As more footage continues to emerge from the Jan. 6 insurrection, researchers and reporters have been able to identify the many groups that overtook the Capitol and the deeper meanings behind their flags, tattoos and signs.
A new report published by Insider analyzed footage from the Capitol attack and identified symbols related to white supremacy, neo-Nazism and far-right extremist groups. One group that was there, the outlet found, was the Oath Keepers. Recognized by their yellow “Oath Keepers” sweatshirt and t-shirt labels, the group is reportedly one of the largest anti-government militias in the U.S. and was seen at several Black Lives Matter demonstrations over the summer as heavily armed counter-protesters.
Another symbol Insider identified was the “OK” hand gesture, which is used among white supremacists to signify “White Power.” Rioters were filmed making the hand gesture while walking past Capitol Police officers.
Yet another symbol identified was one insurrectionist’s “Camp Auschwitz” sweatshirt, which refers to the Nazi concentration camp where over one million Jewish people were killed during the Holocaust. On Wednesday (Jan. 13), the man wearing the sweatshirt — identified as Robert Keith Packer — was arrested for his involvement in the attack.
A commonly seen symbol during the riot were the flags and signs dedicated to QAnon, the Trump-praising conspiracy theory that claims Democrats and members of the elite run a child sex trafficking ring. Jacob Chansley, the horned rioter and proclaimed “QAnon Shaman,” was arrested for breaching the Capitol earlier this month.
Another group that was active in the riot was the Proud Boys, who clashed with Black Lives Matter protesters on multiple occasions over the summer. The far-right group’s leader, Henry “Enrique” Tarrio, was arrested just days before the siege for the burning of a D.C. church’s “Black Lives Matter” flag last month. Tarrio was released from jail shortly after his arrest, but was ordered to stay away from the city to prevent further violence.
See footage of the symbols and Insider’s full analysis below.
A simple hand gesture has been used among Trump supporters that at first glance appears to be an "OK" hand sign, but is actually a common symbol among the far-right and white supremacists to mean "White Power." https://t.co/IBPEG6iIJD pic.twitter.com/PwEnyQwFL2— Insider News (@insidernews) January 17, 2021
One Capitol insurrectionist wore a "Camp Auschwitz" sweatshirt, referring to the concentration and death camp in Poland that was used by Nazi Germany to kill 1.1 million Jews, Poles, Roma, and more. https://t.co/Cw9koTzVI8 pic.twitter.com/KSN6VGJwlx— Insider News (@insidernews) January 17, 2021
Some symbols, like the Confederate flag, had never been seen inside the US Capitol. New footage reveals just what it was like to be among the insurrectionists as they took the building. pic.twitter.com/GFvMBZ7YYA— Insider News (@insidernews) January 17, 2021
The #DontTreadOnMe flag was used during the American Revolution as a call for unification against outside oppressors. However, it has now assumed a new political meaning of rebellion, intolerance, and hate by Republicans at protests. https://t.co/TNgvePvhjG pic.twitter.com/jBgl9Ibd6m— Insider News (@insidernews) January 17, 2021
Jacob Chansley, otherwise known as "Q Shaman," had tattoos of Viking and Norse symbology inked on his torso. While these symbols don't necessarily have racist origins, they have been appropriated by white-supremacist and neo-Nazi movements. https://t.co/slHQ8EVgUh pic.twitter.com/HWKQCpeQyN— Insider News (@insidernews) January 17, 2021
One symbol belongs to the #OathKeepers, one of the largest antigovernment militia organizations in the US today. Members of the group showed up armed to #BlackLivesMatter protests and polling sites in recent months. https://t.co/ADrzbPub6x pic.twitter.com/2FJdMwZGN0— Insider News (@insidernews) January 17, 2021