Police warn of militia group's plot to breach US Capitol on Thurs

Police warn of militia group's plot to breach US Capitol on Thurs

National Guard troops that were activated across the country for the inauguration of President Joe Biden in response to the Jan 6 riot at the US Capitol, are being served low-quality meals which resulted in the hospitalization of Guardsmen.

So far, lawmakers conducting investigations have focused on failed efforts to gather and share intelligence about the insurrectionists' planning before January 6 and on the deliberations among officials about whether and when to call National Guard troops to protect Congress.

The revelation was detailed in a statement from the Capitol Police.

Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.), who has been pushing for removal of the fencing around the Capitol, said Wednesday that in light of the new information, the barriers and increased police presence "may have to be there right now".

Acting Capitol Police Chief Yogananda Pittman said her investigators had collected "some concerning intelligence", but declined to provide any details publicly.

"Following a call with the Mayor of DC and her staff, the Secretary of the Army met with the Acting Secretary of Defense and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff to discuss the requests of the U.S. Capitol Police and the Mayor of DC (at approximately 2:30 p.m.)", Salesses wrote. "Based on the intelligence that we have, the Department has taken immediate steps to enhance our security posture and staffing for a number of days, to include March 4th".

The bulletin explained that some domestic violent extremists "motivated by the QAnon conspiracy theory" could be mobilized to action because they believe that Trump will be inaugurated on March 4 or will return to power on May 20 with the help of the USA military.

Lawmakers are still reeling from January 6 riot when pro-Trump supporters stormed the Capitol, destroyed property, threatened lawmakers and forced Congress to evacuate. Security officials testified last week they expected violence would spill out of protests organized by Trump and his allies, but officials were not ready for a "coordinated military-style" attack on the Capitol.

The 'larger-than-life' statue of Donald Trump at CPAC was made in Mexico
It is believed to be the first endorsement Trump has offered to a challenger of one of the Republicans who voted for his ouster. Continued Democrat control would mean that President Joe Biden's policies would have an easier time passing through Congress.

NBC News also reported that there is no evidence of planned protests or events in QAnon forums, but an FBI official said last week that the bureau is aware of chatter among far-right groups that "Thursday could be the next rallying point".

According to NBC, Blodgett said there's now no indication any groups are planning to travel to Washington, D.C., to protest the 2020 presidential election results or commit acts of violence.

But that advisory was updated in a note to lawmakers Wednesday morning.

Also, thousands of accounts that promoted the January 6 event that led to a violent storming of the US Capitol have since been suspended by major tech companies like Facebook and Twitter, making it far more hard for QAnon and far-right groups to organise a repeat. So far, about 300 people have been charged with federal crimes for their roles in the riot.

Representative Adriano Espaillat said he was "very concerned" about potential threats Thursday and wasn't sure whether the Capitol Police were adequately prepared.

"I believe that there should be additional resources assigned to their efforts to sweep for explosives, for example", he said. They claimed former president Trump, defeated by Biden in the November 3 election, will be sworn in for a second term in office. Rioters easily swarmed through bicycle rack barricades; Capitol and D.C. police officers were overwhelmed by the pure numbers of attackers; and the National Guard did not respond to the scene until hours after the siege had begun.

"Any minute that we lost, I need to know why", Klobuchar said.

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