US Capitol Riot One-Year Anniversary: Was it a False-Flag Attack?

Jeremy Kuzmarov

Amateurish planning, delayed police response and presence of agent provocateurs in crowd offers indication that Deep State was behind it.

On January 6, 2021—one year ago today—a mob of pro-Trump supporters laid siege to the U.S. Capitol, causing more than $30 million in property damage and as many as seven deaths.

At that time, a Joint Session of Congress was convening to perform its constitutional obligation to count the electoral votes for President and Vice President and officially announce the results of the 2020 election, which the rioters viewed as illegitimate.

Upon entering the building, they disrupted the Joint Session of Congress, vandalized, and stole property, ransacked offices, and threatened the lives of elected leaders such as Vice President Mike Pence, who sanctioned the election result, and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, who had been branded as “the devil.”

Since those events, 719 people have been charged with crimes, and 129 rioters have entered guilty pleas.[1]

In November, Fox News host Tucker Carlson caused a stir when he hosted a documentary series, “Patriot Purge” that branded the Capitol riots as a “false-flag” terrorist attack.

According to Carlson, the riots were provoked by violent left-wing antifa activists, the FBI and other intelligence agencies in an effort to discredit the pro-Trump movement and political right.

Carlson was derided by mainstream news outlets as a “conspiracy theorist” and compared to maligned figures such as Alex Jones, who hosts a show that aims to expose the nefarious machinations of the “deep state.”[2]

But there is some substance to what Carlson is alleging—particularly with regards to the FBI and other intelligence agencies—though not with regards to Black Lives Matter and antifa.

Agent Provocateurs in the Crowd

“Patriot Purge” presents the view that the pro-Trump mob that stormed the Capitol included numerous agent provocateurs.

Witnesses indeed reported that they saw groups of men wearing camouflage uniforms and black gear who resembled provocateurs.

The New York Times reported in September that there were at least two FBI informants in the Capitol riot crowd. A study by Revolver News, a pro-Trump news site, found unindicted conspirators to be among the most aggressive.

Thomas Caldwell, leader of the far-right Oath Keepers group, which was accused of being one of the chief organizers of the riot, was a former Naval Reserve intelligence officer and FBI agent. One of the unindicted co-conspirators was his wife.

Enrique Tarrio, the leader of the Proud Boys, another chief organizer of the riot, was an FBI informant.

The very first breach of the Capitol’s police barricades at 12:50 p.m. was coordinated by a former Marine Sergeant from Arizona, Ray Epps, who was removed from the FBI’s Capital Violence Most Wanted List in July—one day after Revolver exposed the FBI’s protection of known Epps associate and Oath Keepers leader Stewart Rhodes.[3]

Rhodes had organized and activated a plan to use violence on 1/6 through a series of encrypted Signal messages beginning at 1:38 p.m.—as Trump concluded his speech at the National Mall and an hour before Oath Keepers lieutenants rushed the Capitol doors.

The FBI has been unable to identify one of Epps’s co-conspirators—despite having a full-frontal photo of him.

Another suspicious figure is John Sullivan, who filmed Ashli Babbitt being shot. He was exposed as an FBI provocateur who had infiltrated antifa and Black Lives Matters in order to cast them in a bad light and put them in jail.

A Poorly Planned Inside Job?

“Patriot Purge” includes an interview with Emily Rainey, a former army psychological officer who said that, if the “capitol riots was an insurrection, it was the most poorly planned ever.”

This would give credence to the theory that the riots were stage-managed, with an ulterior purpose. Rep. Steven Horsford (D-Nev.) expressed belief that the riots were “an inside job.”

Rep. Linda Sanchez (D-Calif.) raised the question of possible collusion among some Capitol Police officers who pulled down barricades for the rioters and, in another instance, stopped for a photo with one of them.

House Financial Services Committee Chair Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) told a radio station that Democrats did not yet know if the failures by Capitol Police were the result of “poor planning or whether it was because there was certain kinds of infiltration”—which is precisely what Carlson has suggested.

“A Five-Year-Old Would Have Known”: Delayed Police Response and Foreknowledge

Former Homeland Security Director Michael Chertoff stated after the riots: “This wasn’t a surprise attack, all you had to do was read the newspaper and see that the president was telling people to go wild. A five-year-old would know this would be a center of focus here.”

A bipartisan Senate report issued in June detailed, however, how the Army deployed the National Guard three hours after the request by the chief of Capitol Police.

D.C. Police Chief Robert J. Contee III slammed the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) for relying on email—rather than the phone—to convey the message that people were chatting online about political violence in the Capitol the night before the riots.

The Senate report also blasted the Department of Justice (DOJ) for “failing to conduct inter-agency rehearsals or establish an integrated society plan.”

Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund, who announced his resignation on January 7th, came under fire for failing to request through the Capitol Police Board the deployment of the D.C. National Guard before the riot, and for failing to adequately prepare the Capitol Police force.

During a conference call, Robert J. Contee and General William Walker, the commander of the D.C. National Guard, testified that two Army officers—General Walter E. Piatt, Director of the Army Staff, and General Charles A. Flynn, then Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations, Plans and Training—stated that they “did not like the optics of boots on the ground at the Capitol.”

