Categories
Uncategorized

What have we learned from Nakatomi Tower attack 33 years ago?

Thirty three years ago today, the United States was forever changed by the deadliest foreign terrorist attack on the country up to that time.  Though the body count is still debated today, at least a dozen local, state and federal law enforcement officials were killed, as well as two of the hostages and all of the terrorists during the 1988 seizure of Nakatomi Plaza in Los Angeles.  Some put the body count as high as 26.  

Significant confusion about the nature of the attack still swirls:  was it an actual terrorist attack by a group sponsored from behind the Berlin Wall on a symbol of international capitalism?  Was it an elaborate robbery?  Or was it an attack on the holiday by a bunch of godless communists intent on winning the nascent War on Christmas?  While we may never know the true motivation of the terrorists, largely recruited from West Germans who had distinctively Hollywood tastes, the incident is relived in households every December.

What we do know is harrowing:  the terrorists took control of Nakatomi Plaza after most companies had shut down business for the holiday weekend.  The Japanese company Nakatomi Corporation, however, insisted their employees come in on Christmas Eve, a Saturday, to finish a major deal.  Taking advantage of the empty building, the terrorists seized about 30 Nakatomi employees, including a woman who was nine months pregnant, celebrating the holiday and the deal close.

The attack was well organized, with the terrorists armed with automatic weapons, plastic explosives and even missiles.  To show their seriousness, the terrorists killed two of their hostages:  Joseph Yoshinobu Takagi, the head of Nakatomi’s US operations, and Harry Ellis, a sales executive.  The terrorists made demands to release compatriots from other worldwide leftist organizations, although historians question the sincerity of that demand.  

However, New York City police detective John McClane–vacationing in Los Angeles to visit his family who had moved to the West Coast earlier in the year–evaded capture in the tower, and set off to thwart the terrorists.  Communicating with a pudgy LAPD officer named Al Powell, who had been assigned to desk duty after killing a child playing with a toy gun, McClane took controversial actions to impede the terrorists, killing many of them, including dropping one out a window from the 30th floor.  (Witnesses on the ground were concerned at the time that the defenstered individual was a hostage.)

Critics say McClain’s actions endangered the lives of the hostages and police on the ground.  The FBI contends two of its agents–FBI Agents Johnson (no relation)–lost their lives in a rescue attempt because of McClane’s recklessness that resulted in the roof of the Tower exploding, destroying two helicopters.  The LAPD also claims that McClain was responsible for the death of sales executive Ellis, having listened to the man’s execution via a walkie-talkie.  LAPD officials also state McClane caused millions of dollars of damage to the building, including requiring thousands of screen doors to be replaced.

The unlikely hero of the attack was a young limousine driver known only as Argyle, who gained redemption after a childhood of thievery, including a 1980 incident at Ray’s Music Exchange in Chicago where he attempted to steal a guitar, only to be stopped by a gunshot by the blind store owner.  (Authorities opted to not charge Ray for the use of a firearm in stopping the robbery, even though there were about 10 members of a blues band in the store at the time.)  Reportedly, Argyle thwarted the terrorists’ getaway by damaging the imitation ambulance the terrorist intended to use to flee during the confusion of the aftermath.

To this day, myriad questions remain unanswered:  What ever happened to the 13th terrorist, a Black American known only as “Theo” who was in the ambulance when it was destroyed by Argyle?  How did the group obtain such an arsenal without authorities noticing?  And why was the attack never mentioned by authorities?  

Some people say that the Reagan Administration, with less than a month to go before leaving office, intentionally swept the incident under the rug in an effort to protect the coalition government of then-West German Chancellor Helmut Kohl.  Rumors that Oliver North provided the weapons to the terrorists were persistent but have yet to be proven definitively.  Tens of millions of dollars in bearer bonds–part of more than $600 million in securities held in the Nakatomi safe–went missing after the attack.  

