News is coming in this evening about the shooting which took place this afternoon at the Holocaust Museum in Washington DC. The gunman, 88-year-old James W. von Brunn, was well known to police and federal authorities as a white supremacist who blamed misfortunes in his life on the “Jews”. The gunman was shot and critically wounded after shooting a guard and fatally wounding him.
Reactions to shooting are focusing on the proof that a virulent form of anti-Semitism still exists in the United States:
“Rabbis Marvin Hier, founder and dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, and Abraham Cooper, an associate dean, said the attack at the museum ‘shows that the cancer of hatred, bigotry and anti-Semitism is alive and well in America.’
‘It is deeply disturbing that one of America’s most powerful symbols of the memory of the Holocaust was selected as the site of the attack just days after President Obama accompanied Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel to the Buchenwald death camp,’ they said.”
Read the full article in the New York Times here.
According to some reports, the National Cathedral in Washington was another of his potential targets.
He was a “revered elder” by some in the white supremacist movement. The shooter wrote that he despised “neo-cons” and Bill O’Reilly among others. He was opposed to most main-line Christians and denominations as well according to his writings.
We’ll update this article as more information becomes available.