The Spoils of FBI Deceit: Was Todashev Executed? Will Joker Tsarnaev Go Free?

rolling-stone-magazine-Jahar-Tsarnaev-boston-bomber-coverIn my book “Don’t Embarrass The Family” I made a handful of suggestions for changes in the FBI hoping it would escape the fetters placed on it during the 48 year reign of J. Edgar Hoover. One, perhaps the major one, was that the FBI should record all interrogation it conducts of suspects or other people who may have knowledge of crimes. This was based on the idea that in the digital age such actions are simple, that the best evidence is a person’s words, and the widespread unreliability of FBI 302s based upon an agents memory. I noted how a federal judge refused to be interviewed by the FBI unless he could review the 302 it planned to file.

Had the FBI stopped it skullduggery we would not now be in the position where we look upon its suggestion that a dead man (Ibragim Todashev) implicated another dead man (Tamerlan Todashev) in a triple homicide in Waltham with a jaundiced eye. Who can believe this when the FBI after so long a time keeps stonewalling its reasons for killing Todashev. Why would you ever kill a man with such critical evidence?

Reading the latest news we see the FBI uses its silence to have the story change in the public perception. Five months and counting the FBI has been working assiduously to try to decide how to explain how and why one or more of its agents killed Todashev who had such important evidence. It has failed to give the barest hint why Todashev would implicate himself and his buddy, if he did, in such a heinous act. Nor does it tell us if he was a suspect, why it violated his right to counsel. We are left to think that this was an execution of him perhaps because he refused to implicate anyone in that murder. Nothing else seems to make sense.

We see the facts of his killing changing in the newspaper reports. Many papers have carried these sentences in their reports over the last 24 hours speaking about the government’s revelation for the first time that Todasheve implicated Tamerlan Tsarnaev in the triple homicide in Waltham. They write Todashev: “was fatally shot at his Orlando home during a meeting with an FBI agent and two Massachusetts state troopers in May, authorities said. He had turned violent while being question, according to authorities.” 

Notice the number of cops has dropped by more than half, the identity of the shooter no longer mentioned, and the false implication that the “authorities” have explained what has happened. We are left to believe someone other than the FBI agent shot him, perhaps some other felon and the FBI has been candid about the happening. Yet not one news outlet points to the inexplicable failure of the FBI to explain why Todashev was gunned down. Notice how many papers are repeating these skewed new facts. Politico, USA Today, Boston Globe, Sky News, The Guardian, etc. 

The government came forward with the statement that Todashev implicated Tamerlan as a result of defense counsel filings in the Dzhokhar (Joker) Tsarnaev case.  Defense counsel is seeking more information in the case which the government wants to hide.  Here is the government prosecutor’s response:

“Any benefit to Tsarnaev of knowing more about the precise ‘nature and extent’ of his brother’s involvement does not outweigh the potential harm of exposing details of an ongoing investigation into an extremely serious crime, especially at this stage of the proceeding, . . . “

This makes no sense. If one or two dead men are the culprits in the triple homicide there is no one to investigate and no need for an investigation. Sometimes the “under investigation” ploy has no legs. This is one of those times. There can be no harm to revealing what was said; rather the harm that will come in trying to continue to hide what happened.

I’ve got this feeling that the chickens are going to come home to roost in this case. Rather than playing it straight, the prosecutors seem to be using the Whitey Bulger play book. What they don’t grasp is no one cares about Whitey and whatever they did to him would get the OK by the appeals court. Things are different with the Joker. People with a real stake in the outcome, the families of the deceased and the walking wounded will be watching this closely as will those interested in making Joker some type of victim. The government must play this above-board and on the level.

Joker’s defense is simple: blame his older brother for overcoming his will. The Patty Hearst defense, also known as, the Stockholm syndrome. This makes the request to know what Todashev said about his brother, and possibly Joker’s involvement in the Triple Homicide, if anything, extremely relevent. Were he involved or had he abetted the triple homicide in any manner he was subject to being blackmailed. He’d live in mortal fear that his involvement would be disclosed if he did not do what his brother Tamerlan dictated. Even if he were not involved, he could have been forced by his brother to carry the bombs or he would falsely implicate him in it.

Time to stop the games and come forward with all the evidence. We’ve already had a great tragedy with the bombing; we don’t want to compound it by doing anything that will save the Joker from facing the death penalty. It is sad to think that if the FBI acted responsibly and recorded Todashev’s statements none of these problems may exist.

8 thoughts on “The Spoils of FBI Deceit: Was Todashev Executed? Will Joker Tsarnaev Go Free?

  1. You assessment of the problem the FBI has recording suspects using digital technology is right on target. You mentioned the Judge who was undergoing a background check and wanted to see the FBI forms and check for accuracy. It brought a smile to my face as I remembered this story.
    Footprint Prank Gets FBI Agent Suspended
    July 19, 1992
    An FBI agent screening a prominent black lawyer for a federal judgeship forced the lawyer to submit a footprint and then posted the print and joked about the stunt, the Boston Herald reported Saturday. Both the agent and his supervisor were suspended for the prank, which happened about a month ago, the newspaper said, citing sources it didn’t identify. The agent, whose name was not disclosed, told lawyer Walter Prince that collecting footprints was standard procedure. Then he hung the print on a wall at the Boston FBI office.

