Letter to Nancy Pelosi from Former Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund Concerning Jan. 6

Link to PDF.

Sund’s letter clarifies a number of issues related to the Capitol riot. Two main items are of relevance to the impeachment trial:

  • Sund’s timeline shows that the crowd that stormed the capitol could not have been incited by Trump’s speech that day.
  • According to Sund, there was no intelligence indicating the potential for an insurrection-style attack on Congress prior to the events that unfolded.

In other words, Trump could not have caused the riot on the day it occurred, and could not have anticipated the riot before it occurred.

Sund nevertheless makes a decisive statement: “This was a well-planned, coordinated, armed insurrection at the United States Capitol.” Instead of blaming Trump, we should be asking who is actually responsible.

42 thoughts on “Letter to Nancy Pelosi from Former Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund Concerning Jan. 6

  1. “ Instead of blaming Trump, we should be asking who is actually responsible.”

    How about not holding a “wild” rally to convince the mob that Pence can overturn the election if he had the “courage”. (Of course would make Pence break his oath of office and act illegally.)

    Perhaps concession after a few dozen courts ruled against his allegations, smoothing the transition, and exhorting his followers that a peaceful transfer of power is our legacy and the reason we are still around as prescribed in the Constitution.

    So who do you have in mind for responsibility?

    Liked by 4 people

    1. RE: “So who do you have in mind for responsibility?”

      I don’t know. I notice that the mob tactics Sund describes are reminiscent of Antifa as an old post in the Forum outlines them:

      https://tidewaterforum.blog/2020/09/06/antifa-reality-check/

      I also notice that one of the arrested protesters is a known BLM organizer.

      Sund, however, makes clear that a number of different extremist groups were expected and I assume that means Proud Boys and other so-called right wingers.

      The country would be better served by a careful investigation of the question you ask than by the impeachment trial.

      Like

          1. “ Sullivan, the founder of a Utah-based group called Insurgence USA, told Fox News last Thursday that he’d entered the besieged Capitol to “document” what was going on and to dispute “this narrative going around” that Antifa instigators had played a role in the riot.”

            Regardless, he has been arrested along with the 150 or so gang members and miscreants. That he was a self-professed liberal photojournalist is not going to help him.

            Liked by 2 people

  2. Here is a scenario to think about. Suppose the GOP had stood up for the Constitution and helped remove Trump for his obvious High Crimes and Misdemeanors at his first Senate Trial and Mike Pence had become the President. Further suppose that President Pence had lost the 2020 election (which, unlike Trump, HE might well have won) and that Joe Biden became President-Elect. In that scenario is there the slightest chance that the insurrectionist attack on the government would have occurred as it did?

    In my opinion, it would not. Trump’s egregious lying and inciteful rhetoric was the necessary ingredient. No matter who planned the sedition, Trump was the cause.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. You are confusing the term “counterfactual” with the term “hypothetical.” But no matter, the thought experiment that I offered was to make an obvious point – it is Trump’s behavior that was the cause of the insurrection. If he had simply and gracefully accepted defeat at the time of the election or after SCOTUS ruled against him, the insurrection would not have happened. If he had not called the faithful to “stop the steal” on January 6th, the insurrection would not have happened.

        But, looking at the bigger picture, maybe he did the country a favor. By inciting this violence he drew out the organized right wing terrorists who are ready to do violence against the Constitution. DHS and the FBI’s repeated warnings along those lines will now be taken a lot more seriously. Thanks Trump!

        Liked by 1 person

          1. “Right. And MLK caused the Watts riots.”

            With all due respect, that is a really stupid attempt at a rebuttal. If Trump had repeatedly and as forcefully advocated for non-violence and the rule of law as had MLK then the violent insurrection on January 6th would not have happened. Period.

            Liked by 2 people

          2. ” And MLK caused the Watts riots.”

            Interesting how you chose to compare one who preached about peaceful demonstration AND practiced what he preached to one who fomented violence and hatred.

            Apples and kumquats, Todd. Apples and kumquats.

            Liked by 1 person

          3. RE: “Apples and kumquats, Todd. Apples and kumquats.”

            Then let me make the point clear for you: In the same way that it is illogical to blame MLK for the Watts Riots, it is illogical to blame Trump for the Capitol riot.

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          4. It is only illogical to those who have given up any sense of logic.

            If you actually pay attention to the timeline that has been laid out in great detail, you could, logically, see that the insurrection started before the first ballot was cast in the election.

            Keep attempting to tie the insurrection to only the Jan 6th speech ignores the history that led to that day.

