Boston Marathon Suspect Wounded, Arrested
The worst appears over for the city of Boston as police arrested their final second suspect in the Boston Marathon bombing. He is 19 year-old Dzhokhar A. Tsarnaev, a U.S. citizen of Chechen heritage. He’d taken refuge in a covered boat in a Watertown backyard. After another shootout, he was arrested and taken to a hospital for treatment. He’d been wounded in the earlier shootout that had killed his older brother, Tamerlan, yesterday.
Police did not read him his Miranda rights under what’s called a “public safety exception.” This allows authorities to delay offering suspects legal representation and delay warning them that they may incriminate themselves if they talk to police without a lawyer. The legal claim is that when there is an imminent threat of further injury to the public they may continue questioning a suspect in order to elicit information that may eliminate such a threat.
However, the question becomes–when do constitutionally-guaranteed rights kick in? Will they ever read him his rights? And will they attempt to use information he may offer them before being Mirandized in court to prosecute him? They surely will try. Now, the question becomes–are we so anesthetized that the courts will be prepared essentially to suspend civil rights to terror suspects, even if they’re citizens and commit their crimes on U.S. soil.
If so, this becomes a further expansion of the war on terror, bringing it all back home, so to speak. We’ve already “established” Obama may kill U.S. citizens in foreign countries without trial. We’ve established that he may arrest foreign citizens and hold them indefinitely without trial in Guantanamo. But we’ve yet to extend this to our own citizens on our home ground. That would truly be an “innovation.”
The younger brother, Dzhokhar, attended Boston’s most élite public high school, Boston Latin. There he was a star wrestler who had a broad social network of friends. He was quite popular and accepted.
As opposed to his older brother, who never acclimated to this country. Tamerlan’s one concession to normality seemed to be to marry and have a child. A Rhode Island woman, Katherine Russell, converted to Islam for him and had a child, Zahara, who is now three. My heart goes out to both of them. Especially this child, who will someday have to try to understand what her father did and why.
One has to ask the question: how does a father of a little baby commit such an act and in the process take the life of an 8 year-old boy? Doing so is literally insane. This moving tweet brought it home to me.
The impetus for the crime appears to have come from a trip that Tamerlan took with his father to Russia and the Caucuses in 2012. The boys were born in Kazakstan, though their family were refugees from war-torn Chechnya. They’d come to the U.S. as refugees a decade ago with the help of the father’s sister, who’d settled in Toronto.
Scott Shane has an instructive article in today’s Times about the precarious existece of Muslim immigrants who have their feet in both worlds–Old and New. The confusion, resentment and guilt adds special fuel to a life lived in the interstices between two cultures, fully comfortable in neither.
Russian intelligence seems to have done a far better job of vetting Tamerlan than our own FBI. When they discovered the boy intended to return to Russia, they asked the FBI to investigate him. The latter even went so far as to interview him personally in 2011. It claims it could find nothing incriminating in his background or activity. Thus, a golden opportunity to intervene and disrupt the blossoming of a future terrorist was lost.
Further, Tamerlan was convicted of assaulting his then-girl-friend in 2009 (she too had converted to Islam for his sake). He could have been deported at that time by U.S. authorities, which was the second opportunity to disrupt his budding terrorist future. This conviction seems also to have destroyed his hopes of pursuing a boxing career, which was the one constructive thing at which he excelled.
Tamerlan spent six months in Russia last year. His father claims his son spent most of his time with him in Dagestan and that they also visited relatives in Chechnya. Mr. Tsarnaev also claims his son did not consort with Islamists while there. Though that seems false. It’s doubtful Russian intelligence would’ve been concerned enough to report him to the FBI as a potential Islamist terrorist; and that Tamerlan would’ve gone on to commit this bombing–without having been “inspired” to do so by groups or individuals he met there.
There will be, and already is a concerted campaign by right-wingers to demonize all Muslims for this act. Islamic facilities have been vandalized in the past 24 hours. Twitter (which, by the way, proved a far more effective tool for learning about developments in this case than any mainstream media source) is brimming with such lunacy. Here’s but a single example:
@abou_charlie Islam has only killed 100 Million ppl in 1440 years. It’s practice today is a crime against humanity & against human biology
— Paul Andres Iniesta(@Paul_Andrez_TO) April 20, 2013
The truth is that Islam no more committed this crime or is culpable for it than Judaism is responsible for murdering Palestinians (or Jesus for that matter). Only very small minds would mistake the misguided, hateful acts of individuals for the beliefs of an entire religion. They’d also have to ignore efforts by the Muslim community to denounce such hate and violence.
Haaretz’s U.S. correspondent provides a further example of cluelessness on this score when he writes in the foolishly titled, Terror Wins and America Loses All Proportion:
If the purpose of terror is to frighten people and instill terror, and to impact governments and have a global impact, there is no doubt the pair of brothers succeeded beyond their rosiest dreams.
This isn’t at all what has happened. Boston is back to normal. Neither it nor America has been brought to its knees. There has been no precedent set that will entice others to try their hand at this. This sentiment is nothing but Israeli wishful thinking and misunderstanding of American society.
