2021 video of barricades around White House shared as recent amid border standoff

By: Umme Kulsum
January 31 2024

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2021 video of barricades around White House shared as recent amid border standoff


The Verdict False

No barricades are currently being placed around the White House. The video is from Joe Biden's presidential inauguration in 2021.

Claim ID 63ca3a33

What's the claim?

Amid escalating tensions between Texas and the federal government regarding undocumented immigration, various outdated and unrelated visuals from the past are circulating on social media, falsely claiming to show recent developments. 

A video showing soldiers standing in front of the White House with army vehicles is circulating. Users have claimed it shows increased security to "protect Biden" amid the border standoff. An X (formerly Twitter) user shared the video with the caption, "#BREAKING - AMERICAN CIVIL WAR: The US Army is deployed around the White House, Protecting the American President from...the Americans. Do they know that civil war is coming? Are they deliberately fueling a civil war in order to enact strict laws? (sic)" The post had garnered 59,000 views (archives here and here).

The video has also gained traction on Facebook with similar captions (archives here and here).

Screenshot of claims made online. (Source: X/Modified by Logically Facts)

What we found

Logically Facts found the video clip is unrelated to the recent migrant issues in the U.S. 

Through a reverse image search, we found a YouTube video by MSNBC, an American news network published on January 14, 2021, ahead of Joe Biden's presidential inauguration. The clip contained visuals similar to those in the viral video. 

Visuals in the YouTube video by MSNBC. (Source: X/YouTube)

While comparing the two, identical military trucks can be seen behind the National Guards and similar cement barriers in front of the Capitol building. These details suggest that the referenced video is not recent. We also found similar images from January 2021 on Shutterstock.

Comparison of the YouTube video and the viral video. (Source: X/YouTube/MSNBC)

No mainstream media reports say there is currently any heavy security in front of the Capitol building. People are instigating fear and panic by sharing outdated visuals online.

Following the January 6 Capitol riots, security was heightened around the White House and across the capital, anticipating Joe Biden's presidential inauguration after he secured a victory over former President Donald Trump. Visuals from January 2021 showed troops in riot gear lining the sidewalks and across the Capitol building, with armored vehicles and concrete barriers across the streets. Biden's presidential inauguration took place on January 20, 2021.

What is the current border standoff about?

Since January 2024, a tense standoff has gripped the Texas-Mexico border, pitting the state government against the federal authorities in a clash over immigration control. In Texas, Shelby Park, Eagle Pass, the National Guard was deployed to erect razor wire fencing to deter crossings. Federal authorities, led by Border Patrol, were allowed by the Supreme Court to cut the razor wire Texas assembled near the Rio Grande riverbanks. As of today, January 30, 2024, the standoff continues. Read our latest article for more information on the standoff and what is happening in the U.S.

The verdict

This widely circulated video depicts the National Guard stationed at a checkpoint near the U.S. Capitol in Washington, DC, before Biden's 2021 inauguration. It's important to note that this footage is unrelated to the recent events unfolding in the U.S. regarding the Texas border standoff. There are no barricades in front of the White House currently. Therefore, we have marked this claim false.

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