- - Tuesday, December 29, 2020

This past week, during the early hours on Christmas morning, an RV packed with explosives detonated in downtown Nashville. It was, we have since learned, a suicide bombing by a man named Anthony Quinn Warner. Not much else is known at this time.

Besides the damage to dozens of buildings, eight people were injured, and, most worrisome of all, widespread Internet and phone outages occurred, including 911. This lasted for hours. Flights out of Nashville International Airport had to be grounded for telecommunications issues. This was, to repeat, the result of explosives in a lone camper parked along the street.

America, like all countries, deal with lone wolf acts of terror from time to time. The murder of 60 people at the hands of Stephen Paddock and a few machine guns fired from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas comes to mind. That evil exists in this world is something most everyone knows, which is why we stay vigilant.

In a few days we click over to 2021, and with that, the anniversary year of 9/11, the greatest visitation of evil to our shores in the history of this country. And while the lone wolf incidents of the past few years are different in kind and scope from the destruction of the Towers and the Pentagon, the effects — fear, despair, anger and fatigue — are similar.

It would be nice, then, if President-elect Joe Biden and his assembling cabinet thought long and hard about this issue of terrorism. It is not simply the Russians and Chinese and their monkeying with our digital networks that must be minded, but so, too, more “rudimentary” types of approach. As Warner demonstrated, exploding a van in front of critical infrastructure can also cause serious damage.

As the protests-turned-riots this summer demonstrated, extremist groups like Antifa have grown, thanks in part to rhetorical encouragement by leftist elites too comfortable setting fires, exploding small bombs and beating up the elderly. They, along with our foreign adversaries, doubtless took note of the events in Nashville. Sooner or later, the Warner method will be copied. The recent explosion is a warning.

Soon, Mr. Biden will have an opportunity to signal his approach to the war on terror. We hope he decides to honor the lives of the victims with a renewed sense of urgency, manifested in support for law enforcement. Everyone is watching, and everything is on the line.

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