FACT CHECK: Was ANTIFA Really Behind Last Week’s Siege on the U.S. Capitol?
Less than a week after the infamous U.S. Capitol siege took place, many conservative talking heads – perhaps in an attempt to protect President Donald Trump from the nuclear fall-out – are claiming that ANTIFA terrorists were responsible for the mayhem that ultimately resulted in five people dead.
Gateway Pundit founder Jim Hoft has pushed the narrative that ANTIFA was behind the attacks for days:
One Black Lives Matter activist apparently made it into the Capitol during the rally, which is being used as proof of a massive ANTIFA conspiracy:
Notice he organized BLM/Antifa to storm the Capitol on the 6th later then "catch and released" pic.twitter.com/0MvK8AdIiY
— Millie Weaver 🇺🇸 (@Millie__Weaver) January 9, 2021
The Utah man told 2 News he was there to document the protests. He is seen in the video moments after a woman was shot and killed trying to break through a window in the U.S. Capitol. You can hear from him tonight at 10. pic.twitter.com/WRwtupKZ3y
— Heidi Hatch (@tvheidihatch) January 7, 2021
Another video of random persons yelling “ANTIFA” at an individual banging on windows is also being used to claim widespread conspiracy:
Stop listening to MSM lies. I was there in DC. Antifa started to break windows but stops by Trump supporters. pic.twitter.com/4KN2EueEJ9
— Emma Right (@emmbeliever) January 7, 2021
However, investigative work by Big League Politics shows that there is no real evidence showing that this event was promulgated or set up by ANTIFA and the political establishment.
In fact, there is more evidence showing that this was a spontaneous uprising of angry patriots who have been pushed past the breaking point.
As a reporter who was embedded in the thick of the chaotic scene, I personally witnessed protesters singing “God Bless America” and “I’m Proud to be an American” while they were being tear gassed and flash banged by authorities.
Protesters were risking life and limb to climb up scaffolding to wave the American flag and boldly display their patriotism. Chants included “USA! USA!” and “We the People,” with constitutional iconography being found everywhere.
Some of the footage can be seen in this news report from ITV News:
As crazy as the real time clips were throughout the day, this segment has to be the best and most surreal perspective yet pic.twitter.com/sH2SrUN99e
— Liam Donovan (@LPDonovan) January 7, 2021
Does this seem like the optics of an ANTIFA rally, or a pro-American uprising? Big Tech entities are scrambling to censor footage of the rally so that they can control the narrative about what actually took place, so people cannot understand this was a pro-freedom revival in the vein of the Founding Fathers.
Additionally, much of the “evidence” showing that prominent protesters seen inside the Capitol were ANTIFA has already been debunked.
That's a tattoo from the video game "Dishonored." It is not a hammer and sickle or Antifa logo. pic.twitter.com/e9qHls6sZE
— Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) January 6, 2021
This article in the Washington Times is reprehensible nonsense. XRVision made no such claim. The individuals identified in the photo are white supremacists, one of whom is Matt Heimbach. The source of the image is from PhillyAntifa, which identifies white supremacist extremists. pic.twitter.com/wsDY3EjXUE
— Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) January 7, 2021
Conservatives claiming that the demonstrators dressed in black was proof that they were ANTIFA. However, Proud Boys leader Enrique Tarrio noted that members of his group were going dark for the rally to make it more difficult to be targeted with the additional heat on the organization.
“We will not be wearing our traditional Black and Yellow,” said Tarrio, who was banned from Washington D.C. during the rally.
“We might dress in all BLACK for the occasion,” he added.
Disingenuous commentators on the Right have been posting videos to make it appear as if the police stood down and allowed protesters to come in. However, an aerial video of the display shows that the cops were simply overwhelmed by the popular revolt:
This video of the siege of the Capitol on TikTok is crazy and different than I had seen pic.twitter.com/JXwvKVLjxB
— Matt Jones (@KySportsRadio) January 7, 2021
Another measure being pointed to as proof of a conspiracy is the denial of excessive force by authorities on the day of the protest.
Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund, who has since resigned from his post, said that he was denied a request to bring in the National Guard. He said that nobody anticipated that protesters would rush the Capitol.
“We knew it would be bigger,” Sund said to the Washington Post. “We looked at the intelligence. We knew we would have large crowds, the potential for some violent altercations. I had nothing indicating we would have a large mob seize the Capitol.”
It also could have been decisions made in response to Black Lives Matter activism that limited the police presence during the rally:
To those pointing out that tear gas was used at times, this law applies to DC Police, not Capitol Police. Federal officers are exempt under this law.
— Cabot Phillips (@cabot_phillips) January 7, 2021
The martyr from the rally, patriotic Air Force veteran Ashli Babbitt, is being downplayed so these conservative outlets can promote their convenient ANTIFA conspiracy narrative. Some entities are even dragging her name through the mud in a pathetic and embarrassing attempt to save face.
A witness who saw Babbit executed by police spoke out about what he had seen after the fact:
Conservative influencers owe it to their followings to tell the truth about what happened at least week’s Capitol rally instead of spinning the situation for their own ends.
The fake news lies from the Left should be expected, but the deception from the Right – fomented by outlets desperate to protect their bottom line, their grift, or their agenda – is simply abominable.