Only two days after the 2020 Presidential election, the Oath Keepers were already persuaded that success had been taken from the former President Donald Trump, and far-right militia members were preparing to tramp on the United States Capitol Hill. Stewart Rhodes, the leader of the group, wrote fellow members that they’re not getting through this without a civil war, according to court documents, adding it’s too late for that. So prepare your ‘mind, body, and spirit.’
Four days later, when the media outlets declared Joseph Robinette Biden Jr., a Democrat, the winner of Nov. 3 elections, the documents say Stewart Rhodes told Oath Keepers to repudiate it and march altogether on the Capitol.
Last week, the indictment of Stewart Rhodes and ten other associates was spectacular in part because federal prosecutors, after a year of inquiring about the assault of 6th January 2021, charged them with seditious conspiracy, an infrequently-used Civil War-time statute reserved for only the most serious of political criminals.
But the documents also display how fast most enthusiastic and dangerous followers of Trump mobilized to undermine the election outcomes through strength and violence, even though there was no extensive voter fraud and Trump’s Cabinet and local election authorities said the election had been free and fair.
Several people have been charged in the violent attempt to halt the congressional certification of Joe Biden’s success. Numerous were animated by former President’s speech at a rally near the White House, just before the insurrection, where he said, they “fight like hell.” And if you don’t fight like hell, you aren’t going to have a country any longer. But for Stewart Rhodes and others, there was no need for Mr. Trump’s words of encouragement. However, the action was already intended.
One thing is clear from the indictment: The Oath Keepers planned on and needed a crowd as cover. Even if Trump wasn’t directly involved in their “plan,” his expectation to his lunatic mob to head to the Capitol definitely helped them execute their operation
— Asha Rangappa (@AshaRangappa_) January 14, 2022
“bloody, desperate fight”
Stewart Rhodes, 56, founded the Oath Keepers in 2009. Rhodes and some friends decided they would form an organization around the “perception of imminent tyranny,” anxious about federal overreach and a series of unknown threats, like the administration was preparing to attack its own people. Moreover, he recruited former and current military, law enforcement, and first responders.
According to a biography on the SPLC (Southern Poverty Law Center) website on extremism, out of high school, Stewart Rhodes joined the Army and became a paratrooper, but was honorably discharged after he was hurt during a night parachuting incident. He went to night school at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. The first job of Rhodes was in politics regarding supervision of interns for Ron Paul, who was then a GOP congressman from Texas.
Authorities say that on 9th November 2020, Stewart Rhodes instructed his supporters during a GoToMeeting call to go to Washington, D.C., to let Donald Trump realize that the people are behind him, and he anticipates that the ex-US President would call up the militia to assist stay in power. Rhodes cautioned it would be a bloody, desperate battle and that couldn’t be prevented.
On the 6th January 2021 morning, Vallejo and others were on a podcast discussing the likelihood of an armed clash. Associates turned up wearing camouflaged combat attire in helmets. They entered the Capitol Building with the enormous crowds of attackers who stormed past law enforcement barriers and smashed windows, wounding dozens of officers and sending legislators running.