But there is an important lesson here that also is difficult for mono-culture westerners like most Americans to understand. That is, Muslims in places like Chechnya have suffered profoundly at the hands of Russia over the past 60 years, beginning with Stalin, who exiled most of them to Kazakstan during World War II, in the belief they’d collaborated with the Nazis.
Speaking of insular and geogrpahically-challenged Americans, we don’t seem to be able to distinguish between Chechnya and the Czech Republic, which forced the Czech ambassador in Washington to offer a quick media tutorial that went something like this: Chechnya=bad, Czech=good.
Yet another example of our cultural insensitivity can be seen in this Ali Abunimah tweet about NPR’s report that the Boston bombing was the first incident of domestic terror since 9/11. This conveniently omits numerous acts of terror committed by white supremacists like the attack on the Wisconsin Sikh temple, the murder of abortion doctor, George Tiller, etc. The moral here is that white Americans can’t be proper terrorists, but dark-skinned foreigners (even if U.S. citizens) can.
Returning to Chechen history, the suffering under Stalin was followed by two more decades of war with Russia in an effort to achieve independence. Putin supported a scorched earth second war that killed hundreds of thousands of Chechen civilians and left the country a ruin. He installed a warlord puppet who assassinates his enemies even in foreign countries with impunity. Both Russia and its puppet Kadyrov are beyond doubt guilty of serious war crimes.
Add to this, our own policies in the Middle East and Muslim lands: drone attacks, secret kill lists, unaccountable targeted killings, hundreds of civilian dead (including children). Though Russia has no more a sense of strategic engagement in Chechnya than we have in the Muslim world, at least it has spent billions to rebuild the country.
Our billions spent in Iraq and Afghanistan seem to have had little or no impact on rebuilding those places or redeeming them from the ranks of failed states. In our drone attacks in these countries (along with Yemen and Somalia), we have no accompanying constructive policy. We shower them with missiles and expect that they will understand that we do it for the greater good of humanity. This might conceivably work if we had a complementary policy of constructive engagement in the Muslim world that offered a more positive message. But we don’t.
So while I find the Boston bombings to be repulsive acts of deranged minds, there is no doubt that they demonstrate in some measure the bankruptcy of our own approach in the Middle East. We offer Chechens like the Tsarnaev boys nothing but bullets and bombs. Do we expect them to thank us for it?
A final word on Twitter. I was on vacation when the bombing and its aftermath occurred. I didn’t have ready access to TV. So I happened upon my Twitter feed and discovered that tweeps were glued to the Boston police scanner and reporting every development as it occurred in real-time. Watertown residents were tweeting what they were hearing and seeing in their own backyards. The entire experience the night of the shootings was one of a Twitter community in which everyone was helping each other to understand, absorb and interpret the events.
CNN and other mainstream media outlets, which formerly used to make their livings and reputations off covering such breaking news stories, were out in the cold. They had a bunch of talking heads blathering on and on and saying nothing helpful or useful. It was all happening on Twitter. It reminds me of that song: Video Killed the Radio Star. In this case, social media (specifically Twitter) killed the cable star.
50 thoughts on “Boston Marathon Suspect Wounded, Arrested – Tikun Olam תיקון עולם إصلاح العالم”
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So the seemingly perspicacious Mr Silverstein has it all solved. He is of Chechen heritage. No more needs to be said. He went to Russia last year. That explains it all. I wonder if Mt Silverstein describes Al Pacino as of Italian heritage? Donald Rumsfeld as of German heritage? Himself as of Khazak heritage (presuming he is a descendant of those in Khazaria who converted to Judaism and became Ashkenazi Jews). Always looking for superficial explanations.
If you’re looking for superficial explanations you might try writing our own blog and reading your own swill. That should satisfy your narcissist impulses. If not that, I suggest World News Daily, Debka Files, or MEMRI as more suitable for superficiality than my blog.
First of all, I want to thank you for a balanced and comprehensive article about the Patriots’ Day bombing. I’m often most critical about the stories on blogs and/or in the media. Your article gives food for thought. There are many questions still left open, I will react in a later post.
This morning, a spokesperson for Putin mentioned the Tsarnaev family traveled on passports from Turkey. Earlier I understood they lived in Dagestan during the ’90s and traveled to the US in 2001 via a short stay in Kyrgyzstan. The FBI does need to answers questions and the coming investigation will undoubtedly provide more surprise facts.
Learn of Dagestan from Tolstoy:
Russian attempts to suppress Chechen separatism have even made a contribution to world literature, in the form of Leo Tolstoy’s masterful novella, Hadji Murad [pdf].
PS Many of the Islamists responsible for the London metro bombing in July 2005, were married with young children. It appears a strategy for Islamists to conform to local customs, shave beards, visit bars and prostitutes before an act of terror. In Europe there are a number of married couples jointly participating in terror.
