Nate Jackson / Jul. 22, 2015

More Details Emerge From Chattanooga

Details continue to come out about the terrorist attack in Chattanooga last week. One Navy officer and a Marine returned fire when a jihadi rammed through the gate and started shooting. According to Navy Times, “Lt. Cmdr. Timothy White, the support center’s commanding officer, used his personal firearm to engage” the assailant. Likewise, one of the slain Marines reportedly had a personal handgun that he used to return fire. But it wasn’t only those with guns who acted with bravery. According to reports, some of the fallen Marines essentially sacrificed themselves by drawing fire away from a larger group of Marines. “This could have been a lot worse,” an anonymous official said. “It could have been a horrible, horrible massacre — so much worse.”

It was bad enough. Remember the fallen: Sgt. Carson A. Holmquist, Staff Sgt. David A. Wyatt, Gunnery Sgt. Thomas J. Sullivan, Lance Cpl. Squire K. Wells, and Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Randall Smith.

Finally, Ed Reinhold, the FBI’s special agent in charge in Knoxville, declared during a Wednesday news conference that the perpetrator was a “homegrown violent extremist” and that it was too early to determine whether he had been radicalized. “This is a complex, ongoing investigation, and we’re still in the early stages of piecing together exactly what happened and why,” Reinhold said. “The FBI has been working almost 400 leads, and has an estimated 250 personnel on the ground in the area, and hundreds more working across the country and around the world on this investigation.” We appreciate the deliberate and thorough investigation, but let’s call a spade a spade.

Maybe that failure is why it took Barack Obama five days to call for lowering the flag.

Photos from the memorial on Lee Highway.

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