The Corner

Chechen Connection Suggests Possible Al-Qaeda Link to Boston Terror Attack

Reports that two brothers from the Russian province of Chechnya who reportedly lived in the United States for several years were behind the April 16 bombings make it likely that they were at least so-called “homegrown terrorists,” possibly radicalized by al-Qaeda propaganda on the Internet. There also is a strong possibility that the two men were somehow recruited and trained by al-Qaeda operatives to stage the Boston attack. This attack is consistent with efforts by al-Qaeda over the last few years to recruit non-Arabs to commit terrorist acts in the West and to use radical Islamist websites to recruit followers in Western countries. I believe the Boston Marathon attacks were too sophisticated to have been conducted by men this young by themselves. They were probably directed by radical Islamist operatives, possibly al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, via websites and e-mail. It is worth emphasizing that Chechens are anti-Russian, not anti-American. Chechens generally like Americans because the United States has condemned Moscow for its ruthless crackdowns in Chechnya. The Langley Intelligence Group Network ran a longer article on this story today which can be found here.

Fred Fleitz — Fred Fleitz is senior vice president for policy and programs with the Center for Security Policy, a Washington, DC national security think tank. He held U.S. government national security ...

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