(NEW) The Brothers

Penny Aggie Volume 2 gSo what if a kid dies God will take care of him Tamerlan Tsarnaev Terrorism has become a festering wound It is an enemy of humanity wrote the late former prime Minister of India Atal Bihari Vajpayee On April 15 2013 two dysfunctional angry young brothers carried out the Boston marathon bombings The oldest brother Tamerlan Tsarnaev was a non practicing Muslim who only became an Islamist militant when his dream of becoming an Olympic boxer ended At the time of the attack he was twenty six years old married a father unhappy and unemployed The youngest brother Dzhokhar 19 years old was a puppy dog to the older brother a kid who had followed his older sibling and crossed the dark side This compelling book is the history of the Tsarnaev family starting with therandparents and the parents The family had been of Chechen descent and wars persecution had forced them to relocate over and over first from Chechnya then to Kyrgyzstan then to Dagestan Russia The parents and Dzhokhar came over to America in 2002 for ninety days on a tourist visa when he was eight The older brother Tamerlan stayed with his uncle and arrived two years later The family claimed asylum and settled in Cambridge Massachusetts Russian Author and Journalist Masha Gessen has written an excellent book that was personal to her in a lot of ways She and her family were also exiles just like the Tsarnaev family were when she just a teenager Later she was literally forced out of Russia due to her books about Putin Gessen believes that very little of the brothers terrorism activities were pre planned She does not believe that the brothers received training from Al ueda or Isis but rather pulled off their own Gandhi Churchill: The Epic Rivalry that Destroyed an Empire and Forged Our Age ghastly deeds in Boston by themselves with some help Unlike the media and law enforcement Gessen does not buy they were radicalized but that the brothers had no real sense of identity and were desperately looking for something meaningful torasp onto They were failing terribly in their own personal lives they were nobodies and this was something big and terrible to attach themselves to it Les Innocents gave their lives meaning Tamerlain was killed during a shootout with the police after the bombing Dzhokhar was captured had a public trial and sentenced to death He put a shame he put a shame on our family The Tsarni family He put a shame on the entire Chechen ethnicity said his Uncle Ruslan Tsarni Four stars for a well written book Masha Gessen did such aood job on her Putin bio I was excited to find this recent book on the Tsarnaev brothers Unlike other terrorists they seemed to have too much I Was A Stranger going for them for them to commit murder as they did Unfortunately this book is nowhere near the standard of the Putin book The brothers have lessoing for them than it seemed but so much is half reported its hard to know themThe book started off well enough with Gessen relating the culture and history from which the parents Anzor and Zubeidat emerged Gessen having visited their several home towns ives enough background so that you understand the horror of the previous eneration and the dull and poor environment Anzor and Zubeidat left Anzor was Chechen but never lived in Checknya and Zubeidat was Avar making them outsiders wherever they went Anzor and Zubeidat went to Boston on tourist visas and later applied for asylum The did not need asylum witness how often family members return to their home region they were not political They were opportunists who after drifting around the Russian Federation through family connections drifted to Cambridge MA While they physically left the old world whichever country or uasi country it might be they did not leave the old thinking behind Their oldest son would be a boxer win awards and be rich and famous Their daughters would marry Chechens no matter how unknown their character or ability to support a family might be Their youngest son it seems they just didn t have time for himThere is undoubtedly a lot to know about this chaotic family than told here Having had a 10 year relationship with the family their landlady Joanna Herlihy surely had to say than appears in this book Only one high school teacher is interviewed none from Jahar s college Tamerlan s wife who must have a story hardly ets a mention while there must 10 pages on the wife and mother in law of Ibragm Todashev who may or may and mother in law of Ibragm Todashev who may or may be part of the story Without saying the brothers are innocent Gessen lays on the circumstantial evidence to exonerate them She challenges the video of them dropping the bags with the bombs it is so bad it took a long time to "id the brothers did ignoring phoned in ids "the brothers Did ignoring phoned in IDs the FBI was in on it She challenges that the Tsarnaev s made the bomb She focuses on the rough interrogation of the friends who threw out Jahar s back pack and Kair Matanov who enjoyed shooting practice with Tamberlan She cites the number of FBI stings that entrap the vulnerable There is a hard to follow thread on Tamerlan s possibly being an FBI informant involving the triple Waltham murder and the killing of Ibragm Todashev There is a support roup to Free Jahar Michael Dukakis calls him Many Chechens think he is innocent or maybe that what he did was a legitimate response to US foreign policy Many like his mother now living in Russia because she has a shoplifting charge in the US think he was set up These and other conspiracy theories comprise about 13 of the bookThe book ends with a vignette about a high school acuaintance of Tamerlan who spoke on CNN It like most of the book seemed to be there to make a page countWhile there is a list of family friends and acuaintances at the beginning the layout makes it difficult to use There are no photos There is no