Americans need to ask what was the 6 January 2021 Capitol Riot? Was it a coup, an attempt at revolution, an insurrection, civil disobedience, a protest, or political theater?
Similarly, ordinary Americans need to ask, are our political leaders covering up the truth about the Capitol Riot? Are the rich and powerful people who paid for and led the violence getting away scot-free while ordinary people are being set up as scapegoats?
To begin, we need to determine what happened on 6 January 2021. Tellingly, the media calls the event a coup and an insurrection, but they refuse to utter the r-word revolution. So what was it?
Was it a Coup?
I do not consider the 6 January violence a coup. To explain, a coup or coup d’état usually involves the military and sometimes law enforcement.
For example, the Army was responsible for the 1973 September 11 Coup in Chile. On 11 September 1973, units of the Chilean army and air force attacked the presidential palace to remove controversial President Salvador Allende.
Notably, the U.S. military was missing in action on 6 January. There were no troops at the Capitol and when troops came, they were the National Guard, not the Regular Army or the Marines.
Indeed, we can charge the US military and its commanders with dereliction of duty on 6 January 2021. Nobody at the Pentagon attempted to protect the Capitol.
America’s generals and admirals were not responsible for 6 January violence. However, their inaction raises serious questions about the military’s effectiveness and its commitment to democracy and the rule of law.
Was it a Revolution?
Frighteningly, the Capitol Insurrection is reminiscent of a pivotal event from Russian history the Storming of the Winter Palace.\
On 7 November 1917 armed supporters of the Bolshevik (Communist) Party overran the Winter Palace. The Winter Palace was the building they based Russia’s Provisional Government and the Duma or parliament. The ineffective and unpopular Provisional Government had taken power after the abdication of Czar Nicholas II a few months earlier.
What happened at the Winter Palace is unclear because the Communists later mythologized the event. However, a group of extremists could seize the seat of government and power.
Americans need to fear because the Storming of the Winter Palace led to 74 years of Communist dictatorship. Moreover, historian Stéphane Courtois, estimates Russia’s Communist regime; the Soviet Union killed around 20 million innocent people. Millions more were tortured, starved, enslaved, imprisoned, and brutalized by the Soviet police state.
Interestingly, modern historians think the Storming of the Winter Palace was a farce. The Bolsheviks, like the January 6 rioters, just walked in and took over. The military did not try to keep the Bolsheviks out. Communist propagandists manufactured heroic imagery of the event to justify it as a revolutionary struggle.
Long-standing class and ideological grievances drove the Bolsheviks at the Winter Palace. Russian leftists were angry because of decades of oppression and political disenfranchisement by the Czarist regime. Income inequality, and lack of rights frustrated other Russians.
Americans need to take note because what happened at the Capitol on 6 January 2021 bears a frightening resembles to the Storming of the Winter Palace. So yes, it was an attempted revolution.
Was it Political Theater?
An interesting way to look at 6 January 2021 is that it was an act of political theater that spun out of control.
Notably, the events of 6 January began with a classic piece of American political theater, a rather routine speech by President Donald J. Trump (R-Florida). The speech was to a crowd protesting the Certification of Joseph R. Biden (D-Delaware) as Trump’s replacement by Congress.
What Trump intended to say is hard to determine. However, the crowd became a mob that stormed the Capitol and tried to lynch members of Congress.
Perhaps Trump underestimated the bloodlust and anger of his followers. There was a certain lack of planning. Notably, no members of the mob had guns or tools to break open doors.
Video from 6 January shows the mob members used fire extinguishes and flagpoles as weapons. I suspect thugs planning to storm a building would bring sledgehammers and battering rams and guns.
Strangely, was no apparent leader directing the Capitol attack. Nobody was directing the attack or commanding the troops.
In comparison, the Bolsheviks at the Winter Palace brought guns and had leaders. Importantly, there appeared to be no mercenaries or professional thugs among the mob at the US Capitol.
There is speculation that Bolshevik leader Vladimir I. Lenin hired mercenaries, veterans of the Czars’ armies, to lead the mob that stormed the Winter Palace. Lenin had the money to finance his coup because Russia’s World War I enemy Imperial Germany was bankrolling his activities. Whether German agents directed the Storming of the Winter Palace is one of history’s more intriguing mysteries.
