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COMMENTARY OF THE DAY
By
Robert Namer
Voice Of America
©2022 All rights reserved
January 21, 2022

    The FBI has lost respect and trust.  The Colleyville, Texas, synagogue hostage standoff was cleared by FBI’s Hostage Rescue Team. The HRT is the world’s premier domestic-counterterrorism team. It knows what it’s doing. Reports from Congregation Beth Israel clearly indicated that a deranged 44-year-old British national, Malik Faisal Akram, was armed with a pistol and had taken a rabbi and three congregants' hostage. Motive? Faisal was said to want the release of Pakistani terrorist Aafia Siddiqui, convicted and sentenced to 86 years for her crimes.

     The 11-hour standoff concluded thanks in large part to the heroism of Rabbi Charlie Cytron-Walker, who hurled a chair at the abductor before escaping with fellow hostages. FBI-HRT then entered, neutralizing Akram.  The FBI’s Dallas division’s special agent in charge, Matthew DeSarno, described the gunman to the press as “singularly focused on one issue, and it was not specifically related to the Jewish community.” You can't blame SAC DeSarno for this disbelieve-your-lying-eyes assessment. He takes his orders from FBI headquarters. 

     Yes, sometimes investigations take time, and you don’t want to release inaccurate information. Yet this was a ground ball. The White House asserted the FBI’s course correction a day later, allowing that, of course, the Colleyville synagogue hostage-taking was “terrorism-related.” The FBI has made a sea change in defining criminal suspects since the Obama administration and its attorney general, Eric Holder, set out to transform the justice system. Post-Obama, law enforcement hesitates to describe criminal suspects’ race for fear of being tagged “racist.” The Post recently reported an Asian woman was shoved to her death in front of a subway train. Police released the victim’s race but not the suspect’s. Why? The alleged perpetrator, a black man, was memorialized on The Post’s front page. Yet law enforcement must navigate wokeness in describing a suspect.  There are sad times.

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