            Liked by 2 people

          5. RE: “If you actually pay attention to the timeline that has been laid out in great detail, you could, logically, see that the insurrection started before the first ballot was cast in the election.”

            First, show us your evidence that it was an insurrection. Look it up at Dictionary.com before you reply.

            Then show us your evidence that Trump caused it. Keep in mind there was no intelligence known to authorities that you can draw upon. All you have is a correlation between Trump’s rhetoric (as you interpret it) and subsequent events.

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          6. All you needed to see was presented by the impeachment managers.

            Again, you are guilty of NOT seeing what you DON’T want to see.

            It is not MY interpretation; it is obvious to those not blinded by Kool-Aid and/or Snake oil.

            Like you told Len about the ONE BLM organizer who was part of the mob, you can find the truth if you really want to. I refer you to my post this morning from REASON. But you don’t so I waste my breath.

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          7. Insurrection.

            Never mind the dictionary. The relevant document is the United States Code.

            https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/2383

            and

            https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/18/part-I/chapter-115

            “If two or more persons in any State or Territory, or in any place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, conspire to overthrow, put down, or to destroy by force the Government of the United States, or to levy war against them, or to oppose by force the authority thereof, or by force to prevent, hinder, or delay the execution of any law of the United States, or by force to seize, take, or possess any property of the United States contrary to the authority thereof, they shall each be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than twenty years, or both.”

            Liked by 1 person

          8. RE: “Never mind the dictionary. The relevant document is the United States Code.”

            OK then, show us the evidence that all the violent protesters were a) controlled by Trump, and b) seeking to overthrow the entire U.S. government and c) not “false flag” operatives aligned with Antifa/BLM.

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        1. Palpable nonsense!

          There is nothing illogical about the idea that the rhetoric used by a leader effects the behavior of his followers.

          If MLK had encouraged violence then it WOULD be logical to say he caused riots. But he did not. So this line of argument is not logical. You are equating something that MLK DID NOT do with something that DJT DID do.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. RE: “There is nothing illogical about the idea that the rhetoric used by a leader effects the behavior of his followers.”

            Yes, there is. Affecting behavior can mean a lot of different things. Causing specific behavior is another matter. It is illogical to confuse correlation with causation.

            Like

          2. Sadly, you are once again full of shit. And again trying to deal with obvious truth by simply pretending that the truth isn’t true.

            Of course rhetoric effects the behavior of others. That is why leaders make speeches. Duh.

            Incitement is a crime because incitement effects (not affects) the behavior of others.

            Liked by 1 person

          3. RE: “Incitement is a crime because incitement effects (not affects) the behavior of others.”

            No, it isn’t. That’s the very nature of your error. Incitement is a crime only if it a) causes a crime and b) the inciter intended the crime to occur.

            Your reasoning is a big FAIL because you can’t connect the dots to prove a) and b). Your whole argument boils down to claiming Trump said some bad things, but you can’t show that Trump’s words caused anything to happen. That’s supremely stupid on your part.

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          4. Supremely stupid?

            Uh, again read the law . . . “(b) As used in this chapter, the term “to incite a riot”, or “to organize, promote, encourage, participate in, or carry on a riot”, includes, but is not limited to, urging or instigating other persons to riot, but shall not be deemed to mean the mere oral or written (1) advocacy of ideas or (2) expression of belief, not involving advocacy of any act or acts of violence or assertion of the rightness of, or the right to commit, any such act or acts.”

            Once Trump used the imperative – “Stop the steal” – he took himself out of the exceptions (1) and (2) above. The law says nothing about “intent.”

            Liked by 1 person

        2. “OK then, show us the evidence that all the violent protesters were a) controlled by Trump, and b) seeking to overthrow the entire U.S. government and c) not “false flag” operatives aligned with Antifa/BLM.”

          (a – None were “controlled” by Trump. But many were “incited” by his rhetoric to “fight”, “be strong” and “stop the steal” or the would “lose their country.” Those are fighting words. ALL of them were invited by Trump to gather on the day the final steps of the election were to occur. And Trump personally intervened to expand the parade permit to include the Capitol.

          (b – Read the law. “Stop the steal and the invasion of the Capitol was an attempt “by force to prevent, hinder, or delay the execution of any law of the United States, or by force to seize, take, or possess any property of the United States contrary to the authority thereof, ”

          (c – Laughable. But the social media tracks of hundreds of these insurrectionists puts the lie to that nonsense claim.

