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But while agreeing that “multi-dimensional preparedness” helped make “Boston Strong,” a Harvard study also describes a situation of chaos and endangerment that the manhunt brought to the streets of Watertown.
Events leading up to the bombing are also beginning to come into focus.
How has the technology provided through DHS grants and the creation of a new architecture of surveillance affected local policing, and what happens to traditional crime solving methods and accountability when police become increasingly federalized and assume ‘national security’ functions?
What lessons should be learned from the inadequacies of those information-sharing systems and intelligence structures exposed by the Marathon bombing?
Twenty-first century ‘homeland security’ policing took over Watertown’s streets during the hunt for those responsible for the heinous attack on the 2013 Boston Marathon.
The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has reportedly spent more than0 billion since it was created in 2003, much of it to promote the collaboration of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies in intelligence-gathering activities, and to provide grants to outfit local police with high tech gear and military-style vehicles and weapons.
Military Blackhawk helicopters buzzed above the usually quiet suburb, and K-9 units were brought in to take part in the search.They proceeded to fire hundreds of rounds at the boat.The FBI’s Hostage Rescue Team (HRT) – which despite being a civilian agency has participated in hundreds of raids in Iraq and Afghanistan alongside Joint Special Operations Command forces – used explosive devices to stun the suspect after a robot removed the tarp from the boat.A report by Inspectors General of Intelligence Services documents the multiple reasons for the failure to prevent the terrorist attack after Russian intelligence issued a detailed warning about Tamerlan Tsarnaev that the FBI only cursorily investigated and did not proactively share with its state and local partners.Numerous questions have been raised, including about whether the bombing could have been prevented if the police had devoted more time and resources to solving the particularly vicious murder of three people in Waltham in which Tamerlan Tsarnaev was subsequently implicated by anonymous law enforcement officials.
But some residents were privately critical of the heavy-handed response.