This afternoon, Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Ray Kelly confirmed reports that the suspects of the Boston Marathon bombing attack allegedly had intended to bring their explosive arsenal to unsuspecting crowds in Times Square.
The brothers, Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, were foiled when the car they hijacked ran low on gas, forcing them to stop at a nearby gas station. That’s when their hostage escaped, setting the scene for a dramatic shootout and manhunt where Tamerlan Tsarnaev was killed and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was captured.
The two suspects involved in the deadly bombing of the Boston Marathon planned to detonate the rest of their explosives in Times Square, according to NBC 4 New York, a plot echoed by the New York Post, Reuters and many other outlets.
It was initially said that the accused duo, Tamerlan Tsarnaev and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, were planning to come to New York to “party,” but earlier this afternoon, widespread reports emerged that Dzhokhar told investigators that he and his brother discussed using their remaining explosives against the city’s tourist-filled landmark.
King of the Hill
State Senator Greg Ball has been on a bit of a media tour since he tweeted his support for torturing the Boston Marathon terror suspect in the aftermath of his arrest, and he doesn’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon. To wit, his round of interviews took him to at least two news shows yesterday evening, Capital Tonight and Piers Morgan Live, where he put his argument into rather direct form.
“All I can tell you is what I would do as an American. If we saw what just happened where we had men, women and children–a child–killed,” he said at one point, for example. “I can tell you that as Greg Ball, if I felt that torture–whether it be making them listen to music at night, or using a baseball bat–would save one innocent life, including that of a child, I would use it. But I’m just speaking for Greg Ball.”
With the news that two of the suspected terrorists from last Monday’s Boston Marathon bombing have roots in the Russia’s Muslim-dominated Chechnyan region, Long Island Congressman Pete King says the United States “can’t afford to be politically correct” with its immigration policies anymore.
“I do believe that whether it’s Chechnya or whether it’s really any countries from areas where there is fighting going on–particularly terrorist fighting–that we have to be extra careful, extra scrupulous,” Mr. King argued during a PIX 11 interview earlier this afternoon. “That would include, to me, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Somalia [and] obviously …. somebody of a Chechnyan background. All of that, to me, we can’t afford to be politically correct and say that somebody coming from a country where there’s a Muslim war going on is the same as somebody … from Switzerland, for instance. There’s a difference.”
Mayor Michael Bloomberg may have canceled his morning radio appearance today in response to the ongoing manhunt for a suspect involved in Monday’s deadly bombing attack on the Boston Marathon, but another top New York official, Governor Andrew Cuomo, scheduled his own radio interview on The Capitol Pressroom soon after. Mr. Cuomo directly addressed the high-profile situation in the Bay State by employing a phrase he previously used to describe climate change in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy: “the new normal.”
“It’s a terrible situation in Boston. And, unfortunately, … one gets the sense that this is more reflective of the ‘new normal,’ if you will,” he explained. “So much of society is changing so rapidly. We talk about a ‘new normal’ when it comes t0 climate change and adjusting to a change in the weather patterns. ‘New normal’ when it comes to public security in a post-9/11 world. Where these random acts of violence, which at one time were implausible, now seem all-too-frequent.”
This afternoon, Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Ray Kelly gave a press briefing to update the public on the city’s security efforts in the wake of yesterday’s deadly explosions at the Boston Marathon. And, while stating there are no specific threats connected to the Boston incident, Mr. Bloomberg ominously warned about “special interests” shaping the city’s security policies in a way “that the terrorists are waiting for.”
“The N.Y.P.D … has helped deter and thwart numerous terrorist attacks on our city in the past,” Mr. Bloomberg explained. “But we must remain vigilant for the future. And we are vigilant. The fact is there remain people who want to attack us. The moment we let our guard down, the moment we get complacent, the moment we allow special interests to shape our security strategies is the moment that the terrorists are waiting for.”
President Barack Obama may have been reluctant to use the term “terrorism” to describe yesterday’s deadly explosions at the Boston Marathon, but Long Island Rep. Pete King, who up until recently was Chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security, thinks there’s no doubt.
“Clearly, this was a terrorist attack,” Mr. King said on Morning Joe today. “You had the multiple explosions. You had someone who was able to penetrate security. Amateurs don’t do that, so this was well-planned and coordinated. It was a terrorist attack. It’s a question of who did it, … it’s too early to say. Obviously we have to consider whether it was Islamic jihad. It could also be white supremacist, it could be anti-government people.”
As city politicians at all levels of government slam Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s decision to continue its plans for the New York City Marathon, an elected official in one of the hardest-hit communities is taking the fight to the next level. Assemblyman Lou Tobacco, representing the South Shore of Staten Island, has called for a nationwide boycott of the marathon’s sponsors if they do not push to end the race.
“I urge the sponsors to do the right thing and join me in calling for the postponement of the race,” Mr. Tobacco said in a statement. “If they fail to do what is right, I urge a nationwide boycott of their products. These sponsors have the power to stop this race, they need to do what is right.”