By: Derek Li
In the recent century, America has been one of the major targets for terrorist attacks.
September 16, 1920: In New York City’s Wall Street, a large bomb carrying dynamite exploded. 38 people died, most of them almost immediately. A total of 300 people got injured, 143 of whom were seriously injured. The bombing has never been solved, although it is generally thought to have been carried out by Galleanists (Italian anarchists).
April 19, 1995: This attack was conducted by Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. By planting a huge bomb into a rented truck, they managed to blow up Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building, causing 168 deaths and more than 680 injuries. McVeigh’s motives for blowing up the building was his anger of the U.S government and how they dealt with the Ruby Ridge and Waco Siege incidences. Timothy McVeigh was sentenced to life imprisonment and later died on June 11, 2001, while Terry Nichols is currently in prison.
September 11, 2001: Also referred to as 9/11, this was the deadliest terrorist attack in history, which was planned and executed by Al Qaeda. Two airplanes, American Airlines flight 11 and United Airlines flight 175, crashed into the World Trade Center in New York City, which eventually caused the collapse of the building. Another plane, American Airlines flight 77, crashed into the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia. Finally, a fourth plane, United Airlines flight 93, was planning to crash in Washington D.C, but eventually crashed in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, after passengers tried to fight the hijackers. A total of 2,996 people died and at least 6,000 people were injured. Out of the 2,996 fatalities, 2,759 people died from the World Trade Center incident, 189 people died from the Pentagon incident, and 45 people died from the airplane crash in Pennsylvania.
October 2002: From October 2-22, 2002, John Allen Muhammad and Lee Boyd Malvo shot 9 people dead over a series of 20 days in Maryland and Virginia. Initially, police and investigators had very little evidence to figure out the situation. However, they later on found out that the guns had been used by the same people. After further investigation, they found out that one of the shootings had been done by Malvo, and then found out he had close links to Muhammad. On October 24, 2002, Muhammad and Malvo were found sleeping in their car, and were subsequently arrested. Muhammad eventually got sentenced to death, and he died on November 10, 2009 by a lethal injection. Malvo was sentenced to life imprisonment.
June 12, 2016: A shooting at Pulse, a gay nightclub, killed 50 people and injured another 53 in Orlando, Florida. This mass shooting was carried out by Omar Mateen, who died after a standoff with the Orlando police. There are multiple theories about his motive for this attack, but none of them have been confirmed as of yet.