Photo courtesy of Washington Post (Luca Bruno/AP)
As crowds gathered to celebrate Bastille Day in Nice, France on Thursday night, a van plowed through the crowd, with the driver purposefully running civilians down and shooting at them from the cab of the van. Police shot and killed the driver. The French government is classifying the attack as an act of terrorism. As of Friday, 84 people had died (including many children) and over 200 were injured, with at least 50 still critical. Two Americans were among the dead. Little is known about the attacker, except that he was a 31-year-old Tunisian who had moved to France in 2005.
This is the third terrorist attack in France in just over 18 months. Terrorist attacks this summer seem to be never ending – Brussels, Bangladesh, Baghdad, Medina, Istanbul, Orlando – and many fear this pattern will become the new normal.