Monday, October 10, 2005

Things That Go Boom

Another day, and another report of a bomb blowing up on a college campus.
Three explosive devices found in a courtyard between two Georgia Tech dormitories on the East Campus Monday morning were part of a "terrorist act," an Atlanta police official said.

One of the devices exploded, injuring the custodian who found them inside a plastic bag. Two others were detonated by a bomb squad.

The custodian suffered ringing to the ears and was treated at a local hospital. The events led to a temporary evacuation Monday morning.

"It is a terrorist act at this point and depending on the outcome of the investigation it potentially could become a federal violation as well," said Major C.W. Moss of the Atlanta Police Department.

The custodian found the three devices about 9 a.m. in a plastic-type garbage bag, Moss said. When he picked up the bag, one exploded, as it was designed to do when handled. The explosives were made up of chemicals placed inside water bottles and could have seriously injured someone, officials said. Numerous agencies were on the Georgia Tech campus to search for suspects.
That situation is still developing.

As we've seen over the last week, there have been numerous bomb threats against public facilities including the NYC subway system and the Washington Monument. Those threats come on the heels of the suicide bombing by Joel Hinrichs. We have very little new information on the Hinrichs suicide bombing from last Saturday. However, Joel's father has apologized for his son's actions:
"I feel obligated to apologize to everyone whose inconvenience has increased, or had worse things happen to them, due to Joe III," the father told The Oklahoman.

He said he wanted to specifically apologize to the Muslim students who were shackled and questioned during the investigation, apartment residents who had to be evacuated, and "the hundreds of thousands of future OU sporting event attendees who will now endure even more rigorous, restrictive search and carry restrictions."
What we don't have are any good answers to why Hinrichs took his life in this highly unusual and very public method. There's no indication that Hinrichs' penned a suicide note, or that one was found. That's curious.

Meanwhile, the NYC subway bombing threat investigation continues both in Iraq and here in the US as the credibility of the threat continues to be assessed. The threat against the Washington Monument was considered to be a hoax.

Other folks are wondering whether we're witnessing a Ramadan offensive. I think that although it is plausible, there hasn't been anything definitive about the bombings at Georgia Tech or at OU to suggest Islamic terror at work. However, this situation definitely bears watching and maybe the press will really start to pay attention since this is now the second bombing in a week on a college campus. In other words, someone needs to be questioning the timing of these incidents. Oh, and this is where data mining could come in handy, as we might be able to discern some heretofore unknown link between the events in Georgia and Oklahoma.

Malkin has more, including that there were incidents reported at UCLA as well. Curious. Very curious.

Some are wondering whether the Georgia Tech incident was a prank and not a terrorist act. That's a good question. Law enforcement is treating this as a terrorist incident. Somehow, this incident seems to be more serious than the usual kind of midterm prank involving stink bombs or smoke bombs - and law enforcement in Georgia aren't taking any chances.

CBS' blog, the Public Eye is finally looking at the Hinrichs suicide bombing. Vaughn Ververs happens to agree with Malkin and others (myself included) who want to know where the national media is on the story:
CBS News national editor Bill Felling, who told us the network is looking into the story. Let’s hope so, it’s one worth airing, whatever the facts are.
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