National Guard Troops To Be Deployed To DC Ahead Of Possible Trucker Convoys

U.S. Capitol Police and DC’s Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency have requested National Guard support ahead of potential trucker protest convoys in and around the nation’s capital.

The Department of Defense approved that request late Tuesday night, allotting 700 National Guard troops for service to this matter. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin approved the request Tuesday from the District of Columbia government and the U.S. Capitol Police, the Pentagon said in a statement Tuesday night.

“The people who live, work and visit the District are part of our community, and their safety is our first mission priority,” Major General Sherrie McCandless, commanding general of the D.C. National Guard, said in a statement. “Our MPD and USCP partners have asked for our help in ensuring people can demonstrate peacefully and safely, and we stand ready to assist.”

Modeled after the “Freedom Convoy” that disrupted a border crossing in Canada for several days this month, a group of American truckers is said to be traveling across the United States in an 11-day journey to protest COVID-19 restrictions, beginning on the West Coast Wednesday.

Organizers for the group, known as the People’s Convoy, are planning to have 1,000 semi-truck drivers gathered in California on Wednesday to start the trek that will take them to Washington, D.C.

The group argues that the “government has forgotten its place” and is overextending its reach with federal COVID-19 restrictions, and says they should be removed.

“The message of The People’s Convoy is simple,” the group said in a statement. “The last 23 months of the COVID-19 pandemic have been a rough road for all Americans to travel: spiritually, emotionally, physically, and — not least — financially.”

Unlike the Canadian Freedom Convoy — which blocked various roads, including the Ambassador Bridge which separates Ontario and Detroit, and ultimately led to the arrests of almost 200 people — the People’s Convoy says it does not plan to obstruct roadways or bridges.

“This convoy is about freedom and unity,” the group said in a statement. “The truckers are riding unified across party and state lines and with people of all colors and creeds — Christians, Muslims, Jews, Sikhs, Mormons, agnostics, Blacks, Hispanics, Asians, Native Americans, Republican, Democrats. All individuals are welcome to participate.”

This is just one of several groups that are reported to be planning convoys in and around Washington, D.C, in protest of vaccine mandates, and in the case of at least one organizer, to protest illegal immigration and inflation.

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