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Terrorist Attack in SF?

Tuesday, August 29, 2006  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt
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When a man named Ohmeed Aziz Popal runs over 14 people over an hour or two, the best thing to do is think terrorism. 

So where is the MSM?  The attacks began five and half hours ago.

UPDATE:  A caller to the program who stated he had lived in the neighborhood where the attacks occured asserted that this is a heavily Jewish neighborhood.  I have not found that confirmed in the media accounts yet.

UPDATE:  Four callers have confirmed that without doubt this is a Jewish neighborhood, and that one of the victimns was run over in front of the Jewish Community Center in the area.

UPDATE:  From an e-mail:

Look on the web! the JCC located at 3200 California St. Site of one of the attacks: 3250 California ST.
 
Please keep an eye out for the first MSM mention you see that this may very well be another mass casualty attack on Jewish Americans, the second in two months.
 
UPDATE:Here’s the video of Mayor Newsom’s press conference.  In it he calls the attacks “road rage,” and states that “there seems to be no pattern” to the victims in terms of ethnicity or age, and he says “We made no assertions that this was a hate crime, though that is being investigated.” The attacker is “relatively young,”  Newsom stated, and  that “it doesn’t look in any way shape or form” like an attack related to “international relations.”
 
UPDATEWayOffBass writes “If what Ohmeed Aziz Popal did isn’t a ‘hate crime’…then what I’m feeling for the media and for Mayor Newsom right now must be love.”
 
UPDATEVictim photo with caption: “Bloodied sheets and rags are left on the sidewalk at California Street near Presidio in front of the Jewish Community Center after a hit-and-run incident.”
 
LAST UPDATE OF THE EVENING:  From the SFChron:
 

The SUV hit two people in front of the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco on California Street, just blocks from where the rampage ended.

Blood covered the sidewalk in front of the center’s gift store entrance and 50 feet farther down the sidewalk lay a mangled bicycle. Security cameras in front of the center captured images of the incident, which happened at 1:12 p.m., said to Aaron Rosenthal, spokesman for the community center.

“As far as we can tell, they were simply pedestrians on the street at the time,” he said.

Three women and four men ranging in age from 18 to 84 were treated at San Francisco General, said Peter Ragone, spokesman for Mayor Gavin Newsom. Others were taken to St. Francis Hospital, Kaiser Medical Center and California Pacific Medical Center.

One young man with minor injuries already has been treated and released as of 4:30 p.m.

“The car came after me,” said the victim, who declined to give his name. “I’m lucky to be alive. Life’s good.”

As of Tuesday night, San Francisco and Fremont police were saying little publicly about Popal or any possible motive for the SUV rampage. Police were awaiting a search warrant so they could enter Popal’s home in Cabrillo Drive in a middle-class section of Fremont.

Popal’s house is a beige stucco, single-family home. In a corner of the front yard is a large tree and the home is landscaped with fake flowers. Yellow police tape stretched across the front yard Tuesday as uniformed police officers gathered outside the house.

A cousin of the suspect, Zarghona Ramish, said Popal was a good guy, but had mental problems.

Popal “thought the devil was coming to get him,” Ramish said.

Another relative said Popal was studying to be a mechanic and had most recently worked at a Newark tire shop. He was married about a month ago in his native Afghanistan and his wife still lives there, relatives said.

It is possible to believe that this killer, like the killer in Seattle, is a lunatic.

But it is simply incredible that the spokesman for the JCC is so quick to dismiss the very idea that anti-Semitic rage drove the attack.

How does a community defend itself when it refuses to recognize a risk?

I’ll leave it to YoniTheBlogger to answer at length.  But it seems to me at least plausible that anti-Semitic propaganda is working its slow poison on some number of people (UNC, Seattle, LA’s El Al counter on 7/4/02, today?) who, when they snap for whatever reason, go out to kill Jews.  This looks to me as possibly another such attack, and anyone dismissing the idea at this stage is manifesting a denial of the most dangerous sort.

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