Bombs sent to Trump critics, POTUS response lukewarm

Credit: Photo by JUSTIN LANE/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock (9943487c) USA CNN TIME WARNER BOMB PACKAGE, New York - 24 Oct 2018

Multiple bombs sent to the offices of prominent anti-Trump critics such as Hilary Clinton, Barack Obama, former CIA director John Brennan (at CNN’s New York Bureau), billionaire George Soros and other Democrat senators was intercepted by authorities and no casualties

Highlights -:

  • Packages containing pipe bombs were sent to some of Trump’s public critics and intercepted by bomb squads.
  • The bombs were constructed and packed in a rudimentary and highly similar fashion.
  • Trump decries violence following pipe bomb attacks, but calls on media to end ‘hostility’

The first pipe bomb was discovered in billionaire George Soros’ mailbox in Bedford, New York on Monday.  Hilary Clinton’s package was addressed to her residence in Chappaqua , New York on Tuesday and CNN’s New York bureau in the Time Warner Center was evacuated shortly after 10 a.m. Barack Obama’s package was intercepted by US Secret Service at a screening facility in Washington.

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Clinton, in a campaign speech for Democrat Donna Shalala’s congressional bid, said that she and her husband, former President Bill Clinton, were “fine” and praised the Secret Service for their quick response.

The FBI said that another suspicious package sent to the Florida office of Democratic Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz was intended for former Attorney General Eric Holder but had the wrong address. It was returned to the Democratic congresswoman because that was the return label on the package. Obama’s and Clinton’s packages had the same return address. A package for ex vice President Joe Biden was also discovered at Wasserman Schultz’s office

The packages were similar in appearance, having been mailed in manila envelopes with bubble wrap interior and six Forever stamps on the envelope. They all listed Wasserman Schultz and her office as a return address.  The bombs show the presence of a sulfur substance, which could have exploded. The devices were pipe bombs and are inherently unstable, and could have been set off just by handling.

FBI Director Christopher Wray said in a statement the investigation is the “highest priority for the FBI.” Counter-terrorism investigators are leading the investigation and are handling as a domestic terror matter.

President Trump made a lukewarm statement in response to the incident. At a campaign rally in Wisconsin, he said, “We want all sides to come together in peace and harmony…Any acts or threats of political violence are an attack on our democracy itself.” He also called for the media to end hostility, amidst heavy criticism for enabling the attacks by making irresponsible statements about the media.

 “The media also has a responsibly to set a civil tone and to stop the endless hostility and constant negative and oftentimes false attacks and stories.” he said.

Trump has often labeled stories he dislikes as “fake news” and many reporters as “enemies of the people.” He has also denounced his political enemies in deeply personal terms and even described those who tried to thwart his second Supreme Court nominee as “evil.”