Steve Baker - TPC
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Who was “Up the Chain” on January 6?
This is a Reprint of an Article First Published on February 24, 2021
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(Susan Walsh / AP)

NOTE: Due to renewed interest in a few of my earliest observations about January 6, I've decided to repost this article -- originally published on February 24, 2021. (There are a couple of specific details in this particular piece that has piqued the interest of other individuals mutually involved in our quest for all the truth about January 6.) I've changed nothing -- save for fixing a few grammatical issues -- as this was an accurate snapshot of what I knew at that point in time, over two years ago. Some of my conclusions were wrong, but I've left those errors intact. (You can judge for yourself.) Some of those conclusions have proved to be more accurate than I'd even imagined. Some . . . well . . . we're still learning. We've had access to so much evidence during the last 26 months, and using that I've tried my best to correct my own errors in subsequent articles, podcasts, and interviews. 


 

I’m exceedingly frustrated by remarks being made in this week’s Congressional hearings. Any fair-minded person should be equally nonplussed by the unwillingness of elected officials and bureaucratic nominees to make honest comparisons between last year’s endless BLM riots and the one-day of violence projected against the Capitol Building on January 6th. Many have openly dismissed any equivalence between those “legitimate” frustrations directed at “systemic” racism from American law enforcement, and the “seditious” frustrations against those on Capitol Hill who “systemically” eliminate individual rights, impose excessive regulatory burdens, and confiscate an ever-increasing amount of our labor. Laws that must also be enforced by America’s cops. Laws that demonstrably exacerbate the inequities between all manner of groups, races, and economic classes, but always favor or exempt the elite. Not the “racial elite,” but rather the political elite, of all races.

This cognitive dissonance from power elites in both government and media regarding the aforementioned events has led me to finally coalesce my thoughts on that which took place on January 6th. Specifically, I’ve come to some conclusions — or at least a working theory — about the who, the how, and the why of what took place on Capitol Hill that day. This is a lengthy analysis, not for the “TL;DR” crowd. Grab the beverage of your choice and please allow me to walk you through my conclusion.  

(For those of you who simply can’t handle a 4,000-word read, I’ll post an audio version on all podcast platforms, shortly.) 

————— 

Let’s begin with the Senate confirmation hearing of Merrick Garland: 

“An attack on a courthouse while in operation, trying to prevent judges from trying cases, that plainly is domestic extremism, domestic terrorism,” Garland said. “An attack simply on a government property at night or under other circumstances is a clear crime, and a serious one, and should be punished.” 

Hmmm. An attack at night is “simply” a crime? An attempt to burn down a federal building, while only occupied by law enforcement and night janitors is not domestic terrorism? Does he think we’re not paying attention to his underlying messaging? Only when elected and/or appointed bureaucratic elites occupy those hallowed halls, does an attack by militant extremists qualify as “terrorism?” Or, is he saying only when right-wing antagonists execute an assault on government shrines should they be labeled as terrorists? 

As for yesterday’s Congressional hearing on the January 6th attack on the Capitol . . . well, that elicited far greater consternation. As relayed by the Washington Post: 

“Sund [ex-Capitol Police Chief] revealed for the first time that an FBI warning of potential violence by pro-Trump supporters reached the Capitol Police the evening before the attack, but was never passed along to leadership.” 

“I actually just in the last 24 hours, was informed by the department that they actually had received that report,” Sund said. “It was received by . . . the Joint Terrorism Task Force, which is a task force with the FBI. They received it the evening of the 5th, reviewed it and then forwarded over to an official at the intelligence division over at U.S. Capitol Police headquarters.” 

“Sund said it went no further up the chain. He did not see it, neither did the House and Senate Sergeants of Arms.”

The FBI document included comments picked up from an online conversation calling for violence:  

“Be ready to fight. Congress needs to hear glass breaking, doors being kicked in, and blood from their BLM and Pantifa slave soldiers being spilled. Get violent. Stop calling this a march, or rally, or a protest. Go there ready for war. We get our President or we die. NOTHING else will achieve this goal.” 

Going back to the multi-city riots beginning on the evening of George Floyd’s death — and I’ve been consistent on this, since — law enforcement had the overwhelming capacity to stop the violence, property damage, fires, injuries, and killings in each city where these riots occurred. For some reason, they’ve not had the orders to do so. As a libertarian, I believe there is no liberty without private property, and therefore, lethal force is justified in protecting both life and property, especially when law enforcement themselves are being assaulted during that process of protecting life and property. The foundational thesis of limited-government, constitutional libertarians is that government has but one moral function: to protect We The People, our stuff, and our liberties from force and fraud. 

