Two former top Washington D.C. National Guard officials have claimed that an internal Army report on its response to the Jan. 6 Capitol riot is “fiction” being used to secretly whitewash the Army’s response to the riot and to shift blame to the Capitol Police.
The 20-page report, obtained by Politico, describes conversations between top Army officials and then-D.C. Guard commander Maj. Gen. William Walker as part of a defense for why the National Guard was unable to respond quickly to the riot.
However, Walker, now the House of Representatives’ Sergeant at Arms, claims some of those communications described in the report never happened. Walker and Col. Earl Matthews, then a top lawyer for the D.C. Guard, insist that Guard members were ready to be deployed to the Capitol.
“It’s whole fiction,” Matthews told Politico.
Earlier this month, Matthews alleged two top Army generals, Gen. Charles Flynn and Lt. Gen. Walter Piatt, lied to Congress about their response to the riot. Matthews said the Army’s description of that day was an “alternate history … worthy of the best Stalinist or North Korea propagandist.”
“The Army report’s narrative is surfacing days after POLITICO first revealed a memo Matthews wrote pushing back against senior Army leaders’ version of the events of Jan. 6. The report and the subsequent pushback from Guard officials highlight the growing controversy about how exactly the military handled the attack on the Capitol,” Politico reported. “Matthews’ memo referred to the Army report, but it hasn’t been made public until now. Matthews and Walker said they hadn’t read it before POLITICO shared it with them. Matthews added that D.C. Guard members had no say in the drafting of the memo and weren’t allowed to see it.”
Walker reportedly said that he had asked an Army three-star general for a copy of the report, but the general refused to do so.
“After reviewing the report, Walker said it made multiple claims about him that are not true,” Politico reported. “Matthews alleges that the report is a secretive attempt to whitewash the Army’s record on Jan. 6 and shift blame to the Capitol Police and Guard leaders, thus taking the focus off the Army’s own missteps.”
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