Tsarnaevs: Why did they murder the innocent?

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev wrote a note in pencil on an interior wall of a trailered boat in which sought refuge after the Watertown shootout. He attempted to justify killing innocent people with the following words,

“The U.S. Government is killing our innocent civilians but most of you already know that. As a M [bullet hole] I can’t stand to see such evil go unpunished, we Muslims are one body, you hurt one you hurt us all. …”

“Now I don’t like killing innocent people it is forbidden in Islam but due to said [bullet hole] it is allowed.”

He is wrong. The Prophet, whom he revers, prohibited killing the innocent.

From the Islamic Supreme Council of America:

The Prophet sent the following message to his military leaders who were setting forth in the way of Jihād to stop hostile advances and defend Muslim territories:

Advance in the name of Allah, with Allah, on the pattern of the Messenger of Allah . That means do not kill the elderly, infants or children and women. Do not exceed the proper bounds. Gather your spoils and make peace, “and do good. Lo! Allah loveth those who do good.”

The Prophet passed by a woman who was killed and said, “She was not engaged in fighting.” The Prophet then sent to the Muslim leader Khālid ibn al-Walīd the following message, “The Prophet orders you not to kill women or servants.”

This was to show the reason in the prohibition of killing her was due to the fact she was not with the fighters. The inference here is “the reason we fight them, is because they fight us, not on the simple principle that they are disbelievers.” This is clear evidence the woman was not a fighter and the Prophet prohibited her killing. From the strong expression the Prophet made, going so far as to send a letter to his topmost military commander, we see how concerned he was to prevent any such incidents, and to insure that every single Muslim warrior was aware of the rules of combat.

The question arises here: when someone explodes a bomb or commits a suicide attack in a public place, how many innocent women, children and elderly people are killed? If for one woman’s death, the Prophet scolded his top general, Khālid ibn al-Walīd, what then about killing twenty, thirty or even hundreds of non-combatants, some of whom may even be Muslim?

Just as the Messenger of Allah forbade the killing of women and the young he forbade killing priests.

The first caliph Sayyidina Abū Bakr aš-Šiddīq’s commandment to the leader of the first Islamic military expedition after the Prophet was:

…No hermit should be molested…Only those should be killed who take up arms against you.

So we see from these various narrations of the Prophet ―and there are many more like them―that the Prophet prohibited the Muslims to fight anyone, Muslim or non-Muslim, even if they are unbelievers, if they are not transgressors against the security of the nation.

This shows that terrorist acts, in particular suicide attacks which kill indiscriminately, are utterly unacceptable forms of combat, even during valid combat authorized for defense of the nation.

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev needs to come to an understanding that his God, whom he calls Allah, does not approve of what he and his brother did. He has an opportunity in this lifetime to atone for what he did, but he is running out of time. A good place to start is the penalty phase of his trial.

With not just his life, but his soul at stake, he must reject self-deception, own what he did and admit that it was wrong. His actions and his note are offensive to his God and he must admit that too and plead for mercy.

The prosecution will likely rest on Monday after the Medical Examiner, Dr. Jennifer Hammers, concludes her testimony about the deaths of Lu Lingzi, a graduate student from China and the child, 8-year-old Martin Richard. Court recessed yesterday for the weekend after Dr. Hammers concluded her graphic testimony about the death of Krystle Campbell, a restaurant manager from Medford, MA.

I am going to pray for him to find the light while there is still time.

I am also going to pray for the jurors because, despite the law that permits them to sentence him to death, no human should kill another.

Let us all pray for the victims whose lives changed forever the day the bombs exploded. May they find peace in this lifetime.

8 Responses to Tsarnaevs: Why did they murder the innocent?

  1. Judicial student says:

    What will the defense do, Frederick? Will they immediately rest after the prosecution does, or will they call witnesses? Will they call Tsarnaev himself?

    • I believe they will rest without calling any witnesses.

      Dzhokhar has a right to testify, but he also has a right to not testify. Technically, it’s his call to make.

      Unfortunately for him, if he testifies, he will have to submit to cross examination. I don’t see that turning out well for him.

      If he were my client, I would advise him not to testify.

      He also can testify or not testify in the penalty phase and, of course, submit to cross examination if he does.

      He also has a right to allocution, which is to speak to the jury before they begin deliberating about whether they should sentence him to death or LWOP. Typically, an allocution is not subject to cross examination, but if he were to wander from speaking about the sentence, the judge might require him to submit to cross or strike what he said, if he refuses.

      • Malisha says:

        Wouldn’t a decision about whether to put him up there or not rest on what he is actually telling his lawyer right now? I think if I were his lawyer and he were telling me that what he did was what Allah told him to do and that it was just and right and none of the victims were to be considered innocent because of the great crimes of the US against Muslims, I’d keep him the hell off the stand and wouldn’t even let him allocute, because he’d be signing his own death warrant.

        • Technically, it’s his call and if he is determined to testify and, in effect, volunteer for the death penalty, there isn’t anything his legal team can do to stop him except ask for a competency evaluation. That might only delay the inevitable.

  2. nancybenefiel says:

    What kind of older brother leads his younger brother into such a nightmare?

    • Malisha says:

      This doesn’t amaze me any more. I think the story is fairly common, the very charismatic sociopathic svengali. If you look at history’s worst sociopaths, they were what their kindergarten teachers would have called “natural leaders.” To them, other people are garden tools.

  3. Two sides to a story says:

    “If every person were to act as if this lifetime were ALL THERE EVER WAS OR WOULD BE, we might come closer to people using their time better.”

    Now is the only time there is. May all beings be free from suffering.

  4. Malisha says:

    “May they find peace in this lifetime.”

    I think the KEY here is “in this lifetime.” Too many people, infected by some ideas that they believe justify totally unjustifiable actions (from preventing others from learning to preventing others from eating to preventing others from living) are focused on a life some time beyond “this lifetime.” That makes them less accountable, and less human, within “this lifetime.” If every person were to act as if this lifetime were ALL THERE EVER WAS OR WOULD BE, we might come closer to people using their time better.

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