    1. MS:

      I knew Walter Prince. He is a great guy. Only in a stultifyingly stolid group like the FBI could something like that occur.

      The FBI has had a long history of disdain for African-Americans. Under Hoover’s rule for almost all of his 48 years there were no black agents except for two or three and their duties did not involve any investigations but as chaueffers for J. Edgar. Hoover grew up in a typical Southern city around the turn of the 20th Century where blacks were mainly employed in menial type jobs. Until he died in 1972, it was hard for him to accept them as being capable of doing otherwise. He was like Winston Churchill who honestly believed the people of India were incapable of self government. Its hard to wash out one’s early beliefs.

  2. “Joker’s defense” seems to point to biased author who has a stake in promoting the event and all the fabricated evidence that Defrauded America as real.

  3. How much extra time should a defendant get because of a bad attitude? If he fails to grovel to the authorities, an extra year or two? The Whitey case and the Todashev matter demonstrate the complete fecklessness of the press. They’ve become wholly dependent on government sources for their information and are incapable of distinguishing fact from fiction. They may as well be asleep. No corroboration or verification ever takes place. 2. Attended a wake of a friend. Several people from Savin Hill were present. All of them knew Connors, Kelley, Veranis and O’Toole. All agreed that the media version of events re: the gangsters was bogus. They enjoyed reading the Patriot Ledger. 3. The fix is already in with Joker. They are going to let him plead guilty and take a life sentence. He will then provide ” valuable, critical ” information that led to the breaking up of a terror plot. He will be released from prison in less than ten years. Why is he still at Ft. Devens? He’s already getting special attention. He should be in a similar cell as WB. The Feds and the press are telling the public that 85 year old WB ( out of trouble for the past 20 years) poses a danger to them but Islamic jihad is a minor problem. 4. Your talk should focus on what WB’s neighborhood was like. Discuss the WW2 memorial. Ask the attendees if their community produced over 200 servicemen ( nine named McDonough) that gave the last full measure of devotion. Ask the attendees how many served in the Military as WB did? Asked if they were subjected to LSD experiments? See which one is going to cast the first stone. WB wasn’t any different than Winter, Salmme, Connors or the other gangsters. He certainly wasn’t in the Mafia’s league. You can’t blame him. All his crimes were committed because of a You-Tube video. As Rushdie said we live in a dumbed down, frightened age. So don’t expect transparency. 5. The JTTF may be telling the truth that they knew nothing about Tsarnaev until he was killed. Is there a small unit in the FBI that works with a secretive small unit at the CIA and a limited group at the White House( the plumbers)? Would this restricted group have been the ones to get the heads up from Russia about Tamerlan’s terrorist activity? Could they have withheld this intelligence from the wider Bureau thus giving the JTTF deniability? Do the State and Boston Police along with the Boston Office of the FBI even have access to the CIA and DC FBI files? Unlikely. The JTTF appears inept or out of the loop. Why even have it? No information is shared. The claim that the FBI performed their duty is nonsense.

    1. N:

      1. No extra time for not groveling. Lots of extra time for taunting and endangering the public. The problem with the media is it has no memory. I was talking to a reporter the other day and mentioned the Titanic sinking. She said. “I missed that. I’ll have to check my twitter. I wonder why no one called me on it?”

      2. Veranis who was taller than Murderman is said to have bent down just before Murderman shot him in the back of the head. Weeks testified “gangsters lie.” The media depending on gangsters for what happened is just spreading their lies. It doesn’t take a graduate of the John Lothrop Motley to have figured that out.

      3. Joker is receiving special treatment. He should be locked up in Plymouth. Something is afoot. Let’s see if the Justice Department goes for the death penalty. I think it has to make a decision on that next month. If they work out a deal with him then give up all hope for American justice. My take on his case is he should have been sent to Guantanamo right away and prosecuted by a military tribunal. We’re lucky our casualties were as limited as they were. Now Joker’s going to be made into a hero by good amount of the anti-government crowd which will lead to the usual “you either with us or against us” mentality so that anyone with an objective cricitism will be labeled a Terrorist sympathizer and sent to Guantanamo.

      Don’t you think the Joker is entitled to know what Todashev allegedly told the cops about the triple homicide? Can you figure out what the investigation is about when the person who did the murder is dead?

      4. I’ll take your advise under consideration about what my talk should be. There’s so many ways to go that I’m having difficulty deciding on my approach. Without factors beyond his control, Whitey’s really just a run of the mill criminal who murdered mostly other criminals who either planned to murder or squeal on him.

      5. The FBI set up the Joint Terrorism Task Forces for the sole purpose of making sure that all information that state or local police may have about terrorism would be funnelled to it. It did not want to get blind sided. Think of Lancaster Street when a half dozen state cops had done what the FBI was unable to do. So the FBI agents on the JTTF task force takes all the local information and gives back only some of the FBI information. Ask anyone – anyone – who has ever dealt with the FBI about whether the FBI keeps as much as possible to itself. It does. That’s why the idea of being in a joint operation with the FBI is foolish since the FBI will never share fully with its partners.

  4. Matt: All kidding aside, I hope you understand what the FBI Fusion centers do. Each state has one and is staffed 24/7 . I continue to identify
    people posting from the FBI Fusion Centers in their attempts to neutralize legitimate discussion and investigation into crimes committed by FBI agents.

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