Please note my disapproval of your casual use of the term “Islamists” when describing extremists who visit acts of murderous terror upon innocent civilians. Islamism is a very wide political movement and does not mean fundamentalism or extremism; to suggest that by conflating the terms is like implicitly equating right-wingers with Nazis or leftists with Stalinists. Your words could be misconstrued that way.
Furthermore, your remarks:
“It appears a strategy for Islamists to conform to local customs, shave beards, visit bars and prostitutes before an act of terror”, and: “In Europe there are a number of married couples jointly participating in terror”
strike me as bizarre and oddly specific; and if you’re going to insist on them, although I don’t know what point they are supposed to make, then I think you should provide a source for them.
Pt. 1 Well taken, any suggestion e.g. Islamic extremist?
Pt. 2 Behavior before an assault is well documented. See the 9/11 terrorists in South-Florida and the Fort Hood shooter. The London metro bombers were mostly young men, married and with children.
Pt. 3 Terrorist couple is just as prevalent as it is in criminal gangs.
1. Yes, “Islamic extremist” is more appropriate for extremists when it’s clear that someone is in fact an Islamist (and preferably also that their extremism was clearly connected to their Islamism). And I have no problem with describing the perpetrators of the London bombings of July 2005 that way. “Jihadist” is a controversial term for radical militant Islamists, but one which I personally have no trouble using, even though it’s not perfect.
In the same way, in addition to “terrorist” or “extremist”, Anders Breivik (who calls himself a “conservative revolutionary”) should be qualified as “right-wing”, “far-right”, “ultra-conservative” or “Christian” (since there is not really a word for being “Christianist”, perhaps ironically). He has also been widely described as a “counterjihadist”, which I think is accurate. (See an article about Counterjihad here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Counterjihad )
Of course, one could argue what is and what is not extreme, when, as many people have pointed out here in the past few days, America and Israel and many, many other states and governments, which we as democratic citizens ourselves tacitly condone and represent, perpetrate extreme actions on an almost daily basis as a matter of policy; and in some cases, such as the Gaza Massacre, and arguably the drone campaigns in Pakistan, such policies amount to what can only be described as “state terror” — much like the original, revolutionary Terror of the French Revolution, which itself is a difficult subject.
Still, I believe we must have a term for those who attack innocent civilians in a premeditated fashion for political or ideological purposes, and I think “extremist” or “terrorist” is technically useful for that phenomenon, even though the terms can mean other things too.
I will add, even though I think you already agree, that in the case of Boston, we can reasonably conclude that the Tsarnaevs are terrorists, but we know nothing yet of their motives or ideology. At most, we believe they are Muslims, but that in itself means nothing. We have, as yet, no indication it was their religion, or a religious-political ideology, that motivated their extremist actions.
2. Breivik, too, did his best to “blend in” with normal society, even though he was deeply different; he played World of Warcraft as a cover to isolate himself; he wore normal clothes in public as opposed to his bizarre religious costumes and Masonic regalia; he too visited pubs; and he too visited or planned to visit a prostitute before the attack. So I don’t see that this should be considered a strategy of Islamic extremists. If anything it is a logical pattern of behaviour for anyone wishing to keep a low profile, for any reason.
3. I don’t know anything about the prevalence of couples either among terrorists or in criminal gangs. But I won’t argue that point because I don’t see its relevance. If the point is: many people choose to sacrifice their lives in situations of war and terrorism even though they have families — yes, I believe so too. Conviction is a powerful thing.
“We have, as yet, no indication it was their religion, or a religious-political ideology, that motivated their extremist actions”
Suheir Hammad, Palestinian-American living in Brooklyn wrote this after 09.11: First Writing ever since:
Min 2:30: “We did not vilify White men when McVeigh bombed Oklahoma (…) and when we talk about holy books, hooded men and death why never mention the KKK.”
PS. I just read about a guy from Bangladesh who was beaten up in Brooklyn on the day of the bombing in Boston (he didn’t even know about it) because he was an ‘Arab’….
DY, talking about Bangladeshi victims of hate crimes, the name – and actions – of Rais Bhuiyan come to mind.
“Rais Bhuiyan, 37, a former Air Force pilot from Bangladesh, survived after Mr. Stroman shot him in the face at close range.”
Q “Mr. Stroman has admitted trying to kill you. Why are you trying to save his life?”
A “I was raised very well by my parents and teachers. They raised me with good morals and strong faith. They taught me to put yourself in others’ shoes. Even if they hurt you, don’t take revenge. Forgive them. Move on. It will bring something good to you and them. My Islamic faith teaches me this too. He said he did this as an act of war and a lot of Americans wanted to do it but he had the courage to do it — to shoot Muslims. After it happened I was just simply struggling to survive in this country. I decided that forgiveness was not enough. That what he did was out of ignorance. I decided I had to do something to save this person’s life. That killing someone in Dallas is not an answer for what happened on Sept. 11.”
Black Widows: The Chechen Female Suicide Terrorists – see link to pdf doc. for info motivation, circumstances of PTSD and revenge feelings.
