Witnesses said they saw police shoot at a man who was running away. One person who was too rattled to give his name said the victim appeared to have been shot more than once and was “still twitching.” He also said it appeared a police officer was shot.That's a strange way to hear the facts. Did Rahami behave aggressively toward the police or was he only running away?
“Lotta’ lotta’ gunfire,” said Derek Pelligra, manager of Linden Auto Body.
Another question is whether Rahami is connected to ISIS or some other radical Islamist terrorist group. Even assuming he is responsible for the bombs, we don't know why he did it. His name doesn't answer the question, and in fact, his backstory suggests a plausible theory of a more personal sort of violent acting out.
The Rahami family runs a restaurant that has a name that seems to poignantly strive for acceptance in America: First American Fried Chicken. But residents in the neighborhood had complained about it, purportedly because it was open all hours and drew rowdy, noisy patrons who weren't above hanging around and peeing in the nearby yards and driveways. The Linden City Council passed an ordinance that would force First American Fried Chicken to close at 10, and the Rahamis resisted the law, leading to friction with the police. The Rahamis brought a lawsuit against the Council, the mayor and various police officers, charging race and ethnic discrimination.
A frequent patron of the restaurant, Ryan McCann, 33, said Ahmad Rahami was friendly and did not seem outwardly angry. Rather, Mr. McCann said, he was obsessed with fast cars, specifically Honda civics custom built to race. Mr. Rahami wore Western clothing, hung out on the sidewalk with friends and often slipped his regular customers free food, he said.But another neighbor, Jessica Casanova, 23, said "They seemed secretive, a little mysterious.... They’re too serious all the time." Maybe it's a sad little story about a restaurant owner who got to feeling paranoid about the people who were interfering with his business. I know, it doesn't explain schlepping the bombs to Chelsea, but as Hillary Clinton chided us when first we heard of the
“He’s a very friendly guy; he gave me free chicken,” Mr. McCann said. “He was always the most friendly man you ever met.”...