The CIA directly asked the FBI to place Tamerlan Tsarnaev, the elder of the two suspected Boston Marathon bombers, on its counterterrorism watchlist handled by the National Counterterrorism Center. That request came after the Russian government asked the CIA to keep an eye on Tsarnaev. It also came a year after the FBI closed its initial inquiry into Tsarnaev based on Russian warnings.
The watchlist, known as the Terrorist Identities Datamart Environment (TIDE), is actually a master watchlist that supplies information for a series of smaller watchlists, including the FBI’s central Terrorist Screening Database, and the infamous Transportation Security Administration no-fly list.
Despite the fact that Tsarnaev was added to the list, Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano testified yesterday that Tsarnaev was not monitored when he returned from Russia in 2012. The FBI now says that the Russians were fine with the level of scrutiny placed on Tsarnaev by the US government. “They were satisfied,” an unnamed official told the Washington Post. “We had checked on their information.”
No wonder they were satisfied. The Tsarnaevs didn’t attack their marathon.
Ben Shapiro is Editor-At-Large of Breitbart News and author of the New York Times bestseller “Bullies: How the Left’s Culture of Fear and Intimidation Silences America” (Threshold Editions, January 8, 2013).