Chris Hayes & Co. Baffled By San Bernardino Motive

December 3rd, 2015 9:36 PM

Rudy Giuliani has said that if you can't figure out that what happened in San Bernardino was an act of terror, "you're a moron." But from Chris Hayes, to the FBI, to a representative of the Muslim community, to a Mother Jones reporter, to President Obama himself, one thing emerged from Hayes' MSNBC show tonight: they're all terribly confused and cautious about what possibly could have been the "motive" of the San Bernardino shooters.

Check out the video montage. It would be comical but for the heinous circumstances—and the unwillingness of the country's political, media and religious leaders to call out radical Islamic terrorism when they see it.

CHRIS HAYES: The FBI's been very careful about attributing motive here so far, it seems they really want to make sure they've penetrated down to the bedrock before they come out and say anything definitive.

PETE WILLIAMS: From the president on down. The president, the attorney general, the FBI officials here in Washington, the special agent in charge in LA, and the county and city authorities. They're all saying much the same: we don't know why they did it.

. . . 

CAIR OFFICIAL: It's mind-boggling. Really, we're all waiting for the results of the investigation to know the real motives. What could have made someone snap like that?

. . .

PRESIDENT OBAMA: It's possible that this was terrorist related. But we don't know. It's also possible that this was workplace related.

CHRIS HAYES: Authorities are still trying to establish a clear motive in yesterday's shooting rampage.   

. . . 

MARK FOLLMAN: Well, as you were just describing, Chris, the confluence of possible motive here is really fascinating, as much as this case is really horrifying. That this may have been some kind of workplace violence combined with some kind of ideological, terrorism-related motive.

. . . 

HAYES: Steve, there's been a lot of concern, and again, I want to be clear about what we know and don't know: we don't know the motives yet  . . . I guess my question is, is there some level at which motivation here ultimately never is resolveable; is fundamentally unknowable at some level?

FOLLMAN: Yeah, I think that's right. It's ultimately very hard to know what the motivation was in any kind of clear sense.