Stewie’s Assault Rifle: Comings and Goings in the Sedition Militia

I’d like to return to what DOJ did with the Oath Keeper indictments.

As I explained, one thing the sedition indictment did is provide DOJ an easy way to split the unwieldy 17-person indictment into two trials. The first, the sedition trial, includes a barely manageable 11 people, all of whom played a leadership role and/or an active role in putting together the Quick Reaction Force stashed at the Comfort Inn in Ballston.

The second, with seven people charged, named “Crowl” after Donovan Crowl, is still just a conspiracy to obstruct the peaceful transfer of power, though charged under the obstruction statute (18 USC 1512(k)), making the potential sentence for the conspiracy charge higher even for those who, like James Beeks, really just hopped on a stack at the last minute. On top of everything else, these defendants now face the prospect of going to trial after what will surely be a high profile sedition trial, which will make it a lot harder to convince a jury of one’s innocence.

In addition, curiously, DOJ charged Jonathan Walden by himself with just obstruction and trespassing.

Whether DOJ charged Walden by himself in preparation of a plea from him or for some other reason, charging him by himself makes a change in naming convention a lot easier.

In past Oath Keeper conspiracy indictments, DOJ referred to charged defendants in all-caps, those who entered cooperating plea deals in standard text, and those who hadn’t been charged yet using a number system, with Person One being Rhodes, as in this paragraph from the December indictment.

The Crowl indictment generally adheres to this practice, listing both those charged in Crowl and those charged with sedition at the beginning to make it clear it’s all one conspiracy.

But because of the way the Crowl indictment is scoped — focusing on what the sedition indictment calls “Stack One” (the one that busted into the Capitol in spectacular fashion) — certain people are not named at all. Roberto Minuta and Joshua James from the sedition indictment aren’t there, Walden, now spun off on his own is not there.

And cooperating witness, Mark Grods, is not there, at all. Whatever references there are to him just refer to him as a co-conspirator.

It’s not just Grods. A bunch of people, formerly numbers, are just co-conspirators now. Perhaps DOJ did that to sow as much paranoia as possible, so that the defendants have no idea who has flipped and who hasn’t. But I’m particularly interested in Grods’ absence for reasons I’ll explain in a follow-up.

Anyway, this naming convention is most notable with the treatment of Person Ten, who has been identified as Michael Simmons by Mother Jones and others, but who is referred to in the sedition indictment as “the operation leader.”

As with Walden, it’s not entirely clear what’s up with Simmons. It cannot be the case that DOJ decided he had no criminal exposure. As prosecutor Kathryn Rakoczy noted in December, Simmons’ attempts to pretend he didn’t know about the insurrection in May FBI interviews “lack credibility.”

Person Ten’s Statements Are Lacking in Credibility

Person Ten, as an uncharged individual who was aware that others have already been charged, had a motive to downplay or disregard both his own involvement and any preplanning efforts. And documentary evidence contradicts Person Ten’s blanket denials. For instance, on October 8, 2021, the government disclosed a Signal chat thread named “Jan 5/6 DC Op Intel team,” which included Person One, Person Ten, codefendant Joshua James, and about seven other individuals. On the Signal thread, shortly before 2:00 p.m. on January 6, a participant posted a video titled “live stream of patriots storming capital.” Another participant asked, “Are they actually Patriots – not those who were going to go in disguise as Patriots and cause trouble[?]” Person Ten authoritatively answered, “[T]here [sic] patriots.” Person One added, “Actual Patriots. Pissed off patriots[.] Like the Sons of Liberty were pissed off patriots[.]” Codefendant Joshua James followed with, “Were coming to Capitol ETA 30 MIN[.]”

The Sixth Superseding indictment alleges that at 2:14 p.m. on January 6, Person Ten informed the “DC OP: Jan 6 21” Signal chat that “The[y] have taken ground at the capital,” and, “We need to regroup any members who are not on mission[.]” ECF 513 ¶ 125. At 3:05 p.m.— twenty minutes after Defendant Harrelson and other codefendants breached the Capitol, and ten minutes before Defendant James and his second wave of coconspirators breached the same doors—Person Ten also messaged another individual, “Were [sic] storming the capital.”

So something had to have happened with Simmons, with a cooperation deal a likely explanation. That’s why I’m interested in a few details laid out in the sedition indictment.

