Nov 18, 2014 by Joseph L. Flatley
The Boston Marathon bombing is much more important than has been acknowledged, principally because it is the defining domestic national security event since 9/11—and has played a major role in expanding the power of the security state. For that reason, WhoWhatWhy is continuing to investigate troubling aspects of this story and the establishment media treatment of it. We will be exploring new elements of the story regularly as the January trial of the accused co-conspirator Dzhokhar Tsarnaev approaches.
The defense witnesses in the Boston Bombing trial certainly have reason to be afraid to testify, given the long official intimidation campaign against them.
Yet, ironically, it is now the government that is claiming its witnesses are scared and even unwilling to testify. Unsurprisingly, the judge overseeing the trial against Dzhokhar Tsarnaev has agreed with the prosecutors.
Since the Boston Marathon bombing last year, WhoWhatWhy has reported on a pattern of intimidation towards people associated with the accused bombers, Dzhokhar and his late elder brother, Tamerlan. Those connected to the case have been intimidated, deported, jailed, and even killed.
It got so bad that Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s defense asked U.S. District Court Judge George A. O’Toole Jr. for permission to conceal the names of individual witnesses until the day before they’re due to testify. That’s because, the defense argues, they fear the witnesses will be subject to further FBI harassment.
Judy Clarke, a member of the defense team, admitted it was an unusual request. “We don’t want to do it,” Clarke told the court. “We’re already struggling to get people to talk to us. We are really worried about losing the slim list of real potential witnesses we have.”
The government countered that it was having trouble convincing bombing victims to cooperate. They are “afraid, if not unwilling, to testify against the man accused of dismembering or traumatizing them in a terrorist attack.” Further, the prosecution argued, keeping Tsarnaev’s witnesses under wraps would hand him an unfair advantage.
On Nov. 12, O’Toole sided with the prosecution, ordering the defense to disclose its preliminary witness list by Dec. 29. He also announced that jury selection will begin on Jan. 5, when an initial 1,200 prospective jurors will be called in to fill out questionnaires over the course of the next three days.
Leaving aside the question of Tsarnaev’s guilt, which has been officially presented as a foregone conclusion with little outside critical analysis of the investigation, his chances at trial are numerically slim.
The Justice Department’s latest statistics show a criminal conviction rate of 93 percent.
Prosecutors in the Boston Bombing case claim that government witnesses are scared to testify. Yet it’s the defense witnesses who should be afraid, given the long official intimidation campaign against them.
Mar 13, 2014 by Russ Baker
Recently, we published evidence of disturbing contradictions in the public accounts of the man who put the guilty stamp on the Tsarnaev brothers in the Boston bombing case. In this second part of a series, we take an in-depth look at that man, the mystery witness. We examine his crucial but little understood role in rapidly ending the investigation of the bombing. Meet “Danny,” the “magic bullet” of the Boston bombing story.
Mar 11, 2014 by Russ Baker
The only witness to the Boston Marathon bombing confession has provided dramatically inconsistent accounts, an exclusive WhoWhatWhy investigation reveals. The clashing stories, coming from a man whose identity remains shrouded, form the basis for the publicly accepted narrative of the bombing and its aftermath.
The discrepancies involve the nature and length of the carjacking episode, and raise serious questions as to whether the anonymous witness was ever a captive of the alleged bombers. This in turn touches on the credibility of his claim to have received a confession from Tamerlan Tsarnaev.
In fact, the problems with this witness’s story cast doubts on almost everything we have been told about what has been described as the largest terrorist attack on American soil since 9/11.
Jan 15, 2014 by Russ Baker
The debate over who was responsible for the attack on the American diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya, rages on. But the partisan noise appears to be obscuring a much more interesting possibility. Not to mention more troubling.
Dec 19, 2013 by Russ Baker
Finally, the cracks in the official 9/11 story are beginning to widen. Two congressmen— alarmed by what they have read about financial and logistical support of top Saudi officials for the purported 9/11 hijackers—are demanding that President Obama declassify a report that would tell us much more about what the US government knows.
Nov 14, 2013 by James Henry and David J. Krajicek
The federal government’s grip on information about the Boston Marathon Bombing investigation and prosecution gets ever more vise-like. A federal judge has rejected the ACLU’s attempt to file a friend of the court brief raising serious constitutional questions about the government’s proceedings against the accused bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. And his defense attorneys have charged that the government continues to withhold investigatory details that Tsarnaev needs to get a fair trial. A civil liberties attorney tells WhoWhatWhy that the judge is acting like “a tool of the U.S. Department of Justice.”
Nov 11, 2013 by David J. Krajicek
An Alabama journalist is jailed for contempt of court after revealing an alleged affair involving one of the state’s elite political families. A hand-picked judge takes the unprecedented steps of sealing all records related to a subsequent lawsuit and decreeing that the stories be scrubbed from the Internet. First Amendment advocates are stunned. WhoWhatWhy reports from Alabama.
Oct 29, 2013 by Dave Lindorff, Russ Baker and Milicent Cranor
The Federal Bureau of Investigation is accused of harassing friends of Ibragim Todashev, the Chechen immigrant who was shot and killed by an FBI agent in Orlando, Florida, under unexplained circumstances during a late-night interrogation five months ago. Todashev was a friend of one of the Boston bombing suspects, Tamerlan Tsarnaev. Two more friends are now behind bars in what advocates say is part of a campaign of intimidation. Just why this is happening remains unclear.
Sep 16, 2013 by Russ Baker
What possible connection could there have been between George H.W. Bush and the assassination of John F. Kennedy? Or between the C.I.A. and the assassination? Or between Bush and the C.I.A.? For some people, apparently, making such connections was as dangerous as letting one live wire touch another.
Here, in anticipation of the 50th anniversary of the JFK assassination in November, is the first part of a ten-part series of excerpts from WhoWhatWhy editor Russ Baker’s bestseller, Family of Secrets: The Bush Dynasty, America’s Invisible Government and the Hidden History of the Last Fifty Years. The story is a real-life thriller.
Aug 07, 2013 by Christian Stork
Just hours before his death, Michael Hastings sent off an ominous email saying that the FBI was investigating him “re: NSA.” Why were the Feds probing this noted investigative reporter? And what might his death have to do with Edward Snowden, now in exile, and Barrett Brown, facing a century in jail?