NBC

Could Russia's Info Have Stopped Boston Marathon Bombing?

Sources detailed an inspector general's report to The New York Times describing information Russia held back on Tamerlan Tsarnaev.

By Cliff Judy | April 10, 2014

An investigative report members of Congress will be briefed on Thursday says Russia warned the U.S. in 2011 that Tamerlan Tsarnaev was growing more and more radical, but then declined to answer any follow-up questions.

ANCHOR: "The report is expected to say that Tamerlan Tsarnaev had raised suspicions at least two years before the attack, but it was only after the attack that Russia provided more details." (Via CNN)

The New York Times cites anonymous sources on the news, and indicates the latest findings seem to exonerate the FBI from the idea agents could've stopped last year's Boston Marathon bombings.

Tsarnaev was killed in the manhunt to find those responsible for the bombs that killed three and wounded more than 260. Tsarnaev's younger brother Dzhokhar faces a possible death sentence if convicted. (Via ABC)

According to the Times, an inspector general's report shows the info Russia didn't disclose to the U.S. included an intercepted phone call between Tsarnaev and his mother discussing Islamic jihad.

A senior government official briefed on the report said: “Had they known what the Russians knew they probably would have been able to do more under our investigative guidelines, but would they have uncovered the plot? That’s very hard to say.” (Via The New York Times)

However, The Boston Globe and Los Angeles Times both report Russia correctly predicted Tsarnaev would try to change his name, another signal he was growing radical.

The two outlets disagree over why Tsarnaev tried to change his name to Muaz. The LA Times says it references an Islamist fighter killed by Russian forces in a region Tsarnaev visited. The Globe reports Muaz refers to an early Islamist scholar.

Regardless, the Globe reports when Tsarnaev filled out naturalization forms less than a year before the bombings, a source says he didn't sign the portion of the application taking an oath of allegiance to the U.S.

The government source said, “If I’m that guy who signed off on this form, I’m thinking about it now, but I’m not sure what I would have done differently.”

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