The main QRF for the people charged in the sedition indictment was (as I never tire of saying) in the Ballston Comfort Inn. Here’s what these guys looked like toting their gun cases around on luggage carts on the surveillance footage.

But before Kelly Meggs and Thomas Caldwell and others settled on the Ballston Comfort Inn for the QRF, Rhodes offered to store weapons for Meggs in the trunk of Simmons’ car.

50. On January 2, 2021, RHODES messaged MEGGS on Signal, “If you want to stow weapons with [the operation leader] you can. He’ll have a secure car trunk or his hotel room (or mine).” MEGGS responded, “Last night call … we discussed a QRF RP so we may do that. As well as the NC team has a hotel room close by.” RHODES messaged, “Ok, We WILL have a QRF. this situation calls for it.” [my emphasis]

The sedition indictment seems to describe Joshua James dropping off weapons at the Hilton Garden Inn in Vienna, VA.

68. On January 5, 2021, JAMES dropped off firearms and ammunition that he, ULRICH, and other co-conspirators had transported to the Hilton Garden Inn in Vienna, Virginia, where RHODES, JAMES, MINUTA, and others were staying.

One of the “others” staying at the Hilton Garden Inn referred to in this paragraph, the earlier indictment makes clear, was Simmons.

On January 4,2021, PERSON TEN checked into the Hilton Garden Inn in Vienna, Virginia. The room was reserved and paid for using a credit card in PERSON ONE’s name.

Anyway, it’s not entirely clear whether that paragraph 68 means that James dropped off weapons he had driven to Vienna at the Comfort Inn, or whether he brought those weapons to the Hilton Garden Inn and they stayed there. It’s worth noting, though, that by leaving Grods out of the sedition indictment, DOJ left out this paragraph from earlier indictments.

On January 2, 2021, Grods messaged JAMES on Signal and asked, “So, I guess I am taking full gear less weapons? Just reading through all the posts. Would rather have it and not need it.” JAMES responded, “Yeah full gear… QRF will have weapons Just leave em home.”

That is, by leaving Grods out, DOJ got to leave out some details about the fate of James’ weapons, too.

And while the sedition indictment has a ton of new details about Rhodes serially arming himself as he drove to insurrection…

On January 3, 2021, RHODES departed Granbury, Texas, and began traveling to the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area. While traveling, RHODES spent approximately $6,000 in Texas on an AR-platform rifle and firearms equipment, including sights, mounts, triggers, slings, and additional firearms attachments.


On January 4, 2021, while still traveling toward the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area, RHODES spent approximately $4,500 in Mississippi on firearms equipment, including sights, mounts, an optic plate, a magazine, and various firearms parts.

… The sedition indictment provides not one detail of where Stewie’s personal arsenal ended up once he got to VA. It doesn’t say he kept all those weapons at the Hilton Garden Inn in Vienna. It doesn’t say the weapons got moved to the Comfort Inn in Ballston.

The sedition indictment does, however, explain that Rhodes and Simmons drove to DC together the morning of insurrection.

At approximately 8:30 a.m., RHODES and the operation leader, and others departed a hotel in Virginia for Washington, D.C., and drove to the Capitol area.

So Rhodes and Simmons traveled to DC in something that had a trunk, like the one days earlier where, Rhodes said, Meggs could stash his weapons.

And I find that interesting because Rhodes and Simmons weren’t together when the insurrection kicked off. Earlier indictments make clear that Rhodes was trying to meet up with Simmons as everyone started converging on the Capitol.

At 2:06 p.m, PERSON ONE sent another message to the Leadership Signal Chat asking for PERSON TEN’s location before stating, “I’m trying to get to you.”

And in fact, Rhodes kept trying to get people to come to the south side of the Capitol, even though all the action was happening north of there.

At 2:25 p.m. PERSON ONE forwarded PERSON TEN’s message (“The have taken ground at the capital[.] We need to regroup any members who are not on mission.”) to the Leadership Signal Chat and instructed: “Come to South Side of Capitol on steps” and then sent a ‘photograph showing the southeast side of the Capitol.

Rhodes’ 2:06 text got cut from the sedition indictment, though his 2:25 one made the cut.

At 2:32, as the Stack was assembling outside the East steps of the Capitol, Kelly Meggs called Rhodes and got conferenced into an already existing call with Simmons.

At 2:32 p.m., MEGGS places a phone call to RHODES, who was already on the phone with the operation leader. RHODES conferenced MEGGS into the call.

