Just before 10:00 p.m. Monday night, a 19-year-old neo-Nazi driving a 26-foot U-Haul truck rammed a security barrier on the north side of Lafayette Square, a few hundred feet from the White House, in an apparent attack targeting President Joe Biden. Video from the scene shows that police recovered a black and red flag with a swastika on it and a roll of duct tape from the truck.
Multiple cell phone videos from witnesses confirm that the driver deliberately tried to drive past the barriers.
The driver of the vehicle was identified Tuesday morning by US Park
Police as Sai Varshith Kandula of Chesterfield, Missouri. Chesterfield
is an upper-middle class suburb of roughly 50,000 people outside St.
Louis. Local NBC reporter Paula Vasan confirmed in interviews with
Kandula’s neighbors that the young man was often seen walking around the
neighborhood wearing a McDonald’s cap and that he “kept to himself.”
A spokesperson for Marquette High School told Vasan that Kandula graduated from the school in January 2022. “We can confirm that he participated in Student Council during his sophomore year and the boys’ tennis team in his sophomore and junior years,” the spokesperson said.
In his LinkedIn profile, Kandula wrote that his “... career pursuit is dedicated in the field of data analytics” and that he was “currently skilled in python and java as my primary sources of coding languages.” He said he did not have any “job experience” and that he was “actively searching for jobs…”
No one, including Kandula, was hurt in the incident, although it does appear that Biden was in the White House at the time of crash.
The incident, coupled with reports of a “suspicious package” nearby, prompted the Secret Service to order the evacuation of the Hay-Adams Hotel, which is located on the corner of 16th and H Street, across from Lafayette Square and the White House.
In an interview with the Washington Post, Chris Zaboji, a 25-year-old pilot who was on a late-night jog, said he heard a “huge crash” despite the fact that he was wearing headphones. He told the paper he saw that the truck had “slammed” into the barricade and that it “seemed intentional from where I was standing.” Zaboji said he began to record the incident, which showed the driver backing up and ramming the gate again, at which point several police officers descended onto the scene.
Kandula is currently facing at least five charges, including assault with a dangerous weapon, threatening to kill and/or harm a president or vice president and destruction of federal property.
The serious charges stem in part from an interview Kandula conducted with Secret Service agents following the attack. In portions of the interview leaked to major media outlets, Kandula admits that he flew to Washington D.C. from St. Louis on a “one-way ticket” and that upon arriving at Dulles International Airport he rented a U-Haul, which he drove directly to the White House.
In the interview, Kandula is reported to have said that his goal was to
“get to the White House, seize power, and be put in charge of the
nation.” As to how the skinny 19-year-old planned to seize power, he
replied, “Kill the president if that’s what I have to do and hurt anyone
that would stand in my way.” He told the agents he had been plotting
for six months and that even though he was not able to penetrate the
White House, “my message was received.”
In addition to driving with a Nazi flag and a roll of duct tape, Kandula had a “green book” on his person, which served as an “outlet for his thoughts,” per the Secret Service.
How long do we have to wait before Marjorie Taylor Greene Tweets to praise Kandula?
She really is disgusting, isn't she? Georgia should be ashamed of itself for sending that trash to DC.
Here's C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"
In 2016, then the vice president, Mr Biden said his son’s cancer could have been caused by the toxic burn pits he was exposed to during his service in the Middle East.
The New York Times reported that Mr Biden said he was “stunned” when he read a chapter concerning the death of his son in the book The Burn Pits: The Poisoning of America’s Soldiers by Joseph Hickman.
Biden also said that reading “The Burn Pits: The Poisoning of America’s Soldiers,” a book on the topic by Joseph Hickman, which included a chapter on his son Beau, opened his eyes to the possibility of a link to his son’s cancer.
“There’s a whole chapter on my son Beau in there, and that stunned me. I didn’t know that,” Biden said. He added, the author “went back and looked at Beau’s tenure as a civilian with the U.S. attorney’s office [in Kosovo] and then his year in Iraq. And he was co-located in both times near these burn pits.”
Because we've called it out all along, long before he became president.
A Stroudsburg man has been convicted in federal court of torturing an Estonian citizen in 2015 in Iraq.
The U.S. Department of Justice says it was in connection with running an illegal weapons manufacturing plant in Kurdistan.
Ross Roggio, 54, was convicted of torturing an employee who raised concerns about what they were doing.
