“[On] January 5, 2021, an unknown individual placed two pipe bombs in Washington, D.C. One pipe bomb was placed at the headquarters of the RNC … and the other was placed at the headquarters of the DNC,” the FBI said.
Not long after the Capitol riots, the evidence was already starting to pile up that the Capitol breaching was likely a preplanned attack rather than a spontaneous one “incited” by President Trump during the speech he gave that day.
CBS News investigative journalist Catherine Herridge was the first to report on the pipe bombs that were found at the headquarters of both the RNC and the DNC within thirty minutes of each other on January 6th as President Trump was still giving his speech:
#CapitolBuilding From Acting US Attorney Michael Sherwin – two pipe Bombs, one near RNC + second, DNC “not a hoax” + “were viable,” ongoing forensics to identify bombmaker + whether timers rigged for max casualties IMAGES first reported @CBSNews pic.twitter.com/d4Sdg4SWy2
— Catherine Herridge (@CBS_Herridge) January 7, 2021
#CapitolHill NEW: Law enforcement report from 1/7 obtained @CBSNews lays out – what appears to be – a significant timeline. First pipe bomb at RNC called in at approximately 1245 as POTUS spoke at rally with a second device at DNC called in approximately 1315. NOTE: Timing + pic.twitter.com/G6qGWLbTB7
— Catherine Herridge (@CBS_Herridge) January 10, 2021
Around that same time, NBC News reported that the FBI and the NYPD alerted the Capitol Police in advance as to the possibility that there would be violence and rioting on the day of Trump’s speech. Such news countered previous assertions by federal law enforcement officials that they were unaware of any intelligence suggesting protesters would become violent and possibly storm the Capitol.
Despite this information, the House voted to impeach Trump on January 13th on a single charge that he incited an insurrection with the speech he gave on January 6th.
Six days later, an even clearer picture and more detailed timeline was revealed via the Washington Post, which published a thorough write-up acknowledging the attack “was not an entirely impulsive outburst of violence.” The piece ran with the headline “Self-styled militia members planned on storming the U.S. Capitol days in advance of Jan. 6 attack, court documents say”:
The arrests this weekend of several people with alleged ties to far-right extremist groups, including the Oath Keepers, the Proud Boys and the Three Percenters, suggest that the riot was not an entirely impulsive outburst of violence but an event instigated or exploited by organized groups. Hours of video posted on social media and pored over by investigators have focused on individuals in military-style gear moving together.
“This is the first step toward identifying and understanding that there was some type of concerted conspiracy here,” said one senior official with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, which is leading the investigation.
More information has emerged since that time about when the pipe bombs were said to have been planted at the RNC and DNC locations:
The FBI disclosed Friday that investigators believe two pipe bombs discovered near the U.S. Capitol were planted the night before the Jan. 6 siege.
Based on analysis of videos recorded by surveillance cameras in the area, investigators said whoever planted the bombs did so between 7:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. on Jan. 5. The bombs were discovered the next day, as Congress was preparing to certify the Electoral College votes for president.
Videos obtained by the FBI and independently by The Washington Post, which posted them on its website, show a person believed to be the suspect walking through the neighborhood, wearing a gray hoodie, a mask and carrying a backpack.
The FBI published the information on their website and Twitter feed as well:
The #FBI and @ATFWashington are offering up to $100,000 for information about the individual(s) who placed pipe bombs at the Democratic National Committee and Republican National Committee headquarters in Washington, D.C., on January 5. https://t.co/f5uzC59PAC pic.twitter.com/NJxepq8PEV
— FBI (@FBI) January 29, 2021
The individual wore a face mask, a gray hoodie, and Nike Air Max Speed Turf shoes in black, gray, and yellow. Submit tips by calling 1-800-CALL-FBI (225-5324) or visiting https://t.co/iL7sD5efWD. pic.twitter.com/mqFgRAWlbH
— FBI (@FBI) January 29, 2021
According to the Washington Post, some officials are speculating that the pipe bombs were deliberately planted in order to distract the Capitol Police during Trump’s speech:
Steven Sund, who resigned as chief of the Capitol Police in the wake of the riot, has said he suspects the bombs were an intentional effort to draw officers away from the grounds of the Capitol.
Herridge reported that upping the reward in hopes of identifying the person or persons behind the pipe bombs was considered a “central element to the broader investigation” as to who or what groups were behind the Capitol riots:
#CapitolRiots @FBI ups reward to 100k for intel about individual(s) behind pipe bombs discovered outside RNC + DNC 1/6, likely planted night before 1/5. Does large reward reflect investigative priority or few actionable leads? WATCH @CBSNLive pic.twitter.com/rjcltgUxIQ
— Catherine Herridge (@CBS_Herridge) January 30, 2021
With the Senate’s impeachment trial just days away, all of this information puts a big dent in the “incitement” case against Trump. Let’s review this from the House’s impeachment article:
Shortly before the Joint Session commenced, President Trump, addressed a crowd at the Ellipse in Washington, D.C. There, he reiterated false claims that “we won this election, and we won it by a landslide.” He also willfully made statements that, in context, encouraged — and foreseeably resulted in — lawless action at the Capitol, such as: “if you don’t fight like hell you’re not going to have a country anymore.” Thus incited by President Trump, members of the crowd he had addressed, in an attempt to, among other objectives, interfere with the Joint Session’s solemn constitutional duty to certify the results of the 2020 Presidential election, unlawfully breached and vandalized the Capitol, injured and killed law enforcement personnel, menaced Members of Congress, the Vice President, and Congressional personnel, and engaged in other violent, deadly, destructive and seditious acts. [Emphasis mine]
The Democrats’ chief argument against Trump is that he “incited” rioters with his speech. It’s always been a specious argument at best. But if all of this was preplanned – and it’s becoming more obvious by the day that it was, their case falls apart.
Not that facts matter to these people. I mean the outcome of the House’s impeachment vote was preordained, regardless of the information major media outlets that are respected by Democrats reported that contradicted their assertions. But the Senate is another matter entirely. Senators view themselves as the more serious and “mature” members of Congress and thus more willing – at least on the surface – to entertain the possibility that the House got it wrong.
After the Senate’s vote last week on the constitutionality of holding a Senate trial after a president has left office, it’s clear that the vast majority of Senate Republicans are not going to go along with the Pelosi’s and Schumer’s games. But will some Democrats, like Sen. Joe Manchin (WV) and/or Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (AZ), join Republicans in putting a stop to the farce in light of the growing amount of evidence that shows the riots at the Capitol were preplanned?
— Stacey Matthews has also written under the pseudonym “Sister Toldjah” and can be reached via Twitter. —DONATE
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