Boston marathon bomb tragedy, and media rush to judgment

This video from the USA is called Kathrine Switzer, Pioneering Boston Marathon Runner, on Fight to Stay in 1967 Male-Dominated Race.

First of all, today I wish recovery and strength for the survivors, families and friends of the Boston marathon bomb horror in the USA.

Then, I remember the Oklahoma bomb horror in the USA. Still many more people killed and wounded. The big media shouted: “Muslims! Muslims!” But the perpetrator of the atrocity turned out to be extreme Right Christian Timothy McVeigh; aided and abetted by other far Rightists.

I also remember the mass murders in Norway. The big media shouted: “Muslims! Muslims!” But the perpetrator of the atrocity turned out to be extreme Right Islamophobe Anders Behring Breivik, a killer with many links to neo-nazis and other far Rightists.

By Barry Grey in the USA:

Media rush to judgment in Boston Marathon bombing

16 April 2013

The explosion of two bombs Monday afternoon at the Boston Marathon has been accompanied by a rush to judgment by the media, in which claims of a broad new terror attack are being made without any factual substantiation.

The bombs exploded near the finish line of the marathon in the heart of the city’s downtown area. According to media reports, at least three people were killed and 144 wounded, including 15 with critical injuries. Witnesses on the scene and at hospitals have reported that the injuries include amputated lower limbs.

The explosions took place within about 20 seconds of one another and 50-100 yards apart, while thousands of marathoners were still running and many thousands of spectators were lined up along the route. The blasts shattered storefront windows, sending shards of glass and other debris into the crowd.

No individual or organization has as yet claimed responsibility for this brutal and criminal act.

Copley Square was evacuated and will reportedly remain closed off for 24 hours. Parts of the city’s public transit system were shut down and aircraft grounded for several hours at Logan International Airport, but service resumed in the early evening.

The federal government increased security around the White House, and New York City announced it had elevated its security operations.

In a press conference several hours after the blasts, Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis said there was a third explosion several miles away at the John F. Kennedy Library, which authorities were treating as related to the bombings at the marathon. However, officials subsequently said the incident at the JFK Library was “fire-related” and not connected to the marathon bombings.

There were also multiple press reports of a third bomb deliberately detonated by authorities following the initial blasts, and the Associated Press cited an unnamed intelligence official as saying at least one other device was found in the area of the race.

In the absence of clear facts or forensic evidence, many of the statements made by the media amounted to pure speculation, aimed at promoting an unstated political agenda and encouraging a mood of panic. Many assertions contradicted one another. For example, some commentators claimed the explosive devices were small and primitive, while others said they were sophisticated and indicated the work of a terrorist organization.

Some media outlets in particular seemed bent on steering the public toward the view that the Boston events were a terror attack along the lines of 9/11. CNN’s Wolf Blitzer directed the network’s reportage along these lines, encouraging his “expert” commentators to make wide-ranging claims within minutes of the explosions and while the mayhem on the streets of Boston was still unfolding. Jane Harmon, the former Democratic chair of the House Intelligence Committee, appearing as a CNN commentator, claimed the bombings pointed in the direction of Al Qaeda.

The Murdoch press’ New York Post ran a banner headline, “Clearly an Act of Terror,” and featured a second article headlined “Authorities ID suspect as Saudi national in marathon bombings, under guard at Boston hospital.”

NBC Evening News featured as its terrorism expert Michael Leitner, former director of the US National Counterterrorism Center under both the Bush and Obama administrations. Without any factual substantiation, Leitner declared that the bombings were the act of a “terrorist organization.”

However, President Obama, in a brief statement from the White House delivered at about 6 PM, pointedly refrained from labeling the incident as an act of terror. He said the “full resources of the federal government” and the “full weight of justice” would be deployed against those responsible, while admitting that the government did not know “who did this or why.”

There appeared to be an element of confusion or conflict within the state over the response to the bombings. The media widely reported that the Federal Bureau of Investigation had declared the bombings to be a terrorist act. And only minutes after Obama’s White House statement, a “senior administration official” told Fox News, “When multiple devices go off, that’s an act of terrorism.”

It is necessary to treat all of the initial reports by the media with extreme skepticism. Whether the Boston bombing was a terror attack by Al Qaeda or by a home-grown right-wing organization, or an act carried out with state involvement, remains unknown.

In maintaining a critical attitude and avoiding falling prey to media manipulation, it is useful to recall the role of the media in previous cases of alleged terrorist attacks. In the anthrax incidents that occurred shortly after 9/11, for example, the media made sweeping claims of Al Qaeda and Islamist involvement, none of which proved to be true.

The leading fighting group in the US-backed war against the Syrian government has announced its loyalty to Al Qaeda: here.

Havana, Apr 16 (Prensa Latina) The Cuban Government condemned today the terrorist attacks perpetrated yesterday near the finish line of a marathon in the city of Boston, in the United States, which killed three people and wounded another 176, including 17 reported in critical condition: here.

