DC protestors organized for months on Zoom, expected outside White House on election day
Black Lives Matter and Shutdown DC have allegedly organized thousands of protesters over Zoom to swarm the White House on Election Day. They have reportedly held training sessions for these demonstrators to teach them how to protest in a large-scale event across the street from the White House.
A number of unconfirmed leaked documents and Zoom call recordings illustrate a coordinated network of activists who intend to mobilize across the nation. Specifically, if Joe Biden loses or if President Trump contests the election results. The materials allegedly show plans to shut down federal buildings, including the White House, and to meet members of Congress at public transportation portals when they’re scheduled to reconvene in Washington after the election.
The goal of these groups is to continue the civil unrest from Election Day until later in the week and potentially until the presidential inauguration in January. The FBI will neither confirm nor deny the plans of these groups since it is an ongoing investigation. The agency did say it has been working well in advance of Nov. 3 with federal, state, and local partners to “gather and analyze intelligence to determine whether individuals might be motivated to take violent action for any reason.”
Shutdown DC posted on their website that thousands of people are planning to “start this next phase of the election cycle in the streets” by gathering at Black Lives Matter Plaza by 4 p.m. Tuesday. Large screens will be set up to stream election results as crowds are entertained by GoGo bands, salsa dancers, artists, and cultural workers.
“Votes will still be coming in, so this will (probably) not be the time we need to create disruption to stop a coup – yet. But we’ll be in a good place to respond to whatever might happen,” the website stated. “This has been a really long and dark era so we’re going to be together to process our feelings of hope, anger, fear, and exhaustion as a community.”
Lisa Fithian, the nation’s best-known protest consultant, is allegedly featured in a recording of one of the training sessions hosted over Zoom by the “Sunrise Movement.” Fithian reportedly showed a target map displaying all the police stations, key government buildings, media outlets, and buildings occupied by “Trump boosters” in the DC area in the Zoom video. She discussed “what would it take to surround the White House.”
“We’re facing an administration and a potential coup and a potential insurrection,” Fithian stated. “Is there going to be a war? Are people gonna get killed? Like is that on anybody else’s mind? I’m guessing it is. We’re going to see potential fighting all over the country or in some hotspots, and we’ve already seen that, so how do we work together across the country to help support each other no matter where we are and to maximize our impact by doing similar things on similar days at similar times?”
Fithian went on to say that demonstrators would be willing to break windows on government buildings and that they should go a step farther and get inside. She told those on the call, “We have to be willing to put our bodies on the line and take on some discomfort and sacrifice risk in order to change things.”
“We are going to be in a crisis but we want to make sure it’s one that we are creating. We want them to be responding to us and us not responding to them. In a situation of a coup or an insurrection or an uprising, whoever’s got the guns, often can win. We should be clear. Trump’s gotta go,” she said, according to the recording of the call posted to the YouTube account SunriseExposed.
These types of videos and training sessions for a number of activist groups have been going on for months. The training sessions target anyone from the young street protesters to federal employees “seeking methods of professional civil disobedience.”
Some snaps outside the White House right now pic.twitter.com/Rd06sDdVmJ
— Olivia Beavers (@Olivia_Beavers) November 2, 2020
“The police are readying for battle. We should be very clear about that,” April Goggans, an organizer with the local Black Lives Matter affiliate, said during an Oct. 26 online training session.
In yet another leaked Zoom call, federal workers, including attorneys and members of the intelligence community, discussed ways to get past street protests and “slow the gears down” through their bureaucracy should the “election go sideways.”
The videos were taken from Zoom recordings exposing plots “to exhaust emergency and law enforcement resources.” Names allegedly listed as participants on the Zoom calls include federal employees with high-level administrative powers and even former State Department employees with experience related to government insurrections abroad.
Hope Neyer, an organizer with Shutdown DC, said her group was rehearsing “election meltdown simulations” that include indefinitely occupying certain public spaces and rushing to intervene in attempts to intimidate voters at polling places or seize ballots.