Just days after Canadian police violently broke up a peaceful protest in Ottawa, a similar demonstration is gassing up and heading toward Washington DC.
The “Freedom Trucker” convoy in Canada took aim at the nation’s COVID-19 protocols – specifically a new law that would require only unvaccinated truckers to quarantine for 14 days after crossing back into the country from the United States. These peaceful protesters drove into Ottawa, parked their big rigs, and spread their pro-freedom, anti-mandate message for weeks before being arrested by police.
Inspired by the work of these Canadian drivers, American truckers are heading to Washington DC in the coming days, and the federal government will have military units waiting for them.
The National Guard Bureau said on Tuesday night that U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin approved requests for 700 National Guard members to aid Washington ahead of the arrival of at least three separate trucker convoys.
Those convoys plan to head to the Washington area to potentially disrupt traffic beginning Wednesday.Trending:
About 400 members of the D.C. National Guard and 300 members from outside of the district will support traffic control. None will carry firearms “or take part in law enforcement or domestic-surveillance activities,” according to the National Guard Bureau.
Local authorities were beefing up their presence as well.
Officers from Washington’s Metropolitan Police Department will increase patrols on Feb. 22 through March 5, shortly after the State of the Union, according to an internal MPD message obtained by ABC News. The department will also have two rapid response teams ready.
The truckers have plans to continue their protests for several days, possibly extending the demonstration through President Joe Biden’s coming State of The Union address.