Afghanistan, Boston Marathon Bombings, Capitalism, Climate Change, Corporate State, Ecological Overshoot, Environmental Collapse, Iraq, Military Industrial Complex, Religious Extremism, Resource Wars, Saudi Arabia, Security and Surveillance State, War for Profit, War on Terror
The horrific bombings which took place recently at the Boston Marathon are the most significant terrorist attack to have occurred on U.S. soil since 9-11. My condolences go out to the innocent victims. Ideologies of any sort can be twisted to justify abhorrent acts. This terrorist act opens up old wounds for an Empire which in the last decade has gone on the offensive, spending vast resources on foreign wars and a security and surveillance state. Even with such Herculean expenditures, the asymmetric nature of terrorism demonstrates there is no foolproof solution for preventing such acts. The perpetrators spent perhaps a few hundred bucks on their homemade bombs, and we spend incalculable multiples of treasure and blood in return. This was really the goal of Osama bin Laden – to draw the Empire into costly wars and expenditures of life and limb. As has been stated by others, the best that can be hoped for from a military standpoint is to keep terrorist groups in a constant degraded and disorganized state. As much as left-leaning individuals as myself like to point out the foreign policy “transgressions”(to put it mildly) of the American Empire, decades of capitalist imperialism will never be put back into the bottle. Such bombings are pretty much daily occurrences in war-ravaged Iraq and Afghanistan as well as other areas of the Middle East. Our incursions into those countries only seem to have fueled the fire.
A law enforcement official had some interesting info on the bombings:
…A preliminary analysis of the bombs, which went off near the race’s finish line on Boylston Street, suggests they are similar to the improvised explosive devices found in war-torn regions like Iraq and Afghanistan, the law enforcement official said.
“The shrapnel, the simplicity of it — it’s something right out of the Iraq War. A basic roadside bomb,” the official said.
That “basic bomb” can be seen in the design of the Boston bombs, the law enforcement official said: pressure cookers stuffed with nails, ball bearings and other projectiles, and hidden in black duffel bags left near the 26.2 mile mark in the race.
What appear to be fragments from a pressure cooker were recovered at the scene, along with BBs, nails and black-nylon fragments possibly from a bag used to house the device, the FBI said.
Black explosive powder and a circuit board believed to have been used to detonate the bombs were also found, the federal official said.
Similar explosives have been used in third-world hot spots from South Asia to the Persian Gulf, and one of the devices used in the botched bombing of Times Square in May 2010 employed a pressure cooker.
The Pakistani Taliban, which claimed blame for the 2010 Times Square attempt, said it had no role in the Boston attack, according to The Associated Press.
A 2010 bulletin issued by the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI warned pressure-cooker bombs are as easy to transport as they are to conceal.
“Terrorists can exploit the innocuous appearance of easily transportable items such as pressure cookers to conceal IED components,” the alert said. “Placed carefully, such devices provide little or no indication of an impending attack.”
That some victims lost limbs in the blast puts the device “into a powerful class,” said John Goodpaster, head of the forensic science program at Indiana University–Purdue University, and former chemist with the federal bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
Goodpaster said the blasts appeared to be from a “high explosive of some kind, military explosive, commercial explosive or improvised explosive.”
The sooner the world can get off MENA oil, thereby pulling the plug on the financial network of terrorist groups, the better off we’ll all be, not to mention our indispensable biosphere.
According to Wikipedia resources:
…Saudi Arabia is said to be the world’s largest source of funds for Salafi jihadist terrorist militant groups, such as al-Qaeda, the Afghan Taliban, and Lashkar-e-Taiba in South Asia, and donors in Saudi Arabia constitute the most significant source of funding to Sunni terrorist groups worldwide, according to Hillary Clinton. According to a secret December 2009 paper signed by the US secretary of state, “Saudi Arabia remains a critical financial support base for al-Qaida, the Taliban, LeT and other terrorist groups.”
The violence in Afghanistan and Pakistan is partly bankrolled by wealthy, conservative donors across the Arabian Sea whose governments do little to stop them. Three other Arab countries which are listed as sources of militant money are Qatar, Kuwait, and the United Arab Emirates, all neighbors of Saudi Arabia…
In an encouraging sign, The small country of Portugal is now running its economy on 70% renewables, serving as a role model for the rest of the world.
…Actually 70 percent isn’t unheard of for Portugal. For a few hours in 2011, Portugal was entirely run on renewable power. Yet this was the first time so much was sustained for a quarter.
