Not Helping

In defending the NSA’s broad surveillance of all of us, out-going FBI Director Robert Mueller told Congress that one of those programs identified Tamerlan Tsarnaev’s friend in Florida after the Boston Marathon bombings.

Yeah, they found him after the bombings.  And they killed him even though he was unarmed.  Great example.

There Was No Knife

Now the government is saying that Ibragim Todashev, the Chechen friend of Tamerlan Tsarnaev who was killed in Orlando by an FBI agent, was unarmed at the time of his death.  Original reports said that Todashev, who supposedly was about to sign a confession implicating himself and Tamerlan in a triple murder in Waltham, MA on 9/11/11, had a knife.

More Questions Than Answers in Tsarnaev Friend Shooting

 

From “The Killing of Tamerlan Tsarnaev’s Would-Be Accomplice Wasn’t So Simple,” Alexander Abad-Santos, The Atlantic Wire:

“Ibragim Todashev may or may not have pulled a knife on investigators in his own apartment. He may or may not have been ready to sign a confession implicating himself and Tamerlan Tsarnaev in a 2011 triple homicide. All we know is that lethal force was used when Todashev was shot and killed early Wednesday morning,  and the only people alive to tell us the truth are the Massachusetts State Police officers and FBI agents who were in the room and pulled the trigger.

 

“What spilled out in the immediate aftermath were reports that 1) Todashev was about to complete his written confession, perhaps strengthening the case against Tsarnaev; and 2) Todashev pulled a knife on investigators, prompting them to kill one of the only men in America who have known when Tsarnaev turned for the worse. Both of those claims seem a lot less solid today….

 

 

“‘I think something went wrong there. I think they just shot him. He didn’t do anything. I know him. He just wanted everything to be over,’ one of Todashev’s roommates told NBC West Palm Beach, and his estranged wife added, ‘He wasn’t involved. So he was not even nervous [to talk with the FBI].’  Todashev’s wife could be talking about the Boston bombings [not the 2011 Waltham triple murder], but she was right about Todashev being cooperative. Todashev, according to CBS, had been talking with the FBI since two days after the Tsarnaev brothers were identified.

 

“What’s perhaps more puzzling is that the story doesn’t seem to add up: What new piece of information makes a guy who has been cooperating with FBI agents for the last month or so turn on them? Could the seizure of [his] computer have led to more revelations? Could the threat of jail time have dawned on him? And even more macabre, one of Todashev’s friends told NBC Orlando that he had been questioned with Todashev by agents on Tuesday night — and that Todashev felt like he was going to die. ‘He felt inside he was going to get shot,’ Khusn Taramiv said. ‘I told him, ‘Everything is going to be fine, don’t worry about it.’ He said, ‘I have a really bad feeling.'”

I wonder if Todashev felt he had been promised a degree of leniency that wasn’t reflected in the confession he was about to sign, that he felt the FBI had reneged on a deal he thought he had, and he became violent.

 


 

Chechen Killed in FL Connected to Tamerlan Tsarnaev

Ibragin Todashev, a Chechen who knew Tamerlan Tsarnaev when he lived in Boston, has been shot and killed in Orlando, FL while being questioned by the FBI and other law enforcement.

The shooting is of course being investigated, but the FBI agent involved says he acted in self-defense when Todashev pulled a knife on him.

Todashev apparently confessed to a role in an unsolved triple murder in Waltham, MA that occurred in 2011, and also implicated Tamerlan in the murders.  One of the victims was Tamerlan’s best friend.

Todashev apparently knew Tamerlan from their common participation in martial arts.

Wow!

The L. A. Times reports* that on April 10, the Boston Regional Intelligence Center issued an 18-page “joint special event assessment” warning that the finish line of the Boston Marathon was an “area of increased vulnerability” and that there might be “small scale bombings.”

 

*  “Intelligence report identified vulnerability before Boston bombing,” Brian Bennett and Richard A. Serrano

Saudis Warned Us about Tamerlan

Saudi Arabia claims that they warned our Department of Homeland Security about Tamerlan Tsarnaev last year.  This was independent of the Russian warning, and was based on intelligence out of Yemen.

Tamerlan tried to make a pilgrimage to Mecca, but the Saudis refused to let him in their country.

It’s Always the Mom’s Fault

Chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, Michael McCaul (R-Texas) believes that the Tsarnaev brothers’ mother played a very strong role in their radicalization.  He said that she would be detained for questioning if she were to return to the U. S.

He also said that given the sophistication of the bombs, he believes that the brothers had training.

It should be noted that while the Al Qaeda online magazine Inspire has instructions for making a bomb, it doesn’t tell you how to make the complex triggering device they used.

Tsarnaev Carjack Victim Purposely Left Smartphone

The 26-year-old Chinese national known as “Danny,” whose Mercedes the Tsarnaev brothers hijacked, purposely left his iPhone in the car when he escaped, so that the police could use it to track the brothers.

When they stopped for gas, Dzhokhar went inside to pay, and Tamerlan put his gun aside to figure out the navigation device (maybe planning his route to New York City?), so Danny managed to escape and run to the gas station across the street to call 911.

Danny also said that when his phone rang, the brothers threatened to kill him if he spoke Chinese on the phone.