Matthew Pottinger, the Trump administration deputy national security adviser who resigned in protest after Jan. 6, 2021, told the House select committee Thursday that the events of January 6 emboldened America’s enemies.
“Our national security was harmed in a different way by the sixth of January and that is, I think it emboldened our enemies by helping give them ammunition to feed a narrative that our system of government doesn't work, that the United States is in decline,” Pottinger said. “China, the Putin regime in Russia, Tehran, they're fond of pushing those kinds of narratives — and by the way, they're wrong.”
Pottinger added that he was concerned US adversaries would be tempted to test US resolve, noting that in late December Trump sent a warning to Iran after an Iranian-backed attack on the US embassy in Baghdad.
Pottinger also testified about how the events off Jan. 6 alarmed US allies who were concerned about what it meant for American democracy.
“I heard from a lot of friends in Europe, in Asia, allies, close friends and supporters of the United States that they were concerned about the health of our democracy,” he said. “And so I think it's incumbent upon us to put their minds at ease to put our own hearts at ease, by investigating what happened on the sixth and making sure that it never happens again.”