Law enforcement officials have found a radical Islamist magazine on Katherine Russell’s computer, the Washington Post reports, calling into question whether the Boston bombing suspect’s 24-year-old widow was somehow involved in the marathon plot.
It remains unclear, however, whether Russell downloaded the material herself or if someone else was using her computer.
Government documents show that suspected bombers Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev likely learned how to make the bombs used in the Boston attacks by reading the al Qaeda magazine “Inspire.”
The magazine’s first issue, published in 2010, contains an article titled “Make a bomb in the kitchen of your mum.”
There’s been speculation that the Tsarnaev brothers were “self-radicalized” through reading materials such as “Inspire” and watching YouTube videos, but that theory has been called into question by some.
The government report says the Boston bombs mimicked the design described in the article, and Dzhokhar told investigators that he and his brother learned how to build the bombs through the magazine (which is published in English).
Russell recently stopped cooperating with authorities, and they’re reportedly sceptical about her claims that she knew nothing about the bombing plot. Dzhokhar told authorities the bombs were built in the home Tamerlan shared with Russell and their young daughter.
The magazine found on Russell’s computer is meant to “motivate” or “encourage” believers to “respond to the call of Allah,” according to a letter from the editor published in the first issue. Part of the letter reads, “It is jihād that gives this nation life. We survive through jihād and perish without it.”
It also says the magazine is “geared towards making the Muslim a mujāhid (jihadist) in Allāh’s path.”
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