Boston attack ‘act of terror’—Obama, Pentagon chief



PHILIPPINE TRICOLOR One of the two deadly explosions that marred the Boston Marathon occurred near a row of national flags that included the Philippine tricolor. The blasts killed three people and wounded over 144, 17 critically. TV GRAB

WASHINGTON—US President Barack Obama on Tuesday branded the Boston bombings a “cowardly” act of terror, but said it was still unclear if a foreign or domestic group or individual was behind the attacks.

“This was a heinous and cowardly act,” Obama said at the White House. “Any time bombs are used to target innocent civilians, it is an act of terror.”

Obama said while the impact of the attacks near the finish line of the Boston marathon on Monday, which killed three people and wounded more than 170 others, were clear, the motives and the identify of those responsible was not.

“What we don’t yet know, however, is who carried out this attack or why, whether it was planned and executed by a terrorist organization, foreign or domestic, or was the act of a malevolent individual,” he said.

But the president again vowed to bring whoever was behind the assault to justice, and warned that America would not be cowed by terrorism.

“We also know this—the American people refuse to be terrorized,” he said.

In frank and direct language, Obama vowed to keep Americans up to speed with developments in the investigation and asked them to remain vigilant.

“What I have indicated to you is what we now know. We know it was bombs that were set off. We know that obviously they did some severe damage. We do not know who did them,” he said.

“We don’t have a sense of motive yet. So everything else at this point is speculation.”

Half staff

Obama on Tuesday ordered flags on the White House, US federal buildings, military installations and naval vessels lowered to half staff to honor victims of the Boston bombings.

The billowing Stars and Stripes atop the White House was lowered after Obama signed a proclamation ordering the mourning ritual.

Flags will remain at half staff until sunset Saturday in memory of at least three people killed and more than 170 injured in the explosions near the finish line of the Boston marathon on Monday.

‘Cruel act of terror’

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel also said Tuesday that the deadly twin bombings at the Boston Marathon finish line were a “cruel act of terror.” He vowed that those who are responsible will be brought to justice.

Testifying on Capitol Hill, Hagel was the first Obama administration official to refer to terror or terrorism after the bombings Monday killed three and wounded more than 140 people Monday afternoon.

Hagel said any event in which explosive devices are used is clearly an act of terror.

“As the president said yesterday, we still do not know who did this or why and a thorough investigation will have to determine whether it was planned and carried by a terrorist group, foreign or domestic,” Hagel told the House Appropriations defense subcommittee. “It’s important not to jump to conclusions before we have all the facts, but as the White House said last night, ‘Any event with multiple explosive devices, as this appears to be, is clearly an act of terror and will be approached as an act of terror.'”

Hagel mentioned the Pentagon’s connection to the race, with many in the defense community participating in the race and commended the quick work of the Massachusetts National Guard to assist after the explosions.

Gen. Martin Dempsey, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, also praised the National Guard. Dempsey was testifying with Hagel.

Hagel said the thoughts and prayers of those at the Pentagon are with the people of Boston.

‘Terrorist attack’

House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, also referenced terrorism.

“You can describe it in a lot of different ways, but it was a terrorist attack of some sort. … There’s just not enough information at this time,” Boehner told reporters Tuesday at a news conference.

“We just don’t know enough about it, but I have no doubt that we will.  … The president and I had this conversation last evening. He’d like to know more, I’d like to know more. The American people would like to know more. Unfortunately we don’t, but I am confident that we are going to get to the bottom of this.”

At the House hearing, Rep. C.W. Bill Young, R-Florida, pressed Hagel about Pentagon plans to disband one of the civil support teams that responded to the attack in Boston. Young said Congress was notified in a March 29 letter that the two teams, one based in New York, the other in Florida, would be disestablished.

Hagel insisted that the teams would remain and said the budget proposal that the administration submitted last week included money for the teams.

FBI pledge

The FBI on Tuesday pledged to go “to the ends of the earth” to find those responsible for the Boston Marathon bombings, noting that it did not receive any threat warnings before the attack.

FBI Special Agent Rick DesLauriers told reporters in the aftermath of Monday’s attack that while investigators were fanning out across Boston, there was “no known imminent physical threat at any location” in the area.

“It will be a worldwide investigation. We’ll go to the ends of the earth to identify the subject or subjects who are responsible for this despicable crime and we will do everything we can to bring them to justice,” DesLauriers said.

The agent also said the US Federal Bureau of Investigation was “not aware of any threat information prior to the marathon.”

Officials put the new toll from the attacks in the northeastern US city at three dead and more than 170 wounded, many of them with traumatic leg injuries, indicating the explosive devices were placed low to the ground.

Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick said only two bombs were used in Monday’s carnage near the finish line of the marathon, and no other other unexploded devices had been found despite earlier reports to the contrary.