index There are no footnotes despite interviews and material from elsewhere After Gessen s excellent and meaty book on Putin this is a big disappointment I m sure this will be controversialThe first sign is the disclaimer at the beginning that says essentially I realize that a lot of people were hurt in the Boston Marathon bombing but this isn t about thatNot that this book should be obligated to be about how bad the marathon bombing was As if In fact I ended up liking this a lot than I would have if it had been a straightforward account of the attack itself which I probably also would have enjoyedThe author covered the wars in Chechnya in the 1990s and had an apparently not particularly pleasant experience as a Russian immigrant in the Boston area as a teenager and so that s what a lot of this ends up being about the wars terrorism limited opportunity and what have you that they were fleeing in Russia and Central Asia and the shitty to say the least experience they had here in the USThe stuff on Russia s various conflicts was fascinating and I imagine would be news to almost anyone here in Murica including it would seem people who are paid taxpayer dollars out the ass to be experts on that sort of thingThere s very little on the bombing itself and the kids who supposedly carried it out and even less th. An important story for our era How the American Dream went wrong for two immigrants and the nightmare that resulted The facts of the tragedy are established On April 15 2013 two homemade bombs fashioned from pressure cookers exploded near the finish line of the Boston Marathon killing three people and wounding 264 others The elder of the brothers suspected of committing this atrocity Tamerlan Tsarnaev died in the ensuing manhunt; Dzhokhar will stand trial in January 2015 What we don’t know is why How did such a nightmare

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The BrothersG oing on than that Being from Ireland isn t anything like being from ChechnyaI had to wait for Masha Gessen to write The Brothers before I could figure out exactly what I meant I felt vindicated when I ot to page 60 and read this American society perhaps than some others Gone: The Disappearance of Claudia Lawrence and Her Father's Desperate Search for the Truth goes through distinct cycles separated by shifts in the national psyche But to a new immigrant nothing was here before and there is no inkling that things will be different after There is only the mood of the present moment and this mood becomes what America feels like The Tsarnaevs arrived a few months after the September 11 2001 attacks on New York and Washington had united Americans in fearThis was the idea I d been feeling around for that tired night in the kitchen when I d been trying to argue with my husband and wash the dishes at the same time and had ended by doing a lousy job at both Being an immigrant is tough no matter where you re from or how much you wanted to live in your new country Being an immigrant from a country most Americans have only heard of in relation to the War on Terror well that makes you the redheaded stepchild of the immigrant family to say the leastThat s the story Gessen tells Bear in mind that she started work on this book practically the day Dzhokhar was arrested I started reading it the week his death sentence was announced This book is not about his trial or about how he and his brother went about bombing the marathon It s about who was arrested for that bombing and why It s also the story of the banality of evil To me the most shocking part of this book is well how boring the brothers were before it happened They weren t particularly intelligent or devout Neither of them seem as if they were interested in or engaged with the world or even their own lives If they had a reason for waking up in the morning I couldn t tell you what it was They just don t come across as the kind of people who could care enough about anything to do something violent They reminded me of a character from a novel I love Lolly WillowesLaura was not in any way religious She was not even religious enough to speculate towards irreligionI m not na ve enough to think that anyone who commits a violent crime must be some wild eyed fanatic andor evilenius Frankly as a smallish middle aged woman living in an increasingly weird city I m starting to wonder if all men are just one bad day and one cheap 1,000 Awesome Writing Prompts gun away fromoing on a killing spree But I did expect to et some sense of why the brothers did what they didMaybe one of the points of this book is that there isn t any such sense to be had Excuse me for uoting at length but I think this is important Very soon many of Tamerlan s and Jahar s friends would be telling the FBI and the media that it was impossible that the brothers were the bombers there had been no sign Surely the friends would say if the two had been plotting something so huge and horrible they would have seemed distracted Or emotional Or pensive Or somehow clearly not themselves But this assumption was a misconception The psychiatrist and political scientist Jerrold Post who has been studying terrorists for decades writes Terrorists are not depressed severely emotionally disturbed or crazed fanatics Political scientist Louise Richardson an undisputed star in the tiny academic field of terrorism studies writes of terrorists Their primary shared characteristic is their normalcy insofar as we understand the term Psychological studies of terrorism are virtually unanimous on this pointNor do terrorists tend to behave out of character just before committing an act that to them appears perfectly rational and fully justified One of the September 11 hijackers called his wife "in Germany on the MORNING OF THE ATTACKS TO TELL HER HE LOVED of the attacks to tell her he loved on the morning of the attacks to tell her he loved she apparently