Wikipedia: Melbourne vehicular jihad “not terror related”

Long list of terror-related vehicle attacks

Wikipedia has a page on vehicle ramming attacks which lists recent terror and non-terror related incidents. It is instructive on many levels.

Firstly, the list of non-terror related events is almost as long as the terror-related events, the impression given that non-terror related vehicular events are just part and parcel of modern life in a big city, as London mayor Sadiq Khan once said. But some of these non-terror related events are suspicious, to say the least.

  • For example, the Bourke Street rampage in Melbourne last year, and the recent Flinders Street incident are both in the list, despite both of the perpetrators referring to Islam, Allah and Muslims during their interviews…
  • An attempted incident in Antwerp in March 2017 is classified as non-terror related, despite the car containing a gun and several knives, and the driver was named Mohamed…
  • A car ramming in Heidelberg in February 2017 is also classified as non-terror related, despite the driver being armed with a knife. The police brushed off any suggestion this was terrorism, but refused to name the suspect or provide any further information…
  • The attack in Graz, Austria, in 2015 is listed as non-terror related, but the driver was a Bosnian Muslim who had recently “shifted to a stricter interpretation of Islam”. After crashing the car, he exited the vehicle and attempted a number of stabbings…
  • In 2006, an Afghan Muslim killed one and injured 18 by ramming his car into bystanders in the San Francisco Bay Area. Once again, this is listed as non-terror related. He was found not guilty by reason of insanity, although Islam and insanity are not mutually exclusive…

Secondly, the list of terror-related incidents is long, and the years 2016 and 2017 are highly over-represented in the list.

Thirdly, vehicular attacks were almost unheard of until the last decade, and have increased in frequency considerably in the last few years. Correlation is no indication of causation, but ISIS encouraged vehicular attacks in a September 2014 document:

If you are not able to find an IED [improvised explosive device] or a bullet, then single out the disbelieving American, Frenchman, or any of their allies. Smash his head with a rock, or slaughter him with a knife, or run him over with your car, or throw him down from a high place, or choke him, or poison him. Do not lack. Do not be contemptible. Let your slogan be, “May I not be saved if the cross worshipper and taghūt (ruler ruling by manmade laws) patron survives.”

Finally, whenever there are multiple causative factors, the media and governments will choose the least inconvenient – mental illness, drugs, intoxication etc – despite them frequently being combined with some religious motivation.

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