          Liked by 1 person

    1. Here is a better scenario, if left wing liberals and extremists, including the Senate and especially the house democrats didn’t harass, president Trump for 4 years, burn buildings, tear down statues, take over multiple entire city blocks, defund police, attack federal buildings, riot, loot businesses and homes, aid and abet illegal aliens, attempt phony impeachment, attack on 1st and 2nd amendment rights and alot more ALL with overt glee, approval and encouragement from Democrats would this have happened? Your side lit the fuse on a severely divided nation and you continue to fan the flames with sensationalist rhetoric.

      Like

      1. Hmmm. That is quite a mind boggling litany of ignorant bullshit. It displays all the pathologies of people who never leaves the propaganda bubble of Fox News and Rush Limbaugh. Or even worse, people who actually beleive things that Donald Trump says.

        But, leaving that aside, do you actually believe that this violent insurrection would have been incited by President Pence? Or are you one of those “conservatives” who want him to be hung for disloyalty because he followed the Constitutional process for a peaceful transfer of power?

        Liked by 1 person

  3. A couple of thoughts on the letter.

    “The first 150 members of the National Guard were not sworn in on Capitol grounds until 5:40 p.m., four and a half hours after I first requested them and three and a half hours after my request was approved by the Capitol Police Board. I still cannot fathom why in the midst of an armed insurrection, which was broadcast worldwide on television, it took the Department of Defense over three hours to approve an urgent request for National Guard support.”

    Waiting for the Pentagon to give the OK. A job the Commander-in-Chief could have done IMMEDIATELY. So ask yourself this: What took so long?

    Conflicting reports on what intelligence was available when seems to happen a lot. (Especially when folks are trying to perform CYA) I do not doubt Sund’s account. I only point out that reporting has been mixed.

    There is nothing in this letter that absolves the former POTUS from the charge of incitement. Especially when you take into account the timeline of the fomenting of discord that began before the election

    Liked by 2 people

    1. RE: “There is nothing in this letter that absolves the former POTUS from the charge of incitement.”

      There are the two bullet points in the post introducing the letter. Trump could not have incited a crowd that was not present at his speech, and there is no evidence linking Trump’s prior rhetoric to the perpetrators. In fact, we don’t even know who the perpetrators were.

      Like

      1. …” there is no evidence linking Trump’s prior rhetoric to the perpetrators. ”

        Wow, you really aren’t watching the trial are you? The evidence has been shown in the Senate using the voices of those who were there and that they were there because they were invited, or ordered to do so by T****. Statements made by those in attendance and are pretty damning evidence.

        Your bullet points are, in a word, bullshit.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. RE: “The evidence has been shown in the Senate using the voices of those who were there and that they were there because they were invited, or ordered to do so by T****.”

          There’s nothing illegal or “inciteful” in encouraging supporters to attend a political protest. None of the videos of the participants I have seen in the hearing show attendees stating they came under orders to tear down the national government.

          Like

  4. Great comment seen on Gab:
    “While Democrats are crying fake tears over a fake insurrection during a fake Impeachment under a fake President…people are hurting out there.”

    Like

    1. You find that a great comment? And you frequent Gab?

      Hmmm. You may not know this so let me share that Gab is the internet home of racists, anti-Semites, neo-Nazis, White Supremacists, domestic terrorists and conspiracy theory whackos. Deplorables of every sort.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gab_(social_network)

      https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2018/10/29/18033006/gab-social-media-anti-semitism-neo-nazis-twitter-facebook

      Now that you know, I am sure that you will take anything you happen to read there with a huge grain of salt. For example, the comment you share is totally laughable nonsense. The Democrats are not crying. The insurrection was real. The Impeachment trial is very real. And Joe Biden is not a “fake President.” Because, you know, he won the recent election decisively and that is how we choose our Presidents in this democracy.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Unlike the previous administration, the current Oval Office resident can walk, chew gum, and do the JOB of PRESIDENT. Your hero in Mar-a-Lago spent over two months ignoring his job by trying to keep his job through illegal and immoral means.

      …”under a fake President”

      You misspelled “of”.

      And Democrats are actually fighting for democracy and the future of this country. T***** and his sycophants in the Senate are all Nero’s who fiddled while the country burned.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. “While Democrats are crying fake tears over a fake insurrection during a fake Impeachment under a fake President… Fake everything. I think more than half the country knows that now and most of the rest are figuring it out. Especially the fake election results.

        Like

        1. “Fake election results?” How so?

          Did all those fake officials from all those fake states take time out of their busy schedules eating babies to cook up these fake results along with their fake pizzas?

          Like

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