Minutes later, after Kelly Meggs and the first stack busted into the Capitol, and Meggs walked towards the office of Pelosi (whom he threatened to kill on election day) with Joseph Hackett and others, Hackett came back out to the entrance as if he was trying to meet up with someone, only to give up and leave.

The detention memo suggests they — apparently including Berry and Connie Meggs, though the detention motion doesn’t mention them — went from here to stand outside Pelosi’s office, and then Hackett — apparently by himself — came back through the Rotunda, stood outside the East Door, looking outward, as if waiting to meet with someone.

Hackett then enters back into the Capitol, goes back to where he (apparently) left Moerschel, Harrelson, and Meggs, along with Berry and Connie Meggs (though they aren’t mentioned) and then he and Moerschel exit the building.

Neither Rhodes nor Simmons entered the Capitol.

To be clear: we have no idea what happened to Simmons and it’s not clear whom Hackett was looking for as Kelly Meggs attempted to hunt down Nancy Pelosi.

But I think it distinctly possible that Simmons drove Stewie’s weapons into DC. Which — particularly if there were a plot to assassinate Nancy Pelosi — would increase Simmons’ exposure significantly.

Update: I just re-read Mike Simmons’ 302s. And he claims that he parked by the Jefferson Memorial.

That’s the location of the “sea” landing point for the QRF teams.

On the evening of January 2, 2021, at about 5:43 p.m., KELLY MEGGS posted a map of Washington, D.C. in the Leadership Signal Chat, along with the message, “1 if by land] North side of Lincoln Memorial[,] 2 if by sea[,] Corner of west basin and Ohio is a water transport landing 11” KELLY MEGGS continued, “QRF rally points[.] Water of the bridges get closed.”

93 replies
  1. TooLoose LeTruck says:

    Once again, spectacular work, Marcy…

    You do intend to put all of this work together someday in book form, right?

    As for the buffoons you’re filleting here…

    I am astonished at the utter lack of awareness of the evidence trail they were leaving in their wake as they bumbled their way on to Jan 6… Go To meetings… text messages… cell phone records… I can only imagine how the staff on duty in the various hotels and motels they were staying at must have reacted as they watched these clowns rolling in carts stacked w/ weapons cases…

    And all in the service of such a spectacularly vile and corrupt person as Donald Trump…

    We’re gonna need to build a new super max prison somewhere… perhaps there are some vacancies at Guantanamo?

    • Bobby Gladd says:

      “the utter lack of awareness of the evidence trail they were leaving in their wake as they bumbled their way on to Jan 6”

      I know. The Stupid on steroids.

      Last year I joked that “the MAGA Civil War will be over in time for Rachel Maddow.” First, with a stop at the Early Bird Special at Olive Garden.

      I mean, WTAF? They’ve been training for this shit for years.

      • TooLoose LeTruck says:

        The people who hand out the Darwin Awards are going to have to come up w/ a new group award for this bunch…

        And while it’s easy, and entertaining, to make fun of them, they’re truly dangerous… they maybe be fools but they’re fools who are armed to the teeth and take their tomfoolery very, very seriously…

        • Bobby Gladd says:

          Yeah, I know you’re right. I’ve had my share of online “death threats” in response to some of my Photoshop spoofing over the years. But nowadays, this current crew of Best Supporting Actors might be more likely to walk the AR-15 talk.

          Still… Last year, I had a transient Twitter exchange with this poignant Boogaloo Boi cat from Michigan. After a while, I started tweet-trolling him (replete with appropriate militia & LE hashtags) stuff like “is it REALLY true that you’re an undercover FBI informant? That’s what a lot of people are saying, bro’.” 🤣

        • FL Resister says:

          Maybe he’s a deep down incel. That can really twist them as we’ve seen.
          His estranged wife Tasha Adams said Rhodes is a “complete sociopath” on CNN this week, expressed “joy” at his arrest, and said her family feels safer with him in jail.

        • TooLoose LeTruck says:

          I did a deep dive on Rhodes this afternoon… took the time to read a profile, check him out at other websites that cover individuals like him, and I have to agree w/ his wife…

          We should all feel safer with him in jail… he’s one scary person…

        • Leoghann says:

          He was on Ron Paul’s staff in Congress after he got his law degree. But apparently in 2009, the bad brain chemicals kicked in, and he started Oath Keepers.

