Boston Bombing: FBI Terror Plot Gone Live
One of the two ethnic Chechens suspected by US officials of being behind the Boston Marathon bombings had been under FBI surveillance for at least three years, his mother said. Zubeidat Tsarnaeva told the English-language Russia Today state television station in a phone interview, a recording of which was obtained by Reuters, that she believed her sons were innocent and had been framed.
Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, was killed in a shootout with police and his 19-year-old brother Dzhokhar was captured after a day-long manhunt.
Boston suspects' father: Somebody framed them
"He (Tamerlan) was 'controlled' by the FBI, like, for three to five years," she said, speaking in English and using the direct English translation of a word in Russian that means monitored. "They knew what my son was doing, they knew what sites on the Internet he was going to," she said in what Russia Today described as a call from Makhachkala, where she lives in Russia's Dagestan region after returning from the United States.
Tsarnaeva echoed the boys' father, Anzor, who said on Friday that he believed they had been framed. Both suggested in separate interviews that the FBI had made no secret of the fact that at least one of the brothers was being watched.
"I do not believe that my sons could have planned and organized the terrorist act, because they knew US national security services were keeping an eye on them," Anzor Tsarnaev told Russia's Channel One television. "They (the security services) said 'We know what you eat, what you read on the Internet'," he said, without making clear how the security officers had made contact.
In her interview with Russia Today, Tsarnaeva suggested FBI officers had visited her home when she still lived in the United States and told her that Tamerlan "was really an extremist leader and that they were afraid of him."
FBI interviewed Boston bombing suspect in 2011 -source
By Mark Hosenball and Warren Strobel | Reuters
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The FBI in 2011 interviewed one of the brothers suspected in the deadly Boston Marathon bombings, a U.S. law enforcement source said on Friday, a disclosure that could raise questions about whether the government missed potential warning signs about the men's behavior.
The source said the FBI's dealings two years ago with Tamerlan Tsarnaev occurred following a request from an unidentified foreign government.
The FBI did not produce any "derogatory" information on Tsarnaev and agents then put the matter "to bed," said the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
Tamerlan Tsarnaev died overnight in Boston in a shootout with police. His younger brother, Dzhokhar, was taken into custody on Friday evening in the Boston suburb of Watertown after a dramatic, day-long manhunt, Boston police said.
The revelation that the elder Tsarnaev was on U.S. law enforcement authorities' radar screens seemed likely to raise uncomfortable questions for the Obama administration about whether it could have done anything to detect and stop the plot.
"It's new information to me and it's very disturbing that he's on the FBI radar screen," Rep. Michael McCaul, Texas Republican and chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, said on CNN late Friday.
It is not known when the Boston Marathon bombings were planned, or whether there were clues that could have allowed authorities to pre-empt it.
National security and law enforcement authorities said on earlier Friday that they had not turned up any evidence that the Tsarnaevs had contacts with al Qaeda or other militants overseas. The brothers were in the United States legally.
The officials said they were leaning toward the theory that the bombings were motivated by Islamic extremism, although that remained unproven.
(snip)Another top priority for investigators is to determine whether the brothers had any confederates either inside the United States or overseas, one U.S. official said. This official and others spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss an ongoing investigation.
Three people were taken into custody for questioning in New Bedford, Massachusetts, police said on Friday. Two men and a woman are being questioned by the FBI "on the assumption there is an affiliation with" Tsarnaev, Lieutenant Robert Richard of the New Bedford Police said.
One official said the possibility that the U.S. government had information that should have raised questions about the Tsarnaev brothers before the attack could not be ruled out. Other officials said they were unaware that such material had turned up.
In several recent cases, U.S. intelligence and law enforcement agencies failed to put together clues that, in hindsight, might have led them to pre-empt a plot.
In 2009, U.S. Army Maj. Nidal Hassan killed 13 people and wounded another 32 at Fort Hood, Texas. Prior to the shooting spree, Hassan had email contacts with Anwar al-Awlaki, the U.S.-born cleric and leader of al Qaida's affiliate in Yemen who was later killed in a U.S. drone strike. U.S. authorities had investigated Hassan's emails, but concluded they posed no threat of violence.
The father of Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the so-called "underwear bomber" who tried to bring down a U.S. jetliner over Detroit on Christmas Day 2009, reported suspicions about his son's activities to the U.S. Embassy in Nigeria. But Abdulmutallab's U.S. visa was never revoked.
A report by the Senate intelligence committee heavily criticized U.S. intelligence agencies for failing to act on available information in that case.19-year-old Dzhokhar A. Tsarnaev-- younger brother of the two bombing suspects-- seemed like a normal teenager, into smoking pot, liked "Breaking Bad" and meth and thought 9/11 was an inside job.
Oddly, Dzhokhar became a citizen in 9/11/2012.
More on the FBI and terror plots here.
Lots of fishiness, all around, like with the ridiculous ricin plot that popped up in this last week.