The RT.com interview with father of the Tsarnaev brothers in Dagestan is quite revealing:
The father of Dzhokhar, Anzor Tsarnaev, spoke from the city of Makhachkala, capital of the Russian republic of Dagestan, shortly after police said his other son, 26-year-old Tamerlan, had been killed in a shootout. Anzor Tsarnaev called on his (younger) son to give up peacefully. At the same time he warned that if the US kills his son, “all hell will break loose”.
Malika el Aroud‘s previous husband, Abdessattar Dahmane, had assassinated Ahmed Shah Massoud, the head of the anti-Taliban Northern Alliance, in a suicide bombing ordered by Osama bin Laden two days before the 911 attacks on the United States.
Richard: “We’ve already “established” Obama may kill U.S. citizens in foreign countries without trial”. Well, yes. But not just Obama. Think of such intellectual giants as President Palin, being advised by her “national security team” (that is the home-grown USA’s terrorist org) as to how, when, where to use un-Constitutional and illegal force to effect their purposes.
The use of unrestrained force seems to be addictive, Absolute power corrupts absolutely. But, I imagine, some people who hold absolute power (well, you know what I mean — USA presidents have very little power in some realms — think AIPAC, BIG BANKS, BIG DEFENSE) may have enough character not to grotesquely over-use it. I hope President Obama is such an one. But some day we will have a real twit as president — as George W Bush was — who can easily be persuaded to overuse the deadly power.
So Obama me no Obamas on this important topic.
Firstly, as a human being I have to say I do sympathise with all the victims of this terrible terrorist attack. Secondly, as a Czech person (not a Chechnian one) I would like to react to the interpretation of the note issued by the Czech Embassy in the text above: I haven´t noticed Petr Gandalovic, our ambassador wrote Chechnya is a bad country – or have I missed something? He just made it clear to the Americans that there are two different names of two different countries (quite distant from each other, by the way) and I personally think it´s rather sad to have to remind this fact on such a political level. I am not a marching encyclopedia either, but before giving an unfortunate statement like this about the origin of the attackers, I would most probably check certain information to avoid blackening somebody innocent. Guys, you have the internet at hand at least if you are writing discussion contributions, don´t you?
Expansion of executive authority, diminishment of Congressional powers & prerogatives, civil society, law and individual liberties is the price of Empire. Obama is a member of the US establishment of power, body and soul, and a mere byproduct of a historical process that began over 100 years ago with what native Hawaiians consider the conquest of their islands in 1893.
Its been a downhill racer ever since, which includes the progressive era, liberalism and all that the left believes and fights for. Republicans, ultra-nationalists, corporatism & other blood suckers, lobbies foreign & domestic are by no means the only guilty parties in the decline and inevitable destruction of US republican, constitutional governance and freedom.
All you have identified are just symptoms, effects, not causalities. The underlying drivers of today’s America are the paths and steady acquisition of American Empire since 1893, which is viscerally opposed to constitutional republicanism and liberty. The end state, if its not averted, is tyranny and the snuffing out of what little remains of the Spirit of 1775 and republican governance.
Did General Ross and Commodore Cockburn not see the end from the beginning?
Your comments about Twitter are seriously misguided. Misinformation was presented as fact and an innocent person was asserted to be the bomber. His family was harassed as his name was tweeted and re-tweeted for hours, even though he had no connection to the attack. It was truly an embarrassing episode for all involved and many many people have apologized for their role in spreading the false info via Twitter.
I agree with you that the Twitter journalism was far from unproblematic — however, let’s note that the major traditional media, too, made serious and dangerous mistakes; from CNN to the New York Post, which briefly persecuted a succession of innocent persons (who just happened to be of ethnic minorities).
I think the general problem, whether in the “Little Brother” social media flow or in the newsrooms of the networks and papers, is that serious, professional journalists who exercise judgment and caution are vastly and increasingly outnumbered by clowns, hacks, and sensationalists.
No, they haven’t.
Most of the people who were spreading the “news” of the boys implicated by the NYP are the sort to say, in general, “well, being Arab/Muslim/Olive/Brown skinned is basically being guilty by extension. Let’s go beat up Muslims or vandalize a mosque.”
Stop acting like those posts were an “innocent misunderstanding”. They were far too vitriolic or blatantly racist in their wording.
Bob, Bob: I’ll let you in on a secret about social media (and every media source). You have to bring your own intelligence and discernment to bear in using them. That means that you read the material and sift through it. You use your judgment. You avoid what appears biased. You use a certain degree of caution.
Most of this post was reported using Twitter as a source for various reports. I hadn’t notivpced you poking too many wholes in it. I have no doubt you would if you could. But you haven’t. Which means that the Twitter sources I used together with my own judgment did a decent job.
So chill Bob.
Here’s what I mean:
The Internet’s shameful false ID
Updated: This morning’s reports make clear: Citizen detectives smeared a missing college student
Bob, I’m a big boy & have enough sense to hold back on reporting a rumor till it’s a fully vetted piece of information. Apprently, I have more faith than you in crowd source journalism, which may be why I write this blog & you…mostly complain.
