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Fri Jan 8, 2021, 03:07 PM

They Were Out for Blood

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2021/01/was-there-a-plan-for-hostages-or-killings-at-the-capitol.html


They Were Out for Blood
The men who carried zip ties as they stormed the Capitol weren’t clowning around.
By Dan Kois
Jan 08, 2021
12:01 PM


snip//

Call the zip ties by their correct name: The guys were carrying flex cuffs, the plastic double restraints often used by police in mass arrest situations. They walked through the Senate chamber with a sense of purpose. They were not dressed in silly costumes but kitted out in full paramilitary regalia: helmets, armor, camo, holsters with sidearms. At least one had a semi-automatic rifle and 11 Molotov cocktails. At least one, unlike nearly every other right-wing rioter photographed that day, wore a mask that obscured his face.

These are the same guys who, when the windows of the Capitol were broken and entry secured, went in first with what I’d call military-ish precision. They moved with purpose, to the offices of major figures like Nancy Pelosi and then to the Senate floor. What was that purpose? It wasn’t to pose for photos. It was to use those flex cuffs on someone.

In October, the FBI and state authorities charged 13 men with plotting to kidnap Gretchen Whitmer, the Democratic governor of Michigan. Members of that plot attended protests at the Michigan Capitol in April, real planners of violence mixing easily with those for whom guns are fun protest props. The plotters discussed a summary execution—“knock on the door,” one wrote in the group chat, “and when she answers it just cap her”—but settled on a kidnapping, pulled off while police were distracted by a nearby explosion. Think of that plot, as these men surely did, as a dress rehearsal for what the zip-tie guys wanted to accomplish at the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday.

They went into the Capitol, as Congress was counting electoral votes, equipped to take hostages—to physically seize officials, and presumably to take lives. The prospect is terrifying. But just because it seems unthinkable doesn’t mean we shouldn’t think hard about what almost happened.
Don’t dismiss the zip-tie guys as “LARPers” or “weekend warriors.” First of all, given the well-documented overlap between ex-military, law enforcement, and right-wing militias, it’s entirely possible these guys were weekday warriors using their training in service of extracurricular interests. (One of the Twitter sleuths who are now trying to track them down sure seems to think they’re ex-military.) More importantly, the long awful course of history reminds us how slippery the slope is from playacting as a strike force to actually behaving as a strike force. Once the zip ties go on, it doesn’t matter whether you’re a “real” terrorist or not.

Today, we’re hearing more about the violence that accompanied the buffoonery: the Capitol Police officer killed with a fire extinguisher, the AP photographer dragged away by goons, the New York Times photographer thrown to the floor who feared for her life. No doubt we’ll hear even more as more stories come out.

But it could have been much, much worse. If the rioters had been a little quicker through the doors; if senators and representatives hadn’t just moved from their joint session into separate chambers to debate the Arizona challenge and had instead still been packed into one harder-to-evacuate room; if any number of things had happened differently, the three people next in the line of succession for the presidency might have been face to face with those zip-tie guys. And then: Who knows.

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Arrow 12 replies Author Time Post
Reply They Were Out for Blood (Original post)
babylonsister Jan 8 OP
spanone Jan 8 #1
Wicked Blue Jan 8 #2
PJMcK Jan 8 #9
Wicked Blue Jan 8 #10
PJMcK Jan 8 #11
Wicked Blue Jan 8 #12
musette_sf Jan 8 #3
intrepidity Jan 8 #4
AnnieBW Jan 8 #5
TwilightZone Jan 8 #7
hadEnuf Jan 8 #6
sarcasmo Jan 8 #8

Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Fri Jan 8, 2021, 03:09 PM

1. K&R

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Fri Jan 8, 2021, 03:10 PM

2. Eric Prince's goons

Last edited Fri Jan 8, 2021, 03:46 PM - Edit history (1)

should be looked into.

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Response to Wicked Blue (Reply #2)

Fri Jan 8, 2021, 03:39 PM

9. Do you mean Eric Prince?

The owner of the company formerly known as Blackwater? Betsy DeVos's brother?

These goons were definitely not weekend warriors. They were trained soldiers.

The attack on the Capital could have ended very differently and very tragically.

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Response to PJMcK (Reply #9)

Fri Jan 8, 2021, 03:46 PM

10. Thanks for correcting me

So much happening that I'm getting muddled

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Response to Wicked Blue (Reply #10)

Fri Jan 8, 2021, 03:53 PM

11. Didn't mean it as a correction!

Only a clarification.

I totally agree with you that those goons were too professional to be fantasy fighters.

Eric Prince should be in jail. He is a very dangerous man with an extremely dangerous and probably illegal business.

You're right that so much is happening so fast that it's sometimes hard to keep up! Enjoy your weekend, Wicked Blue.

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Response to PJMcK (Reply #11)

Fri Jan 8, 2021, 04:17 PM

12. You too, PJ

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Fri Jan 8, 2021, 03:10 PM

3. K & R

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Fri Jan 8, 2021, 03:15 PM

4. At first I thought it was so they would be mistaken as LEO

(or, as likely, they are off-duty or former LEO).

Now I'm unsure.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Fri Jan 8, 2021, 03:20 PM

5. I've Heard They Were Going After Pence

But also Pelosi and Schumer. I would imagine that Kamala and The Squad would be among their targets as well
This is the DU member formerly known as AnnieBW.

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Response to AnnieBW (Reply #5)

Fri Jan 8, 2021, 03:35 PM

7. There's apparently video of them asking where Pence is.

I noticed that when the electoral procedure restarted, Pence clearly looked infuriated, a state I wouldn't have previously thought him capable of. Can't say I blame him.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Fri Jan 8, 2021, 03:22 PM

6. So the storming of the Capitol by the MAGA goons was diversion to slip the black op guys in

the doors to do their hits.

This sure wasn't the masquerade ball gone awry that the Republicans are trying to make it out to be.

It's looking more and more like a targeted assassination plot to be followed by a coup.

The quiet figures behind the loud assholes in the costumes are professional terrorists.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Fri Jan 8, 2021, 03:37 PM

8. Yep, those flex zip ties were for Pence, Pelosi and Schumer and many others.

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