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Trump’s silence on mosque bombing provokes criticism

Plus: plans revealed for super-sized ice palace; $575,000 worth of counterfeit toy airplanes seized in International Falls; gas leak forces evacuation in Minneapolis’ Prospect Park; and more.

President Donald Trump
REUTERS/Scott Morgan

For The HuffPost, Carol Kuruvilla says: “Days after an explosion rocked a Minnesota mosque, President Donald Trump has yet to publicly offer his support to the community. … The president’s silence this week isn’t surprising. Dozens of U.S. mosques have been targeted with threats, vandalism or arson since the beginning of the year, and Trump has yet to offer a word of condolence or comfort to American Muslims, who are concerned about their place in society and the safety of their places of worship.” 

At Newsweek, Jack Moore writes: “Trump’s inaction provoked censure on Twitter. ‘Dear @realDonaldTrump, there was an act of domestic terrorism at the Dar Al Farooq mosque. Your silence is deafening. Sincerely, America,’ one user said in a tweet. … One joked: The only thing missing from Trump’s denunciation of the attack on a Minnesota mosque was a denunciation of the attack on a Minnesota mosque.’ Trump’s silence on the attack follows similar periods of quiet after the January shooting at a mosque in Quebec that left six dead, the murder of a Muslim teenager in Virginia and the Finsbury Park mosque attack in London that left one dead, both in June.”

The Strib kicks in with this: “This kind of interfaith, cross-community unity is the real face of Minnesota — not the hateful cowardice shown in the mosque attack. And it’s not just rhetorical: By late afternoon Monday, a GoFundMe page set up to raise the $95,000 needed to repair the damage done by what the FBI described as ‘an improvised explosive device’ already had received more than $52,000. Minnesota has a national reputation for tolerance and inclusion, but that ethos is increasingly under attack. ”

Palace intrigue: In the Pioneer Press, Bob Shaw writes: “A supersized ice palace is being planned for the 2018 St. Paul Winter Carnival  — to coincide with the 2018 Super Bowl in Minneapolis. The $15 million structure is expected to be built on the grounds of the state Capitol, according to a Monday night presentation at the annual meeting of the St. Paul Festival and Heritage Foundation, which oversees the Winter Carnival. The details of the planned ice palace were announced by David Crary, co-chair of the foundation’s Ice Palace Committee. He didn’t say how high the palace would be but hopes it will exceed the 163-foot height of the 1992 palace, built at Harriet Island to coincide with Super Bowl XXVI at the Metrodome. “The Super Bowl will be in Minneapolis, but the fun will be in St. Paul,” Crary said. 

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A train container of counterfeit …  planes. The PiPress story says, “Federal border officials say they have seized $575,000 worth of counterfeit toy airplanes in International Falls, Minn. U.S. Customs and Border Protection didn’t say what led them to question the 36,000 toy airplanes early this month, but further investigation determined that the importer and manufacturer lacked licenses to display the trademark or make the toys. The toys filled a rail container.”

Good mutts. A KARE-TV story by Adrienne Broadus says: “The war on drugs now has three, new four-legged fighters. After weeks of training, the newest members of the Minnesota State Patrol demonstrated how they search locations for drugs. The new K-9s, King, Remy and Keno, all experienced 10 weeks of training where they learned to detect various drugs in different locations. Sgt. Chat Mills, the K-9 Coordinator, said dogs are paired with handlers that match their personalities. … The Minnesota State Patrol now has 15 K-9’s.”

Another gas scare. Says Tim Nelson for MPR: “CenterPoint Energy workers have shut off a gas leak after the incident forced evacuation from several buildings in Minneapolis’ Prospect Park neighborhood Monday afternoon. Firefighters were clearing the scene and all occupants were allowed back into their buildings by 7 p.m., the fire department said on Twitter. However, workers remained at building under construction — where the leak apparently started — as of early Monday night.”

Oh, carp. Kirsti Marohn of MPR says, “A long-awaited federal report recommends using methods including noise, electricity, water jets and other methods to keep invasive Asian carp out of the Great Lakes. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ 488-page study focuses on the Brandon Road Lock and Dam near Joliet, Ill. It’s considered a key bottleneck in the effort to prevent Asian carp from moving upstream from the Mississippi River watershed into the Great Lakes basin. The Corps of Engineers studied six alternatives and recommended a combination, including installing an electric barrier and a system that uses ‘complex noise’ as a deterrent.”