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MINNEAPOLIS-Police have identified the suicide bomber responsible for at least seven deaths and dozens of injured at yesterday’s Tolerance Day March. He is Lute Johnson of Linwood. Several witnesses reported hearing Johnson shout, “Justification by faith alone!” just before the detonation.
Johnson had been a member of a radical Lutheran group, the St. Lucia Society (“Lucy’s Boys”), but had no arrest record. Immediately after the bombing, the FBI arrested and questioned other known members of the group who were meeting in the basement of Faith Lutheran, including Pastor Knute Nordqvist.
After being released after questioning, Nordqvist denied the existence of any conspiracy. “Those boys were here just to help us plan next year’s lutefisk supper fundraiser, and no, all those rifles stolen by the feds were donated so that low-income parishioners could participate in hunting season.” When asked if he thought Lutherans bore any responsibility for the actions done in the name of that sect, Pastor Knute Nordqvist became visibly angry. “Collective responsibility is baseless and we are Lutherans—no pope is directing our actions. Maybe you should be asking about the injustices that triggered these unfortunate acts.”
The tragedy took place during the 13th annual Tolerance Day March in Minneapolis, held simultaneously with marches in cities around the world to celebrate the 2010 Great Fatwa in which the religious leaders of every Muslim nation gathered in Mecca to jointly issue a directive to all Muslims to cease persecution of Christian and Jewish minorities and to abjure the use of violence of any kind against non-combatants and innocents. It had been inspired by the outpouring of outrage by Muslims worldwide after the 164 cold-blooded Mumbai hotel murders perpetrated by the Pakistani terrorist group Lashkar-e-Tayyiba in 2008. The mass marches and protests throughout the Islamic world led to the dissolution of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence Agency (ISI) and massive global restrictions on funding and popular support for entities believed to aid terrorist groups.
Rep. Ilhan Omar, who led the Minneapolis march again this year, expressed her deep sorrow and said we should pity and not hate Lutherans. “Trying to justify indiscriminate acts of violence and murder just poisons the soul, damages serenity, and hurts our relationship with Allah. There is never any justification for murder, even murder of those who may hate us.”
The FBI was praised by federal, state, and local leaders for the speed with which they acted to round up the alleged co-conspirators. Sources told this reporter that a full ten-agent counterterrorism undercover squad had been undercover among the 22 attendees at a Tridentine Latin mass only a block away at Our Lady of Perpetual Sorrows. They raced to Faith Lutheran before the suspects could flee. The Minneapolis office of the FBI declined to confirm or deny their undercover status.
The names of some victims have not yet been released pending confirmation and notification of next of kin. However, it has just been confirmed that Aziz “Bootsie” Achmed, Minnesota’s first openly gay imam, was among the deceased.Published in