“It’s important to clarify that two and only two explosive devices were found yesterday,” Patrick said.

“Other parcels—all other parcels in the area of the blast have been examined. No unexploded bombs. No unexploded explosive devices (were) found.”

“Our thoughts go out to all of those injured and killed,” he said.

Get Inquirer updates while on the go, add us on these apps:

Inquirer Viber

Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.

  • $18209031

    Bayang magiliw perlas na silanganan alab ng puso sa dibdib moy buhay. Lupang hinirang

    duyang kanang magiting,….

    • $26149191


      Latin Transliteration

      Qilai! Buyuan zuo nuli de renmen,

      Ba women de xuerou zhucheng women xin de changcheng.

      Zhonghua Minzu dao liao zui weixian de shihou,

      Meigeren beipo zhe fachu zuihou de housheng.

      Qilai! Qilai! Qilai!

      Women wanzhong yixin,

      Mao zhe diren de paohuo,


      Mao zhe diren de paohuo,

      Qianjin! Qianjin! Qianjin! Jin!


      Arise, ye who refuse to be slaves!

      With our flesh and blood, let us build our new Great Wall!

      The Chinese nation faces its greatest danger.

      From each one the urgent call for action comes forth.

      Arise! Arise! Arise!

      Millions with but one heart,

      Braving the enemy’s fire.

      March on!

      Braving the enemy’s fire.

      March on! March on! On!

      This is the most stupid national anthem. March, March while they killed them by Million. Small penis country of homosexuals. March, march to death. Being the squatter in West Philippine sea and Paracels islands. March march.

      • heehe hahaa


        How do you know the size of their penises unless you have tried one?

  • Weder-Weder Lang

    Obama: This wasn’t supposed to happen. I thought killing Osama was the end of it.

    Noam Chomsky: Lightning does strike twice, so does blowback. I told you so.

    Pentagon: Just like 9-11, we are firmly denying that the Boston Bombing is a blowback.

    John Kerry: This is heaven-sent, a good excuse for us to attack Syria, Iran & NoKor.

    Bibi Netanyahu: AIPAC & Zionists of the world, let’s pin this on Iran & push US to attack Iran.

    George W. Bush: USA! USA! USA! USA! USA! USA! USA! USA! USA! USA! USA! USA! USA!

    Justin Bieber: It’s either you’re with America or against America. R u a Belieber?

    Dick Cheney: Better days ahead for us neocons and hawks.

    Tony Blair: A preemptive war under a false pretext is always justifiable.

    Ron Paul: This is definitely a shot in the arm for the military-industrial complex.

    NSA Drone Operator in Nevada: More jobs, more promotions more opportunities for us.

    Mitt Romney: Good thing those wounded in Boston are covered by my healthcare reform.

    Jon Stewart: Funny how we never learn. Funny how we think we’re always right.

    Ben Affleck: After Argo, we need another film to make us feel good about ourselves.

    Steven Spielberg: Hollywood’s gonna create an epic movie on this & American righteousness.

    Seymour Hersh: We created too many enemies, we can’t even tell who’s our friend or foe now.

    Jeremy Scahill: Most Americans have no idea how we kill people in Somalia, Yemen & Kenya.

    Drone Victims: Does US bombing of innocent civilians qualify as ‘act of terror’?

    Pakistani Schoolgirl Malala: When will the Americans bomb my village?

    • Crazy_horse101010

      while you are ranting they just said the havent found anything where terrorists were involved

      • Weder-Weder Lang

        but that’s not what them crazy horses wanted to hear. Obama wanted to increase his kill-list to 20 every Tuesday. So does Pentagon and the CIA.

      • 33Sam

        Tamerlan was CIA..

    • 33Sam

      Now this is not beyond the pale of possibilities… Obummer’s 9/11 complete with a side order of Ricin..

      Ok now soundbyte Rachel Maddow..

      Did you see Dubya trip on the word “conspiracy” on that ABC news 4.24.13 with Diane Sawyer’s Boston bombing interview, sitting next to his wife who glared at him for almost dropping the enchilada?

      If you got bad news, you wanna kick them blues; cocaine.
      When your day is done and you wanna run; cocaine.
      She don’t lie, she don’t lie, she don’t lie; cocaine.

  • Leo Capurictan

    So what, American People also kills innocent people around the world, like a boxing sometimes the opponent lands a jab also.

    • Crazy_horse101010

      yeah ben laden was innocent right and read above racist

      • INQ_reader

        Bin Laden won’t have convincing powers without the american policies that puts people from other nations in danger.

  • Concur_Dissent

    North Korea watch out!

    • INQ_reader

      Are you blaming North Korea? What’s your proof? Or, are you going to do a Dubya and murder 100,000 Iraqi civilians to avenge the 3,000 deaths killed in 9/11 attack even if there was no WMD in Iraq?

