Death Knell

JIJI PRESS/AFP.

Schoolchildren accompanied by their parents leave the elementary school in Osaka where a man killed eight students on Friday, June 8

Help me!" the children in a second-floor classroom heard the feeble, desperate cry from downstairs in an elementary school in Ikeda, a suburb of Osaka in western Japan. Then the screams grew louder. On the first floor, second-graders were just finishing music class when a large man in cream-colored trousers madly dashed toward them, muttering incoherently as he attacked pupils with a lethal 15-cm-bladed kitchen knife. He stabbed three boys standing by a chalkboard. When a girl tried to escape, he chased her down a corridor. "Run! Run!" a second child yelled. A teacher threw a chair at the attacker, who...

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