Disgraced ex-FBI agent tells MSNBC ‘9/11 is nothing compared to Jan. 6’

Ex-FBI agent Peter Strzok called for the same urgency and 'war footing' as after the September 11 terror attack

Former FBI agent Peter Strzok claimed on MSNBC Monday that 9/11, the deadliest terror attack in American history, was "nothing" in comparison to Jan. 6.

After "Deadline: White House" host Nicolle Wallace claimed the Capitol Riot was the "deadliest attack on the U.S. Capitol in our, you know, in history," Strzok trivialized the September 11 terror attack that killed nearly 3,000 Americans.

Strzok replied, "I think that’s right, and I think if you look at the scale in terms of a threat to democracy - I mean, 9/11 was a tragedy. We lost thousands of lives in a horrific way, we still mourn to this day, but when you look at something that is an attack on democracy, something that could actually bring about a fundamental change to American governance as we understand it - 9/11 is nothing compared to January 6."

He suggested further that public officials should prosecute those involved in Jan. 6 with the same vigor as they did those who were behind the 9/11 terror attack. 

Ex-FBI official Peter Strzok was fired in 2018 for sending anti-Trump texts.

Ex-FBI official Peter Strzok was fired in 2018 for sending anti-Trump texts. (Reuters)

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"FBI and the rest of the government, if they are not only on the same sort of war footing that they were on in the weeks and months and years after 9/11, shame on everyone," he said. "This is a far greater threat to our constitutional democracy than anything we’ve faced in the past 20 or more years. We need to be addressing it the same way."

He continued, "I suspect if they were, if we were, we might hear more about it and I think that’s the sort of thing that gives a lot of observers, those of us on the panel and others who have been in the FBI, a little bit of concern, whether the same sort of urgency and approach to the situation, whether that approach is on par with the nature of the threat we are facing right now."

Strzok was fired from the FBI in 2018 after multiple anti-Trump texts from 2016 between him and former FBI lawyer Lisa Page, with whom he was having an affair, were discovered. Among the texts were a declaration from Strzok to Page that "we won’t allow" Trump to be elected. Strzok had played a leadership role in both the Russia collusion and Hillary Clinton email probes.

MSNBC's "Deadline: White House" host Nicolle Wallace

MSNBC's "Deadline: White House" host Nicolle Wallace

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Elsewhere in the segment, former FBI official Frank Figliuzzi appeared to condemn FBI agents who equate the waves of deadly and damaging riots that erupted in cities across the country in the summer of 2020 with the Capitol riot. 

"I’ve always, disturbingly, seen agents reportedly making a false equivalence between the Black Lives Matters [sic] protest and what happened on January 6. If an FBI employee can’t figure out the difference between a Black Lives Matters protest and an attack to stop our government from moving and peacefully transitioning power, they need to find another job and that’s what these people are on their way to do," Figliuzzi said.

Comparisons between Jan. 6 and 9/11 have been made on MSNBC before. 

In July, Wallace encouraged "reliving" January 6 every year in the same way MSNBC annually broadcasts its real time footage of 9/11. 

KENOSHA, WI - AUGUST 24: People watch as the American flag flies over a burning building during a riot as demonstrators protest the police shooting of Jacob Blake on Monday, August 24, 2020 in Kenosha, Wisconsin. 

KENOSHA, WI - AUGUST 24: People watch as the American flag flies over a burning building during a riot as demonstrators protest the police shooting of Jacob Blake on Monday, August 24, 2020 in Kenosha, Wisconsin.  (Photo by Joshua Lott for The Washington Post via Getty Images)

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MSNBC guest Paul Rieckhoff appeared on "Deadline: White House" in late July where he suggested Jan. 6 was worse than 9/11 because "Osama Bin Laden never took over the Capitol."