Whoever blames The Muslims (as such, law abiding citizens included) with blood thirsty, indiscriminate terror-tendencies, following the Boston bombing, subscribes in advance to blaming The Jews (as such, law abiding citizens included) with insatiable criminal greed tendencies, following the exposure of the next Madoff.
There’s a problem with reading rights to a man who’s badly wounded: he might not understand, and there’s a strong chance he won’t remember.
Christopher Craig famously pleaded guilty to murder based on what the police told him he’d done. (His back had been broken when he fell from a warehouse roof and to this day has no memory of the immediate circumstances before his arrest.) I doubt that the suspect in Boston, assuming he survives, will remember anything much about his arrest after being wounded more than once immediately beforehand. I also think that interrogating him in the short term, whether with respect to his legal rights or not, is most unlikely to result in a coherent and measured account of events. It is superfluous: there’s such a mountain of evidence against him that his conviction is already probable and nothing he says is going to change that in one direction or the other.
Current practice in the UK (as opposed to 1947 when Mr Craig was arrested) is to convey injured suspects to hospital and formally arrest them and place them under caution (the equivalent of reading them their rights) when given medical clearance to do so. It’s generally assumed that no useful purpose is served by barking questions at a semi-conscious stretcher case.
I gather that this is more or less what is actually happening now in Boston, whether it’s normal practice in the US or not.
“The boys were both born in Kazakstan”
Maybe it’s another Chechenya-Czech Republic moment in the US media, but the Tsarnaev family lived in Kyrgyzstan for decades, in a town called Tokmok.
How the Tsarnaev ended up in Kyrgyzstan : http://www.voanews.com/content/boston-accusations-shock-brothers-former-kyrgyz-hometown/1645612.html
“We offer Chechens like the Tsarnaev boys nothing but bullets and bombs. Do we expect them to thank us for it?”
Really ? i thought the US government was gracious enough, and let the Tsarnaev boys immigrate to this country. Isn’t that a good enough reason no to plant Bombs in your city of residence, A bomb that may kill one of your neighbors/ acquaintances/classmate/ex-girlfriend ?
When it comes to the opportunity, those kids received a huge opportunity, they got much better education were on track for much better life then the life they had. But they chose to do what they did out of Ideology.
There is no other explanation.
If you lived in a country that killed thousands of Jews and also allowed you to settle there, you’d have to be forgiven for reacting with a certain level of vehemence to the murder of your co-religionists. Or have you forgotten that Ehud Barak said if we’re a Palestinian he’d be a militant too??
The conclusion from what you just said is that due to current US foreign policy the US shouldn’t provide asylum to anyone originated in Muslim countries because despite the fact that you will change their life around they will still resent you for your foreign policy will never assimilate and will bring the fight to your own streets killing an innocent 8 years old boy along the way.
Also my memory is a little hazy, but the US was never part of the Chechen Wars, nor the US attacks anyone in this territory or Dagestan . Being a Jew i am totally aware of the guilt trip issue the tribe has, it seems that you have taken yours a bit too far.
Barak said that about Palestinians he he didn’t said that about Israeli Arabs, the brothers should be compared to the later not the former. Huge different.
@Elad R: That is precisely the position of the GOP and anti Muslim types. You should be proud to be on their wavelength completely.
As for my own view, you completely misunspderstand it as usual. I don’t believe that every Muslim seeking asylum on these shores will become the Tsarnaev brothers. But I do know that however few of them there may be here in future, there will be even less (or perhaps none) if we adopt a tolerant, pragmatic, constructive approach to the Muslim/Arab world.
Have you forgotten that the Tsarnaevs are MUSLIM? And that the U.S. has considered itself at war with what it considers to be Muslim terrorists (but which most Muslims deny to be so) for decades? Now I repeat, would you feel angry and resentful if you were a U.S. citizen and the U.S. government had killed 3,000 Jews calling them terrorists? I notice how you danced around that question quite shamelessly, I thought.
@ Richard despite you attempt to appoint me a point of view i never claimed one, so please speak for yourself. I – apparently not like you – do not think that any Muslim out there pays homage to the Muslim tribe and not every Muslim out there identifies him/her self with the faith of other Muslims, if you think that is the case you are the one drawing a line connecting all Muslims in the world. I don’t.
Allow me to elaborate on the failure of your logic as i see it:
On one hand you claim there is no Muslim ideology that turns believers into terrorists – in other words you ignore / dismiss the idea of Jihad and cultural war. On the other hand you are arguing that because the US has a certain foreign policy directed at other soverign countries that turns people not affected directly by that policy into terrorists. This is malarkey.
With respect to your ridiculous question, the US has imprisoned an American Jew for spaying on behalf of the state of Israel, did a Jew strap a bomb onto himself and committed suicide in an attempt to free Jonathan Pollard ? did any Jew planted a bomb next to the finish line of the Boston Marathon (or any other marathon) and killed 3 innocent people ?
may i remind you that the War on terror was initiated after a group of 19 Muslims who followed their ideology flew 3 airplanes into office Buildings in downtown NYC and the Pentagon killing almost 3,000 innocent people, giving the US a good enough reason the initiate the war on terror, have Jews ever done something even close ? you are comparing things that shouldn’t be compared.
