Bryant, I agree. Perhaps, the US attorney was trying to insure the ultimate sanction just as criminals may be sentenced to spend several lifetimes behind bars.I hope that justice is swift. The bombing was a heinous crime.
I agree to call the pot bomb a WMD is disingenuous at best. Call it what it is, murder, terrorism, assault with a deadly weapon but not a WMD.
I think there are a lot of overzealous federal prosecutors trying to make a name for themselves, and making little things into big things is one way to do it.
Clmegeist, "making little things into big things"is possibly not the optimal choice of words. I agree with your sentiment. We often see this at the local level with multiple charges related to a single offense.
You do know that more than 250 people suffered injuries in the two blasts, including dozens who lost limbs?
As terrorist attacks go in the US, that's pretty mass to me. It's amazingly lucky only three people died.
Also, as Fly points out, the charge also ensures the harshest penalties possible are on the table. Massachusetts does not have the death penalty, but a federal WMD charge puts capital punishment on the table.
Federal hate crime statutes were instituted because blacks, Latinos and homosexuals, among others, were the targets of crimes solely because they were black, Latino or homosexual. I've never been the target of a crime because I am a white heterosexual.
Perhaps a specific hate crime statute is an overreach at combating racism and ignorance, but local courts were not giving sentences commensurate with some very violent crimes.
WMD to me says biological, chemical or nuclear not pressure cooker. Make no mistake the crime was terrible but to call it a WMD is to me wrong.
Appreciate your thoughts, hunter.
The pressure cooker bombs used in Boston do meet the FBI definition of a WMD:
any "destructive device" as defined in Title 18 USC Section 921: any explosive, incendiary, or poison gas - bomb, grenade, rocket having a propellant charge of more than four ounces, missile having an explosive or incendiary charge of more than one-quarter ounce, mine, or device similar to any of the devices described in the preceding clauses.
Again, we all agree it was a horrific event whatever you want to call it.
Paulie, it is the definition which is bogus. I go with hunter. If a pressure cooker bomb is a WMD (unless filled with a biological or chemical agent), then my mother should have to complete a background check when she needs a new one form Wal-Mart.
It's a cheesy charge and reflects a somewhat weak faith in our existing criminal statutes.
Bryant: Your right to say that a pressure cooker is not an atom bomb, weapon of mass destruction, but in another sence it is, because of the sociological destruction it is meant to achieve, to cause us to demand more and more government control, like cameras everywhere,in order to be safe. It is a weapon of mass destrution of our freedom and our way of life. Also, this event in Boston is part of the world wide movement to destory the USA and that movement is a weapon of mass destruction. Calling a pressure cooker a weapon of mass destruction is simply a way to identify the act with the movement. We have political leaders who do not what to call it what it is, "a world wide movement by extreme elements who use Islam to control people and want to expand that control to everyone in the world. This is not new in human history, it is human history. This is just the latest version that good people must defeat.