the head. Now, citizen detectives are trying to track down the suspect. Capitol Hill Police Officer Brian Sicknick was killed by a blow to the head with a fire extinguisher, but it’s not clear if he was hit during this particular incident. Meanwhile, authorities in all 50 states have been warned to brace for more violence between now and Inauguration Day. Courtesy of INSIDE EDITION and YouTube. Posted on Jan 12, 2021.)
How could such an event possibly occur?
Baseless conspiracy theories already abound online about Capitol Police facilitating the entry of the rioters into the building.
Videos purporting to support such ideas have been taken out of context as massively outnumbered officers flee when the crowd overruns the police line.
In addition, some rioters were wearing stolen or foraged police gear, further confusing matters.
Tear gas was deployed on out-of-control rioters until the crowd overpowered the officers and turned the gas back on them.
Overwhelmed Capitol Police were hit in the head with lead pipes and violently pressed back by the mob, leading to dozens of injuries and hospitalizations and at least one death so far.
(Flags over the US Capitol flew at half-staff Friday to honor Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick, who died Thursday from injuries he suffered in the insurrection Wednesday. Courtesy of KOIN 6 and YouTube. Posted on Jan 8, 2021.)
Video released Friday shows officers holding back agitated Trump supporters from breaking through the barricaded glass doors into the Speaker’s Lobby, where lawmakers were being evacuated in the background, including Rep. Jim McGovern (D-Mass.).
The bravery and sacrifice of the Capitol Police in the face of the violence deserves to be commended But the question remains, how were they left so outnumbered and unsupported in the face of a massive rally where violence had been openly planned for weeks?
Continue reading… Who dropped the ball in securing Capitol?
Editor’s note: Our thoughts and prayers remain with the families of U.S. Capitol Police Officers Brian D. Sicknick and Howard Liebengood, both blood and blue, along with all those officers injured during the riot.
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