The Boston Tragedy: Where Do We Go From Here?

1.)  State versus Federal Jurisdiction:  I’m no intelligence/national and foreign security expert by any means, but the Boston Marathon tragedy appears to be a textbook example of domestic terrorism.  If Massachusetts wants to initiate criminal legal proceedings on its own, then by all intentions and rights, the Commonwealth should be allowed to do so.

However, federal jurisprudence and authority will most likely supersede/intertwine with the Massachusetts legal system for, in my opinion, obvious and broader reasons/implications.  Let’s not forget that the Chinese legal system must be factored in along the way as well.

2.)  Interrogation Proceedings:  I’ve already noticed one post advocating for the use of torture on the suspect to forceably-seize whatever information he has/may have.  Given his obvious medical and psychological disposition presently, good luck with that….  For the record, I am not a terrorist sympathizer, and I want answers to a whole spectrum of questions (for one, again, how a seemingly normal and popular 19 year old morphs from American citizen to crazed terrorist overnight).  However, as common sense and history have illustrated — and bipartisan politics has recently discovered (re:  the Task Force on Detainee Treatment convened by The Constitution Project) — torture is not very reliable or effective in regards to obtaining solid, credible information (“50/50” at best, and that’s being very generous), but it IS very reliable and effective on how it endangers our military and intelligence personnel overseas and nationally.

This is why I advocate for enhanced/psychological interrogation to be considerably more effective in obtaining the “who-what-where-when-how-and why” of those numerous questions that we as a national and global community need answers to.  I am going to theorize that the suspect’s older brother made the arrogant choice to subscribe to currently-unknown extremist/terrorist cell ideologies (hence the highlight of caution in reference to global military/intelligence aspects), and he was able to influence/brainwash his younger brother overall.  Let’s be crystal clear:  I’m NOT making excuses for anyone, but given what we publicly know about both suspects, this is certainly realistic to assume at the moment.

Regardless, I trust that the personnel responsible for these limited interrogation proceedings will break/deprogram/psychoanalyze/connect the necessary dots/answer the critical questions that need to be answered.  In my opinion, from a psychological vantage-point, allowing the suspect’s mother to have access to her son is a beginning and clear step in the right direction.