2016 Munich shooting
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On 22 July 2016 in Munich, Germany, a lone gunman conducted a rampage centered around a McDonald's restaurant and a nearby shopping mall before killing himself. That day was coincidentally the five-year anniversary of one specific terrorist attack in Norway.
Infering motives from gut reaction
A self-identified Muslim witness who was at the McDonald's restaurant with her son said she heard the gunman say "Allahu Akbar" when he deliberately opened fire at children.[note 1] Other witness accounts attested the perpetrator yelling stock xenophobic sentiments such as "Scheiß Ausländer [fucking foreigners]" and "Ich bin Deutscher [I'm a German]."
Either the shooter was an Islamist fighting on behalf for the usual Wahhabi terrorist groups (even if it's likely that he was a Shia-Muslim) or he was a right-wing extremist opposed to Muslim immigration to the Western world. There's a seeming discrepancy between the accounts, but it also can't be ruled out that all of them are true at the same time as it's not out of the ordinary for terrorists to have contradicting beliefs.
The attacker had been living in Munich for two years and had dual citizenship, which implies he may have had them from birth or applied for German citizenship, the latter of which is a time-consuming process and ultimately means the perpetrator was a home-grown terrorist, making the usual conservative talking point of terrorists entering the Abendland among refugees moot. While any concrete information was lacking when the news of the shooting broke, Daesh supporters were quick to celebrate the murders on social media, claiming that "the Islamic State is expanding in Europe" without even knowing they were possibly rooting for an infidel.
What real evidence says
After scouring the assailant's room the day after the incident, Munich police came to the conclusion that the shooting was a "classic rampage" and failed to find evidence that it was a politically motivated attack or anything linking the gunman to Islamic State. However, they did find evidence for the attacker having a keen interest in rampages (he seemed to have read Why Kids Kill: Inside the Minds of School Shooters, a book analyzing school shootings from a psychological point of view). Not only did he idolize the Winnenden School shooter, but his true idol was Anders Behring Breivik, whose face he used as a WhatsApp profile picture, according to a classmate. Additionally, the perpetrator saw it as an honor that his birthdate was on the same day of some very infamous guy's birthday, and was proud of being a true Aryan who hated Turks and Arabs
According to police, the gunman planned his attack for more than a year and visited the school in Winnenden. He also played "Ballerspiele" (a German pejorative term for first-person shooter video games), which shouldn't be surprising because many male adolescents before and after him play these games.
There are multiple signs the shooter deliberately targeted people in his age group. He was depressive and had problems at school. Furthermore he apparently invited his contemporaries to the McDonald's restaurant via a hacked Facebook account of a young woman as a way to lure them to his execution site. The now-infamous video shows that he argued with a (presumably German) passerby who called him a "Scheiß Kanacke (fucking Kanak)",[note 2] to which he responded, "I am German, I was born here. I've been in therapy. [...] Because of you guys I was bullied for seven years. And now I had to buy a gun to blast all of you."
So there you have it: it was a bullied, depressive kid who happened to be Iranian and saw a killing spree as a legitimate way to exact revenge on his schoolmates; we've all heard this story multiple times before. It was basically a school shooting in all but name (and location), the only difference being that the student chose a non-educational place for his killing site. Commentators from different sides of the political spectrum were quick to jump to their desired conclusions before the bodies were even cold.
Once again, Islamophobes whined about how radical Islamic terrorists used the refugee crisis as a mantle to plan attacks in the West before even knowing who the perpetrator was, where he originated from, or what his religious beliefs were. "Evidence" for links to radical Islam were the shooting site and the day of the week it took place, completely ignoring that these conditions are perfect for any mass murderer, no matter which lunatic inspiration they have; the Friday afternoon and evening is a time when many people are free from most of their societal obligations. The 2011 Norway attacks were also committed at a Friday afternoon. Just saying. Their entire argument showed the first cracks the moment it appeared the shooter might be a xenophobe.
When the reports of xenophobic comments yelled by the shooter were fresh, others were immediately sure it was a neo-Nazi. Another evidence which was presented was the shooter's Bavarian accent, which is ludicrous to present as an evidence for someone born and raised in... Bavaria. Their argument was shattered when it was clear the shooter was Iranian which doesn't necessarily discount any German nationalist affinity, only makes it (very) less likely though.
