How Times Square 'humiliates' terrorism
While it is still not clear who was behind the attempt to bomb New York on Sunday, some tourists and other gawkers are particularly glad to add a dash of adventure to their trip. The crowds are back in strength, drawn by the parades in town, the vague whiff of danger, or both, writes P Rajendran.
And, basking in glory for once are the street vendors who on Sunday saw a suspicious vehicle and reported it to the police, who took whatever protective measures they could to clear the area. Fortunately, whatever was burning did not set off the propane tanks and the bags of fertilizer in the rear of the vehicle.
Photographs: P Rajendran
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Image: Times Square is buzzing again a day after a misfired bomb attack
The man who 'saved' New York
Dwayne Jackson, a T-shirt vendor, is very happy to take pictures with adoring women who describe him expansively as the man who saved New York.
Jackson -- or Lance Orton, another vendor, as varying reports have it -- saw a Nissan Pathfinder standing at an unusual spot -- at the corner of 45th Street and 7th Avenue, on the left side of that south-facing 'V' that makes up Times Square. Lance Orton has apparently had enough and is not expected to return for two days.
"I've been here for 13 years. People normally don't park right there, walk out of the car and leave the keys in the ignition," Jackson says.
Jackson, a Vietnam veteran, says he walked over to the vehicle, and saw the keys were still in. One of the three police officers, who followed him to see who was the owner, found that the car's windows were blacked out.
"Then the car started smoking from the back," says Jackson. There was a small explosion even before the fire department came to the spot, he says.
Image: Dwayne Jackson, who saw the SUV parked opposite his pushcart
Visitors could not care less
With that, everyone moved back. And that's when the police decided to move the people farther back, towards the Junior's Restaurant, farther west on 45th Street and away from Times Square.
Fortunately, after smoking for 5-10 minutes, the fire died out of its own without setting off the other explosives in the car.
Now, despite the marquee over the ABC News Times Square Studio describing a white male who was seen moving furtively immediately after the attack, Rallis Gialaboukis, who also parks his pushcart on 45th Street, is in a hurry today. He is going to appear on the Larry King show and does not want to repeat his role in the tale more than he has to."We have to be careful, watch everyone," he says. It may be true for those who work at the Times Square, but the visitors could not care less. And perhaps it is for the best: there is little as humiliating to a terrorist than be all but ignored.
Image: The marquee over the ABC News studios flash a report of a man being seeing moving suspiciously after the attack