Donald Trump’s attempt at overthrowing the government by turning an unbridled mob of his most deranged supporters on the US Capitol, mercifully, was a failure. However, an unwelcome failure was that of US intelligence and security agencies.
It turns out that dozens, yes, dozens, of people on the FBI terrorist watchlist were part of the insurrectionist mob. I think one or two lunatics slipping through the cracks is understandable, especially if they were to travel by car and go through state borders relatively invisibly. But no. Dozens managed to get not only to Washington, D.C., not only to Trump’s rally, and not only to the footsteps of the Capitol, but they managed to breach the Capitol, desecrate the building, and cause mayhem that killed five people.
How the FBI and other intelligence agencies managed to let this blunder happen is beyond me. It’s embarrassing. Now, some government agencies are preparing for threats against the Biden-Harris inauguration, and it’s worse than you probably thought. The agencies have concerns about not just domestic terrorists on the ground, but also “foreign influence” and, although unlikely, I cannot believe I’m having to type this, drone attacks.
This is what happens when a “President” weakens the nation through demagoguery, incessant lies, sedition, and radicalizing speech all for his own personal benefit. Make America great again? Trump has done the opposite with such radiant aplomb, he practically deserves a medal because it’s hard to imagine how any human on Earth could have possibly defiled our nation and its institutions more than him.
If there’s any solace at all, it’s that, apparently, online rightwing extremists have fractured in the wake of the insurrection based on “ideological” lines, if you can even call them that. This is, to some extent, another example of how rightwing extremist groups tend to fall apart rather quickly and fail to gain sufficient support to actually carry out their batshit ideas (short summary: it turns out they’re too stupid and egomaniacal to organize effectively).
But again, the fact that Trump has put us in this position is astonishing. Given that, the last thing we need is an ineffective intel and national security apparatus.