The U.S. Capitol Police suspended one of its officers on Monday after a congressional aide reported seeing an anti-Semitic document near the officer’s workspace at a security checkpoint, The Washington Post reported.
Zach Fisch, chief of staff to Rep. Mondaire Jones (D-N.Y.), told the Post he saw a printed copy of the Protocols of the Meetings of the Learned Elders of Zion on Sunday on a table inside an entrance to the Longworth House Office Building.
He snapped photographs of the document and shared them with the Post. A photo published by the Post showed the printed copy of the text held together by a binder clip on a table near a metal detector and security desk. A date stamp indicated the document was printed in January 2019, the Post reported.
In a statement Tuesday, USCP confirmed an officer was suspended Monday after anti-Semitic “reading material was found near his work area.”
“We take all allegations of inappropriate behavior seriously,” USCP acting Chief Yogananda Pittman said in the statement. “Once this matter was brought to my attention, I immediately ordered the officer to be suspended until the Office of Professional Responsibility can thoroughly investigate.”
The Protocols, widely referenced by white supremacist groups, is a fabricated document that purports to be confidential minutes of a late 19th-century meeting of Jewish leaders in which they discuss a plan for world domination. Historians have condemned the text as anti-Semitic propaganda.
Fisch called the text’s placement in plain sight at a congressional security checkpoint “both a national security problem and a workplace safety problem.”
“Our office is full of people — Black, brown, Jewish, queer — who have good reason to fear white supremacists,” he tweeted Monday.
Fisch referenced the deadly Capitol riot on Jan. 6 in which hundreds of supporters of then-President Donald Trump stormed the building in an attempt to stop the election certification process. Some of the insurrectionists carried white supremacist paraphernalia, including one who wore a “Camp Auschwitz” shirt. Some of the USCP officers who responded to the Jan. 6 attack reportedly took selfies with the rioters or allowed them to bypass security.
“If the USCP is all that stands between us and the mob we saw on Jan. 6, how can we feel safe?” tweeted Fisch, who identified himself as Jewish.
Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-N.Y.) on Tuesday called for an investigation into “any connections between Capitol Police and white supremacist groups,” citing the recent experiences of Fisch and Rep. Ritchie Torres (D-N.Y.).
Torres tweeted Monday that he observed an officer in a House building watching OANN, which he described as a “far-right propaganda channel that spread dangerous lies about the 2020 election.”
“Horrifying, to say the least,” Torres tweeted.