The storming of the Congress building on Wednesday night in an atmosphere of chaos and violence that shook America and the world with it, astonished many at the ease with which the Capitol security forces were bypassed and able to enter it, and even wandering around its halls and tampering with its contents by Trump supporters. What prompted some today to talk about the existence of security flaws that indirectly contributed to these events.
Bloody chaos erupted in the US Congress (Capitol) on Wednesday when a group of supporters of outgoing President Donald Trump raided the police force protecting the seat of the US legislature, what was considered a complete failure to protect this pillar from the country’s constitutional pillars.
Current and former law enforcement officials said that the events in Congress, the seat of the US Senate and House of Representatives, exemplify unprecedented security flaws in modern American history, which have turned one of the most prominent symbols of American power into a focus of violence.
While events such as the inauguration of a new president involve detailed security planning by many security agencies, officials said there was much less planning for the task of protecting the joint session of both houses of Congress to validate the results of the 2020 presidential election.
A Congressional police force alone confronted thousands of protesters
At the beginning of the events, the demonstrators were completely confronted by the 2,000-strong Capitol Police Force, dedicated to protecting the 126-acre Congress compound.
For reasons that remain unclear, as of Thursday morning, other branches of the huge federal security services had not clearly arrived to support them hours ago, while rioters surrounded Congress.
The Congress building is a short walk from the place where Trump criticized the elections before the start of the riots, describing them as a “blatant assault on our democracy,” according to him, and urging his supporters to “go to the Capitol” and “save America’s march.”
There were threats on social media that pro-Trump protests were being planned, and that they might develop into violence, which would have been necessary for security preparation to confront them.
Despite these risks, a senior official said, the Capitol Police Force had not requested advance support to secure the building from other federal agencies like the Department of Homeland Security.
The National Guard reinforcements summoned by the city’s mayor were not mobilized for more than an hour after protesters broke through the security barriers.