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Homicidal maniacs rage in Las Vegas and elsewhere

October 3, 2017 Headline News No Comments Email Email

More than 50 people were shot dead, over 500 more wounded and incoming flights diverted during the deadliest mass shooting in US history near the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas last night.

Flights heading into Las Vegas McCarran International Airport were diverted to other destinations and tourists hid in their hotels as “nonstop gunfire” raked a music festival.

The final night of the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival was taking place opposite the Mandalay Bay on the Las Vegas Strip when the shooting began. The scene soon resembled a battle zone.

A lone gunman was reported to be firing a self-loading automatic weapon or a machine-gun from the 32nd floor of the property, a 43-storey luxury resort and casino owned and operated by MGM Resorts International.

Police eventually stormed the room and found the gunman dead. Authorities later identified the suspect as 64-year-old Stephen Paddock, a local man and retired accountant who they said acted alone and was not believed to be linked to international terrorism.

Paddock had 19 guns of various types with him in his hotel room, including two high-powered rifles with scopes, mounted on tripods and set up in front of the smashed hotel room window. How he got those to the 32nd floor without being challenged by security is being investigated.

Something sounding like machine-gun or high-speed semi-automatic gunfire can be heard on this brief, 30-second video clip, in which a passer-by tries to persuade a woman to take shelter rather than stand in the open talking on her mobile phone:


Las Vegas is one of the biggest tourist attractions in the US, visited by over 365,000 Australians last year, and the Mandalay Bay is popular with Australian visitors. Its gold colour results from gold leaf being used in the windows.

Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade has beefed up its staffing at US consulates to cater for traumatised Australian visitors caught up in, or affected by, the carnage, some of whom want to return home.

Notice issued by MGM Resorts International last night

In other incidents outside the US, meanwhile, a man screaming “Allahu Akbar” and brandishing a knife stabbed two young women to death at the main train station in the southern French port city of Marseilles. One of the women had her throat slit. Soldiers on duty immediately shot the attacker dead. He was described as of North African appearance. The ISIS terrorist group claimed responsibility.

In Canada same day, police arrested a Somali refugee in connection with attacks in Edmonton, Alberta in which a policeman was stabbed and four other people injured. A vehicle allegedly containing an Islamic flag was driven at a policeman, and several pedestrians were run down, seemingly deliberately. Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau called it a “terrorist attack” and nobody doubts it.

Written by Peter Needham

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