As the smoke to the worst shooting massacre in American history clears, more and more details are becoming apparent, and more questions are begging for answers.
The murderer Stephen Paddock had an entire arsenal in his hotel room. I just saw Time's filmclip of the massacre, and the audio staccato of gunfire sounded like an entire infantry platoon. He had automatic weapons and plenty of ammo; otherwise, he couldn't have afflicted the extent of bloodshed that he did, killing and maiming so many people in so short a time.
Meanwhile, ISIS has taken credit for the massacre, claiming that Paddock converted to Isalm several months ago and became a soldier of the jihad, or holy war.
Not only law enforcement agencies, but any thinking individual, should be asking:
- How did Paddock get all those weapons into the hotel?
- Where was standard hotel security?
- How did all those automatic weapons and ammo remain undiscovered in the five days that the murderer had been in the hotel?
- How does an individual with no military background work like a precision killing machine?
One thing we do know - the answers to all the above questions is Hashem; nothing could have happened if He didn't allow it.
Why did Hashem let this happen?
Looking for an answer, I asked my beloved and esteemed teacher, Rav Shalom Arush. Here's what he said: "Hashem is showing how ugly and cruel a world without emuna is; He has already done this in other places around the world, but people haven't understood the message. We all must strengthen ourselves in emuna and spread emuna as far and as wide as we possibly can. We can prevent things like this from happening again."
We should all pay attention to all the ugly violence in the first 48 hours after Yom Kippur - terrorist attacks in Marseille, France and Edmonton, Canada as well as the ongoing bloodbath in Syria and Myanmar as well as the continued violence against innocent Catalonians, Armenians and Kurds who are merely seeking freedom and self-determination.
Yes, the world without emuna is an ugly mess.
My prayer is that we all heed Rav Arush's words. We must strengthen ourselves and the world in emuna and turn to Hashem - it's our only hope.