heard nothing extraordinary in his voice the attacks to tell her he loved she apparently heard nothing extraordinary in his voice made the decision to commit an act of terrorism the future bomber even a suicide bomber develops it would appear a sort of two track mind On one track life oes on exactly as before on the other he is preparing for the event that will disrupt his life or even end it It is precisely the ordinary nature of the man and the extraordinary effect of the act about to be committed that ensure the two tracks never crossThis passage kept coming to mind as I listened to a news report about the mother of the unman in the recent shooting at a Tunisian beach The woman was horrified by what her son had done and was frantically trying to make sense of it What had she missed Her son an electrical engineering student who had a irlfriend and liked soccer and break dancing was outstandingly ordinary I might have had trouble believing that before I read this book I have no trouble believing it nowSadly I think The Brothers should be reuired reading The history it covers is interesting the ideas it offers are vital I ve been attending Dzhokhar Tsarnaev s trial over the past few months and obtained a media copy of this book Masha Gessen travelled back to Dagestan and retraced the steps of the Tsarnaev family s life leading up to the denouement of the bombing Gessen is deeply steeped in contemporary Russian history particularly as it pertains to Chechnya and has written this book with characteristic empathy nuance and understanding Not only that it is written with considerable verve and was pretty much a page turner throughout I was enjoying it enough until the end when it took a decidedly subversive tone by engaging with many of the conspiracies and legitimately irksome uestions which remain around the bombing FBI relationship with Tamerlan Tsarnaev and the deaths and detentions of many other Chechens in America in the aftermath of the attack The book is written with admirable storytelling skill highly recommended to anyone not just those who are interested in this case The Boston Marathon bombing is yet another news event where I seemed to lose focus before I lost interest I ached for the victims but I didn t respond to the big wave of Boston Strong that followed the vengeance the wounded civic pride and which seemed to outpace the magnitude of the event itself Was it just me or were the details of how and why it happened just overwhelmed by the anger and tears I was particularly surprised by the All I ever say about books any is that they aren t interesting which is not an interesting way to consider a book Let s call this one thought provoking then because it s very well written and Hello, Snow! gets into the family history and history of the fraught regions they come from much deeper than anyone else writing in English anyway has Masha Gessen is a TREASURE because she wrote it mostly before the trial had started it s incomplete and you feel that incompleteness It d be amazing if she wouldo back when the sentencing is over and incorporate the trial into itA number of the reviews here I ve read say that she defends the brothers which I think is inaccurate She allows for possibilities beyond the single obvious narrative we ve been presented with If Zstan to war torn Dagestan and then as émigrés to the United States into an utterly disorienting new world Most crucially she reconstructs the struggle between assimilation and alienation that ensued for each of the brothers fueling their apparent metamorphosis into a new breed of homegrown terrorist with their feet on American soil but their loyalties elsewhere a split in identity that seems to have incubated a deadly sense of mission Like Dave Cullen’s Columbine this will be the enduring account of an indelible tragedy. At couldn t just be found in the wiki I m sure in part because the author couldn t talk Eric Holder into letting Jahar sit for an interview especially after what happened with Rolling Stone The kid s A Little Dinner Before the Play got enoughroupies If and when they fry his ass it ll rival Zayn Malik leaving One Direction and not just because they have a similar lookThe actual story of the bombing to the extent that it s told here only makes up maybe a third of the book The rest is pontificating about the ineptitude if not full on corruption of law enforcement and the myriad abuses of the War on Terror and conspiracy theories about who really planted those bombs Apparently marathon bombing troof is a thing on the Internets now Of course it isI d say that at the very least the author makes a pretty Mastering the Art of Saying No Without Feeling Guilty: Tips, Techniques and Strategies good case that the FBI et al knew a lot about the attacks than they were letting on You can tell she s on to something because otherwise Janet Napolitano wouldn t have bothered issuing a response in the New York Times the other day I read this book in an effort toain some understanding of how two young men could commit the atrocities they did Either I was unable to find a place of objectivity or there was sadly not much in these two to understand I was completely on board at the start as Gessen provides some historical background Yet as she draws closer to the childhood and adolescence of the Tsarnaevs the book loses steam There are so many other characters introduced that their story almost fades into the background My other conclusion is that Tamerlan and his younger brother Dzhokhar were two directionless products of their environment There are simply no answers that can explain their actions be they easy or difficult to understand Well alrighty then This looked so promising from the New Books shelf I actually put down something else I was Yuganta, The End Of An Epoch going to take While it kept my interest this book frustrated the ever loving crap out of meShe starts