Federal authorities aren’t openly labeling the attack on the Boston Marathon, which left at least two dead and 115 wounded, as an act of terrorism. But it is already being investigated that way, according to Rep. Mike McCaul.
McCaul is the Texas Republican who serves as chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security.
“This has all the hallmarks of an act of terrorism,” McCaul told Fox News Monday afternoon. “You have simultaneous bombings taking place at the finish line of a marathon. They [terrorists] always look for mass casualty events.”
Boston Police Commissioner Edward F. Davis left little doubt in response to a reporter’s question Monday about the nature of the attack. “We’re not being definitive on this right now,” he said when asked if the explosions were an act of terrorism. “But you can reach your own conclusions based on what happened.”
The attack occurred at approximately 3 p.m. Video reports showed a blast that felled at least one race participant, followed by huge plumes of smoke. People began running from the explosions, some of them bleeding. Some bystanders appeared to be weeping, and had to be helped off the street.
McCaul told Fox News that ball bearings had been found in the vicinity of the blast. The statement by some bystanders that they found “bullets” in their clothing after the attack led authorities to suspect the bombs were encased in metal fragments in order to maximize carnage.
McCaul described the metal pieces as “ball bearings,” and indicated to Fox News that whatever the motivation for the attack, it is “very clear” it was intended as a terrorist act.
“Federal authorities,” he said, “are investigating it as such, as an act of terrorism,” and he added: “We just don’t know who is behind it yet.”
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