What an eventful two weeks it has been. Monday, the 15th, at 2:50pm, during the Boston Marathon, two blasts went off by the finish line, as he first batch of runners were crossing it. Two people were pronounced dead at the scene, an 8-year-old boy and a 29-year-old woman while countless others injured. I think the count just rose to like 264, according to Huffington Post. A day or two later, we learned that a third person had died, first was unidentified, but later we learned that she was a Boston College student from China.
This event, this incident, is yet another reminder that we are far from safe from terrorists. I knew it was a Muslim terrorist attack from the start. Come on, two bombs went off. The second blast gave it away, while the first one could have been perceived as something accidental. As usual, it took Obama over 24 hours to call it what it was -- an "act of terror". There's actually a much deeper meaning to the word "terror" and the act of it, but we'll get into that in a later blog.
As the week wore on, I was constantly on top of this story -- no matter the news outlet. Like I said, I knew it was a terrorist attack and I knew it would be fascinating to see things unfold. Yeah, I'm reading, and have read, a few books (including The Terrorist Next Door by Erick Stakelbeck) and I'm reading about them after the fact, but I'm somehow enjoying seeing these events and new revelations via evidence as it's happening, whether it'd be through social media, news apps on my phone, it just looking at Google News. It's good to read about it from more than one source. Being that I knew it was Muslims, I jumped on that Saudi national bandwagon that the New York Post started Tues(?). I first saw their tweet, and then the next day, it was on their front page, with a woman, possibly a runner, sitting on the ground, dazed. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I shouldn't trust anything Rupert Murdock produces, but anyway. Once I learned that these two suspects, brothers, of "Russian Caucasus" origin, I had to 1) look it up, because I had no idea where that was and 2) wonder how they were Muslims. Thanks to Google Maps, it all made sense. The Caucasus mountains cover Chechnya (where the suspects are from) and Dagestan, of Russia. The two area, especially Dagestan, have seen lots of violence, preferably jihadi violence, against the Russian government and against Christians, which is sadly expected. I didn't know jack about Chechnya, so I did a little research. Turns out they have a brutal history of their own, that goes back centuries.
Chechens are a rather tight-knit people, but have been a lot of oppression over the centuries. First taken over by a Russian czar, and oppressed, then by Stalin with communism, they never wanted to be apart of Russia. But before all this, they were rather vicious people, and still are in some ways. As for their religion, they had their own pagan beliefs before the Eastern Orthodox Church came into the picture, and Islam made its way there, and have been that way ever since. Pretty much all the former Soviet republics are Muslims, save for Belarus, and are not that devout, save for Afghanistan and Pakistan, because of communist oppression.
The suspects, Tamerlan, 26, and Dkhokhar (aka "Jahar"), 19, Tsarnaev were born in Chechnya, having two sisters between them in age, but moved around, not by choice, to a few of the former Soviet republics before arriving in the US when Tamerlan was 16. He was going to school for engineering and had taken up boxing (Chechen men commonly take up some sort of martial arts -- Jahar took up wrestling). He also had a live-in girlfriend in 2008/2009, in which he was accusing of domestic violence. He could have been deported, but officials said he wasn't a threat. Up until the Russian intelligence community went to both the FBI and CIA, and neither took the urgent message seriously. Tamerlan never became an official US citizen. Younger brother Jahar became a citizen on 9/11/2012... interesting. Jahar is actually recovering, and there's a ton of people who believe he's innocent, and there's a Facebook page for him, and the #FreeJahar tag on Twitter. Oh, conspiracy theorists. I'm like that at times, but only when it's justifiable. Let's see how this case comes together. It's like girls are just virtually throwing themselves via tweets to #FreeJahar. BTW ladies, he speaks like 6 languages... including English.
Now, my honest opinion, news outlets really need to get their stories straight. First, I read that they were planning on coming here to NYC to party, and I just read from another outlet that they were going to bomb Times Square...
And, another thing - where did they get the materials from? A fireworks store in New Hampshire - about an hour's drive from Boston. They wanted the biggest they had. As it turns out, it was the SAME EXACT STORE that the would-be Times Sq bomber bought his materials back in 2010. Hmm... maybe people who buy enough fireworks that are "barely legal" to sell should be screened like people are going to be screened when buying firearms...
"...given that Muslims in the West who become 'more religious' have recently shown a nasty tendency to drift into jihad."
Chapter 4 - Black Hawk Now
The Terrorist Next Door by Erick