Sunday, October 06, 2013

NYC Madness

Was it a motorcycle gang that swarmed investment banker Alexian Lien, dragged him from his Range Rover, and beat him? Was it a mob enraged by Lien's seeming callousness? Was this an ethnically-fuelled attack? Or a bike vs. car rivalry? Was it a class war skirmish? Was it common road rage?

A daytime drive in upper Manhattan for a young family quickly turned nasty last Sunday (29 Sept) when they collided with a pack of motorcyclists. Plainclothes police were among the motorcyclists, and at least some of the multiple altercations were filmed over the at-least four mile chase & assault(s). Nobody was killed, but a man was crushed under Alexian Lien's SUV Range Rover, and Lien was subsequently dragged from the driver's seat and beaten in the street in front of his wife & toddler.

The bikers were part of a larger annual rally of some 1000 motorcyclists from around the region converging on Times Square (link), in which police reportedly forcefully intervened - making many arrests & confiscating 55 motorcycles.

The incident makes clear that sudden attacks can easily happen - in New York City or elsewhere, by a mob or by the cops.

Mr. Lien seems suddenly to have been confronted with annoyance, then trouble. How to best react? Conditions escalated / deteriorated quickly. While Lien survived with reportedly minor injuries, it is imaginable he & his family might have been killed. Subsequent reports on Lien's background (link) (link) and financial situation (involving Skrill emoney / Moneybookers, Investcorp and the Bahraini royal family) led to Lien seeking withdrawal from LinkedIn and other social media. Confrontation thus continues shaking-up those involved & peripheral. Of course the "live & let live" option seems most appealing in hindsight.