The White House responded promptly to the terrorist attacks in Jerusalem in November, in Paris in January, and in Kenya in April. But — except for a brief mention in White House press secretary Josh Earnest’s press gaggle yesterday — Sunday night’s (thankfully foiled) terrorist attack in Garland, Texas, has been met with radio silence.
One of the would-be murderers, Elton Simpson, reportedly tweeted minutes before the attack that he and his fellow assailant had pledged allegiance to Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. And according to CNN, the Islamic State is now claiming responsibility for the attack:
In a broadcast on its official radio channel Tuesday, the group said two Al Khilafa soldiers opened fire outside the event in Garland, a Dallas suburb. Al Khilafa is how ISIS refers to its soldiers.
There is no evidence that Simpson or his partner Nadir Soofi were in contact with the terrorist network. But if they did not take direction from the group, they certainly took inspiration.
Given its tendency to aggravate, rather than assuage, I am on most occasions happy with White House silence. But an attempted massacre by Islamic extremists of innocent Americans on American soil? That is not the time to keep quiet.