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Bastrop Daily Enterprise - Bastrop, LA
A blog 'for independent minds'
Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s opinions
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Opinion page editor Rick Holmes and other writers blog about national politics and issues. Holmes & Co. is a Blog for Independent Minds, a place for a free-flowing discussion of policy, news and opinion. This blog is the online cousin of the Opinion ...
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Opinion page editor Rick Holmes and other writers blog about national politics and issues. Holmes & Co. is a Blog for Independent Minds, a place for a free-flowing discussion of policy, news and opinion. This blog is the online cousin of the Opinion section of the MetroWest Daily News in Framingham, Mass. As such, our focus starts there and spreads to include Massachusetts, the nation and the world. Since successful blogs create communities of readers and writers, we hope the \x34& Co.\x34 will also come to include you.
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By Rick Holmes
June 28, 2013 11:10 a.m.



TzhokharGradOK, so we now know what Dzhohar wrote on the tarp covering the boat where he hid in Watertown:

“The U.S. Government is killing our innocent civilians;” “I can’t stand to see such evil go unpunished;” “We Muslims are one body, you hurt one you hurt us all;” “Now I don’t like killing innocent people it is forbidden in Islam but due to said [unintelligible] it is allowed;” and “Stop killing our innocent people and we will stop.”

We know this because it’s included in the indictment handed down by a grand jury Thursday.  I’m no lawyer, I haven’t read the entire indictment and I look forward to learning more about this when I get off my multiple deadlines today.  My main question: Why are those quotes in the indictment? On their face, the charges against Tsarnaev have to do with his actions, notably killing people.  So why are his religious and political opinions relevant enough to put in the indictment?

My main fear is that Carmen Ortiz, who has already locked up Tarek Mehanna for 18 years for expressing his own religious and political opinions, is as oblivious to the First Amendment as Mehanna’s lawyers contended.  I fear it also confirms that the Obama Justice Department considers anyone who agrees with any positions taken by radical Islamists part of the “media wing” of al Qaida.

What’s most disturbing is that it’s unnecessary for the prosecution to go out of its way to link the Tsarnaevs to Anwar al-Awlaki’s magazine or to indict Dzhokhar for his beliefs.  He killed a bunch of people and injured scores more.  They’ve got plenty of evidence. They caught him red-handed.  Does Ortiz want to make it look like a political prosecution instead of a criminal one? Are she and Holder prosecuting a crime or trying to send a message to other critics of U.S. foreign policy?

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