Date
17 August 2017
One of the flags is see atop the superstructure of New York's Brooklyn Bridge. A senior police official has ruled out terror links but the NYPD is leaving nothing to chance.  Photo: CNN
One of the flags is see atop the superstructure of New York's Brooklyn Bridge. A senior police official has ruled out terror links but the NYPD is leaving nothing to chance. Photo: CNN

Is it art or danger sign? Mystery of Brooklyn white flag

If they were an art project, the New York police would like to know. If they were some sort of warning, they’d be interested in every detail.

Whatever the case, two white flags at the top of New York’s Brooklyn Bridge caused a mix of intrigue and anxiety after construction workers spotted them on Tuesday.

It wasn’t until two days after they replaced two American flags that had flown over the superstructure since as far back as any New Yorker can remember that the offending banners were removed while counter-terror experts watched, according to CNN.

It appears that the flags were genuine stars and stripes that had been bleached white. Also, the lighting under them appears to have been tampered with.

NYPD Deputy Commissioner for Intelligence John Miller said the flags did not bear the hallmarks of terrorism or politics. “This may be somebody’s art project, or it may be an attempt at making some kind of statement, but at this point it’s not clear what that statement is.”

Still, his boss, Bill Bratton, is leaving nothing to chance. Calling it “a matter of concern”, he is asking for information from the public. He has a team scouring social media for any hint about the culprits or any claim of responsibility.

Most New Yorkers, who are nothing if not care-free, have moved on from 9/11 but terror still lurks in the back of their minds. They’re quick to sit up and take notice if a bomb goes off in the farthest corner of the planet, but they’re also just as easily able to get on with their lives.

That said, New Yorkers didn’t see the humor if the brazen display had been a stunt. 

“If flying a white flag atop the Brooklyn Bridge is someone’s idea of a joke, I’m not laughing,” Brooklyn Borough president Eric Adams said. “The public safety of our city is of paramount importance, particularly our landmarks and bridges that are already known to be high-risk targets.”

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