        • Geoguy says:

          I bet Stewie wished he remained a libertarian. From Rick & Morty: Rick: “Off-grid, Morty. We’re gonna live in the woods like libertarians. We’ll hunt rabbits and trade with like little pieces of gold bar that we cut off with a knife.”

        • Leoghann says:

          I believe Rhodes is a Libertarian. I also believe Trump was our first Libertarian President. And he took a cue from Rand Paul and ran as a Republican.

        • TooLoose LeTruck says:

          Well, there ya go…

          Clearly this is what prolonged exposure to Ron Paul could do to your brain…

          I didn’t know that about Rhodes, that he had been on Paul’s staff in Congress… makes me wonder what sort of connection/familiarity Rhodes has w/ Rand?

    • Rita says:

      They probably were thinking that whatever criming they did, Trump would not only pardon them but give them Presidential Medals of Freedom.

    • P J Evans says:

      They assumed that many people were supporting them (though that support possibly existed only in e-mails and FB).

      • JohnJ says:

        I keep telling a Qculter that works with me, of course all your friends agree with you. No one else wants to know you.

    • Drew says:

      I think they were prioritizing convenience of communication over operational security. Locked down OpSec would have made it harder to include as many doofuses in their planning/execution or slowed down communications.

      But more to the point is that their concept of what was going to happen did not involve a long term investigation by the DOJ. They thought that, one way or another, they would win: the certification would be blocked or seriously delayed and Trump would get his do-over with the battleground states, or counter-protesters would confront them and there would be enough escalating interpersonal violence (that wasn’t between MAGAs and cops) that they would have a “defensive” rationale to bring in their weapons, or perhaps they were in with Flynn in their thinking and thought Trump would invoke the insurrection act.

      So their interest in security was purely tactical–keeping their plans concealed from people who might stop them on the day. I don’t think they had any concept of being investigated and arrested down the road. If the issue had ever come up, I suspect most would have contended they would be in a shooting war by that time anyway.

      [I urge caution in underestimating the intelligence of these sorts. What they are deficient in is values, like commitment to democracy or compassion. Any stupidity is a lack of self-awareness due to selfishness, not underlying intelligence. (This doesn’t mean that some of the cannon fodder guys aren’t of limited intelligence, etc. I’m talking about people like Rhodes).]

      • harpie says:

        I agree emphatically with that word of caution.

        Beyond that, these people have an seemingly set in stone,
        UTTER CONVICTION that THEY are ALWAYS RIGHT, and that
        THEY are ENTITLED to IMPOSE their worldview on EVERYONE ELSE.

        IMO, the difference between this and the ENTIRE GOP is
        ONLY a matter of degree, not of substance.

        • eyesoars says:

          They’re fascists. And like Ayn Rand, Adolf Hitler, and other sociopaths, they’re going to shriek “oppresssion!” and stand on their civil rights as they stomp on everyone else’s. Their entitlements are “fundamental rights” and the natural order, where everyone else’s rights are entirely subject to their convenience.

        • timbo says:

          There are different shades of fascists. There are folks who believe they are themselves fascist and then there are fascists who actually believe that they stand for “Freedom!” and “Liberty!” generally… because they have no f-ing clue what any of these political ideas actually entail and mean. In this group of rioters and seditionists, there are obviously both of these types facing charges IMO. Either way, both are a danger to a functioning democracy generally, and to the current Republic as it is. How you deal with each type of person though, particularly under the current legal system, may well be different…depending on how well flexibility in justice and rehabilitation still functions in the Federal legal system.

      • Rita says:

        If I recall correctly, the indictment said that they had talked about a bug out retreat in the mountains.

        Interestingly, they (at least, Rhodes) didn’t flee after the coup failed.

      • TooLoose LeTruck says:

        It’s never a good idea to make fun of people pointing a gun at you, no matter how much they deserve to be ridiculed…

  2. JohnForde says:

    James Beeks is my cautionary example. I am going to think twice before just “jumping on a stack”.
    Seems like he’d be a good candidate to flip.

    • emptywheel says:

      The problem is he–and most of the people on that indictment–have very little to give up. They were so new to the OKs they don’t know people to flip on.

      That’s really the distinction between the two: those that DOJ wants to squeeze and those that DOJ will prosecute out.

