Pensacola Shooting: What Do We Know and What Happens Next?
Three were killed in a shooting on Friday at a U.S. Navy Base in Pensacola, Florida. The alleged shooter, a Saudi Arabian aviation student posted at the base, was fatally shot on the scene. Authorities are still investigating the motives of the shooter and possible links to terrorist groups. The issue is bringing awareness to the presence of foreign military students posted at U.S. bases and the screening processes they undergo. More at Vox.
Despite this tragedy, the community has responded in a way that fills me with hope. The news is still raw, and there is a lot we don’t yet know. But I know this much: “These acts are crimes against all of us.”
That is what Acting Secretary of the Navy Thomas B. Modly said in a public statement on Friday, and I can tell you that a version of this sentence was in the hearts and minds of all the bold, courageous, and selfless members of law enforcement who ran toward the gunfire at NAS Pensacola.
Hours before the shooting, tweets purportedly written by the suspect railed against the United States for its support of Israel and for stationing troops at bases in Saudi Arabia. The tweets are addressed to “O American people” and outline what the author said is a hatred of the United States for crimes against Muslims, including the detention of suspects in Guantanamo Bay.
The deadly shooting by a Saudi Air Force aviation student at a U.S. military base presents the latest test for a monarchy struggling to repair its image in the West following a series of crises in recent years…the shooting has revived memories of the turbulent history between Washington and Riyadh since the Sept. 11 attacks.