An explosion that rocked downtown Nashville on Christmas morning may have been an act of domestic terrorism aimed at police, a political commentator says.
As ABC 7 News reported, a large explosion damaged buildings and wounded three people in the city early on Christmas morning — an act that authorities said was intentional. Video from the moments before the blast showed a loud audio recording warning residents to evacuate the area, following by a blast that shook buildings and shattered windows.
The Nashville Police Department said that officers were called to the area for gunshots being fired just before 6 a.m. They reportedly found no evidence of a shooting, but did find a suspicious vehicle and called for a hazardous unit, the outlet noted. The RV then exploded a short time later.
Authorities continued to search for any signs of other explosives and closed parts of downtown to traffic.
Our canine teams are doing protective sweeps in the downtown area. Traffic downtown is restricted. pic.twitter.com/SAH25JZwIg
— Metro Nashville PD (@MNPDNashville) December 25, 2020
The FBI is investigating the incident, but some believe that the Nashville bombing had the hallmarks of a domestic terrorist attack. Dean Obeidallah, a CNN contributor and political commentator, speculated that it may have been an attempt to attack police officers given that they were called to the area for shots fired but found no evidence of it.
“Wonder if this was sovereign citizens terror movement that is anti-police and anti-Gov,” he tweeted.
Others noted that the style of the bombing was similar to past acts of domestic terrorism.
“Information on #Nashville explosion still scant, but this ‘intentional’ blast—made via sitting automobile—is chillingly similar to those rare terror attacks in US doing the same: World Trade Center (1993), Oklahoma City bombing (1995). Scale of casualties far lower, fortunately,” tweeted Rita Katz of SITE Intelligence Group, an organization that tracks the online activity of white supremacist and jihadist organizations.
There have been a number of foiled attacks in recent months, including what authorities described as a plot to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer by a militia group that accused her of treason.
Details of the apparent Nashville attack are still emerging, but it appeared that the explosives used were very powerful. According to WTFV, the impact was felt across much of Davidson County, miles from where the incident took place. President Donald Trump had reportedly been briefed on the incident, and both Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee and Nashville Mayor John Cooper released statements saying they were praying for the people injured and were dedicated to finding the person or people responsible.