Curiously, on-site law enforcement officials let the key witness to the entire event, John McClane, drive off in a limo–driven by Argyle–with his wife immediately after the attack without questioning him or his wife.  McClane would go on to have a spectacular law enforcement career, but one that strangely put him in a number of deadly situations, including one two years later where he had to act to thwart a terrorist takeover of Dulles Airport.

Created by potrace 1.16, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2019

Now is not the time to talk about over-the-top GOP responses

47 mins ago

Cops find explosives in Crooks’s car

57 mins ago

“Maybe there is” something “Second Amendment people” can do to stop Hillary Clinton from taking away their guns: Trump in 2016

2 hours ago

Man who survived attempted lynching issues statement

2 hours ago

Not too soon to start with the “DEI caused this” bullshit

3 hours ago

White male shooter typical unassuming loner with a gun

4 hours ago

Trump rallies his base after attack

4 hours ago

Report: shooter tentatively identified by feds

12 hours ago

Garland ready to investigate attack

14 hours ago

Comer calls for hearing testimony by Secret Service head

15 hours ago

Trump posts to Truth following ear wound

15 hours ago

President Biden reacts to Trump assassination attempt

16 hours ago

Video of Trump rushed from stage sounds like shots in distance

18 hours ago

Trump taken off stage after shots fired at rally

18 hours ago

Richard Simmons has died

19 hours ago

RNC Speakers include Tucker Carlson, few women

20 hours ago

Fox News would’ve shown the photos if the victims were white

23 hours ago

Orange Felon screams at several House Republicans over failure to pass amendment defunding Jack Smith out of commitee

1 day ago

SUV plunges into hot, acidic pond at Yellowstone Park

1 day ago

Random thoughts Friday, Volume CLXXXI

2 days ago

Dr Drunken Johnson doesn’t think Vice President Kamala Harris is very smart: “She’s got a double-digit ID”

2 days ago

Scientists say first living organism on Earth was an early riser

2 days ago

WATCH LIVE: Biden holds Michigan rally day after presser

2 days ago

Meta creates two-tiered justice system for Trump

2 days ago

Karen threatening to call Secret Service again

2 days ago

Stephen Miller’s outfit asks to be removed from Project 2025 site

2 days ago

Poseidon statute facing removal over conflict with Mayan god

2 days ago

QAdulteress at least pretending this challenge is sincere

2 days ago

Judge tosses Rudy’s bankruptcy

2 days ago

Kari Lake, a 2024 Senate candidate, asks Arizona Supreme Court to declare she won 2022 gubernatorial election or order a re-do

2 days ago

Jury begins deliberating in Menendez trial

2 days ago

Ginger-headed mascot shitposts other ginger-headed mascot

2 days ago

Nepal falls to communism

2 days ago

Big Dem donors withholding $90 million pledged to Biden PAC

2 days ago

Not all Jews will have to be federally registered under Project 2025

2 days ago

Sitting Congressman fills in for incarcerated felon on live stream

2 days ago

Jeffries gives incredibly vague statement on Biden meeting

2 days ago

RFK Jr apologizes to sexual assault accuser, apology not accepted

2 days ago

Redbox DVD rental machine service shutting down

2 days ago

Paunchy, balding autocrats say they have it all figured out

2 days ago

Florida pastor fed THC gummy to teen relative, molested her: cops

2 days ago

Project 2025 team pre-delegitimizing 2024 election, just in case

2 days ago

Brainwormed enough to think Dems want him to replace Biden

2 days ago

Orange Felon screams to Republicans to force SAVE act

2 days ago

WSJ economist survey finds Trump worse for inflation

2 days ago

Cuckquean reportedly will appear at RNC with adulterous spouse

3 days ago

US, Germany foil Russian assassination plot against arms maker

3 days ago

As President dives into policy, Orange Opponent sells sneakers

3 days ago

Report finds Israeli military Uvalde’d Hamas attack response

3 days ago

WATCH LIVE: Biden’s “Do or Die” press conference

3 days ago

x
x
x
x
x
x