President Barack Obama used a briefing Tuesday to declare the bombings the day before at the Boston Marathon “an act of terror,” though the FBI and police still had neither suspects nor a motive for the attacks: here.

While the nation, including the people of Boston, have remained calm, deeply saddened and shocked by the bombings as they are, the media and their leading personnel present a picture of disorientation and panic: here.

As federal trial opens. Judge limits evidence on role of main perpetrator of Boston Marathon bombings: here.

11 thoughts on “Boston marathon bomb tragedy, and media rush to judgment

  1. Boston Police, Fire and EMS Audio Archives – this feed primarily has Boston PD

    2:47 PM to 3:17 PM (Incident starts at the 4:30 min mark)
    [audio src="" /]

    3:17 PM to 3:47 PM
    [audio src="" /]

    3:47 PM to 4:17 PM
    [audio src="" /]

    Boston Fire Department Audio Archives

    2:42 to 3:12 PM (Incident starts 7:48 minute mark)
    [audio src="" /]

    3:12 PM to 3:42 PM
    [audio src="" /]

    3:42 PM to 4:12 PM
    [audio src="" /]


  2. You neglected to mention the terrorist organization responsible for the Atlanta Olympics bomb, Eric Rudolf. There’s no doubt he/they was a cryptomuslim masquerading as a fundamentalist christian. After Atlanta, I have every confidence that the FBI will quickly bring this organization to justice.


    • Hi, the correct spelling is Eric Rudolph.

      Wikipedia writes:

      Eric Robert Rudolph (born September 19, 1966), also known as the Olympic Park Bomber, is responsible for a series of bombings across the southern United States between 1996 and 1998, which killed two people and injured at least 150 others in the name of a pro-life [meaning: against women’s rights to n decide on abortion] and anti-gay agenda. The Federal Bureau of Investigation considers him a terrorist.[1]

      As a teenager Rudolph was taken by his mother to a Church of Israel compound in 1984; it is connected to the Christian Identity movement.[2] He has called himself a Roman Catholic in “the war to end this holocaust” (in reference to abortion).[3] He has confirmed religious motivation, but denied racial motivation for his crimes.

      Rudolph’s denial of being a racist should be seen in the context of the twisted logic of his definition of racism. According to Rudolph (on the Christian extreme Right site of the terrorist organisation the Army of God, to which I won’t link), only African-American organisations like the NAACP and anti-racist organisations like the Southern Poverty Law Center can be racist. And white racism is supposedly inexistent. He writes: “the specter of white racism is a bogeyman, a political tool our Marxist masters use to frighten away opposition”. He probably calls himself a “racial realist” or some other euphemism.

      Rudolph’s denial of being a racist is about as “credible” as the denial of fellow murderer Breivik of being a nazi. Breivik has criticized Hitler for killing ALL Jews; while Breivik thinks Hitler should only have massacred politically Leftist Jews (by the way, the majority of Jews about 1940). This “non-nazism” of Breivik did not prevent him from writing an admiring letter to German NSU nazi terrorist Beate Zschaepe:

      Rudolph “has called himself a Roman Catholic” according to Wikipedia. That sentence is incomplete. Rudolph calls himself not just any sort of Roman Catholic; but a “traditional Roman Catholic”, a reference to the far Right wing of Roman Catholicism; of people like Holocaust-denying Bishop Wiliamson:


      • In spite of the incorrect spelling, his other crimes ranked him as a terrorist organization. Fortunately, the FBI quickly closed in on the Atlanta culprit — Richard Jewell, who had a houseful of bomb-making equipment. He was obviously guilty because he lived with his mother, and the bomb-making equipment was laid out for the press. The FBI discovered his mother’s house had plumbing! In addition he had a large collection of Disney video tapes and a Mickey Mouse watch! Evidence can’t be much more damning than that.

        Furthermore, the FBI tried a ham-handed scheme to have Jewell re-enact the crime, trying several different ways to trick him. They continually leaked information to the press about Jewell’s undoubted guilt. Television and newspapers ate it up. Jewell was never arrested in spite of the staggering amount of evidence against him. He lived with his mother after all! What more do you need?

        It was only after several months when Jewell started filing libel lawsuits (and winning them all) that the FBI backed off and suddenly noticed that the construction of the bomb was identical to some abortion clinic bombs and they realized that their concerted effort to railroad Jewell might possibly have been misguided.

        I was being a little bit on the sarcastic side in my original post.


  3. Pingback: Texas fertilizer fire lethal disaster | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  4. Pingback: Tag “You’re it” Award, thanks Shaun! | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  5. Pingback: Boston bomb horror, pretext for Islamophobic violence | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  6. Pingback: One Boston teenage terrorist, and everyone’s civil liberties | Dear Kitty. Some blog

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.