With that reasoning — and to some of you this will not be a popular statement — only one officer actually did his job on the 6th. The officer who shot Ashli Babbitt. And for that very legitimate reason, he will not be charged with a crime. He was actively guarding House members who were being evacuated from that area, against a large group of aggressive insurgents, with unknown capabilities and weapons, from entering the area in which he was charged to protect. 

Now, speaking of the weapons used and found in DC on January 6th: 

According to CNN, “Some of the weapons that were confiscated had been seen being used inside the US Capitol, including a baseball bat, a fire extinguisher, a wooden club, a spear, crutches, a flagpole, bear spray, mace, chemical irritants, stolen police shields, a wooden beam, a hockey stick, a stun gun, and knives.” 

One man was arrested on Capitol grounds with a handgun and 25 rounds of ammunition. Parked blocks away, in a pickup truck, was found an AR-15, a Glock, and 2,500 rounds. Another vehicle was discovered with 11 Molotov cocktails. These were not brought to the Capitol. Esquire Magazine reported that one man brought a crossbow. It’s not clear whether or not he actually carried that to the riot scene. 

Were there other firearms carried by Capitol rioters? Maybe. Probably. But, the vast majority of those who participated in violence or simply stood on the sidelines and watched were never searched, so we can never know. Most importantly, is what we know that didn’t happen. No one brandished or used firearms against police officers during the melee. Only one shot was fired, and that was the one that killed Ashli Babbitt. 

Virtually all the Capitol Police, Metro Police, and representatives of other law enforcement agencies were armed. They could have stopped this so-called “insurrection” in minutes. Why they didn’t . . . is the question no one is asking. 

Let’s examine the sequence of events as testified upon in yesterday’s hearing: 

– At about 1 p.m. Sund called Robert J. Contee, the chief of police for Washington, DC, and 100 officers were deployed. 

– At 1:09 p.m. Sund called House Sergeant at Arms Paul Irving and Senate Sergeant at Arms Michael Stenger to get permission to deploy the National Guard. He said that the pair told him they would “run it up the chain,” but he didn’t hear back. 

– After that Sund called Irving twice more for a follow-up. 

– After that Sund called Stenger once more for a follow-up. 

– At 2:10 p.m. Sund got approval from Irving to call for National Guard support. 

– At 2:26 p.m. Sund joined a call with Pentagon officials and asked them to deploy the National Guard. Lt. Gen. Walter E. Piatt, the director of the Army Staff, is said to have told those on the call that he could not recommend calling in the Guard. 

Who, “up the chain,” was blocking or denying Sund’s requests for backup?  

I stand by my statement in a previous blog that the skirmish line on the Capitol Steps was a ‘rope-a-dope’ move, orchestrated by whoever “up the chain” was making those decisions. Officers could have ended the event an hour earlier, simply by drawing down on the crowd with their weapons and dispersing them under threat of lethal force. I witnessed dozens of police officers being injured and receiving first aid. (Many, then returned to the violence.) At any time one of those sharp or heavy projectiles thrown by the attackers could have critically injured or killed an officer.  

I contend, that after what was over an hour’s worth of violence, in which the aggressors deployed no firearms, the officers received orders to stand down and allow the more violent elements of the mob to proceed to the building. While we have seen videos of doors and windows being broken, we have also seen videos of police officers opening doors from the inside as dozens of armed officers stood aside and watched the crowd enter. Then, and only then, did passive observers of the violence join in line to also enter the building. Once inside, not one of the violent elements so much as brandished a firearm. Of the thousands of photographs and videos, no such scene was witnessed. Again, any of the violent actors, and most certainly the dumbstruck tourists, could have been stopped in their tracks had officers produced their weapons. As it happened, before my own eyes, police did not draw their weapons until reports of “shots fired” were received over their radios. (In actuality, the ONE shot fired at Ashli Babbitt.) 

It was within moments of that shot heavily armed “ATF Police” entered the scene, also wearing full tactical gear. (Whether they were already on the way, coincidentally arriving immediately after the shooting, or were already positioned nearby or inside is unknown to me.) 

While I do not consider myself an “investigative reporter,” my interests and follow-up on this event, for obvious reasons, have remained heightened since January 6th. As such, I’ve had many conversations with highly-connected military and law enforcement personnel. I’ve developed my own theories of how events transpired, based on the following information: 

– According to interviews I’ve read with Congressmen, some have stated they were informed by their own personal security that a potentially dangerous “event” was likely on the 6th. 

– Multiple mainstream media outlets have reported that the FBI, Homeland Security, and The Pentagon had actionable intel on that potential event as far out as two weeks in advance. (Remember, Sund denies this intel was passed along to his department.)

– I read a tweet from a Congresswoman, in which she said that at 9:34 a.m. she saw people already gathering at the Capitol Building. (I cannot find that tweet or remember who it was. I’ve searched. I should have made a screenshot.) 

