Saturday, July 23, 2016

The Munich terror attack

I've refrained from comment on yesterday's Munich terror attack until details became clearer, because there was a lot of confusion.  However, enough has now been cleared up that we can begin to make sense of it.

First off, a lot of reports are referring to it as a 'shooting' or 'mass murder'.  They're afraid to use the T-word.  'Terrorism' is becoming a politically incorrect description, as these two articles show.  Personally, I think any reporter or news media eschewing that word for politically correct reasons is the epitomy of hypocrisy, cowardice and moonbattery, but I suppose they're not interested in my opinion . . .  In the same light, the BBC initially dropped the shooter's first name, 'Ali', from its reports on the tragedy, presumably trying to hide his Islamic or Middle Eastern connections.  Moonbats indeed!

Next, we're told that the shooter was fixated on mass shootings, in particular the massacre perpetrated by neo-Nazi Anders Breivik in Norway in 2011.  He also claimed (to a bystander during the shooting) that he had been 'bullied for seven years'.  I don't find that surprising;  Turkish migrant workers in Germany have complained about racist abuse and bullying for decades.  If this young man was the child of Iranian refugee parents, as has been reported, he'd have looked very similar to a Turk, and would probably have attracted the same unwelcome attention.  However, not many people commit mass murder as a result of bullying!  He's reported to have had psychotic tendencies for which he'd received treatment.  If those reports are true, then they probably contributed to his last, lethal explosion of anger at the bullying.

Therefore, I don't think we can ascribe this incident to fundamentalist Islamic roots.  It's more likely to have been a single, psychotic explosion of violence.  That doesn't make it less tragic, of course . . . or less of a terrorist act.

The one thing that struck me very forcibly about this attack was how easy it would have been for an armed citizen to stop the terrorist in his tracks, before he'd killed so many people.  Consider this video, showing the perpetrator opening fire on passersby.

Any of those running in panic could have sought cover and fired back, if they'd been armed.  Others nearby (not shown in this particular video) could have done the same.  Anyone who says that armed civilians could not have prevented this attack, or stopped it, is lying to you.  Any competent shooter could have dealt with the terrorist.

The corollary to that is:  if, after all the terror attacks in recent weeks and months, you aren't carrying a gun as you go about your daily routine . . . for heaven's sake, why not?  Do you want to be a helpless victim?  Do you want to have to see your spouse and children shot in front of you because you couldn't stop their murderer?  Get a gun, learn how to use it effectively, get a concealed carry permit if one is available to you - and then carry your gun and be prepared to use it!



zdogk9 said...

I view it sort of like wearing a PFD when I am on the water, and keeping my boat handling skills honed. Probably never need it, if I ever do-----------

Larry Thomson said...

While I admire your sentiment to always carry your own protection and be situationally aware at all times, some of us are not permitted to do this. I live in Canada, where carrying a firearm either openly or concealed will result in one spending an inordinate amount of time incarcerated. This is also true of all european countries. I am, however, armed in my own home, and any person challenging me on my own turf is in for a .45 calibre surprise.

I do agree that situation awareness is a must in todays violence prone environment.

So...essentially your solution will currently only work in the U.S., and only in those states that permit you to carry weapons.


Shell said...

Then there's the very few places that have reported witnesses saying he shouted, "ALLAHU AKBAR!" during the attack. Can't go disparaging the peaceful and peace-loving religion of Islam willy-nilly, now can we?

Avraham said...

The media seems confused as to his motive. They could ask me and I would clear it up for them. His motive was to kill infidels.

Anonymous said...

Bottom line is that he didn't belong there. His parents didn't belong there. He belonged in iran amongst his own kind where no Germans could microagress his delicate persian sensibilities.

Too bad we didn't have separate territories where like people could exist amongst their own kind and pursue their own happiness and practice their own faiths free from interference from other cultures. Perhaps we could call them nations. They could have their own names, governments, laws and flags and speak their own languages. It'd sure cut down on all the chaos in the world.

Inconsiderate Bastard said...

I can't remember the jurisdiction in which it occured, but do remember the story:

If one has a state-issued concealed weapon carry permit one's driver license and vehicle ownership records at the state level are so notated, so when a LEO runs your car license plate or driver license the returned record includes notification that the individual possesses a CWP.

In one jurisiction, which I cannot remember, a group of LEOs mentioned to motorists whom they had stopped, and whose returned records indicated possession of a CWP, that the record indicated they had a CWP and inquired if they were carrying their gun at that time. Approximately 75% of the motorists questioned stated they were not carrying a gun at that time.

