OPINION: This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion
A top official just blew a major hole in the Democrats’ narrative about the January 6 mayhem that took place at the U.S. Capitol.
While testifying before Congress, Maj. Gen. William J. Walker, the commanding general of the D.C. National Guard, revealed the Capitol building was not “unprepared” for the chaos on Jan. 6th.
The security was inadequate because the Commander of the National Guard was told not to authorize additional troops, including a “quick reaction” team, without the express approval of a civil authority.
That would include Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the House Sergeant at Arms.
“This morning you have testified that you received this letter from former Secretary [of the Army, Ryan D.] McCarthy on January 5th,” Senator Portman said.
“So, the day before the attack on the Capitol. In that letter, did Secretary McCarthy prohibit you from deploying the National Guard’s quick reaction force without his authorization?” he asked Walker.
“So, I have the letter in front of me,” General Walker replied.
“And his letter does not. But it is the Secretary of Defense [Christopher C. Miller] says that I have to ‘use it as a last resort.’ But the Secretary of the Army told me, and it’s – I have the letter – that I could not use the quick reaction force. It would… I will just read it,” Walker added.
“I withhold authority to approve deployment of the District of Columbia National Guard quick reaction force and will do so only as a last resort in response to a request from an appropriate civil authority,” General Walker read from the Secretary of the Army’s letter.
“I will require a concept of operation prior to authorizing the deployment of… a quick reaction force,” General Walker added. “Now, a quick reaction force is normally a commander’s tool to go help. Either a civilian agency, but more typically to help the National Guardsmen who are out there in need, need of assistance.”
Thus, the “quick reaction” force was deliberately kept from acting quickly to address a developing emergency at the Capitol grounds.
That certainly blows a major hole in the Democrats’ talking points.
One night before the “Stop The Steal” rally on January 6th, agents at the Federal Bureau of Investigation felt it was necessary to alert Congress that there was a threat of violence.
So they did what any law enforcement official would do: They sent an email. To low-level officials. And zero follow-up.
NBC News reported on the surreal revelation, which came out during today’s Senate hearing on the Capitol riots.
An FBI intelligence report describing plans for violence at the Capitol was sent via email to lower-level officials the night before the Jan. 6 riot, and was never read by Capitol Police or Washington, D.C. leaders, according to testimony at Tuesday’s Senate hearing.
Senators called that “an intelligence breakdown” by both the Capitol Police and the FBI.
Ex-Capitol security chiefs deny ever seeing the FBI email, nor a memo that suggested a violent action was coming.
“The now-former officials responsible for Capitol security on Jan. 6 testified Tuesday that they did not receive an FBI threat report warning that extremists were planning to travel to Washington to commit violence and “war.”
The testimony by former U.S. Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund, former House Sergeant at Arms Paul Irving, and former Senate Sergeant at Arms Michael Stenger came during the first in a series of congressional oversight hearings that will examine the security and law enforcement failures that led to the Jan. 6 insurrection.”
However, the Capitol Police had warned the Congress days prior that there was a high potential of violence breaking out at a protest near the Capitol building.
Former Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund disclosed the information today at Senate testimony.
“As recent as Tuesday, January 5th, during a meeting I hosted with my executive team, the Capitol Police board, and a dozen of the top law enforcement and military officials from DC,” he said.
“No entity, including the FBI, provided any new intelligence regarding January 6. It should be also noted that the Secretary of Homeland Security did not issue an elevated or imminent alert in reference to the events at the United States Capitol on January 6th,” he added.
“We properly planned for a mass demonstration with possible violence, what we got was a military-style coordinated assault on my officers and a violent takeover of the Capitol building,” Sund said.
Sund also named intelligence that even Antifa was expected to be in attendance at a protest that could turn into a riot.
“The intelligence that we based our planning on indicated that the January 6 protests were expected to be similar to the previous [peaceful] MAGA rallies in 2020, which drew tens of thousands of participants,” he said.
“The assessment indicated that members of the Proud Boys, white supremacist groups and Antifa and other extremist groups were expected to participate in on January 6th and that it may be inclined to become violent,” he added.
The former Capitol Police Chief’s testimony has been indispensable in establishing that there was plenty of advanced warning for the House and Senate.
Sund earlier stated that the House was warned six times about the pending danger.
He revealed the resources the Capitol Police requested, including a stronger National Guard presence, in a resignation letter aimed directly to Speaker Pelosi.
The FBI reportedly did nothing to assist in the effort to secure the capitol, despite intelligence indicating that extremist groups were planning an assault as early as December.