Wednesday, June 10, 2009

WaPo- Security Guard Killed at U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum

The Washington Post reports that the guard shot at the Holocaust Museum this morning has died.

A gunman armed with a rifle walked into the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in downtown Washington today and fatally wounded a security guard before being shot and seriously wounded by two guards, authorities said.

I've been to the Holocaust Museum just once. It was a powerful and emotionally draining experience. It was like watching Schindler's List or United 93, only much more intense. You're reminded not only of man's capacity for evil, but also our ability to withstand that evil and rise above it. James Lileks has the most insightful comment I've yet heard:

The fact that the Holocaust Museum has several armed guards tells you why we need a Holocaust Museum.

This murder by a man now identified as a white supremicists and anti-semite is an act of terrorism. He used violence and fear for political ends.

The Union Leader reports that this lunatic once lived in Lebanon, and tried to take hostages at the Federal Reserve in 1981.
We don't yet know the murdered guard's name, and we may never know many lives he saved today. My prayers are for his family, and his colleagues who will put their lives at risk again the next time they go to work.
This murder comes ten days after Dr. George Tiller was killed because he performed controversial abortions. I hope these two crimes do not mark a trend. Violence and murder are not legitimate political tools. It's especially grotesque to see such violence at the Holocaust Museum, where we mark on the largest uses of murder as a political weapon in our history.

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