Walker further said that Generals Piatt and Flynn—the younger brother of Trump’s former National Security Adviser Michael—“both said it would not be in their best military advice to advise the Secretary of the Army to have uniformed Guard members at the Capitol during the election confirmation.”

Piatt claimed that the Pentagon did not deny Sund’s request for the deployment of the Guard, but that a basic plan needed to be established before “rushing into an unclear and dynamic situation.”

Another Army officer on the call allegedly insisted that the protesters were “peaceful,” prompting Contee—who was “incredulous at the Army’s reluctance to engage”—to reply that “they are not peaceful anymore.”

At 3:03 p.m., Acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller—who acknowledged beforehand that January 6th would be a “critical day in many of those conspiratorial minded folks narrative”—approved the activation of the D.C. National Guard.

Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy arrived at the Washington, D.C., Armory at 4:10 p.m. and authorized General Walker to depart at 4:35 p.m., though Walker said that he did not receive authorization until 5:08 p.m., after the Capitol had already been ransacked.

Miller later defended the three-hour delay, claiming that time and resources would be “wasted without planning” and that this was “not a video game.” You have to deploy force in a “mature and well-planned way,” he said. “If the National Guard was deployed earlier it would have been uncoordinated, unsynchronized and not effective.”

Foreknowledge of a violent military-style assault on the Capitol, however, should have elicited careful planning in the days before the Capitol riot and morning of the 6th.

Then the Guard would have been ready for a “mature” and “well-planned” operation at the precise moment that the rioters broke through the Capitol Police’s perimeter.

History of False Flag Attacks and Infiltration of Far-Right Groups

An important precedent may have been established in Michigan, where at least five of the fifteen people arrested in an October 2020 plot to kidnap Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer were undercover agents who infiltrated the Three Percenters, another of the main groups that instigated the January 6th riots.

The FBI had a long history of infiltrating right-wing groups and plotting black flag operations.

An example is the bombing of the Alfred A. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City on April 19, 1995. The FBI had infiltrated right-wing militias that were headquartered at Elohim City on the Oklahoma-Arkansas border who were behind the bombing.[4]

Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols—who were convicted of the bombing—were both alleged government agents.[5]

So were others from Elohim City thought to be part of the plot, including a former West German army intelligence officer, Andreas Strassmeir, who bragged to a reporter that “the right-wing in the U.S. is incredibly easy to penetrate if you know how to talk to them.”[6]

Advancing the U.S. Police State

One year after the Oklahoma City bombing, President Bill Clinton signed a draconian anti-terrorism bill that provided a $500 million windfall for the FBI and helped to lay the groundwork for post-9/11 legislation curtailing civil liberties.

First proposed by CIA officer Theodore Shackley, the bill “gutted the First, Fourth, Sixth and Eighth Amendments to the constitution, [laid] the framework for an entrenched police state, and [gave] the Federal government full power to target anybody deemed a threat to its authority,” in the words of journalist David Hoffman.[7]

NBC News reported that, in the aftermath of the January 6, 2021, Capitol riots, at least 13 states took up legislation to crack down on protests. There have also been growing efforts to censor Facebook and other internet providers.

Congress was further debating domestic terrorism legislationbacked by President Biden—that would result in a further expansion of mass surveillance and funding for law enforcement and diminish civil liberties even more than before.

The military and intelligence agencies clearly then had an institutional interest in allowing the Capitol riots to go forward.

They stood to benefit from the climate of unease that they generated and could invoke the threat of domestic political extremism—as a replacement for the declining threat of Islamic terrorism—to justify police-state measures.


  1. Some of the rioters claim that they have been held in inhuman conditions and subjected to beatings by police and torture
  2. Fox News contributors Jonah Goldberg and Stephen Hayes opted to leave the network to protest “Patriot Purge,” citing concern that the program would “lead to violence.” 
  3. Epps had given incendiary speeches the night before the riots, though curiously was seen protecting law enforcement and trying to calm the crowd after things started to get out of control. 
  4. Elohim City was founded in the 1970s by Robert G. Millar, who became an FBI informant. Author David Hoffman wrote that Elohim City was “one great big government-run neo-Nazi training camp.” David Hoffman, The Oklahoma City Bombing and the Politics of Terror (Venice, CA: Feral House, 1998). 
  5. David Paul Hammer, Deadly Secrets: Timothy McVeigh and the Oklahoma City Bombing (Bloomington, IN: AuthorHouse, 2010). McVeigh wrote to his sister Jennifer of his recruitment by the Special Forces as a black agent operative after serving in the army during the 1st Persian Gulf War. Terry Nichols also testified that McVeigh was a government agent. McVeigh told his cellmate on death row that an army Major had instructed him to carry out the Oklahoma City bombing—for which he was set up as the fall guy. 
  6. Strassmeir quoted in Hoffman, The Oklahoma City Bombing and the Politics of Terror, 133. ATF informant Carol Howe said that Strassmeir was a mastermind of the Oklahoma City bombing. See also Hammer, Deadly Secrets
  7. Hoffman, The Oklahoma City Bombing and the Politics of Terror, 378, 386.