Attacks of Jihadists and right-wing extremists are so common nowadays that we totally forgot the school shooter phenomena which used to be the go-to answer in the past for these type of events (especially in Germany) which also means that we shouldn't be automatically ruling out the idea of an armed Muslim with an intent to kill having other reasons to stage attacks which are not related to faith. Therefore in the future wait for all the available evidence and show some restraint before jumping to conclusions.
Eight of the people who died were in the shooter's age group. Furthermore of the dead, four were Turkish, one was Greek and three were Kosovo Albanians. The targeting of people from his age group and addition to most of them being very likely Muslims would imply that the motivation was non-Islamist and shows more characteristics of a school shooting despite not taking place in a school. The claim has been raised that the shooter deliberately targeted people of Turkish and Arab descent whom he probably felt bullied by. The police initially shrugged of the possibility of the shooter deliberately targeting specific people as the McDonald's where the crime took place was one usually frequented by foreigners. This was later proven false as the gunman had the chance to kill more people but determined to spare Germans.
Poor media coverage
Despite video of the gunman that hinted at nationalist and anti-immigrant motives, media outlets such as CNN refused to report this several hours after the video was published. Fox News, on the other hand, reported the rooftop dialogue and the possible right-wing motive. You know you're a bad network when Fox does better than you.
When it was clear next to nothing could be used to imply ties to Islamic extremism and a sufficient amount of indisputable evidence started to pile up showing the perpetrator being at least partially inspired by Anders Breivik, people either saw a deliberate attempt at pushing an anti-right agenda by Munich police and the
Lügenpresse German media while at the same time ignoring evidence and pushing their own agenda or getting into all out conspiracy mode.
Breitbart for example claimed the police was "denying" a Daesh connection and "trying" to link the gunman to their imprisoned saint Breivik in one of their headlines. The article itself doesn't elaborate on the clickbait title but the damage has already been done. However Breitbart wasn't alone in suspecting an alleged cover-up of the "real" Islamist background for blaming the innocent far-right.
The most popular conspiracy theories
- "In the beginning they said there were three shooters, now they revert back to the lone gunman narrative."
- The rampage was initially thought to have been carried out by two additional assailants because a suspicious car with two guys was speeding off during the event. However it turned out to only be two panicked survivors who fled the scene when the shooting went down.
- Very easy. The gunman was a teenager traveling on foot with a heavy backpack full of ammunition. There's no way he could have gotten far. The suicide might have been his plan all along and if that's not the case he possibly contemplated that a suicide might be the best decision after he realized the police locked the city down to prevent him from escaping plus the fact he eventually got caught which he most likely didn't keep in mind during his year-long planning stages.
- "They locked down the city, not for the gunman because that was obviously a false flag, but because they prepared for a martial law regime as sirens could be heard all over the city."
- Don't be ridiculous, there's enough empirical data from totalitarian countries to fall back on when a state really wants to implement martial law, they don't need to prepare anything. The sirens could be heard because it is an effective way to signal to the population to seek shelter and initially the police wasn't aware where the gunman or gunmen could have fled, therefore it was best to stretch the possible whereabouts of the perpetrator(s) widely.
- "German security forces came from all over the country leaving other places exposed."
- You have to understand in the incipient stages of the atrocity, it was logical to believe that this was a radical Islamic terrorist attack. That's why they called in all the help they could get to stop loonies on the loose before it could have gotten worse.
- "Angela Merkel was nowhere to be seen in emergency meetings of German security agencies. Where was she?"
- Who knows? Maybe taking a shit? First of all the German chancellor is not the commander-in-chief and she was pretty quick to address the public about the situation because that is her immediate job.
- "Shooter couldn't hit people from a distance of ten feet therefore this must have been staged."
- The shooter had no prior experience in handling firearms whatsoever. It was more or less the first time he pulled the trigger and nobody becomes a gunslinger the moment they touch a gun. Let's digress for a moment: Remember the incident a few days prior to the shooting when a trained cop fired three times at an unarmed stationary black therapist lying on the road and an unarmed stationary autistic man sitting on the street, only hitting once? Even with practise you can miss from close proximity, it happens, so get over it.