– Astonishingly, there was little-to-no police presence at the rally area, itself. While I was not able to access The Ellipse area because of the crushing density of the crowd, the much larger mass of people gathered on the Washington Monument lawn was not accompanied by any visible police presence. My videos began upon arrival at 9:32 a.m. and continued until I proceeded to the Capitol, (about halfway through Trump’s speech), and not one police officer is ever seen in a single frame of my video. Many who have attended multiple rallies and protests in DC, including January 6th, have also commented upon this same, highly unusual observation. (Where were they? Certainly, the President was well attended to, but why was there no visible presence of law enforcement where the largest group of attendees were gathered?) 

– Sund requested back-up from the Metro Police at 1 p.m. I saw their arrival, firsthand, shortly thereafter. (Trump did not conclude his speech until 1:11 p.m. I’ve previously well-documented all timelines, and have the video metadata to verify all my assertions.) 

– I arrived at the skirmish line at 1:19 p.m., capturing video of the melee until, at 2:15 p.m., the heavily-armed police line suddenly and inexplicably stood aside, moved back, and allowed the mob to approach the now opened, (from the inside), west doors of the Capitol Building. These officers did not act, synchronously, of their own accord. They take commands. . . from “up the chain.” Someone gave the order for them to stand down. They were not “overwhelmed” by “thousands of insurrectionists.” That is the biggest lie of the ongoing narrative. With video evidence, I can show no more than 200 people, and probably as few as 100 actively engaging in actual violence and pressing against the police barricades. The several thousand observing the happenings were doing just that: “observing,” and taking cellphone videos, as I’ve also well documented. It was only at this point that several hundred non-participants in the violence joined in the lines proceeding to the Capitol doors they entered. 

– Of additional great interest, is the fact — as I’ve also documented — that many professional photographers, adorned in protective gear and some wearing press badges, were already on the scene upon my arrival. (How did they know? Who told them to be there, and to so prepare themselves for the violence that was to take place?) 

(Details of everything I saw that day, up to this point, and afterward, can be read on my blog, “What I Saw on January 6th in Washington, DC,” dated January 13, 2021.) 

– Since that day my conversations with the aforementioned military and law enforcement personnel have revealed to me the very high probability that both ’Special Forces’ operatives and U.S. Marshalls were mixed in with the crowd that entered the Capitol Building. I asked them that question about possible “undercover” professionals because of the five very distinct types of persons I observed in the crowd that day: 

1 – antagonists from right-wing militias and extremist groups 

2 – antagonists from left-wing Antifa/BLM organizations (See my podcast interview of John Sullivan’s brother, James, who details his brother’s activities that day.)

 

3 – peaceful rally participants who entered the building after the police stood down 

4 – both credentialed and citizen photojournalists 

5 – very obvious, (to me), “professionals,” who were not active in violent or destructive acts, but who were very carefully “keeping a close watch” on everything taking place during the proceedings, with heads on a swivel and eyes constantly darting back-n-forth 

Now, to my theory of how and why events transpired: 

Irrefutably, the intel of possible violence was known to the highest officials in our government. If the FBI, Homeland Security, and The Pentagon knew, then most certainly Pelosi and McConnell knew . . . and, most likely, President Trump. Every known piece of visible and documented evidence proves that the early breach of outer barricades was allowed to happen. This was accomplished by a small group of people against an armed police force. It did not have to happen. It was allowed to happen . . . from “up the chain.” 

The hour-plus skirmish by those early insurgents against police lines was allowed to happen. Police were heavily armed but only “riot control” measures were used against the antagonists. (Tear gas, flash-bang grenades, pepper spray, and some rubber bullets.) This did not have to happen. It was allowed to take place until police were ordered to stand down . . . from “up the chain.” 

At least two doors — of which I have video — were opened from the inside and several hundred people were allowed to casually stroll into the Capitol Building, during which time dozens of armed police officers stood aside and watched . . . under orders to do so.  

The legislative seat of the most powerful nation on the planet was not “breached” by so-called “armed insurrectionists” . . . who never fired a single shot. Using only sticks, poles, bear spray, axe handles, and baseball bats, no more than two hundred violent activists were allowed inside by a security force of at least an equally numbered amount of law enforcement officers possessing far more deadly weapons than those used by the antagonists on the skirmish line. Again . . . this did not have to happen. This was allowed to happen. The ongoing, hyperbolic narrative of “heavily-armed insurrectionists” is utter bullish-t. 

I do not believe officials making these decisions were complicit in planning with the violent factions. I know they knew what potential existed and that they carefully orchestrated, by command-and-control actions, each step of the events that transpired. National Guard presence was not wanted on-site, too early, to not scare off the militant groups and thwart their intentions. Once it was determined the militant factions would not use overtly deadly force, (firearms), they were gradually allowed access to the Capitol grounds, steps, and then the building. Beginning with the breach of outer barricades, followed by the violent skirmish line, and finally, access inside the building itself was granted. The presence of riot-geared photographers, with press badges — already on site long before the conclusion of Trump’s speech — was a dead giveaway that “up the chain” officials both knew and had tipped off the media about what was to come. 

