Shadow post-riot plans ‘violent threats’ for Biden inauguration

With one week before the opening day, only one thing seems certain: Joe Biden will be sworn in, his hand on an 1890s family Bible, and will become the next President of the United States.

However, almost every other detail of that day is evolving, thanks to the coronavirus pandemic, the almost inevitable impeachment of his predecessor and the attempted insurgency in the very spot where Biden will likely be sworn in.

After last week’s failed uprising on the United States Capitol by supporters of President Donald Trump’s attempts to cling to power, security professionals, law enforcement and transition officials fear increasingly that the presidential inauguration slated for next week and the events surrounding it provoke hundreds of potential plotters in the nation’s capital.

“You haven’t really experienced this level of potentially violent domestic terrorism in the United States, certainly in my lifetime,” said Roderick Jones, security expert and executive chairman of Concentric Advisors, a private security firm. “It’s not about Al Qaeda leading attackers – individuals or small groups of individuals taking that motivation and then using those tactics themselves. It really makes it very difficult for the security and intelligence authorities to gain the upper hand, because there is no organization to infiltrate.

Presidential inaugurations are always a balance between security and spectacle – part constitutionally mandated transfer of power, part Super Bowl halftime show – and the transition Biden has long recognized that between the coronavirus pandemic and the threat of “weird shit” from Trump supporters, next Swearing-in of the Week was always going to be a break from the traditional pump.

But last Wednesday’s potential coup, which left five dead and came far closer to threatening the lives of senior government officials than initially thought, revealed deep security concerns – and promises further waves of protests in the coming week have frightened security experts and members of Congress.

“We are very concerned about the violent and persistent threats to our democracy,” six leading lawmakers said in a statement following a briefing by Justice Department officials on Tuesday, describing the current investigation into the attack. from the Capitol. Members of Congress, who head the US House of Representatives’ Armed Services, Homeland Security, Intelligence, Justice, and Oversight Committees, wrote that “it is clear that we must do more to prevent, penetrate and prevent deadly and seditious assaults by violent extremists in the days to come, ”especially with Biden’s inauguration just a week away.

Some supporters of Biden even called for all but the simplest elements of opening day to be canceled: no parade on Pennsylvania Avenue, no pre-recorded national anthem sung by a pop icon, and no potential exposure to supporters a president who made it clear they would. not go quietly.

“You don’t need a grand inauguration to be a great president,” said one of Biden’s top donors, who cut the presidential inauguration committee with a six-figure check in December to help fund the festivities which they say will be canceled, says The Daily Beast. “Look at Lyndon Johnson, he’s never had a parade.

But Biden’s Inaugural Committee and the Congressional Joint Committee on Six-Person Inaugural Ceremonies, which oversees inaugural events at the U.S. Capitol, have vowed to push for some semblance of normalcy, albeit with a dramatically increased security footprint. . The National Guard is preparing to send up to 15,000 troops to the nation’s capital ahead of the inauguration, and the U.S. Secret Service has started making security arrangements in downtown Washington a week ahead of schedule .

“The safety and security of all those taking part in the 59th presidential inauguration are of the utmost importance,” the secret services said in a statement. “For more than a year, the American secret services, as well as our [National Special Security Event] partners, has worked tirelessly to anticipate and prepare for all possible eventualities at all levels to ensure a safe and secure inauguration day.

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