Portugal’s investment in modernizing its electricity grid in 2000 has come in handy. Like in many countries, power companies owned their own transmission lines. What the government did in 2000 was to buy all the lines, creating a publicly owned and traded company to operate them. This was used to create a smart grid that renewable energy producers could connect to (encouraged by government-organized auctions to build new wind and hydro plants)…
Of course planet Earth has an avalanche of environmental problems coming to a head in the near future (all caused by humans, mind you), but it’s good to see some accomplishments in at least one area of human impact – reduction of fossil fuels – even if it may be too little, too late.
Pingback: A Note on the Recent Terrorist Bombings | OccuWorld
A good point made by Assad of Syria today:
And then this comment which spells it out again for the ‘Mericans. Others call this “blowback” for poorly thought-out American foreign policy:
I had posted some pics from Reddit on two suspicious-looking men at the Marathon, but they have apparently come forward and have been cleared, so I took those photos down. So now we have breaking news that photos of “persons of interest” will be released today:
So here they are. Pretty generic looking, could be from anywhere…
After looking at another set of pictures, I’m ready to speculate a bit…
– a well-planned, coordinated attack from a terrorist cell, not a lone wolf nutter
– both individuals have dark hair and their facial features appear Middle Eastern(probably Arabic, light complected)
– they left the country within 24 hours of the attack
they look middle eastern to me also, but hey, our country is a hodge-podge, a melting pot, who knows? could be american.
could be lone wolves, could be back in their digs in anywhere.
notice how the prez is not saying we will withdraw from MENA, not going to shut down any of our 1,000 overseas bases.
As an artist, I study faces and they simply look Middle Eastern to me. I don’t have a racist bone in my body. My wife is not the same race as myself.
They both have prominent, aquiline noses. Their stature is average and slender, not fat or noticeably muscular.
They simply say “Arabic” to me.
not saying anybody is anything, but yeah, arabic. aquiline? huh? like sherlock holmes? myself, i’m straight abstract, anything i’ve ever done, but then i didn’t put paint to canvas until i was 40 years old.
you are right about the build. i have dabbled in a bit of archeology, anthropology, behaviorism, jack of all trades, master of none. the study of the human race.
but seriously, the govt. policy is insane, the ruling class has def made a conscious decision to go with the status quo, the faces change, the name of the game stays the same. the writings are out there, chalmers johnson, mlk, chomsky, (though honestly? i’ve never cracked one of his books, must be a collegiate thing).
everybody knows the score, our govt. should be re-settling people back to the land, we have enough un-employed, while we have the juice to feed them while we get the topsoil breathing again, deep green. instead it’s going to turn into the hunger games, it already is, if you just go backwards. like reese said in terminator, one possible future.
meanwhile back at the ranch, we’re afraid (at least i am) to talk too loud about reining in the empire. there’s chris hedges, greenwald, what we have is bushbama talking about catching ’em and staying strong.
here’s what i see where i live, rednecks who own guns, even the women, (they’re right proud of their pistols, the women are) but they leave the AR at home locked up, they take care of their weapons, they know how precious they are, and how dangerous. here’s what’s funny, half of them think we should bring the troops home, hell, it’s their kid’s who are overseas! it’s the truth. half of ’em know the trans. nat. corps. are squeezing the world dry, and aren’t shy about saying it.
anyhow, i guess i’m saying if agreement could be reached across the gulf, nah. never happen. but i’m telling you, our govts. policies do not reflect the will of the people, i really believe that, people aren’t that dumb. i’m tired, can’t type, this is a chore, break time.
Oh I didn’t mean to imply you were saying anything, I was just dispelling the racism issue.
Yes “aquiline nose”:
The aquiline nose, a characteristic of Semitic races such as the Arabs and Jews, is also prominent among the South Arabians (Seligman.1917). This too is significant as there are many Moors today who do possess prominent aquiline noses.
more pics here.
yeah, and i read that the aryans were from asia, conquered all the way to europe in times that have been forgotten about, wiped out the precursors to the indus valley civilization (or the indus?) just sort of “on the way” you might say; but then no………..my brother the history professor says something else, and he knows about isolates and all that, says there are common words in nepal or somewhere that are the exact same as the basque language.
with our narcissistic western view very few realize how many empires have come and gone, tamarlane, the people who made the bamiyam buddhas. if any of that is even spelled correctly.
