Expert on terrorism weighs in on suspects' possible motivation - WECT, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Expert on terrorism weighs in on suspects' possible motivation

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) – An expert on terrorism is sharing his take on the investigation into the Boston Marathon bombing.

Dan Masters, Ph.D., Assistant Professor in the UNCW Department of Political Science, has been watching the case closely.

He hoped the second suspect would be taken alive, so he could be questioned and we could get a better understanding of why this happened.

"I think it will give us a better sense of closure to understand what was going on in the process," Masters said. "Right now, we have so many open questions."

His theory is that his older brother, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, was the leader, he became a radical and recruited his younger brother.

"You have an older brother who never seemed to assimilate well when he came to the US," he explained. "His Facebook page has some sort of statement that ‘I don't have any American friends, I don't get Americans' indicated he just doesn't feel at home and can't really connect with the American population.

He believes that isolation drove him to become radical.

It appears that the older brother was in touch with radical groups, but it's not apparent yet if there was any kind of broad conspiracy.

"It's entirely possible this kind of attack was completely and totally them," he said. "Think about Oklahoma City. You had two people operating in isolation with a very large fertilizer bomb unbeknownst to anyone else. So, a large attack can take place with very few people given the availability of how to make a pressure cooker bomb."

He hopes that in the coming days, we learn more about the motivation behind the attack.

"There's probably no real rhyme or reason," he said. "He may have thought he was expressing a certain degree of rage or point of view through his attack. It will never make sense to anybody. This is a person who is incredibly frustrated with his own condition and this became a way of expressing something that seemed culturally consistent with who he was."

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