Despite broken windows and damage to some offices and other Capitol property, it was not until Ashli Babbitt was shot that Capitol and Metro police officers drew their weapons and were then accompanied by much more heavily armed policing agencies. (I saw all this with my own eyes. I have the video.) Tear gas was then deployed inside the building, and with weapons drawn by police, the building began to be cleared out. Based upon the firepower of law enforcement personnel and the utter lack of firepower of those who were allowed inside, Congressional personnel and Vice-President Pence were never in any real danger. I also believe the aforementioned Special Forces operatives and U.S. Marshalls were deployed to be mixed in with the crowd should the militants actually use firearms or somehow gain direct access to Congressional VIPs. I do not believe their presence was part of some grand conspiracy to gain access to Congressional computers and files, (on Trump’s behalf), but that they were there for the express purpose of “taking care of business” — outside or inside — should actions by the more militant of the mob get lethally out of hand. 

I’ve concluded that in the earliest realization of potential unrest, by the highest of Congressional officials, it was determined they could win a decisive PR victory to ultimately be used in bringing the legislative and executive might of the US government against so-called “right-wing extremists” of every stripe. Indeed, to be able to shape the narrative that not just Trump supporters, but all Republicans, conservatives, libertarians, constitutionalists, and every individual and/or group professing political beliefs on the right side of the political debate could be labeled as “extremists,” “seditionists,” “insurrectionists,” and ultimately, “domestic terrorists.” Labels were earned not only by those who participated in violence and destruction but also heaped upon those who would use political speech antagonistically against the incoming neo-Marxist presidential administration and new Democratic majorities in both the Senate and House of Representatives.  

In short, what transpired on January 6th was the largest PR victory, won by progressives, since the stock market collapse of 1929 and the ensuing Great Depression. What progressives gained in those following years, by way of the establishment of the New Deal and the birth of our existing welfare state, this day similarly gifted them both the “moral authority” and the “public outcry” REQUIRING them to silence opposition voices and finally justify draconian gun control measures. 

We’ve already witnessed the de-platforming of Parler and the deletion of scores of conservative social media accounts, including that of the then President of the United States. Just yesterday, Congressional leaders called upon cable and satellite TV carriers to drop Fox News, NewsMax, and OAN. To their gun control aims, pay attention to the language and headlines used by mainstream media outlets: 

-The Hill:  “Police seized alarming number of weapons on Capitol rioters, court documents show” 

-CBS:  “Arsenal of weapons seized from Capitol riots” 

-NBC:  “Dozens Arrested for Capitol Riot After Feds Find Guns” 

-The Washingtonian:  “Guns, Brass Knuckles, Homemade Napalm: Read Some of the Documents From Arrests After the Capitol Riot” 

-Vice:  “Cops Found This Terrifying Weapons Arsenal in a Pickup at the Capitol Riot” 

That last headline is instructive. “Found . . . in a Pickup.” In reality, only one person was arrested with a handgun on Capitol grounds. NONE were used. Yet, gun control legislation now being considered by Congress, and supported by the Biden administration, would instantly criminalize more than 100 million law-abiding Americans who took no part in the January 6th affair and have never used their firearms illegally. While I’m certain the current bill, as written, will never pass, I fear what compromises GOP leadership will make toward a more watered-down version. Even if only 10% of this bill’s proposals become law, it will be devastating to America’s law-abiding gun owners and emasculate our Founder’s intent behind the 2nd Amendment.

With each carefully directed act in the drama that played out on January 6th, 2021, the occupying elites of that federal building on Capitol Hill seized far too much control over the prevailing narrative and captured an unprecedented amount of political territory in their escalating war against the 1st and 2nd Amendments. Thank god the only weapon fired that day was by law enforcement, otherwise, the 2nd Amendment would most surely now be lost.  

Were those calling the shots, “up the chain,” anticipating or hoping for an actual exchange of gunfire between the rioters and police? Were they prepared to sacrifice Capitol Police officers on the altar of tyranny? Did the one Capitol Hill Police officer who died that day not have his life ended in the manner those “up the chain” actually desired? From the bullet of a man who could be tied to The Oathkeepers, the Proud Boys, or some actual “White supremacist” militia? 

Will Pelosi and McConnell ever be forced into a position where they must answer those hard questions? 