      • timbo says:

        One might imagine that by now the Federal judiciary is cottoning on to this in this on-going series of prosecutions? Somewhat of a conundrum to the fair-minded perhaps…

  3. harpie says:

    SIMMON’s answer in Rakoczy’s December reply:

    Another participant asked, “Are they actually Patriots – not those who were going to go in disguise as Patriots and cause trouble[?]” Person Ten authoritatively answered, “[T]here [sic] patriots.” Person One added, “Actual Patriots. Pissed off patriots[.] Like the Sons of Liberty were pissed off patriots[.]” […]

    …is missing from the sedition indictment:

    79. […] Another participant asked, “Are they actually Patriots – not those who were going to go in disguise as Patriots and cause trouble[?]” RHODES responded, “Actual Patriots. Pissed off patriots[.] Like the Sons of Liberty were pissed off patriots[.]” […]

  4. greenbird says:

    (good to make each comment follow keyed-in user and email … pause-enforcing.)
    still no specific case# or def# to ID: waiting for 7S ?
    = no docket = anything sealed is not accessible?
    Walden also no specific case# = no docket = anything sealed is not accessible?

  5. pdaly says:

    Marcy, the mention of Rhodes texting a picture of himself on the SOUTHeast steps caught my attention.

    Some of us on a prior recent thread were snickering that former paratrooper Rhodes kept texting south when he (we think) was on the north east portion of the U.S. Capitol.
    Then there is a mention of the stack heading north to meet up with [Rhodes?] that threw us off.

    Southeast door would be the closest entrance to the House of Representatives wing, but it was the northeast door that was breached after the west side of the U.S. Capitol was breached.

    Rep. McCarthy was yelling to Trump over the phone around 2:45 pm that day (the actual timing of the call remains shrouded) to call off the attack and McCarthy tells Trump (cannot find the news article link at the moment) that his office staff are taking cover from windows being smashed in his (McCarthy’s) office.

    Was there a breach of the southeast doors that has not yet made it into a court document yet?

    Did Rhodes temporarily give up on Pelosi/House of Representatives and move north to the Senate wing at the northeast doors?

        • Rayne says:

          @capitolhunters’ January 6 analysis Google Docs spreadsheet contains a timeline of events that day in which signals are mentioned.

          According to the spreadsheet at 2:41 someone hoisted a Gadsden flag as a signal from the SE balcony of the capitol building, same person who’d also strung up a Gadsden flag on the NE balcony.

          At 2:52 an FBI tactical team arrives at SE corner according to the spreadsheet.

        • harpie says:

          Here’s a VIDEO from the ProPublica Parler Video page, that they list as happening at 2:52 PM “Near the Capitol”

          I think this is the FBI arriving at the South East corner of the Capitol and entering through the South Doors at around 2:52 PM. [Some of them try the South East stairs, but turn back.]

          The East side door that was breached was the Central East Doors [Columbus Doors]

          There’s a Gadsen Flag on the South side of the South East balcony at [1:26]

        • harpie says:

          [0:34] [Woman: ???
          Man1: No, they’re against us.
          Woman: Well, they shouldn’t be. [0:38] The FBI?]

          [0:41] [LE: “Let’s go.” // “I dunno.” // “[…] inside the Capitol. Over.”] […]

          In my above comment, the mention of the Columbus Doors is in response to pdaly’s original comment.

        • pdaly says:

          Thanks for the clarification.

          I went back to look for a graphic that showed a northeast door breached by rioters, but I see on a new graphic that it was on the Second floor–so likely an internal door, not the exterior northeast door.

        • pdaly says:

          I think I was also confusing northeast steps with the security door breach due north.

          This U.S. Capitol north door was breached by the Klein brothers, both of whom had previously entered the Capitol on the west side and exited before successfully prying open the north door. One of the Klein brothers was carrying a Gadsen flag which he used to block chemical spray aimed at the crowd by the Capitol police defending the north doorway entrance.

        • Badger Robert says:

          It all looks impressive, from the timeline. And with the under responding metro police, and the delay in NG deployment, the obstructers seem to have a chance.
          But by 2:53 the House was evacuated. By 2:52 the FBI had a tactical team ready to escalate if they saw the need.
          Something held the conspirators back. We don’t clearly see their problems, but they surely existed.
          And the fact that elements were left stochastic doesn’t mean the danger wasn’t there. Individual heroism held the line for enough time for the FBI to deploy and then pressure on Trump led to the NG.
          There was no second wave of violence.

        • timbo says:

          Of also possible interest is what would have been Metro and DCCP response to the rioters had those bombs gone off by the GOP and DP HQs… of course, there would be no real open discussion in public of whatever level of force escalation orders were in place that would involve deadly force. (Or, if there are such publicly available, please point me at them?)

