Capitol Hill Attack: Thompson Seeking Answers on Intelligence Failures

insurrection at the Capitol and related threats against the Nation’s peaceful transition of power,
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Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), Chairman of the Committee on Homeland Security, and Rep. Elissa Slotkin (D-MI), Chairwoman of the Subcommittee on Intelligence and Counterterrorism, sent a letter to Melissa Smislova, Acting Undersecretary for Intelligence and Analysis, to better understand the role the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of Intelligence and Analysis (I&A) played in facilitating the sharing of intelligence related to potential threats on January 6, 2021.

This comes after a Wall Street Journal report that I&A sent a national summary to law enforcement across the country stating there was “nothing significant to report,” in the lead-up to the attack on the Capitol, contrary to I&A’s previous warnings about potential violence toward government officials.

This letter is part of a review the Committee is conducting on the events and intelligence surrounding the insurrection at the Capitol and related threats against the Nation’s peaceful transition of power, including the Inauguration.

“Part of I&A’s mission is to share threat-related information among partners at all levels of government and with the private sector. In October 2020, DHS warned about the heightened potential for violence particularly toward government officials. Yet, according to a recent Wall Street Journal (WSJ) article, on January 5, I&A sent a national summary to law enforcement across the country stating there was “Nothing significant to report,” in the lead-up to the attack,” the Chairs wrote.

“We are concerned about these inconsistencies, which may have prevented adequate preparation by the Federal government in advance of the Capitol siege.”

The letter asks Acting Undersecretary Smislova to provide a copy of the January 5, 2021 national summary referenced in the abovementioned WSJ article and any correspondence between I&A and its partners regarding potential threats and or any preparations in advance of the January 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol.

The WSJ article also references a January 4 Fusion Center Network call discussing possible threat information leading up to the events on January 6, and this letter seeks to understand if I&A was invited to or a participant in that call, and if so what information was shared.

Click here to read the full letter.

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