I Alone Can Fix It: Donald J. Trump’s Catastrophic Final Year by Carol Leonnig and Philip Rucker:
A little before 2:30, D.C. mayor Muriel Bowser’s homeland security director launched an urgent conference call connecting the mayor, Contee, Sund, and Walker. Top staff working for Army secretary Ryan McCarthy dialed in from across the river. Sund joined the call in progress and told the two army lieutenant generals working under McCarthy that his officers were in a dire crisis and needed help immediately. But the McCarthy aides, Walter Piatt and Charles Flynn, who coincidentally was Michael Flynn’s brother, sounded reluctant. Piatt said he didn’t like the “visual” of National Guard members standing sentry in front of the Capitol, and he would prefer Guard soldiers take up posts elsewhere around the city to relieve D.C. police so police officers could instead respond to the Capitol. As they both stood over a desk phone set on speaker, Flynn concurred with Piatt, saying it would not be his military advice to McCarthy to deploy the Guard without a plan. Flynn would later seek to conceal that he was on the call; when he ultimately admitted he was part of the discussion, he said he could not recall exactly what he had said.
Contee, who by that point had already sent more than one hundred of his officers to help the Capitol Police, was stunned. Sund was pleading for help. He had just told Piatt and Flynn that armed rioters had breached the Capitol and that shots had been fired inside the building. And they were talking about optics and planning duty assignments.