Unfortunately, a couple of hundred radical suckers somehow were deluded enough to believe they could “stop the steal,” occupy the Capitol building of the United States, and perhaps take Pelosi and Pence hostage . . . with bear spray and sticks. Were some just leftist radicals, wearing Trump hats as false flags, there to create chaos and foist blame upon the hundreds of thousands of “mostly peaceful protestors?” Either way, or both, they were nothing more than useful idiots who in advance of the day projected their violent intentions on social media, using electronic devices monitored by the NSA, and who fell right into a well-anticipated trap. One that will land many of them in federal prison for a lot of years and quite possibly create a prison state for the rest of us. Ultimately, those faux “insurrectionists” got played by political operatives far savvier than themselves, and 350 million of us will likely pay a heavy price for the actions of a couple of hundred fools. 

Meanwhile, Pelosi’s “9/11-style Commission” will most certainly be a whitewash of what took place behind the scenes that day — “up the chain” — no matter how loudly and frequently we ask, “What did she know, and when did she know it?”

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On December 8, 2023, Bull City Syndicate (BCS) played its final show. We went out with a bang, performing a top-shelf corporate holiday event to 700 enthusiastic attendees. Appropriately, in the city of the band’s birth — Durham, NC — The Bull City. I considered booking a final public show, but after much thought, I decided to retire the band in a more low-key, less public manner. 

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Bull City Syndicate opening for Eddie Money in 2008

From that point forward, things began to change quickly for SK. First began a radical updating of our set list designed to draw more people to our shows and more dollars for the band. I began to pursue more private events and larger public shows. Some of the original band members were not happy about the extra demands and work required to make the move from a fun club band to a serious special event band, and we began to replace members. With the band growing in popularity, we were able to attract even more versatile and better-trained musicians. We went from being a really good band to a great "horn band," packing out every live performance and fielding requests for those higher-paying private events.

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Durham Herald Sun Magazine feature in 2008

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There were many highlights through my time with both incarnations of the band: SK and BCS. My very first gig with SK was an opening date for Kool & The Gang. Our last such brush with greatness was when Dolly Parton joined us onstage performing her classic hit, “Jolene.”

We were honored to be the headlining entertainment for the last two NC Governor’s Inaugural Balls. We performed for some of the largest companies and charities in America: SAS, Glaxo, AT&T, American Heart Association, and too many others to list. We traveled throughout the Mid-Atlantic region for shows — as far north as Maryland and even down to Florida.

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In 2018 came my most fun spin-off. A David Bowie Tribute act called The American Bowie Experience. (ABX) With that group, we moved our bassist, Randy Ines, over to keys (because of his virtuoso piano chops), and brought my son Duncan in on bass guitar. (Bowie’s son is also named Duncan. Just a coincidence.) Despite the growing popularity and demand for ABX, that band didn’t survive the COVID-19 pandemic after a year and a half of lockdowns. It was everything I could do just to get BCS back to work.

American Bowie Experience at House of Blues in Myrtle Beach, SC - 2019

The aftermath of the pandemic was the beginning of the end for BCS. My life began to change drastically. For more than 25 years I’d been a hobbyist political writer and commentator. My writing chops began to take shape in the early days of the Internet. AOL, Compuserve, and Prodigy eventually became MySpace. MySpace became Facebook, where my online following really began to take off. 

In early 2020 — long after the four versions of the band had become my full-time job and main source of income — “Two Weeks to Flatten the Curve” became two months of COVID lockdowns, and none of the band projects were allowed to do live performances. It was then that I decided to monetize my writing “hobby,” moving that to the captain’s seat of my endeavors and BCS and its spinoffs to the co-pilot’s seat. By 2022 and into 2023, my journalistic efforts were being rewarded with significant media attention, and my travels were keeping me away from the band and its needs with increasing frequency. 

In the summer of 2023, I was approached by Dallas-based Blaze Media to become a contributing writer. I was now splitting most of my time between D.C. and Dallas, and the bands’ bookings were suffering. With that came the hard decision that ultimately led me to retire from the BCS and C&K brands, make the total life transition and reinvention to a full-time writer and investigative journalist for The Blaze.

An appearance on The Glenn Beck Show in 2023

I’ve been doing music in one form or the other for over 50 years. At 19 years old, I was traveling the world playing trumpet. In the 80s, I was working for churches doing music and promoting contemporary Christian music concerts with the biggest names in that industry. Into the 90s, I became manager to national acts touring around the world — which caused me to put my horns in the closet for about 10 years. By 1999, I just wanted to play music again, and I answered that ad to join Soul Kitchen & The Bull City Horns.

Obviously, this telling is the very short version of that 23-year experience, and what became such a significant part of my life. There were hard times and bad times, but mostly wonderful times with all the guys and gals I was honored to perform with. We played for near-empty rooms and for as many as 40,000 at festivals. We shared the stage with famous artists and many of the best local musicians and bands. I will always cherish every moment.

