The New York area was rocked with explosions this Saturday, with one bomb detonating in Manhattan and another, just 11 hours earlier, in a Jersey shore neighborhood. Surveillance videos led the FBI to zero in on 28-year-old New Jersey resident Ahmad Khan Rahami, who was apprehended this morning after a shootout in Linden, NJ.
The Afghanistan-born suspect shot one officer in the vest and another in the hand before authorities were able to shoot him in the shoulder. He was bandaged and taken to a hospital via ambulance.
The FBI believes Saturday’s explosions in New York and New Jersey are connected, and Rahami is wanted for questioning in connection with both events.
The shrapnel-filled bomb that detonated in Manhattan’s Chelsea neighborhood on Saturday injured 29 passersby, but caused no fatalities. The jury-rigged device appears to be made from pressure cooker parts and Christmas lights. It was activated using the timing device from a flip phone.
Police discovered a second bomb nearby that never detonated.
Just 80 miles away and less than 24 hours earlier, a pipe bomb exploded in Seaside Park, NJ as participants lined up to begin a Marine Corps charity run. Five more explosive devices were located late Sunday at a train station in Elizabeth, NJ. One exploded as police used a robot to investigate, but there were no injuries.
“None of the devices are very sophisticated, but they show enough know-how to be lethal, reports CNN.
No international group has claimed responsibility for the bombings, but NY State Governor Andrew Cuomo considers detonating a bomb anywhere in New York City as “an act of terrorism.” Cuomo said this morning that he “wouldn’t be surprised if it [the investigation] zeroes in on a particular individual, today even” and that he “wouldn’t be surprised if we found a foreign connection to the act.”
NY Mayor Bill de Blasio, however, was reluctant to classify the crime as terrorism. “It could have been something personally motivated. We don’t know yet.”
“Almost anybody could have fabricated these bombs and used cellphones as timed detonators,” said a US official. “There are instructions all over the Internet, and the crudity, positioning, and relative ineffectiveness of these does not suggest that a more sophisticated group played any role.”
UN world leaders are scheduled to meet in Manhattan for six days starting tomorrow, and Mayor Blasio has promised that the security presence will be “bigger than ever.”
Editor’s note: Together with 8 eight people stabbed to death in a mall in Minnesota (responsibility claimed by ISIS), it is very clear this is a coordinated attack. Radical Islam is showing us they can reach us throughout America in a coordinated strike.