On Sunday, over 2,100 National Guard troops ended their deployment to Washington D.C. after being camped out around the Capitol for over four months following Trump’s attempted coup on January 6.
Up to 25,000 National Guard soldiers were deployed to the Capitol following the January 6 attack, which was led by fascist militias such as the Proud Boys, Oath Keepers and III Percenters, backed by thousands of Trump supporters.
The far-right mob was allowed to breach the Capitol in an attempt to overthrow the election of Democrat Joe Biden following the deliberate security stand-down facilitated by high-ranking Trump loyalists within the Department of Defense, the police and intelligence agencies.
Testifying to the ongoing fear within sections of the ruling class of another coup attempt, a seven-foot-high “non-scalable” security fence was installed around the perimeter of the Capitol complex and the US Capitol was transformed into a military camp surrounded by thousands of National Guard soldiers.
Further demonstrating the ongoing high risk of violence even after Biden’s inauguration, in March, Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, who previously announced a series of internal discussions throughout the military to deal with growing problem of “extremism in the ranks,” also announced that he had approved a 60- day extension of the National Guard deployment through May 23.
The decision to keep the soldiers around the Capitol was made due to the ongoing threats of fascistic violence and warnings of an “insider” attack against President Joe Biden, which led to the delay of the State of the Union address until April.
Some of those warnings collected by police and intelligence agencies were made public this month with the release of hacked data from the Washington D.C. Metropolitan Police Department. The police files, which included intelligence and planning documents, were obtained by the hacker group Babuk at the end of April and passed on to the journalist collective Distributed Denial of Secrets, which has begun uploading the files online.
The data shows that following the January 6 siege, the D.C. Metropolitan Police continued to receive specific, detailed, violent threats against Biden and other targets in Washington, leading up to the inauguration. The most serious threats concerned the far-right libertarian militia group the Boogaloo Bois. Like the other militia groups that participated in the assault on the Capitol, the Boogaloo Bois claim a high proportion of current and former military members.
Throughout the last year, Boogaloo Bois have appeared at both anti-police-violence and anti-lockdown/pro-reopening protests with semi-automatic weapons, body armor, Hawaiian shirts and sometimes pipe bombs. Within the last year, members of the fanatical nationalist gun group have been charged in the kidnapping plot against Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer, the murders of police officers (some of whom were viewed as a danger to the far right) as well as terrorism and arson charges.
One of the intelligence documents compiled by the D.C. Metro Police with the assistance of the FBI, Business Insider first reported, was for a plan called “Operation Stormbreaker” which involved “targeting landmarks, government buildings, power plants, and other civic institutions in D.C. on January 19.”
According to Insider, the police memo said January 19 was dubbed “National Popcorn Day” by the Boogaloo movement and QAnon adherents who were spreading the plans within their social media and encrypted communication circles. Police intelligence reports showed an alleged map that Boogaloo members had created with a list of targets in D.C. that included the White House, the US Treasury, the World Bank, the US Capitol and the Lincoln and Jefferson Memorials.
The Guardian reported on a January 13 intelligence memo which concerned a group calling itself Patriot Action for America. The memo claimed that the group had been “calling for others to join them in ‘storming’ state, local, and federal government courthouse and administrative buildings in the event POTUS [Trump] is removed as president prior to inauguration day.”
The memo also mentioned the possibility of another suspect in the pipe bomb plot outside the Republican and Democratic National Centers in D.C. The “possible second suspect” was “observed on video scouting taking photographs in advance of the placement” and “took a metro to the East Falls Church stop and took a Lyft from there.”
A January 22 document concerns a Pennsylvania man who was arrested after “transmitting interstate threats to multiple US senators of the Democratic Party,” including that he was “going to D.C. to kill people and wanted to be killed by the police.” The Guardian noted that when the man was apprehended by police “he was in possession of a rifle, two handguns, and a large quantity of ammunition.”
In another leaked January 17 intelligence memo, police detailed Boogaloo activity on a website called Tree of Liberty, which has since been taken offline. The memo noted the filthy reactionary language common in police and military agencies throughout the country. Posts included anti-Semitic imagery, extolling Boogaloo Bois to attack Jews, described as “lizards,” while law enforcement was concerned with security around the Capitol. The memo also noted that multiple posts on the site upheld QAnon adherent Ashli Babbitt, a former National Guard soldier, who was killed in the assault on the Capitol as “the martyr of their modern movement.”
Testifying to the fact that fascistic elements are being cultivated and elevated by the ruling class in order to blunt the growing socialist movement of workers and youth in opposition to the current social order, during a May 12 House hearing on the January 6 attack, Republican Arizona Representative Paul Gosar, a leading “Stop the Steal” organizer, claimed that a Babbit was simply a “young lady, a veteran, wrapped in an American flag” who was unjustly “executed” while attempting to storm the Capitol.
Even after the inauguration of Biden, D.C. police continued to collate threats of fascist violence in the Capitol. The Guardian reported on a February bulletin which stated that “an identified militia group member” in Texas was claiming that if their “operation failed at the US Capitol,” there was a “back-up plan” involving the group “detonating bombs at the US Capitol during the State of the Union.”
The unnamed group was described as “a large organization allegedly with members from every state, which included individuals who were former military and law enforcement.”