This new report from Fox’s Catherine Herridge is significant. She reports investigators have determined that the Boston bombers did not use cell phones to trigger the bombs. Instead, they used “line of sight” controllers from remote control cars to trigger them. This mechanism, according to Herridge, is not similar to the one published in ‘Inspire,’ the al Qaeda magazine.
Ever since the bombings, experts in and out of government have insisted that the bombers could have learned how to build their bombs off the Internet, and consistently pointed to the article in ‘Inspire’ that details building pressure cooker bombs. But if they deviated this significantly from the ‘Inspire’ design, then they may not have learned to build their mechanisms via that magazine at all. Which begs the question, then where did they learn it?
It also begs another question. Tamerlan Tsarnaev was seen talking on his cell phone a few seconds before the blast. Who was he talking to? He could have been talking to his brother, of course, but he could have been talking with some third party. None of the photos released by the investigation so far show either of the two brothers using a “line of sight” controller. Investigators haven’t ruled out the possibility of a third bomber.
Another unsolved mystery is how did they build such powerful bombs. According to reports earlier this week, the older brother bought powerful fireworks from a New Hampshire store in February. As powerful as those fireworks were, they probably didn’t contain enough gunpowder to build the 8 known bombs. The lack of any color in the smoke is also evidence against the use of firework gunpowder. Additionally, buying enough fireworks to power those bombs would have been expensive, and the extraction process would have been messy.
They could have milled their own powder. It isn’t difficult to do, but requires space, electricity, proper ventilation, the right ingredients (which are cheap) and a few cheap parts, and patience. The question is, if they milled their own powder, where and when did they do that?
If we treated the surviving bomber as an enemy combatant, our investigators could just ask him. But Obama and Holder have chosen not to designate him as an enemy combatant.