Man Convicted of Torture and Exporting Weapons Parts and Related Services to Iraq
A federal jury convicted a Pennsylvania man on May 19 for numerous crimes, including the torture of an Estonian citizen in 2015 in the Kurdistan region of Iraq, in connection with the operation of an illegal weapons manufacturing plant in Kurdistan.
According to court documents and evidence presented at trial, Ross Roggio, 54, of Stroudsburg, arranged for Kurdish soldiers to abduct and detain the victim at a Kurdish military compound where Roggio suffocated the victim with a belt, threatened to cut off one of his fingers, and directed Kurdish soldiers to repeatedly beat, tase, choke, and otherwise physically and mentally abuse the victim over a 39-day period. The victim was employed at a weapons factory that Roggio was developing in the Kurdistan region of Iraq that was intended to manufacture M4 automatic rifles and Glock 9mm pistols.
In connection with the weapons factory project, which included Roggio providing training to foreign persons in the operation, assembly, and manufacturing of the M4 automatic rifle, Roggio also illegally exported firearm parts that were controlled for export by the Departments of State and Commerce.
“Roggio brutally tortured another human being to prevent interference with his illegal activities,” said Assistant Attorney General Kenneth A. Polite, Jr. of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division. “Thanks to the courage of the victim and other witnesses, the hard work of U.S. law enforcement, and the assistance of Estonian authorities, he will now be held accountable for his cruelty.”
“Today’s guilty verdict demonstrates that Roggio’s brutal acts of directing and participating in the torture of an employee over the course of 39 days by Kurdish soldiers could not avoid justice,” said U.S. Attorney Gerard M. Karam for the Middle District of Pennsylvania. “We thank all the prosecutors and law enforcement agents who worked tirelessly to address these acts that occurred in Iraq.”
“Today’s milestone conviction is the result of the extraordinary courage of the victim, who came forward after the defendant inflicted unspeakable pain on him for more than a month,” said Assistant Director Luis Quesada of the FBI’s Criminal Investigative Division. “Torture is among the most heinous crimes the FBI investigates, and together with our partners at the Human Rights Violators and War Crimes Center, we will relentlessly pursue justice.”
“U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement is firmly dedicated to pursuing those who commit human rights violations, like Roggio, to ensure perpetrators face justice for their atrocities,” said Deputy Director and Senior Official Performing the Duties of the Director Tae D. Johnson of ICE. “Our investigators will continue to work tirelessly with government partners so these horrendous acts do not go without consequence.”
“The illegal export of firearms parts and tools from the United States often goes hand in hand with other criminal activities, such as the charge of torture on which the jury voted to convict the defendant,” said Special Agent in Charge Jonathan Carson of the Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS), Office of Export Enforcement, New York Field Office. “I commend our law enforcement colleagues for their dedication to bringing justice in this case.”
Roggio was convicted of torture, conspiracy to commit torture, conspiring to commit an offense against the United States, exporting weapons parts and services to Iraq without the approval of the Department of State, exporting weapons tools to Iraq without the approval of the Department of Commerce, smuggling goods, wire fraud, and money laundering. He is scheduled to be sentenced on Aug. 23 and faces a maximum sentence of life in prison. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
Roggio is the second defendant to be convicted of torture since the federal torture statute went into effect in 1994.
The FBI and HSI investigated the torture and were joined in investigating the export control violations related to the firearms manufacturing equipment by the Department of Commerce’s BIS Office of Export Enforcement.
Trial Attorney Patrick Jasperse of the Criminal Division’s Human Rights and Special Prosecutions Section, Trial Attorney Scott A. Claffee of the National Security Division’s Counterintelligence and Export Control Section, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Todd K. Hinkley for the Middle District of Pennsylvania are prosecuting the case. The Estonian Internal Security Service, the Justice Department’s Office of International Affairs, and the Pennsylvania State Police also provided valuable assistance.
Members of the public who have information about human rights violators in the United States are urged to contact U.S. law enforcement through the FBI tip line at 1-800-CALL-FBI or the HSI tip line at 1-866-DHS-2-ICE, or complete the FBI online tip form or the ICE online tip form.
- Truest statement of the week
- Truest statement of the week II
- A note to our readers
- Iraq and the UN
- TV: The four stories of LOVE TO LOVE YOU, DONNA SU...
- Books (Ruth, Ava and C.I.)
- Tweet of the week
- 2013 passings
- Event of the week
- Stan on the streaming services
- This edition's playlist