I don’t know Martin Richards, or his family. All I know of him is what I see in the pictures, and what was reported in the press.
Martin can be seen here at his school. He had a mother, a father, and two siblings: a twelve-year old brother, and a six-year old sister. His family lived in a middle class neighborhood in Dorchester, Massachusetts. Both his father and his mother were runners, although neither was participating in this year’s Boston Marathon. Because they enjoyed running, the whole family went out to watch the race.
Here is another photograph of Martin, holding on to the fence near the finish line of the Marathon race course. Martin seems anxious, as if he is waiting for the race to come to a close.
This photograph is significant, as it also includes one of the men who killed him, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the American citizen of Chechen/Dagestani descent who became an Islamist America-hating terrorist. Tsarnaev and his brother Tamerlan planted two bombs, loaded with shrapnel, to go off in a staggered fashion, so as to maximize casualties among the crowd watching the race. The bombings resulted in the deaths of three people and the maiming of many others; the second bomb was responsible for killing Martin Richards and harming Martin’s mother and his sister. It was a second Boston Massacre.
But Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev had no reason to hate America.
They were both ethnic Chechen/Dagestani refugees from Russian provinces where rebellions by the natives against the Russian government had been crushed by the Russian government. Their family had (supposedly) faced danger/prejudice in these provinces, so they left and came to America. Our country took the Tsarnaev family in, and gave the brothers a possible path to future success. Tamerlan hoped to be a champion boxer. Dzhokhar wanted to be a doctor. Even Tamerlan apparently recognized a major positive about America – Mrs. Tsarnaev claimed Tamerlan defiantly told FBI officials, “I am in a country that gives me the right to read whatever I want and watch whatever I want…””
For that matter, our country’s citizens have also been extremely generous to the entire Chechen/Dagestani people. Since 2007, Americans have spent $7.2 million on Chechen/Dagestani-related grants. These include: ““life-sustaining relief to war-affected populations of Chechnya through assistance in shelter, water and sanitation,” building facilities for “end violence against women and girls in Chechnya” efforts, “free legal assistance in Chechnya,” and even a grant to “raise professional competence of teachers from St. Petersburg and teachers from Chechnya in tolerance and international awareness.””
The Tsarneav family also personally benefited from U.S. financial generosity. The parents, and the boys when they were children, were all on public assistance. Later, as an adult, Tamerlan also received welfare when he lived with his wife and child. And Dzhokhar received his own personal grant of $2500 from other Americans to further his own education at college.
But it turns out that both of these brothers were still failing to achieve the American dream. Tamerlan’s boxing career had stalled. He hadn’t gone anywhere in his schooling. He didn’t have many (or any) friends. So he began to get angry, and beat his girlfriend, and sell pot, and embrace his religion, especially the violent, political version of it. And his brother, who was busy smoking pot in school, and perhaps as a result, failed to keep his grades up in college, began to listen to Tamerlan and his twisted dream of a jihad against infidels.
Infidels like Martin Richards, the eight-year old who the Tsarnaev’s successfully murdered in Boston. Along with, eventually, three other innocent people: Krystle Campbell, Lu Lingzu (a Chinese international student), and Sean Collier. And also the 265 persons wounded in the blasts and firefights.
But we know that they did do it, and that they sure seemed satisfied with the results of their actions (with the exception of their eventual capture/death). In that picture with Martin Richards, we can see that Dzhokhar, supposedly the “angel” Tsarnaev, was smiling as he walked away from the bomb he had just planted at Martin’s feet. And we know that after the bombing, but before the brothers were identified, Tamerlan was laughing on the phone with his mother after she called to make sure he was safe.
Sorry, but I am not going to feel bad for these mass murderers. I feel bad for the victims, like eight-year old Martin Richards. According to his school headmaster, Martin Richards “was a bright, energetic young boy who had big dreams and high hopes for his future.” But Martin Richards has no dreams, no hopes, and no future anymore.
The Tsarnaev’s are nothing but a couple of Islamist losers, who were failing at everything they had ever tried, so then they turned to violent jihad. And they murdered innocent people whose country had been nothing but good to them.
One of these losers is already dead. The other – after he is done spilling his guts – deserves the same fate.
Adam Turner serves as staff counsel to the Endowment for Middle East Truth (EMET). He is a former counsel to the Senate Judiciary Committee where he focused on national security law.