      • Concur_Dissent

        ever hear about what some people would call cynicism…. lighten up grouchy!

      • INQ_reader

        I’m just learning from history. america has the tendency to blame others, never themselves. I’m guessing the North Korea will be the next target of american scapegoating. Bottom line is, the problems are not resolved.

      • Crazy_horse101010

        whats your proof did you forget about kiwait and the gassed kurds in the war with iran from 1983 to 1988 the iraqs used chemical weapons in every battle and they even gassed villages in iran and the pictures of dead kurd women holding dead babies was kind of touching your brainwashers forget to tell you about them

      • INQ_reader

        You’re the one who forgot. The reason for attacking Iraq were the alleged, and never proven, weapons of mass destruction. Forget about the Kurds, ONLY 5,000 were murdered by Saddam, vs the 100,000 Iraqis murdered by american invasion.

      • Concur_Dissent

        so because iraquis killed their fellow iraquis, did it justify for the US to invade iraq and kill iraquis also?

  • INQ_reader

    Only in the US of A…

    • charlie_oscar

      Dito Dito ! At Plaza Ferguson in Malate, Manila. At a gasoline station in the Makati central business district along EDSA, across the street from the Dusit Hotel in Makati. At the cargo handling area of the Ninoy Aquino International Airport AND On a bus traveling along the Epifanio de los Santos Avenue (EDSA).

      All of these bombings occurred on Rizal Day 2000! Did you forget already?

    • Crazy_horse101010

      must not read about iraq and other arab countries heard of car bombs racists they just said on the news its somehing that rarely happens in america many have tried but few made it.

      • INQ_reader

        But those countries never interfere other countries, and claim that they are the world’s policemen.

  • Juan Delacruz

    i hate it when things go wrong and the head of government use big worrds when its obviuos that they are clueless and those at the botom work hard to figure out the answer.

  • $26149191

    A 95-year-old Chinese woman thought to have passed away stunned her neighbours – after waking up six days after she had been placed in a coffin.

    Li Xiufeng was found motionless and not breathing in bed by a neighbour two weeks after tripping and suffering a head injury at her home in Beiliu, Guangxi Province.

    When the neighbour who found her could not wake the pensioner up, they feared the worst and thought the elderly woman had passed away.

    China’s ZOMBIE……

  • farmerpo

    Clearly an act of terror but no one is taking responsibility… new trend to avoid the payback? Indeed a cowardly act. just like the random shootings that killed a lot of innocent people in Washington.

  • bok

    No doubt. Al Qaeda’s signature. The hallmark of a terrorist organization.
    This time Al Qaeda will NOT admit it. They will just let the U.S.absorb the shock and impact to the american psyche,

    • 33Sam

      Because Al Qaeda is controlled by the CIA and the U.S. governmnet..

  • fromuniversityofthephilippines

    A point-by-point explanation of the evidence found at the site of the Boston Marathon bomb blast (the remnants and traces of the explosive device), using video aerially shot of the crime scene investigators at work, is given here by an NYPD bomb expert in this news video produced by ABC News…to view, pls type in your url bar: marichu wordpress

  • warillaman

    According to wikileaks, malaysian dogs has been responsible for supporting and arming MNLF in the 70’s as admitted by this malaysian officials. all because of Sabah!!! after MNLF was given autonomous authority by our government this dogs lost control of them and formed another one MILF, and now, they are part of peace process and demand to the chinese traitor president to drop sabah claim in exchange for peace in mindanao!!! This dogs controls the future of mindanao and our president as well….

    • heehe hahaa

      You are the one yelping like a dog with your war mongering posts. Your own government and most of your countrymen do not support your views.

      People like you hate to see peace anywhere because you do not have an education and your only job is to fight and fight. Grow up. Go to school. Get a job. Get a life.Stop calling yourself a victim all the time.

      • Paitoonn Charoenkrung

        half hearted peace initiative is no peace at all; MNLF which is one of the key players in Mindanao has been set aside all because the Malaysians wants the filipino muslims to forget about Sabah. All Muslims in Mindanao should support the sultanate of Sulu in taking back Sabah for their bright future

      • heehe hahaa

        You ask for the Muslims in Mindanao to sacrifice their lives for your defunct Sultanate. Do you think the Muslims there are so stupid and will happily be someone else’s cannon fodder?
        They have chosen peace with the Philippines after decades of war that impoverished everyone. Most of them want peace and a better life. What you are suggesting is for them to keep fighting endlessly.
        The bright future comes only when there is peace. With peace you have better schools, jobs, business opportunities and wealth. Beats the hell out of surviving at the lowest level in a jungle and bombs raining down on you from fighter jets.

