Yet another shooting in U.S.! It happened today when three police officers were killed and another three critically wounded in Baton Rouge, capital city of Louisiana state in U.S. While the details are still emerging, a man identified as Gavin Long of Kansas City went on a shooting rampage on his 29th birthday that left two police officers and a sheriff’s deputy dead, Louisiana State Police have said. Later, Long was killed by other police officers who responded to the situation and arrived at the scene.
While the terrorist attack that happened in France few days ago is still the major international headline, the shooting of Police Officers today in Baton Rouge, just about a week after the ambush of Police Officers in Dallas, is causing enough consternation in federal and state administrations in America. Taking into account the stand-offs between the Police Officers and African Americans over the last couple years during which few African Americans were killed by the Police Officers in isolated incidents, it doesn?t come across as a total surprise that incidents keep happening. In fact, the Louisiana State Police received credible information from their intelligence department that Police Officers may be attacked; however, they couldn?t act on it as it was not an organized crime and it would have been extremely difficult to even guess who the potential suspects are.
While the Dallas and Baton Rouge shootings bring to light about tough situations both the Police and African American community face, there is another wave of shootings that Americans are worried about: isolated terrorist attacks by educated men. We have seen shootings in Orlando last month; and also the one in San Bernardino last December. There is no doubt that the shooter in both cases were highly disturbed mentally and were drawn to Islamic radicalization.
Whether the stand-offs between Police and African-Americans, or terror incidents involving radicalized men, there seems to be a consensus that these are not organized crimes. While the intelligence departments can gauge the threat level using data mining tools, it is becoming increasingly difficult for them to zero in on the actual individuals that might strike. For instance, who would have that San Bernardino gun man, who appeared calm and quite to his colleagues, would go on a rampage against the same colleagues. Even the Orlando shooter seemed not abnormal before the shootings, although he spoke to his wife about radicalization and that he intended to kill people. His wife is now facing criminal charges for not reporting the threat to law enforcement authorities.
While the tensions between Police Officers and African-Americans are not new in America, the fact that several incidents happened in the last couple years is keeping both administrators and politicians on their toes. In addition, the terrorist attacks – both in America and across the world ? is another issue that the Obama administration has to deal with in its capacity as primary foreign policy making body for the world. While the administration is trying to come up with ways and means to reduce both domestic shootings and terrorist attacks, the potential candidates for U.S. presidential elections later this year ? Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump ? have been increasingly talking about these incidents in their campaigns and debates. While it is not clear if any of these candidates have a manifesto to reduce the risk of such incidents from happening, it would definitely be on people?s mind when they go to vote on November 8th.
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