(Image: Supplied)

The Capitol building in Washington was breached for the first time since 1814 — that time by British soldiers, this time by a mob of supporters of outgoing President Donald Trump, whipped to a frenzy by constant false claims that his re-election had been stolen from him. The soft light of dusk hit wreaths of tear gas in America’s capital as Australia woke up this morning.

As the hours passed, people began to wonder, where is Prime Minister Scott Morrison? There was no statement from him, nor from Foreign Minister Marise Payne. Eventually, after what felt like interminable silence, he managed a fairly tepid tweet at 9.40am:

Very distressing scenes at the US Congress. We condemn these acts of violence and look forward to a peaceful transfer of government to the newly elected administration in the great American democratic tradition.

Hell, at least it acknowledged the true election result, which not all Australian political figures have managed to do. By 10.30am, Payne had chimed in with something similar.

Morrison’s response, while fairly tardy, wasn’t all that out of sync with what most world leaders were saying — the tone du jour was to express dismay at what was occurring, along with faith that the grand democratic institutions of the good old US of A could absorb and survive it:

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson

Columbian President Ivan Duque

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau

Some countries did manage to hint at, or even directly name Trump’s role in bringing this about:

Norwegian Minister for Foreign Affairs Ine Marie Eriksen Søreide

Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon

EU representative for foreign affairs Josep Borrell Fontelles

Irish Foreign Minister Simon Coveney

And German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas, who likely takes events like this pretty seriously, made a fairly direct observation: “Inflammatory words turn into violent acts — on the steps of the Reichstag, and now in the #Capitol.”

Leaders of African nations, so often on the receiving end of this kind of rhetoric, have yet to weigh in, as this has been happening across the middle of the night for the region.

China’s Xi Jinping also appears to be yet to say anything, as is Japan’s Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga and India’s Narendra Modi.

Whichever of Russia’s nine time zones he’s in — which could put him anywhere between 3am and midday at time of writing — Russian President Vladimir Putin has so far kept his thoughts to himself.