(RT) In a surprise address to the nation, US President Trump announced he was deploying the military to stop the unrest in Washington, DC and said he would intervene anywhere local authorities fail to restore order after days of riots.
Trump appeared in the White House Rose Garden around 6:30 pm on Monday, declaring that the US has been gripped by “domestic terror” of “professional anarchists and violent mobs” who drowned out the “righteous cries of peaceful protests” over the death of George Floyd, an African-American man killed by police in Minneapolis, Minnesota last Monday.
All of the country was justly outraged by Floyd’s “brutal” death, Trump said, but the protests since then have turned to violence. In Washington, DC alone, he said, the rioters vandalized the Lincoln Memorial and the WWII monument, and set ablaze a historic church near the White House.
“These are not acts of peaceful protest, these are acts of domestic terror,” he said.
Pledging to end the “riots and lawlessness” immediately, Trump said he “strongly recommended” to every state governor to deploy the National Guard in sufficient numbers to “dominate” the streets and shut down riots.
If they fail to do so, he added, “I will deploy the US military and quickly solve the problem for them.”
He also revealed that the “heavily armed” US troops have already been dispatched to the streets of Washington, DC to “stop the rioting, looting, vandalism, assaults and wanton destruction of property.”
Organizers of the “terror,” which he described as “Antifa and others,” will face severe criminal penalties, including prison terms.
Right before he appeared, loud explosions could be heard near the White House. A feed from the protest outside showed mounted police dispersing masked demonstrators, as flash-bang grenades and tear gas went off.
Though the officers caught on video kneeling on Floyd’s neck until he died were quickly fired, and one of them was charged with murder, protests over the incident escalated into riots in Minneapolis last Wednesday. They then spread to nearby St. Paul and then to 75 other major cities across the US over the weekend.