- "The moment of the video when we should see hard evidence of the shooting, the filmer runs away."
- The person who filmed the event of a guy shooting randomly at people, started to panic and ran for his life. Don't act as if this isn't a natural reaction.
- "Richard Gutjahr, the Israeli arch-Zionist Mossad mole who is married to the Israeli Zionist Mossad agent Einat Wilf, was filming the terror attack of Nice and barely a week later he takes photos of the Munich shooting which he uploads and ultimately deletes to destroy evidence. Suspicious!"
- Gutjahr is a well known German journalist and reporter, so it's not out of the question that he could have been in two large cities in France and Germany in a matter of days, not only that but he works for Bavarian Broadcasting, therefore Munich is a place he probably happens to be at often. What should he have done? Just keep quiet about what he has seen? He just did his job. Either journalists report on facts which you don't like and you accuse them of being in bed with the 'Zionist' "lying press" or their reports belong to a staged event constructed by their 'Zionist' overlords.
- Gutjahr deleted the pictures and said that he made a mistake by uploading them. He initially uploaded them to prove that the shooting was no rumor but still claimed he shouldn't have done it in the first place. Therefore he wasn't deliberately destroying evidence just correcting something which he couldn't reconcile with his conscious.
- "The shooter was a nice teenager. They are faking evidence against him."
- People who knew him described him as timid. But you ignore all the info about him being a bullied depressed social outcast which most likely played the largest role of him going cuckoo.
- "Munich Massare, Oktoberfest terror attack, Munich Shooting - all related!"
- All of these were done by different set of people with different motives. The only connection they have is they happened in a large city which hosted one Summer Olympics and every year in September the Oktoberfest takes place there. Both of these events are attended by a lot of people (what a coincidence!) which makes the McDonald's where the shooting mostly took place the outlier from these examples.
- "Why are police officers pointing their guns at the Munich mall. It makes no sense."
- It makes a lot of sense. At first they didn't know where the gunman and the possible accomplices could have fled. He or them could have very likely hid in the mall, so better be ready if that is the case.
- "The entire shooting was a c-grade movie employing crisis actors. It's so fake, everybody notices it!"
- This means that every one who was at that specific McDonald's restaurant and the Olympia Mall during those hours must have been paid to act and keep quiet for all eternity in the age of social media. Now consider the scale of this operation: The mall has over 2,400 parking spaces which means the mall can be attended by at least 2,400 guests at any time, not even counting people arriving on foot bike or public transit. And we didn't mention the visitor total of the McDonald's restaurant and all the people around those busy streets yet. You must be extremely gullible to believe this could be pulled off without anybody spilling the beans. Watergate had less people "in the know" by orders of magnitude and it couldn't be kept under wraps for long.
- "Obama knew it was a false-flag operation and unintentionally became delighted about the shooting."
- When Obama was addressing the rampage he digressed into a personal tangent about his eldest daughter graduating from high school while being slightly jocular making the audience laugh in response. This does not necessarily prove ill intent as Obama needs to address these issues on a regular basis and he can't be faulted for having the audacity to hope for once in a while even at an improper moment.
Unlike the ax attack near Würzburg (about 250 kilometers or 2 hours by train North-Northwest of Munich) the political debate did not become hysterical immediately. In the case of Würzburg a sideshow about whether or not shooting the attacker was the right call developed after a politician of the Greens raised that question on her Twitter. However, given the response to school shootings in Germany both stricter gun laws and bans of first person shooters will probably be brought up by right wing politicians. People on the left might call for better therapy for mentally ill people and the ministers of the interior on both state and federal level will probably call for more surveillance of public places, because clearly having more video material to sift through would have helped tremendously in this situation. Munich police was universally lauded for their calm and their masterful handling of social media in the face of chaos and tragedy.
- It's baffling how a massacre of kids apparently proves the greatness of a deity.
- Kanak is actually Polynesian for 'human' but in German it's an ethnic slur predominately used for people of Middle-Eastern descent.
