The former assistant director for counterintelligence at the Federal Bureau of Investigation is warning about extremists taking action across the county on the same day as a rally supporting January 6th insurrectionists.
The “Justice for J6” rally is expected to be attended by the Proud Boys and Oath Keepers, two groups whose members have been charged with conspiracy for the attack on the Capitol by Trump supporters seeking to overturn the 2020 election. The rally is being organized by Matt Braynard, a former Trump campaign operative.
“Braynard’s followers believe many of the more than 570 people who have been charged with federal crimes in the attack were nonviolent and “reasonably believed they had permission” to enter the Capitol, according to a Jan. 29 letter Braynard sent to the Department of Justice and FBI. Braynard’s letter demands prosecutors drop all charges,” The Washington Post reported. “Although local authorities have not provided crowd estimates, Look Ahead America estimates that 700 people will attend — up from an earlier estimate of 500 in a previous permit application.”
Former FBI official Frank Figliuzzi, who warned on Wednesday that violence could extend far beyond Washington, DC, offered new details during a Friday MSNBC appearance with Chris Jansing.
“What are you watching for both in terms of the preparation for it and how law enforcement is planning to deal with this?” Jansing asked Figliuzzi.
“We see this planned, permitted rally for September 18th in Washington, D.C., but it is interesting, monitoring the chatter on extremist sites, including Proud Boys’ chatter, it seems that they now believe that there will be so much security presence that they’re telling their people don’t go. That, in fact, they’re referring to it as a false flag operation by the government, that something will happen, but it won’t be us, it will be the government manufacturing it. So that’s good news,” Figliuzzi said.
“But here is the not-so-good news. What the talk has turned to online is, ‘Let’s do something somewhere else, let’s be local, let’s go local, let’s make it happen at other places.’ And for those in the counterterrorism business, they can’t help but think of soft targets,” he explained. “If it is too hard to hit D.C., go elsewhere.”
“So that’s the talk right now online, maybe going local, and that’s going to be a challenge for local and state law enforcement,” Figliuzzi said.
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