In Donald Trump’s January 6 reenactment, attackers become martyrs, heroes – Times of India

WASHINGTON: Such propaganda, a cocktail of conspiracy theories and propaganda to the public at one of the darkest junctures in history—is fueling confusion over the sufferings of January 6.
Hate is “love”. Violence is “peace”. donald supporter trump The attackers are patriots.
Months after supporters of the then-president stormed the Capitol on that winter’s day, Trump and his acolytes are taking this revisionism to a new and dangerous place—one of martyrs and heroes of war, and seeking revenge. It is a place where the cry of “blue lives matter” has turned into the slogan “F—blue”.
The fact reversal about the siege is the latest in oeuvre to contrast Trump’s collection of “big lies”, the most striking of which is that the election was stolen from him when it was not.
It is rooted in the formula of powerful propaganda through the ages: Say it loud, say it often, say it with political power behind you, and people will believe. Once spread by pamphlets, posters and word of mouth, now spread with the swipe of a finger, the result is the same: a passionate, undeniable following.
The technique of glorifying one’s side and showing the other with false information, if not outright lies, has been in practice since at least World War I, when the US government treated a German soldier as an ape-human. The spirit for the purpose was aroused with posters depicting it. A willowy American young woman in his clutches. This faded after years after the horrific use of propaganda by Nazi Germany for the slaughter and subjugation of millions of people.
Whether from deceitful warmth or simply the arrogance of a defeated president, few methods are the same, such as telling the same construction over and over until it sticks.
Trump perfected the art of repetition—about “election fraud,” “rigged elections” and “large-scale voter fraud,” none of those allegations proven in dozens of court cases and official post-election audits. , but still there was a tangle between them. .
Four years ago, Trump appeared to equate white supremacists and racial justice protesters in Charlottesville, Virginia, with his remarks that “there were great people on both sides.”
This time in this statement, the very nice people who were there on January 6th were aside: his.
For the other side — the police, overwhelmed for hours and bloodied in rebellion — Trump has only one face-to-face question that doubles as a four-word conspiracy theory: “Who killed the Ashley Babbit?”
Those words have become a viral mantra meant to elevate Babit to the cause of freedom as a righteous martyr. They revolve around mainline social media platforms where Trump is banned for spreading misinformation, but his followers are still praised. Woman killed by a police officer shot as she tried to climb through the jagged glass of a broken window House Chambers during the riots
Babbitt has become the face of the rebellion – decked out on T-shirts and cheering in basement ballrooms at hotels across the country where conspiracy theorists gather to hang out. Street lamps and passers-by plaster on the building’s façade, as they tell of the unveiling of a statue of Babbitt in Alexandria, near Virginia, at “high noon” July 27, in the Georgetown neighborhood of Washington.
Trump and many Republicans have cycled through various symptoms of rebellion, each iteration completely unlike the previous one. The attackers were said to be left-wing Antifa followers in disguise. Then he was called an overzealous tourist. Now they are declared as foot soldiers for freedom.
Each iteration requires Americans to ignore the anger that appears on their screens, and some lawmakers to ignore that they were among the attackers’ shocking targets that day. Hunts now admire hunters.
Taken together, revisionists and their believers are “floating in a vast sea of ​​crap,” said Brendan Buck, once a former top aide to House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Vis.
The currents of that ocean are familiar to historians who study what drives some conspiracy theories and propaganda.
Once people catch a lie, they can have no confidence that they are not true, said psychology professor Dolores Albaracin. University of Pennsylvania and co-author of the upcoming book, “Creating Conspiracy Beliefs: How Our Thoughts Are Shaped.”
Despite the well-documented facts about what happened on January 6, believers often dismiss anyone who tries to set them straight, claiming that they were either duped or part of a conspiracy. are part, Albaracin said.
“Faith has a tool that protects it,” she said. “Nothing can invalidate a conspiracy theory. Attempting to refute the theory proves the theory and signals you as the conspirator.”
DJ Peterson, an expert in authoritarianism and propaganda, is the chairman of Longview Global Advisors, a Los Angeles-based consulting firm, and former director of the Eurasia Group and rand corporation. He said that in an online world full of information and a real world plagued by polarization, “you pick and choose what you want to believe, including sticking your head in the sand.”
Trump, Peterson said, is excellent at raising claims that propel his original supporters and tax them against other Americans.
“That’s where Trump’s power lies,” he said. “He’s good at picking up these threads, which tend to lower trust levels and create divisions.”
Recent polls are consistent in showing the country’s division over Trump and his post-election history. In short, two-thirds of the population is against it; Two-thirds Republican for that. In one of the latest, Quinnipiac found that 66% of Republicans consider President Joe Biden to be illegally elected.
This number and others like it in many polls, represent the millions of people who were tricked into believing election fraud allegations, including Trump’s own Attorney General William Barr, which were thoroughly investigated and denied. it was done. Trump’s bastions have stuck and are now undermining efforts by him and those close to him to glorify the January 6th crowd.
“The consequence of lying is that you never go back to where you were before,” said Harvard Historian Jill Lepore, whose podcast, “The Last Archive” explores what happened to deception, deceit, and truth. “That’s what’s hurtful about our special moment.”
About Trump, she said: “Their approach is usually just to create chaos so that people don’t really know which way to look.”
In case of rebellion, his followers looked away. An offensive amnesia seems to have captured how ugly it all was, even if the scenes that aired and streamed in real time are forever.
After a staged rally flocked to the Capitol, where Trump told them to “fight like hell,” and vowed he’d be right there with them, the attackers beat up an overwhelming number of law enforcement officers, many of them injured. In one particularly gruesome case, an officer was crushed against a door by people pushing to get in, bleeding from his mouth as part of his face pressed against the glass of the door.
Inside lawmakers ran for their lives, hiding for hours as the crowd wandered the halls of Congress holding Trump’s flags. The attackers called on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Cal., and wanted Trump’s vice president, who was also there. “Hang on to Mike Pence,” he chanted.
Babbitt was part of a group that was trying to bang on the doors of the House Chamber as Capitol Police officers vacated the House floor and some members were still trapped in the upper gallery. Officers used furniture to put up barricades on the glass doors separating the hallway from the speaker’s lobby to try to stop the attackers, who were breaking the glass with their fists, flags and other objects.
Only three police officers were guarding the doors on the other side of the stacked furniture as at least 20 attackers tried to get inside, shouting, “F—blue!” and “Break it!” One broke the glass of the door next to the officer’s head; Another warned officers that they would get hurt if they did not move out of the way.
A Capitol Police lieutenant pointed his gun. “gun!” “gun!” The attackers shouted as the hysteria reached fever pitch. They began to lift the Babbit up to climb through the window. The soldier fired one round.
Babit had a shoulder injury. She later died. The officer was cleared of wrongdoing, and his name was not released.
Trump now falsely says – and with a stream of repetition – that he was shot “right in the head”.
“They were there for a reason, the election rigged,” he explained. Fox News A week ago. “They thought the election was rigged. That’s why they were there. And they were peaceful people. These were great people. The crowd was incredible. And I mentioned the word love. Love – love in the air, I’ve never seen anything like it.” Too.”

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