- "'Urgent terror state' in Munich - Shooting claims six lives" (in German), Südtirol News, Jul 22, 2016
- Joern Poltz, "Gunmen launch deadly attack on Munich shopping mall, still on the run", Reuters, Jul 22, 2016
- Janek Schmidt and Emma Graham-Harrison. "'Strange and withdrawn': what drove Ali Sonboly to launch Munich massacre?", The Guardian, Jul 23, 2016
- "Alleged Perpetrator of Munich - What we know about the marksman" (in German), FAZ', Jul 23, 2016.
- "Shooting in Munich: What We Know, and What We Don’t", The New York Times, Jul 22, 2016.
- Catherine E. Shoichet, Ralph Ellis and Jason Hanna. "Munich shooting: 9 victims, gunman dead, police say", CNN, Jul 23, 2016.
- Andreas Rietschel, "Cabinet meets" (in German), GZ Live, Jul 22, 2016
- "'Classic rampage without political motivation'" (in German), FAZ, Jul 23, 2016.
- Markus Wehner. "Homicidal maniac was a far-right extremist" (in German), FAZ, Jul 27, 2016
- Janek Schmidt, Kate Connolly and Emma Graham-Harrison. "Munich killer was bullied teenage loner who had obsession with mass murder", The Guardian, Jul 23, 2016
- "Munich gunman Ali Sonboly 'planned attack for more than a year'", The Guardian, Jul 24, 2016
- Joern Poltz and Karin Strohecker. "Munich gunman fixated on mass killing, had no Islamist ties", Reuters, Jul 23, 2016
- Bill O'Reilly on the rampage in Munich (Autoplay video), Jul 23, 2016.
- Jan Schmidbauer. "Right-wing populists embarrass themselves with Munich comments" (in German), Süddeutsche Zeitung, Jul 23, 2016.
- July 2011 calendar
- Tweet from Sky News (Autoplay video), Jul 22, 2016.
- Damien Gayle. "Munich attack: German politicians signal review of gun laws after shooting", The Guardian, Jul 23, 2016.
- "After Denying Islamic State Connection, Police Try To Link Munich Gunman To Anders Breivik", Breitbart, Jul 23, 2016.
- Voat v/Conspiracy: "The attempts by the media to blame the Munich shooting on the right wing are the most disgusting thing I've seen" thread, Jul 23, 2016.
- "Munich False Flag – the unanswered questions", OSNet Daily, Jul 23, 2016
- "MUNICH ATTACK: FALSE FLAG INSIDE-JOB", Aangirfan, Jul 23, 2016
- Steve Robson. "Munich shooting: Teenage gunman had book on 'why students kill' and 300 rounds of ammunition in backpack", The Mirror, Jul 23, 2016.
- Police Bavaria press statement, Jul 23, 2016.
- Godlike Productions: "MUNICH FALSE FLAG: German Feds were conducting "salvaging exercise" near the mall before the shooting." thread, Jul 22, 2016.
- "Desperate Zionists Commit Another Fraud with Munich Shooting Hoax", Nodisinfo.com, Jul 22, 2016.
- Jesse J. Holland. "Unarmed black man shot by police in Florida", Fay Observer, Jul 21, 2016.
- "Is This Proof That The Munich Shooting Was A False Flag?", OYE.NEWS, Jul 23, 2016
- "Peekay Truth: Munich Shooting - Does This Rate as the Greatest Coincidence Ever? + Munich McDonalds Shooting Hoax - It's Embarrassing", The Excavator, Jul 23, 2016.
- Twitter: Richard Gutjahr tweet (in German), Jul 22, 2016.
- Twitter: Richard Gutjahr tweet (in German), Jul 22, 2016.
- Olympia drive and parking (in German)
- YouTube: "Munich Shooting Hoax - Obama Duping Delight" by Benjamin Donkey, Jul 22, 2016.
- YouTube: "USA: Obama makes joke after commenting on Munich mall shooting", Jul 22, 2016.
- Jannis Brühl. "Rampage: De Maizière reanimates killer game debate" (in German), Süddeutsche Zeitung, Jul 24, 2016.
- Carolin Gasteiger. "The man that stayed calm" (in German), Süddeutsche Zeitung, Jul 23, 2016.