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Professor Accused of Saying Boston Marathon Bombing Terrorist Could be “Montana Whack Job,” Says Quotation is Not True, Skewed and Taken Out of Context

Montana
Photo courtesy of J. Stephen Conn/Flickr

UPDATE: April 19 – After being accused in an article by WPRO News of having said that the Boston Marathon bomber “could be some far right wing kind of Montana whack job,” strategy and policy professor Marc Genest said the quotation is misleading.

“First of all, it’s not a true statement and I’ve contacted WPRO,” Genest said. “Unfortunately, a young staffer decided to put a ridiculous headline saying it was Al Qaeda or a Montana whack job. That is not at all what I said. Those comments were completely skewed and taken out of context.”

Genest said his office has received many calls and emails over the story, some of which appear to contain threats. On account that Genest works closely with the federal government in counter-terror, anyone who sends threats will likely draw attention from authorities.

“I certainly had no intention of insulting anyone from the great state of Montana,” Genest said. “I have traveled to Montana several times, and I can attest that it is a wonderful, beautiful state with patriotic people and fantastic fly fishing. I was referring to the potential that a Unabomber-type of lone-wolf terrorist might be responsible for the marathon attacks that occurred in Boston.”

As a professional that does real counter-terror work with the federal government, Genest hopes the issue of a non-story can be put aside.

“Frankly given the tragic events of the last several days, I would urge you and your listeners to focus on more important issues, rather than a poorly written article from a radio station,” Genest said. “I think it’s time that we all turn our attention to things that actually matter, such as the victims of this heinous attack.”

Marc Genest:

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Original Story – Speculation over who planned and executed the bombings at the Boston Marathon will undoubtedly continue, even after authorities narrow down the suspect list. An article entitled “Bomber was “Montana whack job” or Al Qaeda Operative” by WPRO News reporter Kim Kalunian demonstrates the wide range of suspects many experts are considering.

Kalunian reports that in a conversation with WPRO Anchor Buddy Cianci, Newport Naval War College Professor of Strategy and Policy, Dr. Marc Genest said that there are strong indications that the bombs were set off by by “a traditional terror organization or group.” Indications such as the types of bombs used, and the timing of the event for high casualty count and media coverage, lead many to this conclusion.

However, according to the story, Genest went on to say, “It also could be an American that is angry at the federal government, remember, this is tax day. It could be some far right wing kind of Montana whack job.”

Genest has been contacted to see if he still stands by the “Montana whack job” phrasing. His response will be posted here when available.

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