BCS Express in Cary, NC - 2013

I want to express my heartfelt thanks and admiration to all the fantastic musicians who made those 23 years unforgettable. And to the fans who continued to show up for our infrequent club shows in the last couple of years. Many who’d been coming to see us for over 20 years!

At our final Durham show on December 8, I stepped off the stage a few times just to watch and soak it in. After the last song, and when we began the final tear-down and load-out of the gear, one of the guys said to me, “You know you’re going to miss this.”

Yes . . . I am.

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A Brief Summary of My Personal January 6 Story Timeline (Then ’til Now)
Mainly For Newer Followers, Not Yet Up-to-Speed on My Work

A more detailed account of my day on January 6, 2021, can be found here:

https://thepragmaticconstitutionalist.locals.com/post/3897816/what-i-saw-on-january-6th-in-washington-dc


 

-On Dec. 21, 2020 — two days after Trump announced his own "wild" J6 rally at The Ellipse in D.C. — I posted this announcement to my social media accounts:

“Regardless of how you feel about the election results, this might be a spectacle worth observing up close and personal. (I'm predisposed to believe this crowd will not riot, loot, and burn the city.) I might begin my northeast run on this date, in DC. Anyone else going? #tpcroadtrip2021”

Well . . . they didn't "burn the city."

——

-In my email newsletter that went out on January 4, 2021, I made the following comment:

“I am headed to DC on Wednesday. Why? Not because I think a crowd of any size is going to force government into a real investigation of the election results, but because the “powers that be” on all sides of the political equation need to see WE THE PEOPLE in force, letting them know that WE ARE WATCHING. WE are engaged! WE are not going to lay down to any level of tyranny — whether it comes from the right or the left, the Democrats or the GOP. I’m also hoping to document on video anything “special” that might happen, and perhaps get a few interviews from a variety of voices.”

-By “special” . . . it was rumored there would be some big announcement on the election controversy, (a release of The Kraken, maybe), about which I hoped to get comments from members of the crowd. There was nothing special announced from the stage, by Trump or any of the others. The “special” came later . . . unexpectedly.

——

-I arrived at the Washington Monument at about 9:30 am on January 6, and spent the next three hours watching the crowd grow to an enormous size — documenting it on video.

-Trump took the stage almost an hour later than announced, at 11:57 pm. His “warm-up” acts were ‘meh,’ and his speech was equally ‘meh.’ Because of the cold, windy conditions, the poor audio, and wanting to get ahead of the throng that was scheduled to march on the Capitol for the other events, I left the Washington Monument lawn about halfway through Trump’s speech and began a brisk walk toward the Capitol Building . . . along with thousands of others already peeling off from Trump's speech.

-I arrived at the Reflection Pool on the west side of the Capitol at about 1:15 pm, where I was hearing police sirens and what sounded like explosions. From there, I could see smoke and the arrival of DC Metro PD (MPD) units pouring down the steps toward the west terrace. I made the decision to sprint up to the terrace, where I turned on my camera at 1:19 pm, and for almost an hour filmed the violence and surging crowds in that area.

-Just after 2:00 pm I began to notice signs of Capitol Police (USCP) withdrawal. Shortly thereafter, there was a sudden surge of protestors up the stairs underneath the scaffolding on the northwest side of the terrace. Hundreds of protestors were now in unrestricted movement up those stairs, so I followed.

-At approximately 2:21 pm I followed hundreds of protestors through what some call the “Senate Wing door.” This, I would later learn, was the site of the first breach of the building. I did not see the breach, as it occurred at approximately 2:13 pm, while I was still on the lower terrace.

-For almost 40 minutes I captured scenes inside the Capitol Building, before exiting at about 2:59 pm, at the exact location where FBI tactical unit medics were trying to save Ashli Babbit’s life. Just over one minute after I exited through the South door, I filmed Babbitt’s extraction through that doorway, while the D.C. Fire EMT crew still worked feverishly on her lifeless body.

Screenshot from my video - January 6, 2021 - of Ashli Babbitt being evacuated from
the Capitol Building by D.C. Fire Department emergency medical techs.

-Shortly thereafter, I gave a couple of interviews to local media, found a restroom and a sandwich, then returned to the Capitol to witness the arrival of the Army and Air Force National Guards finalize the clearing of the entire Capitol grounds. I then returned to my hotel in Arlington sometime after 7:30 pm.

——

-For the next five days I began frame by frame review of my videos, and then started writing my first story about the event, which was posted on January 13, 2021:

https://thepragmaticconstitutionalist.locals.com/post/3897816/what-i-saw-on-january-6th-in-washington-dc

-On February 24, 2021, I published my second story about J6:

https://thepragmaticconstitutionalist.locals.com/post/3897816/what-i-saw-on-january-6th-in-washington-dc

-As I’ve pointed out many times, I got a few things wrong in my earliest analyses. I’ve tried to correct those over the following months and years as new evidence has presented itself. But, those two articles remain as written — errors included.

