Eleven dead in deadliest attack on Jewish community in US history
28 October 2018
Eleven people were killed and six injured after a gunman opened fire Saturday during the morning service at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Two of those injured are in critical condition, and one was undergoing his second surgery Saturday afternoon as doctors attempted to save his life. The names of the victims have not yet been released; authorities have said that they are all adults.
The horrific attack is the deadliest against the Jewish community in US history. It is an expression of the profound political crisis in the United States and a consequence of the Trump administration’s promotion of extreme-right-wing and fascistic sentiments. It follows the mailing of more than a dozen pipe bombs to prominent Trump administration critics last week.
The Pittsburgh shooter, who has been identified as Robert Bowers, a 48-year-old white male, walked into Tree of Life Synagogue with an AR-15 semi-automatic and three handguns shortly before 10 a.m., yelling, “All Jews must die” as he began shooting.
Pittsburgh police arrived shortly afterwards. Two of the first officers on the scene were shot as they attempted to arrest the shooter, who was exiting the building at the time. Two other police officers were shot after Bowers retreated back into the synagogue, where he was finally shot and arrested.
Three services were taking place at the synagogue at the time of the shooting, including a naming service for newborn baby girl. About 100 people were in the building at the time the mass shooting began. The Tree of Life Synagogue is located in the predominantly Jewish neighborhood of Squirrel Hill.
Federal prosecutors charged Bowers with 29 counts of…