The images of a mob of supporters of President Donald Trump who stormed the US capital on January 6, 2021 shocked the world and will go down like a gloomy day in the history of American democracy. Jowharlooks back on a black Wednesday when the seat of US power was exceeded by extremists.
Washington DC witnessed unimaginable scenes on Wednesday, when a crowd of Trump supporters gathered to protest the certification of the November 3 presidential election and Joe Biden’s victory, invading the Capitol, the temple of American democracy.
It was a coup that lasted four hours while the world watched, riveted and terrified of the violence in the world’s oldest continuous democracy before calm was restored.
Crowds gather at the National Mall to protest the certification of election results
Crowds at National Mall, Washington DC © Cheriss May, AFP Pro-Trump protesters march on US Capitol building where lawmakers gathered to certify results of 2020 presidential election. © Tasos Katopodis, AFP
Overwhelmed security forces
The police force in the Capitol was quickly overwhelmed by the mob. © Julio Cortez, AP
Protesters enter the Capitol
The police can not prevent the demonstrators from entering the Capitol. © Reuters
Pro-Trump protesters force their way into the temple of American democracy. © Win McNamee, AFP
Legislators block themselves when the session is interrupted
To protect lawmakers, security officials support furniture against the chamber door and draw their weapons when the mob strikes through the doors. © Drew Angerer, AFP
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi had called a joint sitting of the House and Senate to confirm the electoral roll for the November election. © Greg Nas, AP
U.S. Capitol police with guns are drawn to watch as protesters try to break into the chamber. © J. Scott Applewhite, AP
Operation and chaos inside the Capitol
A protester hangs from the balcony of the Senate when Congress holds a joint session on January 6, 2020. © Win McNamee, AFP
Pro-Trump mobs gather inside the Senate chamber. © Win McNamee, AFP A protester sits in the Senate on January 6, 2021. © Win McNamee, AFP
Surrealist scenes inside a sacred monument
A protester looting a stool in Captiol’s Rotunda. © Win McNamee, AFP
A Trump supporter takes a seat away from the action on the second floor of the Capitol near the entrance to the Senate. © Mike Theiler, Reuters
This Trump supporter, wearing fur and horns, was soon identified as Jake Angeli, who has demonstrated at several Trump meetings. AFP – WIN MCNAMEE
A Trump supporter carries a Confederate battle flag on the second floor of the Capitol. © Mike Theiler
Damage and destruction inside the US Capitol building after Trump supporters broke into security and entered the building. © Olivier Douliery, AFP
Armed police follow a Senate procession carrying boxes holding ballot papers to the House of Representatives for a joint session to confirm the ballots, © Manuel Balce Ceneta, AP