——

-Because I engaged in no violence, property damage, chanting, singing, carried no flags, and wore no political messages on my clothing . . . as the months wore on I began to think maybe I was going to have the same respect as so many other journalists who were not being rounded up in the J6 dragnet. But, on the morning of July 22, 2021, I received a phone call from FBI Special Agent Gerrit Doss. After he asked me for a voluntary interview, I immediately turned that over to my local attorney, and they worked together with all our schedules to arrange a date for the interview.

-The first attempt at scheduling the FBI interview was aborted on-site, on the morning of August 5, 2021. The reason given — after my attorney and I had already arrived at their Cary, NC filed office — was that they could not interview me, “because of my press status,” until after they received a letter of approval from the U.S. Attorney General’s office.

-My attorney worked with an assistant USAG, they negotiated a proffer agreement for the interview, and it was rescheduled for October 18, 2021. I was interviewed for two full hours, under the agreement that nothing I said in the interview could be used against me — should charges be made against me — in court . . . unless I perjured myself. (That didn’t happen.)

-On November 17, 2021, my attorney received an email from Assistant U.S. Attorney Anita Eve — out of Philadelphia — stating, “Your client will be charged within the week.”

-On Monday morning of Thanksgiving week — November 22, 2021 — we sent out approximately 200 press releases to all manner of media sources, stating that I — an independent journalist — was about to be prosecuted for nothing more than the act of “journalism” on January 6.

-At approximately 1:00 pm that same day, AUSA Eve sent my attorney a copy of that press release, stating, “We’re not happy about this.” He responded, asking, “Are you saying my client should forego his 1st Amendment right because he is being persecuted by the federal government?" There were a couple of other exchanges between my attorney and the AUSA before she went silent. I assumed that was because of the Thanksgiving holiday.

-My phone began to ring from interested media sources, wishing to cover my story.

-On Tuesday evening — November 23 — I received a call from Senator Ron Johnson (WI), asking me how he could help. As the minority leader of a Senate J6 investigative committee, he put me in touch with his investigators.

-On Wednesday morning — November 24 — I was contacted by an attorney who practices criminal law in D.C., who happened to be a federal prosecutor for more than 20 years. After a three-hour phone call, I engaged his services.

-On Monday — November 29 — my new attorney reached out to AUSA Eve by both email and phone, and she never responded. We never heard from her or the FBI again . . . until yesterday — August 5, 2023 — more than 20 months later, when my Raleigh attorney received a call from the FBI notifying him that they had “service of process” for me.

-This turns out to be a Grand Jury subpoena, requesting my January 6 videos. My attorney received that on Monday. We have been able to determine the DOJ has reopened its investigation into my January 6 activities. I volunteered to give those to the FBI during my interview in October of ’21, but they never followed up and requested them. The most unfortunate fact is . . . grand juries are not convened to investigate misdemeanor crimes. For unknown reasons, they are apparently considering a felony recommendation to the grand jury. As of this writing, that is all we know.

——

-Since January 6, 2021, as well as the time since my threatened prosecution, I have been very active in investigating many aspects related to January 6. Something I never expected to be engaged in. I have broken original stories, developed Capitol Police whistleblowers, met with Congress Members, and engaged with congressional staffers and investigators. All of that has been well documented in my blogs.

-In the fall of 2022, I covered every day of the first, nine-week-long Oath Keepers trial, at the District Courthouse in D.C.

-I’ve been interviewed for my work by innumerable media sources — large and small — from Tucker Carlson on Fox News, to reporters with both NBC and the New York Times, to smaller podcasters. I’ve also collaborated on several stories with The Epoch Times, and have been one of a small hand full of journalists who’ve been given access to that “41,000 hours of J6 video” by Speaker McCarthy’s staff. I am just now entering into a “contributor” relationship with Blaze Media.

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As I said in the beginning, this is an abbreviated overview of my personal “January 6 story.” I have no idea what the government’s renewed interest is in me or my videos. The only “crime” I committed on January 6 — technically speaking — is to have entered a restricted building. But, so did some 80 to 100 other journalists who have not been charged with any crimes. We all simply followed the story where the story went that day.

It would be easy to speculate that I might be being singled out because I haven’t conformed to the “preferred narrative,” or because of the sensitivity of certain stories I’m currently working on. I simply have no idea, so can’t really go there. Not at least until I see the subpoena on Monday, and we can get some questions answered about the status of my case . . . which went from “Your client will be charged within the week” to total silence from the DOJ for more than a year and a half.

Some say there are “no coincidences” in this particular game . . . but we’ll know more on Monday.

