It is extremely painful to watch the images of homes burning, all the more so because my late Uncle and Aunt were burned out of their Santa Barbara home in a wildfire almost two decades ago. Their household appliances were reduced to puddles of shiny metal when we visited them shortly after they were able to get access to their former home. They lost all their photos (and everything else), so family members made copies of our old family pictures. Other family treasures were not so easily replaced.
This time around, I am deeply concerned that some of the fires might have been set intentionally by terrorists, or that terrorists may be planning to set such fires. This AP story from July 2003 warns that setting wildfires has been discussed by terrorists:
The FBI alerted law enforcement agencies last month that an al-Qaeda terrorist now in detention had talked of masterminding a plot to set a series of devastating forest fires around the western United States.
Other than a preliminary report on Fox News this morning that someone had been spotted setting a hillside on fire and arrested, I have no indication that there is any terror activity at work. However, it is obvious to any terrorist that Santa Anan winds offer the possibility of inflicting huge damage on California, home of the flesh pots of Hollywood, with a simple match.
Hat tip: Lucianne Goldberg