Boston Mayor and U.S. Establishment Press Ignoring Marathon Bombing 'Sleeper Cell' Reports

An unbylined Associated Press report (graphic saved here) appearing at ABC News (time-stamped 9:51 a.m. at the AP's main national site; graphic saved here) reports that Boston Mayor Tom Menino appeared on ABC's "This Week" and said, in the AP's words, that "the suspects in the Boston Marathon bombing acted alone."

The brief AP report's third paragraph then has Menino saying, again in AP's words, that "another person was taken into custody" after "a pipe bomb was found in another location." This apparent inconsistency seems to be an attempt by the mayor to minimize the degree of homegrown "sleeper cell" concerns, especially in light of reports containing a cascade of contradicting details which follow the jump.


At the UK's Daily Mirror News (bolds are mine throughout this post):

Boston bombers: FBI hunting 12-strong terrorist “sleeper cell” linked to brothers Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev

Police believe the pair were specially trained to carry out the devastating attack

The FBI was last night hunting a 12-strong terrorist “sleeper cell” linked to the Boston marathon bomb brothers.

Police believe Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev were specially trained to carry out the devastating attack.

More than 1,000 FBI operatives were last night working to track down the cell and arrested a man and two women 60 miles from Boston in the hours before Dzhokhar’s dramatic capture after a bloody shootout on Friday.

A source close to the investigation said: “We have no doubt the brothers were not acting alone. The devices used to detonate the two bombs were highly sophisticated and not the kind of thing people learn from Google.

“They were too advanced. Someone gave the brothers the skills and it is now our job to find out just who they were. Agents think the sleeper cell has up to a dozen members and has been waiting several years for their day to come.”

... Dzhokhar even went to a college party two days after the bombs wreaked havoc at the finish line. According to fellow students, he “looked relaxed” as he joined in a party at the campus on Wednesday night.

Hours later he was involved in the shootout which saw his brother killed.

Investigators have begun piecing together how the “well-mannered” brothers of Chechen origin were radicalised.

The UK's IBTimes.com has similar information, plus a few more details:

Boston Marathon Bombings: FBI Hunts Terror 'Sleeper Cell' Linked to Tsarnaev Brothers

... Dzhokhar is said to have run over his brother as he made his getaway in a stolen SUV while Tamerlan lay handcuffed on the ground with fatal gunshot wounds late on Thursday.

Investigators have confirmed they will invoke public safety powers to interrogate him without reading him his "Miranda" rights to remain silent and have a lawyer present.

Authorities hope he will not invoke his right to silence, and will talk to them about any other terrorist threats, and the location of possible further explosives.

Currently, Matt Drudge and U.S. Blogs are relaying this information, while the U.S. establishment press, based on a Google News search at 11:30 a.m. sorted by date on "Tsarnaev sleeper cell" (not in quotes), are not. One would think that the U.S. press has better access to FBI and law enforcement sources than UK-based outlets. If so, unless the UK outlets are being played (which seems a remote possibility, given the degree of detail presented), why haven't they learned these things? Or worse, have they learned them and chosen to hold off reporting them?

If the kind of disparity in public officials' statements and press reports continues much longer, it will be worth asking whether there is an attempt to bottle up the truth of what led to the Boston Marathon bombings and the presence of other similar sleeper cells in the U.S.

Cross-posted at BizzyBlog.com.

Tom Blumer
Tom Blumer
Tom Blumer is a contributing editor for NewsBusters.