Stay tuned . . .

Steve

P.S. I have no idea what they're looking for in my videos. What's so special, that it requires a Grand Jury subpoena? All the good stuff is already posted online:

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Tweetstorm Rollout on Secret U.S. Army SpecOps Deployed on January 6
Having no name, this top secret group is referred to as “the activity,” “the unit,” or “orange”

THREAD: Two and 1/2 years ago, in my 2nd article about #Jan6, (Feb. 24, 2021), I revealed a “very high probability that both [Army] ’Special Forces’ operatives and U.S. Marshalls were mixed in with the crowd that entered the Capitol Building.”

https://thepragmaticconstitutionalist.locals.com/post/3842175/who-was-up-the-chain-on-january-6

——

10 months later (Jan. 3, 2022) Newsweek confirmed my sourcing with a story headlined, “Secret Commandos with Shoot-to-Kill Authority Were at the Capitol.” saying, “The role that the military played in this highly classified operation is still unknown.”

https://www.newsweek.com/exclusive-secret-commandos-shoot-kill-authority-were-capitol-1661330

——

I have quietly investigated this discovery ever since and eventually revealed my knowledge of a SpecOps group deployed on J6 to be a top-secret SIGINT group from Ft. Belvoir, just outside D.C. (I have no info if this is the same group Newsweek reported.)

——

I have long been aware of a current member of this “unit” deployed to the Capitol on J6. Late in 2022, I was introduced to a retired member of the same SpecOps group. In short, he was highly impressed with my knowledge of that unit, as they officially . . . “do not exist.”

——

They may not officially “exist,” but in 2007, British author @MickWSmith revealed the existence and history of this U.S. Army SpecOps group in his book, “Killer Elite: The Inside Story of America's Most Secret Special Operations Team”

https://www.amazon.com/Killer-Elite-Completely-Americas-Operations-dp-1250006473/dp/1250006473/ref=dp_ob_title_bk

Unlike the SEALS or Delta Force, this secretive Army team does not have a name. Only their specific operations are given a name, and they are otherwise generally referred to as “the activity,” “the unit,” or “orange.”

——

My source, who is a retired member of “the unit” does not believe his former group could possibly have been used for any purpose on J6, as it is outside the operational protocols of their mission. Namely, when he was a member, they would never be used for domestic operations.

——

Also, he says they would never have been “seconded” to @FBI. They have a specific chain of command within the Army hierarchy and are only ever seconded to the CIA in overseas ops. That said, he has been retired from “the unit” for almost a decade.

——

In my recent interactions with congressional members and staff, I have been informed that they are aware the “the unit” was operational in some capacity on J6, but have been unable to get answers from @DeptofDefense, specifically because they “do not officially exist.”

——

In recent weeks, trying to get more information, I’ve read another team of special ‘intel’ investigators into my research on this subject. Our most recent discovery is that they have been able to identify another current member of “the unit” who was at the Capitol on J6.

——

Before I go any further in this narrative, I'll emphasize that I've never implied “the unit” was deployed on J6 for nefarious purposes. In my 1st story, I theorized that they were simply there to “take care of business” should protestors get out of hand, using lethal weapons.

——

That established, their presence and deployment raises serious questions. Why are military forces being deployed in violation of posse comitatus law? Is it common practice for @DeptofDefense to allow military SpecOps to be used at domestic protest events?

——

More importantly, if this is not common, and was a one-off operation . . . having “the unit” seconded to @FBI on J6 . . . WHY? What did they know, requiring “the unit's” presence at the Capitol, and what was “the unit’s” “posture” on J6?

——

We are seeking more information, and answers to those questions, but do not expect to receive those directly from @FBI, @CapitolPolice, (if they even knew), or from @DeptofDefense. But, you may be asking why I’m talking about this without having all the facts nailed down.

——

My @FBI whistleblowing friends, @KyleSeraphin and @RealStevefriend have advised me that “daylight” is not only the “best disinfectant,” but also the best “protection” when one is hovering this close over the target. 

——

I don’t have the same covering as that afforded a reliable MSM journalist - as when @FBI had Newsweek’s @warkin release a one-year anniversary CYA story about their deployment of every 3-letter agencies’ tactical teams and military commandos with “shoot to kill” orders on J6.

——

So . . . I’m letting @FBI and @DeptofDefense know that I’ve now read three other friendly journalists, a team of think tank investigators, and several congressional staffers into the details of this story. “Whacking” me, to stop my work, will probably be counterproductive.

——

But, they are welcome to reach out to me and answer my questions. (I also have more.) I’m certain they already have my number. 

Stay tuned. More on this, and even more important J6 stories are in the pipeline. 

——

On Twitter, (or, X):

https://twitter.com/TPC4USA/status/1686907274692861952

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