Investigators mull the motive of Boston bombers

Kathy Stewart,

WASHINGTON – After the events that took place in Boston this week, many are left asking the question, “Why?”

Why did two brothers who lived in the U.S. for almost a decade orchestrate such a heinous crime as the Boston bombings?

Former FBI profiler Clint Van Zandt says the two brothers acted together.

“One of the things investigators need to determine is the motive in this case,” says Van Zandt, who adds that it remains too early to know if the brothers had assistance from others.

What investigators do know is that both brothers had strong feelings concerning the Chechen cause.

“(The bombings may have been) to bring international attention to the plight of the Chechen people and their conflict with Russia,” Van Zandt says.

Interviews conducted with family members of the Tsarnaev brothers indicate both had issues with America, particularly the older brother, according to Van Zandt.

“The 26 year old was disaffected with America. He wasn’t able to fit in,” he says.

Older brother Tamerlan Tsarnaev died in a shootout early Friday with police. He had spent at least six months last year in Russia in the Chechen area, before returning to the U.S.

He also could have been a “father figure to younger brother” and may have been “responsible for the radicalization not only of himself but of his younger brother,” Van Zandt says.

Younger brother Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, 19, became a U.S. citizen on Sept. 11, 2012, beckoning the question: Why did he make the effort to adopt the U.S. as his own country?

As the Boston marathon case continues to unfold, investigators continue to work on establishing a motive.

More from WTOP

Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up