In your effort to create distinctions that don’t exist, you’ve mangled and deliberately misunderstood my views. U.S. foreign policy isn’t directed at “sovereign countries” so much as against radical Islamist movements within those countries. It is a war we view as against Muslim extremists, and many Muslims themselves view as against Islam itself.
Further, many Muslims, whether they live in these countries or thousands of miles away don’t view themselves as “not directly affected by” our policy. In fact, they hold the very Jewish view of kol Yisrael arevim zeh ba-zeh, that all Israel is bound up together. In other words, what harms one Muslim harms all Muslims. This is called solidarity, a notion common to most religions and political movements. So once again contrary to your claims, my views on this aren’t “malarkey,” but quite accurate.
I note that instead of answering my question directly, you dredged up a wholly inappropriate analogy to Jonathan Pollard. In my question to you I posited that the U.S. was killing Jews (not imprisoning them). Killing 3,000 Jews to be precise, not imprisoning one Jew (Pollard). Why is it that you are so desperate to avoid my own analogy? Could it be that you know I’m right and that you and many other Jews would rail against such injustice. And that you and possibly other Jews might actually be willing to engage in an act of desperation and resistance. An act that was heinous, that killed people, but that you viewed as just in light of the great injustice against which you protested?
Why yes they have. You might recall the Polish Jew, Herschel Grynszpan, who assassinated the Nazi diplomat in Paris in 1938, which brought about Kristalnacht as an act of German revenge. He too killed to protest Jewish dead. in fact, this postcard he wrote to his parents explaining his act of desperation, sounds much like the telephone call Tamerlan made to his uncle just after the Marathon bombing in which he begged forgiveness from him for what he’d done:
Again, I’m neither justifying what the Tsarnaevs did nor what a Jew might do in a similar situation. I’m merely trying to point out that we’re all human beings and that our responses to tremendous suffering and injustice aren’t that dissimilar despite what you and Pam Geller might have us believe.
@ Elad Ridiculous
“Barak said that about Palestinians he didn’t say that about Israeli Arabs….”
Those are the same people, often coming from the same families, lived on the same land and in the same villages and towns before ’48. The fact that you try to dissociate Palestinians in Israel and elsewhere shows that you know nothing about them (nor do you care) or the way they feel and self-identify.
To push your sick comparison further: according to your disticntion between Palestinians and Israeli Arabs, the Holocaust should only concern those who were actually killed or survived the camps, people who lost family members during the genocide shouldn’t be concerned and surely not the Mizrahim. Pfff !
You are comparing apples and oranges and ignoring reality.
Despite your political agenda there is a huge difference between Israeli Arabs and Palestinians. The first hold an Israeli ID care and are equal right citizens, the later are not.
Your statement is the reason we know there would never be peace, Your statement is the reason Israel insist the PA will recognize Israel as a Jewish state.
If you think citizens of a country have a right to throw bombs, there is no room for a discussion.
“If you think citizens of a country have a right to throw bombs, there is no room for a discussion”
Cut the crap, will you ! Nowhere did I mention anything about bombs ! The Arab citizens in Israel self-identify in their vast majority as Palestinians (Israeli Palestinians, ’48 Palestinians, Palestinian citizens of Israel, Palestinians living in Israel, Palestinians), and no cheap Zionist hasbarista is going to divide the Palestinians into Palestinians and “Israeli Arabs”.
First you claim that “Israeli Arabs” are equal right (?) citizens (which of course is a lie, starting with the Citizenship Law) and then next you claim that Israel should insist on being a Jewish state. Only a ethnocentric supremacist doesn’t see the contradiction.
What do you mean you didn’t mention anything about Bombs ?
Did you ignore the context of the conversation ? So just to remind you the context is Ehud Barak statement that if he was a Palestinian who would become a militant.
I separated the two groups, Israeli Arabs who has equal rights enjoy access to the Israeli social systems : Healthcare, Welfare Education etc. And the Palestinians who has no rights within the Israeli social system and have no country of their own to supply similar services. By combining the two groups you support the right of Israeli Arabs to armed resistance (following the logic presented in Barak’s statement) and that is ludicrous.
I don’t know if you were told but one can be a citizen of one state following their law to the letter while being culturally assimilated to another group. For examples the Palestinian citizens of France, The Mexicans in the US the Israeli’s who reside in the US and so on.
I don’t think it’s worth arguing with this particular liar. He’s set his way of thinking in stone.
You’d think he’d at least show sympathy towards people from Chechnya as a whole, given that they suffered through two brutal Russian-instigated wars and now a putinite puppet government under Kadyrov.
@Elad R: the concept of “jihad” is far more complex in the mainstream Muslim world than it is to the radical Wahhabis who most commonly use the term to further their cause.
Of course, “Muslims are normal people too” doesn’t really fit into your own ideology, does it.
