Knock-Off Jihadis: Washington Post: "Vice President Biden lashed out at Islamist terrorism Wednesday and described the perpetrators of the Boston Marathon bombings as 'twisted, perverted' jihadists, as he and other dignitaries paid tribute to an MIT police officer allegedly slain by one of the bombers last week. Attending the memorial service for officer Sean Collier were thousands of students and uniformed police from across the country. Speaker after speaker eulogized the 27-year-old for his dedication to the students he was sworn to protect. But Biden also used the occasion to angrily denounce the brothers of Chechen origin who allegedly planted the bombs and later murdered Collier, calling them 'two twisted, perverted, cowardly knock-off jihadis'."
What They Planned to Do Next: Wall Street Journal: "The brothers suspected of bombing the Boston Marathon had planned to 'party' in New York City following the attack, New York Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said Wednesday. Mr. Kelly said details of the alleged bombers’ travel plans emerged from hospital interrogation of the surviving suspect, 19-year-old Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, who was charged this week in connection with the April 15 bombing that killed three people and injured more than 200. The police commissioner said there is no evidence that the suspects planned any attacks in New York. 'There is some information that they may have been intent to come to New York but not to continue what they were doing,' said Mr. Kelly, attributing the information to interrogations of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. ... While the brothers didn’t appear to have any intimate connection to New York City, Mr. Kelly said investigators in Boston and New York are looking into at least one visit by Dzhokhar Tsarnaev to New York last November. Mr. Kelly said there may have been subsequent visits as well, and investigators have tracked other potential links to the New York City area."
The Trigger: CBS News: "Investigators are looking at the possibility that the Boston Marathon explosions that killed three people and wounded more than 260 were triggered by a remote-controlled device, a law enforcement source told CBS News Wednesday. CBS News investigative senior producer Pat Milton reports that a radio-controlled type of device, like those commonly used with toy cars, or components of such a device might have been used to trigger the bombs, according to the source. The source said analysis of the bombs remains ongoing. Two officials on Wednesday told The Associated Press the bombs were not very sophisticated. One of the officials described the detonator as "close-controlled" — meaning it had to be triggered within several blocks of the bombs."
Terrorism on a Budget: Boston Globe: "If the brothers had outside financial or technical support for their deadly attack on the Marathon, it certainly isn’t reflected in their lifestyle or their weapons. The picture that is emerging is more like terrorism on a budget, consistent with reports that Dzhokhar Tsarnaev told interrogators from his hospital bed that he and his brother acted alone."
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New Ricin Suspect: Reuters: "Federal law enforcement agencies investigating ricin-laced letters sent to President Barack Obama and other officials broadened their search for clues on Wednesday by targeting the former business of a Mississippi martial arts instructor. Members of an anti-terrorist response team from the Mississippi National Guard wearing hazmat suits had already searched the Tupelo home of Everett Dutschke on Tuesday, accompanied by agents from the FBI and the U.S. Capitol Police, according to law enforcement sources and Dutschke's attorney, Lori Nail Basham. Federal agents moved their search to the premises of a former martial arts studio Dutschke ran in Tupelo on Wednesday morning, Basham said."
Hillary's Pay Day: NBC News: "On Wednesday, Hillary Clinton begins what will likely be the most lucrative part of her life – so far – as she gives her first paid speech in Dallas, Texas. She’s expected, like her ex-president husband, to command a whopping $200,000-plus for each appearance.To put that in perspective, Clinton’s salary as secretary of state, where she logged more frequent-flyer miles than any American envoy ever, was a paltry-by-comparison $186,600. Advertise | AdChoices That means if she gives just 10 speeches this year, she’ll take home a cool $2 million -- before she pays taxes to Uncle Sam, of course."
Fears of New Sectarian War in Iraq: New York Times: "In what appeared to be a new phase in an intensifying conflict that has raised fears of greater bloodshed and a wider sectarian war, Iraqi soldiers opened fire from helicopters on Sunni gunmen hiding in a northern village on Wednesday, officials said. ... The Sunni uprising, having now turned violent, represents a significant challenge to the rule of Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki, whose consolidation of power over the security forces and the judiciary, and his targeting of high-level Sunni leaders for arrest, has raised alarms among world powers. Mr. Maliki has presided over an unwieldy power-sharing government, which nominally gives prominent roles to Sunnis but in reality has resulted in political stasis, and he has signaled in recent months that he would prefer to move to a majority government, dominated almost solely by Shiites. On Tuesday, two Sunni ministers quit to protest the raid in Hawija, and the largest bloc of Sunni lawmakers suspended participation in Parliament."
Building Collapse in Bangladesh Kills 87: Associated Press: "Rescuers tried to free dozens of people believed trapped in the concrete rubble after an eight-story building that housed garment factories collapsed, killing at least 87. Workers had complained about cracks in the structure before it came tumbling down, but were assured it was safe. Searchers cut holes in the jumbled mess of concrete with drills or their bare hands, passing water and flashlights to those pinned inside the building near Bangladesh's capital of Dhaka."
A Few More Quick Hits From Slate's Blogs—
- Crime: That’s No Excuse: The Angry Parishioner Who “Accidentally” Beat His Priest to Death With a Hoe
- TNC: Rand Paul Can’t Decide if He Supports Drones Killing Robbers (VIDEO)
- XX Factor: Why Did France Take So Long to Approve Gay Marriage? Aren’t the French Ultra-Liberal?
- Weigel: President Obama Pandered Like Crazy to Olympia Snowe for Health Care Vote, Got Nothing
- Moneybox: Different Places Have Different Safety Rules and That's OK
- Future Tense: How Apple Has Changed Since Steve Jobs Died—and How It Hasn't
- Weigel: Why Was a Black Woman Photoshopped Out of an Anti–Voting Reform Ad?
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