We have no idea whether or not the Chechen brothers Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev were the Boston terrorists. But several parts of the official narrative are already falling apart.
Initially, the claim that they robbed a 7-11 is totally false. USA Today reported on April 19th:
There was a 7-Eleven robbery in Cambridge last night, but it had nothing to do with the Boston Marathon bombing suspects.
Margaret Chabris, the director of corporate communication at 7- Eleven, says the surveillance video of the crime was not taken at a 7-Eleven and that the suspect that did rob the 7-Eleven does not look like Tamerlan or Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.
“The suspect in the photos for that particular 7-Eleven robbery looks nothing like the suspects,” Chabris says. “The police or someone made a mistake. Someone was confused.”
At an earlier press conference morning, when [State Police Superintendent Timothy Alban] described the manhunt and standoff that resulted in the death of an MIT police officer, he also said that the two brothers robbed a 7-Eleven.
Moreover, the FBI initially denied ever having spoken with either of the brothers. But CBS news notes:
The FBI admitted Friday they interviewed the now-deceased Boston Marathon bombing suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev two years ago and failed to find any incriminating information about him.
Other oddities include the following:
Again, they might be guilty. But as Glenn Greenwald notes:
The overarching principle here should be that Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is entitled to a presumption of innocence until he is actually proven guilty. As so many cases have proven – from accused (but exonerated) anthrax attacker Stephen Hatfill to accused (but exonerated) Atlanta Olympic bomber Richard Jewell to dozens if not hundreds of Guantanamo detainees accused of being the “worst of the worst” but who were guilty of nothing – people who appear to be guilty based on government accusations and trials-by-media are often completely innocent. Media-presented evidence is no substitute for due process and an adversarial trial.
Indeed, the FBI said it was positive that Bruce Ivins was the anthrax killer (after falsely accusing 2 other people of being the culprits). However, the National Academy of Science found that the FBI failed to prove its case.
Note: Media said that the door-to-door searches conducted in Watertown were voluntary. However – whether or not you agree with the need to do so – the searches were not always exactly voluntary.