Ruslan Tsarni, Tamerlan and Dzhokhar’s uncle from their father’s side of the family, was one of the first people to speak out about his nephews and their relation to the Boston Marathon. He took part in an interview on April 19 denouncing his nephews, saying that “being losers, not being able to settle themselves” in America was the reason for the bombing.

In a separate sit-down interview, posted on April 20, the uncle states that Tamerlan’s “radicalization” started 2009 in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Ruslan considers himself to have a harsh and strict personality. The brothers did not live in Chechnya, but in Dagestan where their mother was from. Part of the family’s troubles, between the uncle and his brother’s family, seem to stem from the fact that Zubedait, the suspects’ mother, “changed her attire and only attire, not her behavior” in 2008. In regards to Tamerlan, Ruslan claims: “I was his hero... I had all hopes in him”. The uncle wishes that Dzhokhar will be able to give answers about what influenced him and his brother, and is “happy that he’s alive”. Ruslan believes Tamerlan had used Dzhokhar as an “instrument” in the past, which suggests that the older brother may have had more of an influence in how the bombing was carried out.

Video: YouTube via CNN
With regard to the marriage between Ruslan Tsarni and Samantha Fuller, daughter of a CIA official Graham Fuller, Daily Mail goes into some detail while other national networks do not make mention. Graham Fuller, the CIA’s former station chief in Kabul, Afghanistan and former vice-chair of the National Intelligence Council, had reportedly spoke about the marriage that lasted three to four years, and said “any attempts to portray the relationship as a link between the security agency and the two terrorists was 'absurd'”. Fuller does not have a close relationship with the Tsarnaev family aside from being Ruslan’s father-in-law and possibly meeting Anzor once. From this perspective and because no major news network has reported on the relationship, it seems as though it is unimportant to the background story of the suspects with regard to the Boston bombings. 
After further investigation, another item not mentioned is Fuller’s connection to the rise of Al Qaeda and radical jihadis. From an anonymous submission: “What hasn't been reported about Fuller is that he was the CIA's station chief in Kabul, Afghanistan in the late 1970s — when, according to Zbigniew Brzezinski, the CIA planted a trap for the Soviet Union, in the form of radicals who overthrew the Soviet-backed regime, sparking the disastrous invasion and occupation that eventually destroyed the Soviet Union, and gave rise to Al Qaeda and radical jihadis in their place.” A source to support this statement could not be found.
Photograph: U.S. Foreign Policy In Perspective
It is also reported that Dzhokhar came into contact with Brian Glyn Williams, who works for the CIA on subjects of terrorism, suicide bombers, and Chechnya. Brian is a history professor at the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth where Dzhokhar was a student. Williams states that Dzhokhar had contacted him during 2011 in order to “rediscover his roots and his identity”. Williams also wrote an article for the Huffington Post on April 25 titled: “Thoughts on the 'Jihadification' of Boston Bomber Tamerlan Tsarnaev”. 

Now that we know more about Ruslan and his potential ties with the CIA, how can he be perceived in regards to the interviews about his nephews? Does this have an impact on the case?  What would have been said if CNN or FOX had reported on Ruslan’s supposed minor association with the CIA? Should Dzhokhar’s association with Williams have a larger impact on how this case is perceived?

5/22/2013 01:50:13 pm

I appreciate your writing an article on this subject. I have had suspicions about Uncle Ruslan's behavior from the start. It is bizarre to pronounce one's nephews guilty immediately and without ample evidence. It is more natural to defend younger relatives, at least initially, as the brothers' other relatives did. Even the Unibomber's siblings, who turned him in, said it was heartwrenching. Uncle Ruslan had no problem handing his young relatives over to the executioner as a knee jerk reaction. Very strange indeed. Also, I could not help but notice back in April the way in which Dzhokhar's classmates from college and high school as well as his friends spoke out on his behalf defending him as a peaceful, laid-back, humorous individual. I remember thinking it was strange when Professor Williams put in his 2 cents making an obscure comment about Dzhokhar wanting to learn about his ethnic roots. It is a strange, insinuative and somewhat racist statement for a professor to make under the circumstances. If Dzhokhar were Irish, would the professor even have brought this up. When I read that he works for the CIA, it sent chills up my spine. He and Uncle Ruslan were the only two people that knew Dzhokhar to say anything negative.

5/27/2013 02:32:47 pm

Honestly, I have a lot of respect for this guy. He tells the message of morality, character, and hard word. I do recognize many inconsistencies in this case and believe there is a possibility of the brothers not being guilty of all that is charged but I don't believe that the uncle was in on framing his nephews or anything like that. In the full interview you see genuine emotion and love for his nephews. He is extremely well spoken and has a better command of the English language than many native speakers. I thought it was especially touching when he mentioned each of the victims by name and said he would beg for forgiveness. I believe this is just a honest, hardworking guy who came to America and found his American dream but unfortunately by blood relation got caught up in this mess.

John Baxter
5/28/2013 01:03:27 pm

I too really like this man. I believe he helped give a background to what may have gone wrong for these brothers. There seems to be a huge pressure to achieve from the fathers side of the family and yet a turn towards a more religious side which without proper guidance can lead to a wrong path. This man made me feel for dzhokhar and realise while everyone says he was quite or funny or normal or relaxed etc he seems to lack a support system or stable home life. This uncle has tried to understand them and make them look like human beings by pointing out where it may have started to go wrong. I do not believe he would set them up as this brings a lifelong negativity to his own family. From this man we realise that the family including sisters didn't have a lot of contact. Again I do not believe everything that's ascribed to the brothers but the uncle stepped up for the burial, that's support and I believe if he gets involved in dzhokhars life it'll be for the better. If only he had more contact with them in recent years.

5/29/2013 08:14:12 pm

not just #throwmynephewsunderthebus "looooosssaaazzz" uncle, I read even Katie Russell's grandfather was connected o CIA.

He was protecting himself in my opinion, from public rage, not just him I watched an interview with Bella (Jahar's sister) who said she had no contact with the brothers (actually I don't know if it was Bella or the other sister - the one in NY). Most of the brothers friends however noted that they were extremely protective of their sisters - so I don't understand the sudden distancing, except in the context of self-preservation.


Proper investigation can be of great help in case


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