Nova has a show on now about life in australia
4 billion years before life even showed up, 500 million years to go from slime to where we are, and people just don’t get how fragile life is.
final thing, the kids? they get it, they think survival, really much more cynical than my generation imho, contrary to people on the web with their optimistic philosophy. at least in my little circle they are thinking long term, moving north, they figure it’s going to get hot, so they think move north.
too bad about the bombing, but maybe this new generation will survive, some of them, that’s the most optimistic spin i can put on things. i’m out. 🙂
the world is fixin’ to tear itself apart, the old religions, the old dialectics, they aren’t cutting it anymore, they never really did. i’m going to be really brutally honest with you, i have always been on the left, always the peacenik, but i am really starting to wonder if we haven’t had it wrong all along. i’m not advocating for anything, but i wonder if violence is not just the way the human race is made, just the way it is, and we are just tilting at windmills.
been reading lots about how it all started with agriculture, with the creation of walled cities, etc. etc. maybe it did start with organized societies, but what does it matter? we are where we are. the greeks had slaves, so did the romans, our country only outlawed it 150 years ago, and then promptly instituted a virtual chattel system of wage slaves.
in the early 1900’s woodrow wilson ran the reds out of the usa, that ended any real reform if we’re honest about it, fdr simply saved capitalism from itself. it serves the moneyed interests to have central control, inverted totalitarianism, mass media.
small independent farmsteads wouldn’t serve the machinery of state capitalism (fascism) that we have. they may talk about greening up, who are they kidding?
we have been tromping around the world for 100 years, and the peace prize prez ain’t gonna stop it.
this country is a total mic/propaganda complex, the corps. that make the weapons own the airwaves.
when i blogged about the libya bombing being against the constitution i was pretty much hammered. sorry to be such a downer, maybe the best thing would be a collapse, the old ways aren’t working, maybe after the fall we can find a new one, but it may not look like what we think. where we think right now it should go may not be where it winds up. perhaps all the old assumptions will be swept away with the old world.
Like in the animal kingdom, all humans get violent if their essential resources are threatened. That’s why the “coming famine” exacerbated by climate change and ‘peak water’ is of significant concern.
I’ll have to continue this later because I’ve got to run.
This may be the final showdown for the Boston Bombers…
From NY Times:
Two young men, armed with guns and explosives in what appeared to be backpacks, engaged in a violent standoff with dozens of police on a street in Watertown, Mass., Thursday night, a resident said.
Andrew Kitzenburg, 29, said he looked out of this third floor window to see two young men of slight build in jackets shooting at dozens of police officers from behind a black Mercedes SUV. The officers and the men were 70 yards apart, he said, and engaged in “constant gunfire.”
A police SUV “drove towards the shooters,” he said, and was shot at until it was severely damaged. It rolled out of control, Mr. Kitzenberg said, and crashed into two cars in his driveway.
Perhaps they are just plain old American Crazies…
Kevin Moore said:
Very easy really. Just look at the list of nations due for raygeeem change and pick the ones with the most loot-able resources that are least able to defend themselves from airborne assault.
One of those will be where the ‘terrorists’ will be from.
North Korea, Iran and Venezuela are too well armed for the US to attack. So that leaves Syria, Yemen, Ethiopia, Mali, Sudan etc.
Myanmar has got quite a lot of untapped fossil fuel reserves, but Hi Liar Clinton seems to have already prised open that nation for looting.
They’re from Chechnya!
“…The Tsarnaev family moved to Dagestan from Kyrgyzstan in 2001, the school spokesman told RT. Dzhokhar studied there for just one year and produced no particular impression, good or bad, on the teachers. The family moved to the US in 2002, RT was told.
Dzhokhar was born in Kyrgyzstan. The family, which also included two daughters, Bella and Amina, had the status of refugees at the time they moved to Russia.
Dzhokhar has several Chechen-related interests stated in his profile. He states that he speaks Russian, English and Chechen and holds career and money as his personal priorities. He claims he is a believer in Islam…”
so, it’s all over but the crying. will we collectively learn from this? or will we simply add another layer of surveillance. a cursory reading of any behaviorist, B.F. Skinner jumps to mind, will tell us that most of these destructive behaviors are learned. now is the time for soul-searching, for us to ask what we, as a species, are doing wrong.
is it religion? capitalism? what causes these things? and how can we fix it? it’s not enough to call it a “senseless tragedy” or the “work of a madman”.
So very true. Sadly, nothing will be learned by American society writ large. We are well into the end stages of self-destruction and denial, even as the truth becomes more difficult to respin or brush under the rug.
Kevin Moore said:
The parents of the so-called terrorists claim it’s all a set-up. and apparently the FBI knew all about the suspects for years. Hmmmm?
The last timer the US meddled in the part of the world the ‘terrorists’ are from it got its arse kicked very badly.
That suggests it was all done to ramp up the US fascist state another notch. Got to keep the US populace anxious and dependent on corporations. Otherwise Wall St falls.
Aptitude Design said:
” Two Males.of Caucasian Origin” whatever their ‘appearance’ might invoke, Check out their neighbours, the Georgians & the Armenians, for example.