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Jason Holliston
Wednesday, July 21, 2004  
Car Bomb in Tennessee

Let's say you hear that an SUV had exploded, killing the driver, large enough so people miles away felt the blast, and leaving only the shell behind. Wouldn't a rational person's first though, in 2004, be that terrorism would be a real possibility? Many attempted suicide bomber's cars explode before they can reach their destination. I read about these fortunate mistakes all the time in locales such as Palestine and Iraq. If it happens in the U.S., though, it's different, apparently.

A sport utility vehicle exploded in a parking lot at Nashville's largest hotel, killing one male inside, and authorities said they suspected a homemade bomb was involved.
Investigators from the federal Joint Terrorism Task Force were at the scene, but FBI agent Doug Riggin said there was no reason to suspect terrorism.

No reason to suspect terrorism, except for the fact that terrorists in other parts of the world use car bombs all the time. How often do you hear about cars blowing up in your neighborhood? I'm trying to figure out why the FBI agent would be so quick to pre-empt the 'T' word. If they know something that makes them think it's not terrorism, they didn't mention it in the news article. This reminds me of the shooting at the Los Angeles airport a couple years back at the El-Al ticket counter. An hour after the incident occurred, authorities were soothing the public that terrorism didn't seem to be a factor.

I understand the desire to keep panic down at a minimum, but listen -- hearing that a car bomb went off in Tennessee and only killed the driver isn't going to cause widespread panic, even if it were an al Qaeda member behind the wheel.

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