News from North America, Wednesday 17th April 2013

Reuters: “Boston Marathon bombing investigators on Wednesday entered the third day of their hunt with an emerging picture of the target: a suspect or suspects carrying heavy bags or backpacks made of dark nylon.

While still unable to conclude whether a group or individuals were responsible for the attacks that killed three people and wounded 176, and whether they were foreign or American, investigators gathered enough evidence at the crime scene on Tuesday to slightly narrow their search.”

CNN: “Within a day of the Oklahoma City bombing, officials had named their suspect: Timothy McVeigh. Within two days of the 9/11 attacks, investigators had zeroed in on al Qaeda as the perpetrator.

But as loved ones mourn the deaths of three people and dozens remain hospitalized from dual bombings at the Boston Marathon, two questions continue to hound authorities: Who triggered the attack, and why?

Even for seasoned investigators, the theories run the gamut on whether Monday’s attack was an act of domestic or foreign terrorism.”

CNN: “An envelope that tested positive for the deadly poison ricin was intercepted Tuesday afternoon at the U.S. Capitol’s off-site mail facility in Washington, congressional and law enforcement sources tell CNN.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said he was told the letter was addressed to the office of Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Mississippi. A laboratory in Maryland confirmed the presence of ricin after initial field tests indicated the poison was present, according to Senate Sergeant-at-Arms Terrance Gainer.”

Huffington Post: “A federal judge sentenced a former Marine from Indiana to 20 years in prison Tuesday for starting a fire inside an Ohio mosque because he wanted revenge for the killings of American soldiers overseas.

Randy Linn, 52, apologized in court and blamed what happened on a day of heavy drinking. He said late last year while pleading guilty that he’d become enraged after seeing images of wounded soldiers in the news and decided to burn the mosque.”

FBI: “Two New Jersey men convicted for conspiring to travel to Somalia to join a terrorist group and murder individuals whose beliefs and practices did not align with their extremist ideology were sentenced today to 22 and 20 years in prison, respectively, New Jersey U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced.

Mohamed Hamoud Alessa, 23, of North Bergen, who was sentenced to 264 months in prison, and Carlos Eduardo Almonte, a/k/a “Omar,” 27, of Elmwood Park, who was sentenced to 240 months in prison, previously pleaded guilty to one count of conspiring to murder persons outside the United States on behalf of designated Foreign Terrorist Organization al Shabaab.”

START: “In light of the series of bombs that exploded near the finish line at the Boston Marathon on April 15, the University of Maryland’s National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism (START) has compiled data on the history of terrorism in Boston, Massachusetts, terrorist usage of coordinated attacks in the United States, and terrorist attacks at previous marathons around the world.”

Live Science:  “A video of the scene from Monday’s Boston Marathon bombing showed people running toward the wounded, trying to help. A flood of support and sympathy poured out all across the Internet. And Bostonians rushed to donate blood and offer spare bedrooms to those displaced by the blast.

Even though a human (or humans) caused the carnage at the finish line, such acts of kindness, as well as a sense of empathy, are actually hard to overcome — even for the terrorists, psychologists say.”

Comment: Foreign Policy: ‘What Extremists Are Saying About the Boston Massacre’ by J.M. Berger. “Domestic extremists of every stripe have been eager to discuss who is responsible for the Boston Marathon bombing, and their conclusion has been almost unanimous: It’s the other guy.”

Comment: The Guardian: ‘Terrorism in the US: what is the real threat level?’ by Harry J Enten. “Though we know nothing yet about who committed the bombings at the Boston Marathon, or why they did so, the assumption at this point is that these were acts of terror – and, as the president affirmed Tuesday, is being investigated as such.

The shadow cast by the 9/11 attack means that every such incident now tends to be seen as a new episode in a distinct and frightening era of terrorism in the mainland United States. But does this picture actually fit the historical record?”

Comment: Daily Telegraph: ‘Boston Marathon bombings: America the vulnerable’ by Tim Stanley.  “The scenes from Boston feel depressingly familiar. Violence in a crowded public space, blood, screams, panic and the wail of police sirens. This latest American tragedy has taken three lives and left dozens injured, and it only adds to the fear and paranoia that already pervade US politics. Twelve years after the 9/11 attacks, America still feels vulnerable. As it has every right to, for the country finds itself under attack from without and within, locking it into a terrible cycle of violence.”

This entry was posted in News and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Territory: . : , . Bookmark the permalink. Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.
  • Navigate to regional portals

    North America Middle East South Asia Europe
  • Latest analysis from our experts

    Paul Kamolnick
    Paul Kamolnick · United States
  • Get our Extremism Tracker Email

    * indicates required