          What we saw Jan 6 21 was a fairly restrained response from the police IMO…notably restrained given their legal authorities to protect the Capitol and the Congress? Plenty of chain of command/field command issues on that day for the police… it really was amazing how disciplined those police who were there at the Capitol that day actually were IMO. One bad order could have made things much worse than what actually happened. Similarly, one bad open policy might also have been a much greater disaster in terms of consequences for either the rioters and/or the Republic…

  6. CocoPop says:

    Thank you so much for this very helpful site! It’s fascinating information and I can’t stop reading.
    The question that I keep coming back to is: How did they fail?
    What I saw on TV was a mob ransacking our Capitol and then wandering away as it got dark and cold. They took the Capitol, but they couldn’t keep the Capitol.
    Did they fail because they couldn’t find hostages?
    Was it Trump’s tweet that robbed them of the mob and their momentum?

      • cmarlowe says:

        bmaz – I’ve been reading this site, and I must admit my reading comprehension skills are probably in the bottom half of most readers and posters. I pay a lot of attention what you say. However your answer here confuses me. It seems that “they” did not 100% succeed, but I guess your statement and mine both beg the question, “succeed at what?” Please enlighten me, I sincerely don’t get it.

        • Leoghann says:

          Depending on which part of “them” it was, they had one of two purposes:

          1. To capture and/or execute the Democratic Congressional leaders, Mike Pence, and Kamala Harris.

          2. To scare Congress into changing their certification process to allow substitute electors’ votes in, or, failing that, to “encourage” the leadership to adjourn the body for enough period of time to let certain states overturn their election results and send Republican electors.

          By 4:30-5:00 p.m., they knew they had failed (thus far) at both of those goals. Most of their “normie” manpower that would allow them to keep fighting had become bored, tired, or sated, and had left. And the place was being overrun by cops.

          So they called it quits for the day. They have, however, left it to the Misinformation Media and politicians to continue the fight.

        • timbo says:

          re: “had become bored, tired, or sated, and had left”

          WTF are you talking about? Were you there? Have you ever been involved in any such demonstration/riot/political action for any real length of time? I ask because your phrasing indicates that you really don’t understand the dynamics of crowds, individuals, and political movements… other than some pompous, condescending, and HIGHLY theoretical way…

      • CocoPop says:

        I just found this blog last week! I’ve been reading very day, neglecting chores because I cannot stop. And I understand “they” are still working on taking down our government. But I’ve not found the answer to why the Oath Keepers & PBs and other insurrectionists just walked away at the end of the day. This blog is, by far, the very best resource I’ve found for truth regarding January 6 and what is being done to bring accountability. It lightens my heart in these dark days!

    • rip says:

      I don’t know why they seemed to “stand down”. There was obviously a larger LEO presence but that wasn’t the obvious reason. It appeared to be more of a signal – from where.

      Or why they weren’t detained and searched after leaving the premises. This happened after the larger LEO presence but it seems that almost all participants just walked back to their cars/hotels. Strange.

      • MB says:

        From where? How about the belated DFP (Defeated Former President – following Biden’s description) video saying that he “loved them but now go home”? Coup practice was over. The next year or 2 will be “lessons learned” and “let’s try again, but better”

      • civil says:

        Officer Hodges, who works for the DCMP and arrived as backup, was one of the LEOs who testified in the July 27 public hearing before the Select Committee, and he said “Once we got to the Capitol and we were fighting, I was wondering, how many more bombs are there? What’s the trigger? Is it going to be a cell phone? Is it on timer? How many guns are there in this crowd? If we start firing, is that the signal to them to set off the explosives, however many there are in the city? Is that the signal for them to break out their firearms and shoot back? So that’s the reason why I didn’t shoot anyone, and I imagine many others didn’t. Because like I said before, there were over 9,000 of the terrorists out there with an unknown number of firearms and a couple hundred of us, maybe. So we could not -, if that turned into a firefight, we would’ve lost, and this was a fight we couldn’t afford to lose.”

        So my guess is that the LEOs didn’t kettle the insurrectionists and try to arrest them because the LEOs were concerned that it would turn into a firefight and/or prompt someone to set off one or more bombs.

        • eyesoars says:

          Even had they been black/POC protestors, there apparently weren’t enough LEO there to do any of those things. Further, the alignments of some of those organizations standing by to potentially assist LEO weren’t entirely clear: their leaders in many cases had been installed and/or influenced by Trump, and there were significant uncertainties and hazards there.

