Last night’s hostage situation in Sydney lasted almost 17 hours and captivated the entire world, which was of course exactly what Islamic cleric Man Haron Monis had in mind when he walked into that cafe. When the guns stopped firing, a man and woman lay dead, four more were rushed away with injuries, and Australian authorities were left with the task of scraping up what was left of Monis.

From the Daily Mail:

Initially one man emerged with his hands up and lay down on the ground in front of police. Seconds later, a group of at least five hostages appeared suddenly after apparently escaping the cafe.

Seven Network reporter Chris Reason, who was watching the siege from his newsroom across the road, said Monis was attempting to usher the hostages from one side of the café to the other when a group broke away.

It is not clear what prompted police to storm the building, but it is believed Monis fired his shotgun, reportedly killing one of his captives.

This appeared to be the trigger for tactical police to move in. Within seconds, they had blasted through the cafe door and opened fire with automatic weapons, also hurling what appeared to be stun grenades. The sounds of explosions echoed through the city, and the flashes of rifle fire and the grenades lit up the area.
The gunfight lasted less than two minutes, and more hostages emerged after the police raid.

As the scene calmed down, a bomb disposal robot was seen entering the cafe.
The dramatic end to the siege came as the gunman holding the remaining captives was revealed as a self-proclaimed Islamic cleric Man Haron Monis.

Donald Trump appeared on Fox and Friends this morning and made a good point about how borderless the world becomes when Islamic extremists pick a target:

“You look at those images, that could happen anywhere,” said “Fox and Friends” host Steve Doocy, “You live on Fifth Avenue here in New York City. There’s a Lindt chocolate shop close to your house.”

“Maybe that will be next,” replied Trump. “And the fact is they no longer respect this part of the world, our world. They no longer respect it. They see what’s happened. They see what they get away it, and they just don’t have respect.”

“And it will happen in this country,” he predicted, “and it’ll happen more and more and throughout the world. A lot of it is a lack of respect, and they certainly don’t have that.”

The most striking thing about the world’s reaction to this is that nobody seemed particularly surprised that a card-carrying terrorist was holding court inside a downtown chocolate shop. It’s terrifying, and perverse—and we expect it.

A great number of people out there wish that the United States and her allies would ignore the threat of Islamic extremism, but the reactions I saw during the standoff prove that even if the politically correct classes don’t like it, people understand who these people are, and what they do.

Most importantly, they understand that anyone can be a target.