Nine people are confirmed dead in Munich as a citywide manhunt continues at “high speed” for suspects who committed an attack that is being labeled “suspected terrorism” at the Olympia Mall according to Munich authorities.
The attack took place on Friday at the Olympia Mall where as many as three gunmen entered the shopping center and opened fire at passersby apparently at random.
An employee inside the mall, who would give only her first name, Sabiha, said she saw a gunman open fire outside her clothing store. The assailant — described as about 6-foot-1 and wearing a black shirt and “some kind of vest” — moved through the corridors before leaving the building, Sabiha told The Washington Post.
Sabiha said she saw at least two people killed and one injured.
“I was lucky because he shot toward the other directions, not mine,” she said, speaking from a hiding spot inside a storage room in the store.
A video clip posted on Twitter showed a gunman opening fire outside a McDonald’s near the shopping complex as people dashed for cover. The man appeared to fire on passersby with a handgun, seemingly at random.
A police statement sent by Twitter urged people near the site to remain in their homes.
A similar announcement was issued by the U.S. Consulate in Munich, which reported “shots fired at multiple locations in Munich.” It advised U.S. citizens to “shelter in place pending police announcements that the situation is under control.”
At this point, German authorities are not saying whether they believe the attack to be of the Islamic fundamentalist variety but they are keeping the possibility open. Not only that but they are stating that there is the possibility that this attack was carried out by “right wing extremists” who are upset over Germany’s immigration policies.
According to The Washington Post, a message was posted online from an apparent Islamic State account stating: “Nowhere is safe for all of you. You people have opened the doors of hell by declaring war on us.” Still, ISIS did not officially declare responsibility for the attack as the organization did after the recent axe attack on a train in southern Germany on Monday. For this reason, the attack is not being attributed to the Western-backed and Western-created terrorist organization.Munich police have declared the situation an “acute terrorist situation.”
Still, there are now suggestions coming from German and international mainstream media outlets that the attack was of the “right wing extremist” variety due to a statement allegedly made by one of the shooters where he says, “I am a German.”
Of course, the shooter may well have been a native right wing German or he may also have been a second generation Muslim immigrant. He may also have been a combination of the two with aggravating mental issues. At this point, we simply don’t know.
However, Sky News has released a transcript of the dialogue between the shooter and a man on balcony.
The transcript is as follows:
Balcony Man: “You f****** a****** you…”
Shooter: “Because of you I [unintelligible]…”
Balcony Man: “You *** you. you’re a ****.”
Shooter: “…and now I have to buy a gun to shoot you.”
Balcony Man: “a gun – f*** off your head isn’t on right.”
Shooter and Balcony Man shouting at each other.
Balcony Man apparently to people filming: “He’s got a gun here the guy has one.”
Balcony Man: “F****** foreigners.”
Balcony Man to someone else : “Ey! He’s got a gun. He has loaded his gun! Get the cops here!”
Shooter: “I am German.”
Balcony Man: “You’re a **** is what you are.”
Shooter: “Stop filming!”
Balcony Man: “A **** is what you are, what the f*** are you doing?”
Shooter: “Yeah what, I was born here!”
Balcony Man: “Yeah and what the f*** you think you’re doing?”
Shooter: “I grew up here in the Hartz 4 (unemployment benefits in Germany) area.
Balcony Man and Shooter talk at same time (unintelligible).
Shooter says something about “Behandlung” which means “treatment”.
Balcony Man says something like, “Yeah treatment is something for you.”
Shooter: “I haven’t done anything here for [unintelligible]. Just shut your f****** face man.”
Balcony Man: “You **** you.”
Balcony Man: “Hey! He’s on the upper floor here [unintelligible].”
Filming man goes into cover, shooter starts firing.
Balcony Man calls him a “****” again.
Balcony Man shouts something at him about “shooting here” and shooter replies multiple times, “Yeah, that’s where you’re right! Yeah you’re right with that! Yeah you’re right!”
Other reports have witnesses saying that the shooter screamed “Allahu Akbar!”
If the attack was indeed motivated by a hatred of refugees and immigrants it seems a strange method of expressing it by shooting other Germans as opposed to the population of people that is the target of hatred. Likewise, screaming “Allahu Akbar!” is a bit out of character for a right winger in Germany.
It should be noted also that, as the shooter and the man on the balcony argue, the balcony man says “fucking foreigners” as an insult to the shooter suggesting that the shooter appeared to look like something other than an ethnic German. The shooter then replies that he is German was born in the Hartz 4 area ( a reference to Germany’s Hartz 4 unemployment system that artificially deflates real unemployment numbers and forces many workers to work for private companies in order to receive unemployment benefits).
Still, we must be clear that, at this point, this situation is still developing. We will continue to monitor the crisis as it unfolds.
The attacks in Munich come on the heels of the attack in Nice, another instance in which questions surround the event pointing to both the possibility of a false flag event, terrorist act, or an actual act of random psychologically induced violence.