      • warillaman

        idiot, he,he,he, war has started last february didnt you know? your own government forces will not last a protracted war because you don’t know how, you’re an idiot dog as all of your kind, it is hard to own a land that is only given after being tamed and domisticated by your white masters, not through your blood, sweat and tears that you will die for it!!! unlike my land, my forefathers fought our invaders, we killed the very first western invader that set foot on our land, we may have been defeated in the end, but we fought nevertheless all thru those invading foreigners, except for the tausugs who has never been defeated and occupied!!!! not like you malaysian dogs, he,he,he,he,

      • heehe hahaa

        Your 200+ terrorists do not add up to a war. It was just a fly swatting exercise for our troops, not a war. There is no war between the Philippines and Malaysia.

        Your imaginary Sultanate with its imaginary 10,000 troops in reality was only 200+ terrorist who are now dead, captured or have fled like cowards. Reality sucks right?

        The land belongs to its inhabitants who have been there several thousand years. Sulu had never ever controlled Sabah and never will.

        You sound so proud of your killing tradition and it is so sad you have been born several hundred years late. You should try controlling your own life and get an education first instead of being a terrorist.

  • Cali To

    my main suspect here is…..its an American white who did it!

  • Guest

    Probably some crazy militia man who hates the government and don’t want to pay taxes!
    Coincidence that he detonated bombs in Boston where the American Revolutionaries dump tea in Boston harbor protesting taxation from England. He detonated the bomb 1 day before the tax filling deadline during the Boston Marathon which is covered by the media? Given that no international terrorist group took responsibility for this bombing leads me to believe it’s domestic terrorist!
    It’s nice to see the Philippine flag front in center, even if it was during a tragedy.
    If anyone is interested, google The Big Picture. There’s a lot of pictures worth seeing.

  • RiverHorse

    these bombs would have made more impact if set off kung saan nag momotorcade mga kandidato dito sa pilipinas lalo na kung TraPo, unahin na yung mga dating presidente na tumatakbo uli ngayon.

  • bicolokano

    “What I have indicated to you is what we now know. We know it was bombs that were set off. We know that obviously they did some severe damage. We do not know who did them,” he said.

    hmmm, parang ewan lang.. nakakatawa sana kung hindi lang to bad news..

  • DannyGane

    Even the most powerful nation of the world is not exempted from terrorist acts. Why? How? When?

  • ivanhenares

    “…near a row of national flags that included the Philippine tricolor.”

    The Philippine flag has four colors, not three.

    • Paitoonn Charoenkrung

      It is three, blue, red and white, the yellow is the color of the sun not the color of the flag

    • Barney Stinson

      then call it the “quad color.” happy?

  • airbase

    We strongly condemn this act of terror. Our thoughts and prayers to those who lost their lives. We share the wrenching pain and anguish of the those who have been terribly injured. Surely, the responsible for this cruel and evil act shall be meted justice.

  • Juan Relaciones

    Philippine tricolor? I see red, white, blue and yellow which, in simple arithmetic, are four colors.

    • Vertumnus

      The colors refers to three primary colors in this case red, white and blue. Most triband flags have 3 color. It is understood when you say tricolor, that you are referring to the flag.

      • Barney Stinson

        yeah, bobo Jose. e di tawagin mong quad color para maging masaya ka.

    • Barney Stinson

      tawagin mong quad color para mas maging masaya at makulay ang buhay mo.

      • Juan Relaciones

        Bicolor ang Philippine flag hindi tricolour.

      • Barney Stinson

        E lalo ka palang nabulag. White is the presence of ALL colors in the light spectrum. Pero ayaw ko na magpaka-techinical baka hindi mahagip ng roach-sized brain mo. Tawagin mo ang watawat kung ano gusto mong tawag para masaya ka.

      • Juan Relaciones

        Masaya naman ako lagi. Ikaw lang ang galit. Relax lang. Mamatay ka sa high blood niyan.

      • Barney Stinson

        LOL pinagtitriplan ko lang ang mga “opinionated” dito… consider me a troll

  • kilabot

    terrorism is just a transition.
    the final war is against perversion;
    nation fighting against its own people;
    the justification being laid slowly;
    by presidents, prime ministers, and the like.

  • frudo

    condolence sa mga biktima ng bomb attack.

  • crisostomo_ibarra_the3rd

    Where on earth is the vaunted US intelligence network in that bombing? Boston is a very conservative City and the terrorists have found it to be a relatively easy starting point of their cowardly acts. Even the 911 terror planes mostly originated from Boston. What is next Boston? You need to put in more surveillance systems in your city. Manila has more CCTVs than your Boston, Mr. President.

    • Barney Stinson

      uuh atually, quite the opposite. Boston is a very Liberal city in the even more liberal state of MA. Another Hater.

  • 33Sam

    You mean the cowards in government…Illuminati symbol..ahhhteeeennn—hhhhuttt!!!

To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.

Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:

c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City,Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94


editors' picks



latest videos