Proud Boys boast they caused 'absolute terror' during Capitol riot

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Graig Graziosi
·2 min read
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 (EPA)
(EPA)

The Proud Boys are celebrating their role in the US Capitol insurrection on Wednesday by taking a virtual victory lap on social media.

The group - a Southern Poverty Law Center designated hate group that was told to "stand back and stand by" by Donald Trump during a presidential debate earlier this year - posted messages boasting and taking credit for the riot.

"For several hours, our collective strength had politicians in Washington in absolute terror. The treacherous pawns (cops) were also terrified," a Proud Boy wrote on the group's Telegram social media page.

On Parler, another social media platform that welcomes extremists banned from Twitter and Facebook for violating those sites Terms of Service agreements, the Proud Boys openly supported the Capitol insurrection.

"Doesn't look like they're destroying the capital. Looks like they're liberating it," the group wrote. "God bless America and all her patriots."

Prior to the rally, the leader of the Proud Boys, Henry "Enrique" Tarrio was arrested for burning a Black Lives Matter sign that was stolen from a church in Washington DC. He was also found in possession of high capacity firearm magazines.

A DC judge banned Mr Tarrio from entering the District.

The group is being sued by the Lawyer's Committee for Civil Rights Under the Law for what it calls a "racist attack on Metropolitan AME church," which "was one of several levied against churches targeted for their support of the Black Lives Matter Movement."

Rep. Matt Gaetz, a Trump loyalist, echoed right-wing conspiracy theories during the Congressional count last night, alleging that the Trump and Confederate-flag waving, largely white, unmasked and vocally supportive group of the president's supporters that stormed the Capitol were actually antifa plants.

In addition to that claim being utterly unsubstantiated by facts, the Proud Boys announced their intention to dress in black and wear masks - which is how anti-fascist protesters generally dress at protests - during the 6 January march into Washington DC.

Mr Tarrio wrote on the Proud Boys' Parler feed that the group would be "incognito and we will spread across downtown DC in smaller teams. And who knows ... we might dress in all BLACK for the occassion."

Videos from the riot show that some of the first individuals to attack the fence and get into fist fights with police were dressed mostly in black.

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