Think about that: 75% of individuals eligible to legally carry a self defense firearm had consciously elected to not do so.

There may certainly be a multitude of legitimate reasons for that, such as planning to enter a non-permissive environment ("gun free zone") and not wanting to leave their gun in the car, driving in or to a jurisdiction in which their CWP is not honored, working for an organization which prohibits firearms on the property, etc. Let's assume those conditions cover 50% of the reasons those people were unarmed.

So, what about the other 50%?

There are a number of organizations which are opposed to private gun ownership, much less the carrying of a personal self defense firearm, and some states prohibit carry in government buildings; such policies place all of us at risk because when the overwhelming majority of us who follow the law patronize those establishments or use those government services no one, save the occasional "authorized" security guard, in those environments is armed for self defense.

We saw what happened recently in Orlando when only "authorized" personnel are armed: 49 dead, over 50 wounded. As to how many of those 49 dead wound up in that condition because the "authorized" armed personnel hid behind their patrol cars outside for 3 hours waiting for scene command to make a decision about engaging the perpetrator I'll leave to conjecture.

The late Colonel Jeff Cooper, among his many aphorisms, stated "the first rule of gunfighting is: 'bring a gun'." Carry your damn gun, everywhere it's legal, and apply constant pressure to private organizations and public bodies to eliminate legal restrictions on where you can legally carry your self defense firearm.

Then train with it, practice with it, strive to become good with it.

I tell my CWP students that, when they get their permits, they are not carrying a gun to be a junior police officer, or to be a security guard for the convenience store or bank, or to prove they are a better shot than the bad guy, they are carrying a gun because sometime, somewhere, all their best efforts at avoiding trouble may fail and a gun may be the only useful tool that keeps them alive, so they better know not only how to use it effectively but they damn well better have it with them when that happens.

Anonymous said...

The other thing that struck me reading the news coverage as it came live-feed from Germany was the panic in the area around the main train station. There were reports of a shooter in that area, and apparently people were told to leave the train station and find shelter. They ran and that started a wave of people bolting from cafes and shops running for cover. The police/security also shut down all of central Munich and asked/ordered people off the main roads leading into the city. One gunman in a mall paralyzed one of the largest cities in Germany. It was like Boston, but more so. I have yet to find out if anyone was hurt in the scramble.


Roy said...

I typed a nice long comment on this thread.

Checked the "I am not a robot" and then "Publish..."

I got an error message that said "...two people were trying to edit my comment at the same time, hit the back button and try again." I hit "Back", but my entire comment was gone in a puff of smoke.

Roy said...

...okay, let's try again...

I have a CWP and most of the time I do NOT carry. Here's why.

I work in the medical industry servicing medical electronic equipment - mostly MRI machines. The company I work for prohibits the carrying of firearms while at work. I am a remote employee, so I could probably get away with violating company policy - or at least until I actually *needed* to use it. At that point company policy would be the least of my worries and I wouldn't care. However, most medical establishments are "gun free" zones. And before I can service any MRI magnet, I must first remove any ferrous metal from my person before I can approach the machine. Could you imagine the panic and "flop-&-twitch" that would ensue when I had to remove my concealed carry firearm? Not only would I be thrown out of the place forthwith, but my job would be immediately forfeit. In the winter, I could probably get away with just leaving it in my coat pocket, but that won't work for over half of the year, and the odds of it being discovered are still pretty high.

Otherwise, I agree with you.

(Several years ago, I was present when a uniformed police officer came in to have an MRI study done. He removed his duty belt and his shirt with all of the pins and other metal stuff on it. Unfortunately, he had forgotten his backup weapon in an ankle holster. When he lay down on the table, the very powerful magnet yanked the pistol out of its holster and slammed it onto the front of the machine. The panic that ensued was rather comical. They asked me what to do. I had everyone calm down, and then simply walked up to the machine, pulled the pistol off of the magnet, and placed it in a locker with all of his other stuff. Goodness, the ignorance of firearms is astounding. They thought it might go off on its own just sitting there.)

Anonymous said...

Yes, shooter was bullied, but not by his German classmates. Was bullied by (Sunni Muslim) Turks and Arabs who picked on him for being an Iranian (atheist or Shia Muslim -- probably atheist). They beat him up and robbed him repeatedly.

His victims -- younger than him so probably not his tormentors -- were nearly all (7 out of 9) Sunni Muslims. In other words, classic revenge rampage murder as seen in schools and universities before. "Revenge" because to psychotic killer, victims *similar* to his tormentors are good enough -- he's psychotic, remember?

Spree killers are not unknown in Germany. The new, multicultural Germany will produce even more of them.