welliving some background on Chechnya it s problems with Russia etc There s a lot of background about the Tsarnaev families movements hither and yon along with a time line and the most God awful map illustrating said travels Much time then is spent telling us This was a strange book In light of the recent anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombing and the close of the trial against one of the brothers this seemed like a Once a Wicked Lady: A Biography of Margaret Lockwood good pick up I was intrigued by the title and the idea that it was not about the bombing itself but rather what led up to it and its aftermath I did not know and was somewhat expecting being left with answers but the book is a little odd and I m not entirely sure what a reader is supposed toet out of it It s the story of the family Tsarnaev their origins their struggles and their hopes and dreams I thought the author started off relatively well by discussing Dagestan the place in history and eography what sort of background the parents came from But I have to admit I was not as interested in the parents We see the family move to the US in the hopes of a better life and to achieve what some of their countrypeople have becoming lawyers marrying and having children without the threat of war although the family would arrive not long after 911 and moving up This was not to be so They did not adjust did not assimilate and despite the talents of the family members their mom is ifted with languages Tamerlan was a ood boxer etc they are unable to achieve what they had hoped And then from here the book becomes murky The author traces the elder brother s return to Dagestan the sort of drifter Dzhokhar had become the author states he chose the least academically challenging of the schools that accepted him although doesn t name the others without discussing the details It s not really clear what exactly drew the brothers to create bombs It s like the younger brother was a stoner in college and then he tells his friend he can build bombs Uh what and then he tells his friend he can build bombs Uh what author sort drops these two once the bombing occurs Tamerlan dies not long after in a confrontation with the policegetting run over by his brother and focuses on the friends who were arrested and interrogated "for being connected or somehow helping Tamerlan and Dzhokhar hide evidence etc I ve read reviews critical of the book saying "being connected or somehow helping Tamerlan and Dzhokhar hide evidence etc I ve read reviews critical of the book saying s too sympathetic but I
Think The Problem Is Elsehwere 
the problem is elsehwere s so much that is missing I understand the author s focus but the way the book is constructed I just do not understand what the reader was supposed to extrapolate I do not consider myself an expert but there were articles talking about the parents after the bombing they disappear pretty much by the last part of the book about uncle Ruslan who called his nephews losers Tamerlan s wife who briefly appears in the book etc The author sometimes skips around in time and I kept pausing because I know I ve read other pieces and articles about pieces of this story yet they are not mentioned here Indeed according to the bibliography the author relied almost entirely on books but it s clear she did interviews too Did she read the various news articles She discusses some of the media perceptions and coverage but it even with Gessen s narrow focus I couldn t help but think she was leaving stuff out And I could not say if that was to make the book sympathetic on her subjects but it just seems sloppy This was really emphasized to me when the author states that Chechen men beat their wives to show their power Um There are no footnotes or endnotes and while I understand that the author is journalist who did research and has reported on Chechnya forgive me for wanting some citation for that statement There are some ood parts at the end that will make us uestion about what we were told about this story about whether the use of force was really justified etc But some of the omissions are uite odd It was an interesting read but it s obviously not at all authoritative It was worth the read but I ll be picking up other books to supplement this one When Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was arrested for the Boston Marathon bombing my husband and I Future Focus got into an argumentWho cares where he s from he said Everyone s talking about his family being from Chechnya like that s enough to make him a terrorist in and of itself He s an immigrant Okay How is his being from Chechnya any different from his being from IrelandI don t know if he picked Ireland because it s a country he s heard of because I m Irish or because we re both old enough to remember a time when saying you were from Ireland would lead a listener to thoughts of and possibly uestions about the IRA I do know that he s someone who s morally opposed to putting people in ill fitting boxes and he d just come home from a long day with coworkers who had no problem with the idea that Muslim immigrant terrorist just waitin to happenI understand what you mean I said And I know everyone s being a big collective idiot about he and his brother being Muslims and I m sick of it too But there s something wrong with your example There s somethin. Ome to passThis is a probing and powerful story of dislocation and the longing for clarity and identity that can reach the point of combustion Bestselling Russian American author Masha Gessen is uniuely endowed with the background access and talent to tell it She explains who the brothers were and how they came to do what they appear to have done From their displaced beginnings as descendants of ethnic Chechens deported to Central Asia in the Stalin era Gessen follows them as they are displaced again from strife ridden Kyrgy.