With all eyes on Beijing, waiting for China to make an untoward step, it is no wonder that today’s headlines all screamed about the senseless stabbing of two Americans associated with the U.S. Olympic volleyball team.  Todd Bachman – father-in-law of Hugh McCutcheon, the American men’s volleyball coach – was fatally stabbed at Drum Tower, a popular tourist attraction in Beijing. His wife Barbara Bachman and a female Chinese tour guide were also injured – Barbara’s injuries are considered life-threatening.

The killer is identified as 47-year-old Tang Yongming from Hangzhou. He committed suicide after the attack, which appears to have been completely unprovoked. Tang had no criminal record and was not behaving suspiciously before the attack.

The Bachman’s are a Minnesota family, and Todd Bachman ran a successful chain of garden centers. Their daughter Elisabeth – married to volleyball coach McCutcheon – is a fromer Olympian herself, having competed in the same sport in the 2004 Olympic Games in Atlanta. The Bachman chain of stores is over 100 years old, with Todd as the fourth generation to run the business, which provides pointsettia’s to the White House every Christmas since 1984.

Despite the overwhelming security presence at this year’s Games, random crimes are still unavoidable. But whereas other crimes might never receive worldwide coverage out of China, in this case every country has their major news organizations operating in and around Beijing. It will be interesting to see over the coming weeks just how much more news from inside that secretive country actually manages to slip out, thanks to the free Western press who happen to be on hand. The Chinese government may think they can control everything. This only proves that they cannot.

Update: Just moments after hitting the “publish” button, news broke of further troubles in China.

A news agency says several explosions have rocked a county in a restive Muslim region of western China, but no casualties have been reported.

The official Xinhua News Agency says the explosions took place early Sunday in Kuqa county in the Xinjiang region.

The agency cited witnesses as saying they saw flashes of fire and heard gun shots following the explosions.