What We Know: Terror in New York
What we know so far is that an asshole decided that killing people was an appropriate solution to life’s problems. Luckily one of the fine officers from NYPD was able to stop the man before more damage was inflicted.
The man who perpetrated this heinous act is Sayfullo Habibullaevic Saipov. In 2010 Saipov was granted entry into the United States. It is unclear what he did for the previous 6 years, but 6 months ago he was employed as an Uber driver (passing all background checks). It is believed that upon arrival to the United States, Saipov who had passed multiple background checks and screening processes, became radicalized by ISIS (whom he claimed to support via a note near the rented truck used in the attack).
This attack comes on the heels of major victories by coalition forces against the ISIS organization including the fall of the so-called capital city of Raqqa.
What we know is that Saipov rented a truck and targeted a group of cyclists and pedestrians. Six of the cyclists died immediately and two victims who’d been injured later died of their wounds. Since 2014 extremists have used vehicles to kill 142 people. ISIS has been extremely vocal in supporting lone wolf attacks using “weapons of opportunity” to kill unbelievers and infidels. Despite reports of firearms being used, a pellet gun and paintball gun were the only “firearms” recovered from the scene. The only known casualties came from the vehicle strike.
Five of the victims were Argentinian tourists celebrating their 30th anniversary of high school graduation. A sixth Argentinian citizen was identified but was only injured. A sixth victim was a Belgian citizen. The last two victims names have not yet been released/identified. We wish there was more we could do to express our deep and heartfelt sympathy for the families and the victims.
In before the politicians start politicizing and grandstanding as they usually do. While obviously a horrible event, we are not victims nor should we react accordingly. There is a lesson to be learned here. The goal of terrorism is fear and change. Whether its domestic or foreign influenced terrorism, the goal is the same. They want fear. We refuse to be afraid. We mourn those we lose due to ignorant and irrational violence. We also stand fast looking evil in the eye. We will not budge, we will not move from our principles and you can’t evoke enough fear to make us forget who we are. Never forget that America. It is not our land or our possessions that make this country great. It is our freedom. It is our ethos. Out of many, one. That is what America is and will continue to be. Do not be afraid. What we know is that we’re not going to cave in the face of evil and ignorance. We’re better than that.