        • timbo says:

          No. What was imperative from the politicians in the Congress and from VP Pence was that the transition of power continue unencumbered ASAP. So what happened on Jan 6, at the end of the day…into the next morning, all night long, was the transition of power and the maintainence of our Republic’s Constitutional system to function (such as it is).

          Yes, the attempt to game the system had failed on that day, and Twitler and the Twisslerings were on the backstep as a result. Had this not happened, had the police and military (eventually) occupied the Capitol arresting thousands of people in the process (like 9000?), the Congress would very likely have not been able to get back to business as they did…and, in the end, on that day anyways, it was more important than allowing the Big Lie Twisslerings to continue on with their plans within the Adminstration and Congress. Instead their maybe supporters were allowed to leave and leave relatively quickly. No one could wave a hand and easily, no violently, quickly remove thousands of folks from the mall and place them in detention? There’s not easy way to arrest that many people scattered around the mall and DC area, let alone in the Capitol building, etc, in a matter of a few hours. Or at least there were no realistic plans in place at the time to do so in any sort of timely manner.

          In the end, I’m glad the leadership of the Congress and the VP decided to take the tact that they did. And we all should be too IMO, at least those of us who didn’t want to see things escalate even further.

          And do you really think that rounding up all the folks there that day would have lead to our legal system processing their cases any sooner or gotten us any further modicum of “justice” out of the Constitutional system?

    • Al Ostello says:

      I don’t recall where first I heard the whole theory, perhaps on this site, but one part of on indictment mentioned a plan for Oath Keepers to bring in all the guns in the eve of J6 (that they transported across state lines.) They were surprised that the national guard was brought in at hour 3, which extinguished the Oath Keeper plan and that also supports the idea higher ups had a plan to keep the national guard at bay.

      This recent msnbc video clip includes Oath Keepers plan to bring in more guns later at night:

      • timbo says:

        Me? I just want to catch the person who planted those bombs and find out what the actual plan with those was, including any co-conspirators in that particular plot.

    • bughunter says:

      I’d say they failed because they were expecting a massive counterprotest at which to incite violence, and use the violence as an excuse for the next step: Trump declares a National Security Emergency.

      But the counterprotesters didn’t show up. They smelled a trap, and convinced the non-fascists to stay home.

      Here’s a good article, on a good news site, that goes into some depth:

      • timbo says:

        “Smelled a trap”?! What a joke!

        There were no massive counter-protesters because there weren’t any planned. I want to see the actual FBI reports on all this—can you show me credible FBI intelligence, local intelligence from LEO, etc, etc that there was >any< planning by any "antifa types" to be there on Jan 6? Any? Where are these ideas of such plans actually coming from? From the right wing extremists and Twisslerings and nowhere else that we know of; everyone who is "antifa" expected the Capitol police and the Congress to do its job that day…without any need to be there at all; all this stuff about "antifa!" is coming only from the right and those who seek to justify violent action from the right.

  7. Badger Robert says:

    In the timeline linked by Rayne its clear they failed. By 2:52 the last Reps were evacuated. At 2:53 the FBI tactical team arrives and can start using firearms, if it sees a rioter who is armed.
    Too many elements were left to chance. There had been a good number of horrendous stochastic terrorist attacks, so they perhaps thought that some of the new recruits would be “crazies” which is why the called them “normies”. They were wrong.
    LE and the FBI used the minimal force necessary to clear the capital.
    By 5:20 it was winding down.
    Lots of brave talk, lots of weapons, but very little will to use them.

    • timbo says:

      Well, let’s hope that the DCCP and the MPDC had learned a bit from this experience so that if there’s another such incident in the future that it gets less further than it did on J6.

  8. civil says:

    Thank you for all of your careful analysis. I sure hope that the House Select Committee has staff assigned to read your columns and work by others who are doing detailed analyses, to help them identify key pieces that they’d otherwise miss.

  9. Ladyhawke says:

    Marcy, I’ve been reading you since dkos. Thank you so much for your and the team’s incredible work (and for slapping down the “tv lawyers”)!
    Whenever I see video of the Capitol attack I think of the staffers (one woman?) who amazingly took time during that terrifying escape from the Floor to carry the box of electors’ certificates with them.
    I know the states have copies, but if the insurrectionists had gotten or destroyed them, would it have allowed the conspiring Republican House members to object and prevent the vote later that night, making space for the rest of the plan?

