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What We Know and Don’t Know About the Manhattan Bombing

This weekend's bomb(s) in Manhattan didn't kill anyone. (Matias Rothkopf/Flickr)

All was abuzz in Manhattan as usual on Saturday night.

Then, an explosion was heard.

It was a bomb that went off in the Flatiron and Chelsea neighborhood of New York City. 29 people were injured.

There was also a pressure-cooker-style bomb found in a trash can a few blocks away that same night--but it never exploded, thieves are thought to have accidentally disabled the bomb when stealing a backpack and putting the bomb in a trash can.

All of this followed the explosion of a pipe bomb at a Marine Corps charity race in New Jersey.

It didn't end there.

More bombs were found in New Jersey on Sunday. A group of homeless people saw a backpack near a trash can and opened it up to see five explosives. They alerted police right away.

It was a frightening weekend of terror around the country's largest city. Let's take a look at what we know and don't know:

We know: The suspect was captured.

That was quick. The FBI identified a suspect--named Ahmad Khan Rahami--behind all of the bombs in New Jersey and New York.

He was captured on Monday morning in New Jersey.

There was a shootout, but the suspect was captured alive. Only two police officers were wounded.

The suspect is a US citizen born in Afghanistan. He lives in Elizabeth, New Jersey.

What we don't know: The suspect's motive

Behind every terrorist's attack, there is usually a motive.

No motive is clear right now, other than the obvious aim to inflict harm on people.

We know: What presidential candidates Clinton, Trump said

All of this is happening in the middle of a heated election season.

Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton said America will continue in its strength as a united country, as well as in its plan to defeat terrorist groups such as ISIS.

“This threat is real but so is our resolve. Americans will not cower, we will prevail. We will defend our country and defeat the evil twisted ideology of the terrorists. I’m the only candidate in this race who has been part of the hard decisions to take terrorists off the battlefield, and I’ve laid out a comprehensive plan to meet the evolving nature of this threat and take the fight to ISIS everywhere they threaten us, including online.”

Clinton also criticized the kind of rhetoric her opponent--GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump--has used, saying it helps ISIS recruit people.

Donald Trump hasn't said much about the attacks since his first statement on the bomb in Manhattan, and he called Saturday night's initial explosion a bomb before it was confirmed to be one.

(Clinton said she was waiting for more information on Saturday.)

Trump's campaign issued a statement:

Last weekend’s attacks, which are just the latest to be carried out on U.S. soil on President Obama’s watch, should be a wakeup call for every American.

They pointed fingers at President Obama's immigration policy and criticized Clinton's desire to increase the amount of Syrian refugees the United States takes in.

And Trump has tweeted:

We don't know: If this is from al Qaeda or ISIS

There's no group to blame just yet--there hasn't been a claim of responsibility from any international terrorist group.

We don't know: If there's a terror cell

It is not yet clear if the suspect is a part of a terrorist group (or "cell") we don't know about in the New York City area or within America.

Law enforcement--like the FBI--have been watching for a terrorist cell in the country and are investigating the suspect in this weekend's events. At the moment, there is no apparent terror group operating here.

We know: What POTUS said

President Obama commented on the bombs found over the weekend, saying Americans should not change their way of life:

“They will never beat us. As Americans, we do not and never will give in to fear. That’s going to be the most important ingredient in defeating those who want to carry out terrorist acts against us.”

And so New Yorkers will go off to the deli, as per usual.

Stay safe, everyone.

Images used under Creative Commons licensing.

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What We Know and Don’t Know About the Manhattan Bombing

Patrick deHahn

Patrick deHahn is a freelance international news reporter, having contributed to The Atlantic online and Mic. He's worked at CNNMoney, the New York Daily News, and Voice of America. Patrick loves tweeting, reading, and grabbing coffee in either New York or Washington D.C. Tweet anything on politics or world conflict to him! Follow: @patrickdehahn.

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