This is the first time I have objected to anything you have written, but I object to this. You are repeating hearsay, unsubstantiated “background” on these young men, when absolutely nothing that has been parroted by the press can be used to even begin to speculate on what happened. It is not even wise to take anything the family has said at face value. As has been discussed before, we don’t even know if this was an act of terrorism or not, at least not in the “political violence” sense. The young man is not even awake and the FBI won’t release any information on his condition.
“Tamerlan spent six months in Russia last year. His father claims his son spent most of his time with him in Dagestan and that they also visited relatives in Chechnya. Mr. Tsarnaev also claims his son did not consort with Islamists while there. Though that seems false. It’s doubtful Russian intelligence would’ve been concerned enough to report him to the FBI as a potential Islamist terrorist; and that Tamerlan would’ve gone on to commit this bombing–without having been “inspired” to do so by groups or individuals he met there.”
I don’t know where you got this from, but various sources I have read said nothing about Russian intelligence reporting him to the FBI; it was stated that an inquiry was made to the FBI and the agency responded by saying they had no information indicating he had any ties to Islamist groups or activities.
See this Associated Press report, via the Washington Post:
‘The Russian FSB intelligence security service told the FBI in early 2011 about information that Tamerlan Tsarnaev, one of the brothers suspected in the Boston Marathon bombings, was a follower of radical Islam, two law enforcement officials said Saturday.’
The NYT, for its part, writes:
‘… the F.B.I. disclosed in a statement that in 2011 “a foreign government” — now acknowledged by officials to be Russia — asked for information about Tamerlan, “based on information that he was a follower of radical Islam and a strong believer, and that he had changed drastically since 2010 as he prepared to leave the United States for travel to the country’s region to join unspecified underground groups.”’
The FBI claims to have examined Tsarnaev in response to this request, but that they did not come up with anything that alarmed them. It’s unclear to me how much weight they gave to the Russians’ own concerns.
‘It was unclear Saturday whether Russia makes requests of any American traveler of Chechen origin to Russia, or if the Russian government offered the F.B.I. specific evidence in the case of Mr. Tsarnaev.’
That is my point. A routine inquiry from an anonymous tip. Guess what? It happens all the time in an age of religious paranoia. It happened to an American I know.
Being religious, even as a Muslim, does not mean you are a potential terrorist. I know Muslims who have posted videos of Anwar al Awlaki and Osama Bin Laden on their Facebooks – but they are not terrorists.
Richard assumes Tamerlan met with Islamists on his trip to Russia but has no proof. Even if he did, what does that mean? I know a lot of Islamists myself, but that in and of itself means nothing.
I’m sorry, but I see an attempt here to make these young men into religious extremists, when there is nothing to indicate it to be the case. I have seen more compelling speculation (and less offensive to me as a Muslim) in the comparison to the Columbine case. I think there is a heavy psychological situation here, not necessarily having anything to do with Islam. The rush to hook it up to religious fanaticism is very ugly and unfair.
@EladR, for once you have said something true. We Muslims are not all the same, we do not think the same, nor do we believe the same. But the rest of what you said is so wrong that you should just erase it from your mind totally. It’s so gl and vicious that it boggles the mind. You know nothing about Islam, obviously; you are so ignorant that you take extremist doctrine and attribute it to mainstream religious teachings. You then imply that because a group of so-called Muslims allegedly were responsible for 9/11, that this hideous violence is part of what Islam embraces. I am sorry Richard’s comment rules prohibit me from saying what I think of your stupidity, but know this: your mentality is what gets Muslims killed not only in the US, but all around the world. Stupidity is what causes more violence than religion ever will. I’m surprised that as a Jew, this has escaped you.
@EladR, I am also revolted by your glib words of Jewish superiority, especially knowing the terrorism committed by Jews against Palestinians. Your implication that Jews are superior to Muslims is laughable.
I agree that the motives of terrorism should more often be explored in terms of psychology rather than merely in religion or politics; Slavoj Žižek, for instance, persuasively distinguishes between “proper” fundamentalism (e. g. Tibetan Buddhism, Amish) and violent terrorism which, and I simplify, he links to resentment, a morbid obsession with the sins of the Other, an internalized feeling of inferiority towards the supposedly or actually hostile Other. See his book “Violence” for more on this.
No-one becomes a mass murderer, or even an acid-thrower, on the basis of ideology alone. So many other mental triggers are necessary — some of which should be examined in the light of politics, some in that of sociology, some in that of economics, some in that of psychology, etc. Ultimately, religion — for all its pomp and circumstance — is just another part in the very complex machinery of human behaviour. It is also a convenient scapegoat, as both Jews and Muslims know all too well.
Russia asked the FBI to investigate Boston bombing suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev in 2011, a source in US law enforcement told Reuters. The state, which was not identified in the statement on the FBI website, filed a request concerning Tsarnaev saying that he was a follower of radical Islam and was preparing to leave the US for a particular region to join “unspecified underground groups.”
In 1999, Republican presidential candidate George W. Bush and his advisor Condoleeza Rice, warned Russia about HR violations in Chechnya and urged support for the Afghan-style “freedom fighters”. The democratization of the Soviet satellite states and in greater Middle-East region hit a snag as US policy failed.