      • Ladyhawke says:

        Thank you. I found this article about the unnamed woman staffer who directed the removal and safekeeping of the three boxes:

        “The boxes don’t hold the only certified electoral votes — other copies are held by state governors, the National Archives and the Federal Registrar, which has digital copies — but they are the physical copies of the certificates that could allow for the process to continue on time and as planned.” (We all know what they would say about digital copies and perhaps physical ones, etc.)

        Sen. Jeff Merkley is quoted, “Had they not done so, then the hooligans outside, disrespecting the Constitution, would have come in here and opened these boxes and burned the ballots, destroying the voice of the people symbolically.”

        • P J Evans says:

          I remember the coverage last year said that electors have to sign three copies, for the state, NARA, and Congress.

  10. harpie says:

    12:29 PM · Jan 17, 2022

    I’ve seen no commentary on why Stewart Rhodes adopted a Serbian model for his civil war, but I’d love to hear what people make of that choice. [link]

    Capitol Hunters talked about that a little in this thread:
    2:05 PM · Jan 13, 2022

    […] The OK indictment shows explicit talk of armed takeover, and inspiration from Eastern Europe, where ‘hybrid’ actions of large crowds combined with military actors have toppled governments. (Rhodes says: [Police and] “Military aligned with the people”). Similar language is used by many.. 5/ [screenshots] […]

    To show how common this talk was, here’s Patrick Byrne, not a military guy at all, former Overstock CEO, election-fraud conspirator, pal of Michael Flynn, met with Trump on Nov 18th [12/18/20] – casually discussing the playbook he’d learned on a trip to Moldova… [screenshots] THREAD]

    • Tallyrand says:

      I also noticed that Micheal Waller was posting in 2017-2018 a blueprint for a Jan 6th style coup claiming that it was the Dems’ true plan. Clearly he was seeding the narrative early.

    • Rayne says:

      Amusing in an awkward way since the Observer was a Kushner property which his BIL took over operations after Trump’s inauguration.

    • greengiant says:

      @20committee tweeted of Trump Feb 17, 2017 … received email, “He will die in jail.”
      Schindler’s article was comparing Trump to Milosevic.Typical psywar to turn the analogy 180 degrees.

  11. Greg Hunter says:

    Based on Rayne’s comments about signals associated with this seditious conspiracy related to the IEDs placed in two places around the Capitol; I woke up with this great fear that if someone finally flips and names a name and what if that name is an FBI/Government agent that participated in the preparation and delivery of duds?

    Please tell me I am a nutter and have nothing to worry about…..

  12. Krisy Gosney says:

    Just want to tell you Marcy I’m reading everything from your Twitter feed and blog and you are doing amazing researching and reporting. Thank you!! Thanks to everyone involved here!

  13. harpie says:

    THANKS for explaining the DOJ naming convention.

    So, I guess the capitalized RHODES in paragraph 35. of the CROWL et al indictment is a typo, because I’m pretty sure every other mention of Rhodes is not capitalized?

    I’m curious why the list of co-conspirators at paragraph 9. doesn’t list Rhodes at all.

  14. skua says:

    One of the surprising features of the current overall picture I’ve got of 6 Jan insurrection is the amount of inhibition in play:
    The Park, Metro, Capitol police and the FBI seemed restricted to “compliant mode” in their preparation.
    The pipe bombs weren’t detonated.
    AIUI no guns were fired except for one at Babbitt.
    The (multiple – how many) readied pro-Trump QRFs weren’t deployed.
    The National Guard’s deployment was delayed some 3 hours.

    Seems suggestive of experienced, high level planners being involved.

    • timbo says:

      High in what sense?

      Occam’s Razor tells us that it is incredibly unlikely that anyone could have coordinated J6 on any such scale, certainly not without leaving handprints all over it everywhere. That is not to say that Twitler and his Twisslerings weren’t involved in key ways, just that the incredible notion that somehow all these jurisdictions were somehow under orders and in cahoots is not credible. Not. Credible.

  15. pdaly says:

    I agree, harpie . I was just wondering how I had missed the part earlier about Simmons parking near the Jefferson Memorial!

    I just read the Mother Jones article about Simmons (link in original post) and he seems hard to pin down AND Simmons also goes by an alternate name Michael Greene, too, but refuses to say why?

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