security

Report: Two National Guard Members Cut From Biden’s Inauguration Security Over Ties To Right-Wing Militias – Forbes


Topline

A dozen members of the 25,000 U.S. National Guard troops deployed to Washington, D.C. for President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration have been taken off the job, some of whom reportedly had ties to right-wing militias or espoused “extremist” opinions online, following reports defense officials were worried about an insider attack from among the troops.

Key Facts

The Associated Press initially reported two members would be removed from the security mission, but by Tuesday afternoon the number had swelled to 12.

Gen. Daniel R. Hokanson, National Guard Bureau Chief, confirmed at a Tuesday press conference two members were moved from inauguration duty “out of an abundance of caution” after “inappropriate comments or texts” they had made were discovered.

The FBI discovered information regarding 10 others during vetting and provided the National Guard with names, Hokanson said.

It’s still unclear which militia group or groups the members may have been tied to, their National Guard units or if any of the 12 individuals were working together.

No evidence of an active plot against Biden has been found, according to AP.

AP first reported Monday the FBI was vetting all 25,000 troops deployed to Washington, D.C. for the inauguration to try and stamp out the threat of attacks coming from within the security detail.

Key Background

The atmosphere in Washington, D.C. ahead of Biden’s inauguration has been tense since supporters of President Donald Trump rioted on Capitol Hill nearly two weeks ago, prompting organizers to beef up security to prevent more violence. A number of police officers and other public servants have been arrested in the wake of the riots for taking part. Last week, the FBI sent out a memo warning of possible violent protests in Washington, D.C. and all 50 states through Inauguration Day. Acting Secretary of Defense Christopher Miller said in a statement Monday troops were being vetted “as is normal for military support to large security events,” adding there is “no intelligence indicating an insider threat.

Further Reading

12 Guard Members Removed From Inauguration (Associated Press)

Two Army National Guard members removed from inauguration duty (CNN)

Officials Raise Alarm About Insider Attack At Biden Inauguration, FBI Screens National Guard Troops In D.C. (Forbes)

Preparing For The Worst: National Guard Troops Sleep In Capitol Building Amid Security Increases (Photos) (Forbes)

Here Are The Police Officers And Other Public Employees Arrested In Connection To Capitol Riot (Forbes)





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