From CBS News Thursday afternoon:
The cause of the blaze remains unclear, but officials do not suspect terrorism or arson. …
A French judicial police official told the Associated Press investigators think an electrical short-circuit most likely caused the fire. The official, who spoke anonymously about the ongoing investigation, said investigators still don’t have the green light to work in the cathedral and search in the rubble for safety reasons.
Dozens investigating cause of massive Notre Dame fire
About 50 investigators are involved with the probe, and some 40 people, including those involved in the cathedral’s restoration work before the fire, had been questioned by Thursday, according the Paris prosecutor’s office.
So at this point, it sounds like we have nothing yet. No terrorist group has claimed credit and no inspectors have gotten to the site. All that has happened is that some people who had been inside the church have been interviewed and, so far as we know, none took the blame.
Man arrested at U.S. cathedral with gas cans, lighters
In the U.S., a New Jersey man was charged with attempted arson Thursday after trying to enter the historic St. Patrick’s Cathedral in New York carrying gas cans and lighters. Police said Marc Lamparello, 37, parked his minivan outside the historic cathedral just before 8 p.m. Wednesday, CBS News correspondent Mola Lenghi reports.
My impression from the 1990s is that Church Arson is a thing.
Back then, the Clinton Administration and the MSM freaked out and promoted a conspiracy theory that the dozens of black churches in the rural South that go up in flames each year were the work of some vast racist plot.
But, when cooler heads looked into it, it turned out that there are something like 500 church fires per year in the U.S. Why?
First, there are a lot of churches.
Second, many are old and not build to modern anti-fire standards.
Third, there is more church arson than you’d think. Some is Baptist Lightning with ministers wanting that big $50k fire insurance payout.
And there are firebugs, for whom churches make easy targets in that they are empty much of the week. Plus more than a few arsonists have unsurprisingly fraught relationships with God, religion, churches, etc.
This is one reason why I don’t think it’s a good idea for the New York Times to push arsonist imagery, such as its recent oped subtitled:
There are a number of people out there who like starting fires, so let’s not encourage them with our political ranting. For example, who knows how many of the recent brushfires in So Cal were started by arsonists? I do know that the biggest recent structural fire in L.A., of a huge apartment complex under construction downtown, was set by a Black Lives Matter terrorist.