News / USA

US Senator Blames National Security Breakdown for Boston Bombings

Sen. Lindsey Graham (2013 photo)Sen. Lindsey Graham (2013 photo)
x
Sen. Lindsey Graham (2013 photo)
Sen. Lindsey Graham (2013 photo)
Cindy Saine
Veteran Republican Senator Lindsey Graham says for him, the Boston Marathon bombings are a case study in the failure of the U.S. national security system, nearly 12 years after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.  He spoke to reporters Thursday after U.S. intelligence officials briefed members of the U.S. Senate on the latest information on the Boston attacks.

Senator Graham has been a harsh critic of the Obama administration's handling of last year's September 11 attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya that resulted in the deaths of the U.S. ambassador to Libya and three other Americans.  

Now, he is also sharply criticizing Democratic President Barack Obama for presiding over what he believes is another failure by U.S. national security agencies to prevent last week's Boston marathon bombings.  Senator Graham said he still has questions about how Tamerlan Tsarnaev and his younger brother, Dzhokhar, were able to carry out the bombings that left three people dead and 264 others injured when Tamerlan was on U.S. counterterrorism watchlists.

“The suspected radical Islamist, the person we got warning lessons about, is openly on the Internet for months talking about killing Americans and engaging in radical Jihad against the United States and we were unable to connect the dots and pick that up.  The rest is history.  Between [the attack on the U.S. consulate in] Benghazi and Boston, our systems are failing and we are going backwards,” Graham said.

Graham praised President Obama for the killing of al-Qaida terrorist leader Osama bin Laden, but said the president needs to realize that the United States is still at war with what he called radical Islam.

Other U.S. lawmakers have praised the Federal Bureau of Investigation and other U.S. security officials for their success in finding the Tsarnaev brothers suspected of the Boston attacks so quickly.  

The Democratic chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, Dianne Feinstein, defended the FBI.

“The FBI is total hands on this thing now, and they are committed to follow this through, bring everyone to justice, understand all of the elements of it, but they have to be given an opportunity,” Feinstein said.

Several U.S. lawmakers have said it is too early to begin hearings into the bombings, because the FBI investigation is ongoing, and authorities are still attempting to question Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, who is in custody in a Boston hospital.  But two House of Representatives Foreign Affairs subcommittees are holding the first hearing on the bombings Friday, on "Islamist Extremism in Chechnya."

You May Like

Video One Year After Thai Coup, No End in Sight for Military Rule

Since carrying out the May 22, 2014 coup, the general has retired from the military but is still firmly in charge More

Goodbye, New York

This is what the fastest-growing big cities in America have in common More

Job-Seeking Bangladeshis Risk Lives to Find Work

The number of Bangladeshi migrants on smugglers’ boats bound for Southeast Asian countries has soared in the past two years More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthroughi
X
May 22, 2015 10:23 AM
Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthrough

Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Europe Follows US Lead in Tackling ‘Conflict Minerals’

Metals mined from conflict zones in places like the Democratic Republic of Congo are often sold by warlords to buy weapons. This week European lawmakers voted to force manufacturers to prove that their supply chains are not inadvertently fueling conflicts and human rights abuses. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Class Tackles Questions of Race, Discrimination

Unrest in some U.S. cities is more than just a trending news item at Ladue Middle School in St. Louis, Missouri. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, it’s a focus of a multicultural studies class engaging students in wide-ranging discussions about racial tensions and police aggression.
Video

Video Mind-Controlled Prosthetics Are Getting Closer

Scientists and engineers are making substantial advances towards the ultimate goal in prosthetics – creation of limbs that can be controlled by the wearer’s mind. Thanks to sophisticated sensors capable of picking up the brain’s signals, an amputee in Iceland is literally bringing us one step closer to that goal. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Economy Sinks As Foreign Troops Depart

As international troops prepare to leave Afghanistan, and many foreign aid groups follow, Afghans are grappling with how the exodus will affect the country's fragile economy. Ayesha Tanzeem reports from the Afghan capital, Kabul.
Video

Video Poverty, Ignorance Force Underage Girls Into Marriage

The recent marriage of a 17-year old Chechen girl to a local police chief who was 30 years older and already had a wife caused an outcry in Russia and beyond. The bride was reportedly forced to marry and her parents were intimidated into giving their consent. The union spotlighted yet again the plight of many underage girls in developing countries. Zlatica Hoke reports poverty, ignorance and fear are behind the practice, especially in Asia and Africa.
Video

Video South Korea Marks Gwangju Uprising Anniversary

South Korea this week marked the 35th anniversary of a protest that turned deadly. The Gwangju Uprising is credited with starting the country’s democratic revolution after it was violently quelled by South Korea’s former military rulers. But as Jason Strother reports, some observers worry that democracy has recently been eroded.
Video

Video California’s Water System Not Created To Handle Current Drought

The drought in California is moving into its fourth year. While the state's governor is mandating a reduction in urban water use, most of the water used in California is for agriculture. But both city dwellers and farmers are feeling the impact of the drought. Some experts say the state’s water system was not created to handle long periods of drought. Elizabeth Lee reports from Ventura County, an agricultural region just northwest of Los Angeles.
Video

Video How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction

An international team of scientists has sequenced the complete genome of the woolly mammoth. Led by the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm, the work opens the door to recreate the huge herbivore, which last roamed the Earth 4,000 years ago. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble considers the science of de-extinction and its place on the planet
Video

Video Blind Boy Defines His Life with Music

Cole Moran was born blind. He also has cognitive delays and other birth defects. He has to learn everything by ear. Nevertheless, the 12-year-old has had an insatiable love for music since he was born. VOA’s June Soh introduces us to the young phenomenal harmonica player.

VOA Blogs