Mary: I can understand your discomfort at much of this. But I don’t think it does Muslims or anyone a service to shrink from what appears reasonable, if not yet definitive.
Your information about the Ryssian inquiry is wrong. Russian intelligence warned the FBI that he was planning a trip the the Caucuses and asked them to investigate for fear he had radical Islamist leanings. The FBI appears to have done a piss poor job.
This was an act of terror. Obama said it from almost Day One. Denying what is obvious to most doesn’t do our cause any good.
Firstly, as a human being I have to say I do sympathise with all the victims of this terrorist attack. Secondly, as a Czech person (not a Chechnian one) I would like to react to the interpretation of the note issued by the Czech Embassy in the text above: I haven´t noticed Petr Gandalovic, our ambassador wrote Chechnya is a bad country – or have I missed something? He just made it clear to the Americans that there are two different names of two different countries (quite distant from each other, by the way) and I personally think it´s rather sad to have to remind this fact on such a political level. I am not a marching encyclopedia either, but before giving an unfortunate statement like this about the origin of the terrorists, I would most probably check certain information to avoid blackening somebody innocent. Guys, you have the internet at hand at least when you are writing discussion contributions, don´t you?
I tweeted tht it’s a sad testament to the mono cultural nature of American society, our insularity and geographical ignorance that we need to be reminded of such rings. Allow me to apologize that your country should have to offer us a world geography tutorial.
Statement by Petr Gandalovič, Ambassador of the Czech Republic.
You say that someone who has children but kills other children must be “liiterally insane”. Unless you are a qualified psynciatrist who has treated the suspect, I don’t think you have any basis for making such a diagnosis. Many Nazis who carried out atrocities killing children were good father and family men themselves.
Regarding your comment “We offer Chechens like the Tsarnaev boys nothing but bullets and bombs. Do we expect them to thank us for it?” I presume that you are saying that what they did is at least somewhat “understandable”, although I fail to see how the people they killed were in any way responsible for American policy in Chechnya. But let’s extrapoliate what you have said….given the horrific history of Jewish suffering in the 20th century and before and the thosands of Israeli CIVILIANS killed by Palestinian terrorism which you yourself condemn, then wouldn’t the actions of Teital, Goldstein and Amir ALSO fall in the category of being at least “somewhat understandable” according to your own definition>
@Bar Kochba: In your use of the term “understandable” I think you’re deliberately attempting to conflate it with “justifiable.” This I would never do. I may “understand” the reasons a terrorist might choose to kill someone. But I would never justify it. I don’t justify the murders at the Marathon any more than I would justify the murders by Baruch Goldstein or the other Jewish murderer-terrorists you mentioned.
Can I understand their grievance from their own point of view? Certainly I can intellectually understand it. But I reject it just as I reject Tamerlan Tsarnaev’s alleged acts of exploding bombs and killing Americans.
I like this quote …
“Twitter does its best work in the first five minutes after a disaster, and its worst in the twelve hours after that.”
— Matt Roller (@rolldiggity) April 15, 2013
How easy to make a blunder:
I confess a journalistic sin by Jeff Jarvis
@Oui: I should add to what you wrote above by way of explanation: I learned what I learned about the Marathon bombing and its aftermath by reading my own Twitter timeline. That is, tweets of those I chose to follow. I didn’t read every bit of nonsense that every Twitter user wrote about the bombing. So the garbage Matt Roller speaks of or that Bob Mann criticizes wasn’t as prevalent in my timeline since, hopefully, I chose to follow people who are careful and reasonable. That considerably narrowed down the Twitter universe for me (I follow just over 1,000 people).
Thanks for clarifying the extreme right view on the subject:
1. You are stating “U.S. foreign policy isn’t directed at “sovereign countries” so much as against radical Islamist movements within those countries”
2. You are stating ” In fact, they hold the very Jewish view of kol Yisrael arevim zeh ba-zeh, that all Israel is bound up together. In other words, what harms one Muslim harms all Muslims. ”
to summarize these two point (which you brought) The US runs a campaign against radical Islamist movements, who I’m sure you’ll agree adhere to cultural war against the west and Jihad. Muslims who do not share the same ideology see themselves, as an act of solidarity, bound to the faith of those who share the extreme ideology.
The argument you made contradicts the notion presented by you on this site many times that there is a different within the Muslim society and not all Muslims share the same extreme ideology.
The outcome of both your arguments is that it really doesn’t matter if a Muslim holds an extreme Ideology due to Muslim solidarity. This argument is BS.
You actually expect us to believe you treat Jewish terrorists the same as Muslim ones? Whenever you bring up Jewish terrorists, it is always with entirely unqualified condemnation and disgust: no context, no grievances, nothing. And of course you’ll prominently post any bloody photos you can find. But if innocent Jews are ever murdered, whether in Itamar or Mumbai, you’ll fill it with qualifications, background, and context. And of course, no photos; in fact, you’ll make the deaths as vague and as passive as possible.