Pentagon chief waited hours to send Capitol Aid: why?
WASHINGTON, DC-JAN6: Tear gas fires at supporters of President Trump who stormed the United States Capitol. (Photo by Evelyn Hockstein / For the Washington Post via Getty Images)
As protesters stormed the Capitol on Wednesday, then-US Capitol Police chief Steven Sund said he had asked for National Guard support six times before and during the attack on the Capitol, and declined or delayed each of its requests. Mayor Muriel Bowser desperately called the governors of Maryland and Virginia and asked the National Guard to send help.
Bowser sent one on Tuesday letter To Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy, Acting Attorney General Jeffery Rosen, and Acting Secretary of Defense Christopher Miller, who specifically stated that they did not want federal law enforcement staff to provide additional assistance on Wednesday and that Capitol Police be ready be dealing with the problem expected activity.
During an emergency meeting called by Maryland Governor Larry Hogan (R) with the Maryland Police and National Guard, House Minority Chairman Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) Called Hogan from an “unknown bunker” and notified him that the Capitol Police were “overwhelmed” by the crowd storming the Capitol, The week Reports.
There were 500 Maryland National Guard members outside of DC ready to help. Still, Hogan had to tell Hoyer that despite the urgent pleading of the House No. 2 Democrat, he still had no permission to send the National Guard.
It wasn’t until 90 minutes later that the Secretary of the Army, Ryan McCarthy, called Hogan and asked, “Can you come as soon as possible?”
Hogan replied, “Yes, we’ve been waiting. We’re ready.”
“I can’t tell you what was going on at the other end of the decision-making process,” Hogan said. “There’s been a lot of media speculation about it, but I don’t know what’s going on in the White House or the Pentagon.”
The army says they received the first call for help from Bowser shortly after 1:30 p.m. on Wednesday, followed by several additional calls for help.
Bowser asked the DC National Guard soldiers to send reinforcements, but Pentagon officials said they had asked for clarification. According to defense officials in the Wall Street JournalPentagon officials asked, “What are you going to do with them?”
It took an excruciating 90 minutes to identify these needs and approve the relocation of 200 troops stationed at traffic checkpoints and subway stations across the city. It took even longer for the extra soldiers to find protective gear and reach the Capitol.
During this critical time lag, the mob overwhelmed the barriers outside the Capitol, erected a wooden gallows, crashed through windows and doors, leaving a trail of destruction and violence.
The attackers carried a collection of Donald Trump, Blue Lives Matter and Confederate flags and stuck a bloody police officer in a doorway. His excruciating screams were captured on video as the mob tried to get inside.
“Hang Mike Pence!” They sang, beat the police with pipes, and stabbed them with flags. “USA, USA!”
They fatally wounded an officer with a blunt instrument; and dragged another face down across the Capitol steps into the crowd and hit him with whatever they could get their hands on.
When the mob reached the Capitol Complex around 12:40 p.m. ET on Wednesday took about 15 minutes to breach the building’s west edge, Sund says. “The contingent of the Capitol Police, which numbered around 1,400 men that day, was quickly overrun by the estimated 8,000 rioters,” reports NPR.
“If we had the National Guard, we could have kept them in check longer,” Sund told the Washington Post.
At 2:26 p.m., Sund said he had an urgent conference call with the Pentagon to ask for additional assistance.
“I urgently ask for immediate support from the National Guard. I have to get boots on the floor, ”said Sund.
According to Sund, LTG Walter Piatt replied: “I don’t like it when the National Guard has a police line with the Capitol in the background.”
Mayor Muriel Bowser’s chief of staff, John Falcicchio, said several times during the call that the situation in the Capitol was “bad” The Washington Post.
“I saw this crowd hitting that glass screaming,” Rep. Jim McGovern, D-Mass., Told The Associated Press on Sunday. “As I looked at their faces, it occurred to me that these are not demonstrators. These are people who want to cause harm.”
Once inside, the mob wanted to know where the house spokeswoman, Nancy Pelosi, was. They would eventually find her office and steal her lectern and laptop.
“Where are they?” yelled the mob as they chased lawmakers. Congress workers put furniture against doors and crouched under tables for hours.
“Media Murder” was carved on a door of the Capitol. Journalists were attacked; Some had smashed their equipment.
It wasn’t until 3:10 p.m. that the guard was finally deployed and they didn’t arrive until 5:40 pm. After most of the violence had ended, the post Office Reports.
Following the violent uprising in the Capitol, US Capitol Police chief Steven Sund resigned after Pelosi asked him to resign. House NCO Paul Irving and Senate NCO Michael Stenger also resigned.
Congress plans to investigate the law enforcement response that led to the catastrophic planning errors on Wednesday.
Many questions remain, however, including the Army’s failure to respond to Bowser and Sund’s requests for assistance.
Piatt denies that he blocked Sund’s request: “I have not made any statement or comments similar to those given to me by Chief Sund in the Washington Post Article, ”he told Business Insider.
On Monday, three days before the attack, Bowser had asked the National Guard for a light security presence, given the negative press resulting from the massive military footprint in the Capitol during the summer protests. According to military officials, defense officials agreed that around 340 National Guard DCs would perform support tasks such as traffic management.
In the summer, President Trump convened the DC National Guard. He didn’t do it on Wednesday. Rumors circulated that Vice President Mike Pence requested assistance from the guard, but reports that Pence gave the order are false.
“The vice president is out of the chain of command. He doesn’t have that authority, he didn’t order it, ”said Jonathan Hoffman, Pentagon spokesman.
The authority to activate the DC National Guard was delegated by the President to the Secretary of Defense and further delegated to the Secretary of the Army. Mayor Bowser is not authorized to call in the National Guard. She can apply for her assignment as she did here, but ultimate authority rests with the Army Secretary, Ryan McCarthy, who delayed approval of her application by 90 minutes.
Several European security officials believe that “there must have been at least some tacit support from US federal agencies responsible for securing the Capitol complex,” Business Insider reports.
Insider spoke to three officers Thursday morning: a French police officer in charge of public security in an important part of central Paris and two intelligence agents from NATO countries who are directly involved in counter-terrorism and counter-espionage operations that the USA, terrorism and Russia are involved. They said the available evidence pointed to an attempted coup in another nation. No one was willing to speak on the file because the subject was so bad.The French police officer said they believed an investigation would reveal someone interfered with the deployment of additional federal law enforcement officers on the outskirts of the Capitol complex; The officer has direct knowledge of the proper security procedures for the facility.
National security is at grave when America’s allies believe US federal agents were involved in a coup. It is therefore important that Congress conduct a thorough investigation. We need to know why it took so long for the army to respond to requests to deploy the National Guard.
“This is really, for the most part, a Capitol Police failure in planning,” said Lindsay Cohn, associate professor of national security affairs at Naval War College TAC. “Mayor Bowser was probably too optimistic. She could have asked for more DC National Guard beforehand. I think the Capitol Police were way too optimistic and don’t seem to have had any emergency planning … [in case] You could be wrong. They only seem to have expected a mild protest. “
“This was an unprecedented attack on Capitol Hill. There was nothing like it before, ”said constitutional attorney Bruce Fein TAC. Fein said it would have been difficult for security to anticipate a mob that would behave in ways Washington had never seen before: “Who would have expected a president to start a riot and the equivalent of Henry II wants that no one frees me from this interference priests? ‘and call the mob down on its own vice president?’
Could this have been prevented if the National Guard had deployed in 45 minutes?
“Government bureaucracies move slowly all the time, especially when something is completely unexpected,” said Fein. “Now you should know that you are expecting a mob.”
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