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Senate report says FBI and Homeland Security ignored ‘massive’ information before Jan. 6

Washington – The FBI and Homeland Security downplayed or ignored “mass intelligence information” ahead of the January 6, 2021 executive order. Attack on the US CapitolA new report on pre-insurrection intelligence failures will be released on Tuesday, according to the chairman of the Senate committee.

The report shows how officials perceived and warned of the potential for violence, even though some supporters of then-President Donald Trump openly planned the siege in online messages and forums. It details why it didn’t.

Among the many pieces of information that were overlooked was information from December 2020 sent to the FBI by members of far-right extremist groups. Proud Boys According to the report, they will be coming to Washington, D.C., to certify victory over Joe Biden, and “the plan is to literally kill people.” The Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee said officials were also aware of a number of social media posts that foreshadowed violence, including one that “armed” Trump supporters and stormed the Capitol, threatening lawmakers. Some called for them to be killed or to “burn the place down,” he said.

Michigan Senator Gary Peters, the Democratic chairman of the Homeland Committee, said the breakdown was “largely due to a lack of imagination in credible threats of a possible Capitol invasion.” , reiterated the Commission’s findings of September 11 regarding future intelligence failures. 2001 terrorist attacks.

A report by most of the panel’s staff said the intelligence services were not fully recalibrated to focus on domestic, rather than international, terrorist threats. And government intelligence leaders could not sound the alarm, “partly because they could not imagine the Capitol being occupied by mobs.”

Still, Peters said his reasons for dismissing what he called a “large amount” of information were “not easily explained.”

In some other reports, failure of intelligence Around January 6 — including bipartisan 2021 Senate Report, House January 6 Committee Last year and several times Internal evaluation The latest investigation by Capitol Police and other government agencies is the first congressional report to focus exclusively on the activities of the FBI and the Office of Intelligence and Analysis of Homeland Security.

Mr. Peters said the commission’s interviews with officials from both agencies in the wake of the attack found they were “fairly blaming” each other.

“Everyone failed, everyone should be held accountable,” Peters said.

The report draws on emails and interviews collected by Senate committees and others, including the House committee on January 6, to detail information obtained by government agencies in the weeks prior to the attacks. ing.

While the report did not fail to obtain evidence, the agency “failed to fully and accurately assess the severity of the threat identified by the information and formally disseminate guidance to law enforcement partners.” It has said.

When Republican Trump tried to reverse his election loss by falsely claiming he won the 2020 election, he told his supporters: fight like hell ’” in a speech in front of the White House that day as thousands marched toward the Capitol. A U.S. Government Accountability Office report earlier this year said more than 2,000 mobs overpowered law enforcement, assaulted police officers, and caused more than $2.7 billion in damage to the Capitol.

The rioters smashed through windows and doors, forced lawmakers to run for their lives, and suspended the election recognition of Democrat Biden.

The FBI and Homeland Security downplayed the threat, according to a new report, even though the attack was taking place. While the Capitol Police were struggling to remove the building, the Department of Homeland Security “still struggled to assess the credibility of threats to the Capitol and report that information.”

And at a 10 a.m. press conference, demonstrators gathered near President Trump’s speech venue and the Capitol “wearing bulletproof helmets and bulletproof vests and carrying radio equipment and military backpacks,” the FBI said, “at this time. There is no credible threat in

A lack of sufficient warning means that law enforcement is ill-prepared to establish a tight perimeter around the Capitol, such as is done during events such as the annual State of the Union address. It means that it was not.

The report contains dozens of reports of violence received by government agencies on 6 January but rejected either due to lack of coordination, bureaucratic delays, or fears on the part of those collecting the reports. include. For example, the FBI, which was trying to find social media posts planning the Jan. 6 protests after a contract for a third-party social media monitoring tool expired, was met with unexpected interference. rice field. At the Department of Homeland Security, analysts were hesitant to report open source information after being criticized for collecting information on Americans during racial justice demonstrations in 2020.

One piece of information the FBI received prior to the Jan. 6 raid was from a former Justice Department official who sent screenshots of online posts from members of the extremist group Oath Keepers. It’s not a rally. It’s–it’s a bullet! ”

social media company parlorThe FBI, a popular platform for Trump supporters, sent several posts it deemed alarming directly to the FBI, adding, “This has more sources,” and worries about what might happen on Jan. 6. He added that he does.

According to the report, one of Parlor’s posts sent to the FBI read, “This is not a rally and is no longer a protest.” “This is the last position we will draw a red line on the Capitol. (…) Don’t be surprised if we pick up the #capital (sic) building.”

But despite being warned, officials repeatedly said there were no credible threats, according to an investigation by a Senate committee.

“While our country continues to consider the effects of January 6th, what is clear is the need for a reassessment of the federal government’s domestic intelligence gathering, analysis and dissemination processes,” says the new report. .

Homeland Security spokeswoman Angelo Fernandez said in a statement that the department made many of these changes two and a half years later. The ministry “is stepping up intelligence analysis, information sharing and operational readiness to prevent acts of violence and keep communities safe.”

In a separate response, the FBI said it had focused on “rapid information sharing” since the attack and centralized information flow to ensure more timely notification to other organizations. “The FBI is determined to vigorously combat the danger posed by all violent extremists in the country, regardless of motive,” the statement said.

FBI Director Christopher Wray defended the FBI’s handling of intelligence operations Among them is a report from the Norfolk field office on January 5, citing an online post foreshadowing a possible “war” in Washington the next day. The Senate report noted that the memo “does not list numerous other warnings” received by government agencies.

The FBI and Homeland Security faultfinding echoes the fierce criticism directed at Capitol Police in a bipartisan report published by the Senate Homeland Security Committee two years ago. The report also found that police intelligence was aware of social media posts calling for violence, but failed to inform the highest leadership of what they had found.

Peters said he requested the intelligence agency’s investigation following other reports that focused on other aspects of the attack, including a House committee investigation last year. The Jan. 6 committee focused more on Mr. Trump’s actions, and in a report the former president concluded: Criminal involvement in a “multi-part conspiracy” He tried to overturn the legitimate outcome of the 2020 presidential election but failed to stop his supporters from attacking the Capitol.

“It’s important for us to recognize these failures and make sure they don’t happen again,” Peters said.


Associated Press reporters Eric Tucker and Rebecca Santana contributed to this report.

Copyright 2023 Associated Press. all rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

https://www.local10.com/news/politics/2023/06/27/the-fbi-and-homeland-security-had-a-massive-amount-of-warnings-about-jan-6-a-senate-report-finds/ Senate report says FBI and Homeland Security ignored ‘massive’ information before Jan. 6

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