Now that the worst is over, the Australian government and the international media can go into full “This has nothing to do with Islam” mode, with explanations of how Man Haron Monis was mentally ill, or driven to this by the evil deeds of Australian soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan. There will also be a heavy barrage of “backlash” stories — indeed, they have already begun.
“Sydney Cafe Hostage Situation Over, ‘Number of People Have Been Hit,’” CNN, December 15, 2014:
SYDNEY, Australia (CNN) –
[Breaking news update at 10:33 a.m.]
“A number of people have been hit,” Australian state broadcaster ABC reported. ABC journalists said the siege appears to be over. “Certainly it’s ended,” an ABC journalist said.
[Previous story, posted at 10:31 a.m.]
(CNN) — Gunfire erupted early Tuesday at the Sydney cafe where a gunman has been holding hostages.
Police could be seen throwing flash-bang grenades into the cafe in video aired by CNN affiliate Seven Network.
At least one person has been shot, Australian state broadcaster ABC reported. Medics were performing CPR on two people, the broadcaster reported.
The fate of the hostages and the gunman, identified by an official with direct knowledge of the situation as Man Haron Monis, was unclear Tuesday.
Hundreds of police officers, including snipers, had surrounded the Lindt Chocolate Cafe in Sydney’s central business district shortly after the gunman took over the building at 10 a.m. Monday (6 p.m. ET on Sunday).
Chilling images from Australian media on Monday showed people, believed to be hostages, with their hands pressed against the cafe’s windows. They were holding up a black flag with Arabic writing on it reading, “There is no God but God and Mohammed is the prophet of God.”…