Moreover, many of the mob members resembled cosplayers because they wore costumes rather than uniforms. To elaborate, cosplay is a form of amateur theater in which people dress up as characters they admire.
Thus, we can view the Capitol Riot as Political Cosplay or amateur Political Theater that spiraled out of control. A strong possibility is that Trump and his handlers underestimated the passions of the mob. Trump did not think the mob would attack the Capitol or try to lynch Vice President Mike Pence (R-Indiana).
Is There a Cover Up?
Many observers, including me, are wondering if America’s political leaders and others are trying to cover up what happened on 6 January 2021?
In particular, I have to wonder why Congress was quick to impeach former President Donald J. Trump (R-Florida). I have to wonder ask why they held an impeachment without a full investigation of the events. If they want to prevent Trump from running for President in 2024, Democrats had four years to impeach why now?
Was impeachment rushed to cover up the involvement of Republican leaders, wealthy campaign donors, major media figures, business leaders, military commanders, and law enforcement leaders in the insurrection? Notably, there have been allegations that some Congressional Republicans were in contact with insurgents, or had advance knowledge of the event.
A strong possibility is that Congressional leaders are more interested in protecting Congress’s reputation than learning the truth. If that is true, US Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-California) and U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-New York) are leading the cover up.
Questions we need to ask about January 6
Some other questions we need to ask about January 6, 2021 include:
1. Why did the massive digital and electronic surveillance apparatus run by the National Security Agency (NSA) and other entities not detect the planning for the Capitol Attack? Edward Snowden’s revelations show the NSA’s capacities are vast, yet the agency failed to detect the chatter about the Capitol. Is the NSA incompetent or deficient or negligent, or is something else going on?
2. Did somebody inside the NSA or Department of Homeland Security deliberately ignore the chatter about the Capitol? Could somebody in the NSA or the intelligence community have directed the mob?
3. Interestingly, ViceTV alleges that retired Lieutenant General Michael T. Flynn was behind the QAnon conspiracy which helped inspire the 6 January riot. Flynn was US National Security Advisor and is a former Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency? ABC News alleges that Michael T. Flynn promoted the rally that preceded the Capitol Riot. Interestingly, Flynn himself was not at the rally. Flynn’s brother Lieutenant General Charles Flynn was one of the Army officers who failed to respond to the insurrection, CNN alleges.
4. Thus we need to ask if high-level members of the military, the intelligence community, and law enforcement had a role in the planning for January 6, 2021. Did somebody deliberately suppress intelligence that could have led the military to protect the Capitol and prevent the insurrection?
5. Did wealthy business leaders or political donors finance the violence? The Tampa Bay Times alleges that Julia Jenkins Fancelli, an heir to the Publix supermarket fortune, paid $300,000 to finance the Trump rally before the insurrection.
6. What role did foreign governments play? Remember Lenin and the German money?
7. How was the attack financed? Were rioters, many of whom were broke according to The Washington Post, paid to attack the Capitol? Chainalysis Insights claims somebody sent 13.5 Bitcoin (BTC) to far-right activists and internet personalities involved in the protest on 8 December 2020. Who sent that money and what role did it play in the attack?
Americans need answers to these questions. We need to know if we can trust our institutions and leaders and if our leaders will hold the rich and powerful accountable for their actions.
In particular, I think the image of billionaire ex-President Donald J. Trump (R-Florida) being allowed to jet away to his luxurious home at Mar-a-Lago while the FBI arrests middle-class rioters will fuel distrust and class warfare.
I predict there will be more violence and perhaps another attempt at Revolution without accountability. Something to remember is that the far left is watching. If leftists see the far right get away with insurrection, they will try it next. I think there are left-wing billionaires in America who would love to see a red flag flying over Capitol Hill.
A final thought, our political leaders’ response of pretending nothing happened on 6 January 2021, or claiming that the insurrection was the work of a few nuts will not work. I think inaction, childish talk of healing, and the fantasy of return to normalcy is a sure-fire way to trigger more violence and revolution.