National Guard are brought in to the East Plaza of the U.S. Capitol during a rehearsal for President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration ceremony, at the Capitol in Washington, Monday, Jan. 18, 2021. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
UPDATED 8:58 AM PT – Monday, January 18, 2021
The FBI has been screening all 25,000 National Guard service members who are protecting the U.S. Capitol amid concerns of an insider attack.
On Sunday, Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy asked security officers to be watchful for issues within their ranks, although no red flags have been raised yet.
The FBI reportedly vetted troops by running their names through databases and watch lists, while searching for previous charges or potential domestic terrorist associations.
For some, protecting the nation’s capitol comes as a great honor.
“But the D.C. National Guard is the only unit in the country, in the world, that calls themselves Capitol guardians,” stated Command Sgt. Major Michael Brooks of the D.C. National Guard. “And for a brief moment of history, all 25,000 guardsmen that will be in the Capitol will be able to call themselves Capitol Guardians and I hope they cherish that as much as we do.”
Roughly two and a half times the number of troops will be deployed for the upcoming Inauguration Day compared to past ceremonies.