The Washington Post

Obama calls Boston bombing ‘an act of terrorism’

President Barack Obama speaks in the Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House in Washington, Tuesday, April 16, 2013, about the Boston Marathon explosions. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
President Obama speaks at the White House on Tuesday about the Boston Marathon explosions. (Susan Walsh/AP)

President Obama told reporters Tuesday morning that federal authorities are investigating Monday’s bombings at the Boston Marathon “as an act of terrorism,” though they still did not know who perpetrated the attack and what might have been the motive.

“Any time bombs are used to target innocent civilians, it is an act of terror,” Obama said in the White House briefing room. “What we don’t yet know, however, is who carried it out, and why.”

“Clearly, we’re at the beginning of our investigation,” he added. “But we will find out. We will find whoever harmed our citizens, and we will bring them to justice.”

Just before talking to reporters, the president met with his national security team, including FBI Director Robert Mueller, Attorney General Eric Holder, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano and his deputy national security adviser for homeland security and counterterrorism, Lisa Monaco.

“This was a heinous and cowardly act,” said Obama, who did not take questions.

The president praised both the marathon runners and Boston residents for their response, saying they showed the world how the country responds to acts of terror: “Selflessly. Compassionately. Unafraid.”

“The American people refuse to be terrorized,” Obama said.

Juliet Eilperin is The Washington Post's White House bureau chief, covering domestic and foreign policy as well as the culture of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. She is the author of two books—one on sharks, and another on Congress, not to be confused with each other—and has worked for the Post since 1998.



Success! Check your inbox for details. You might also like:

Please enter a valid email address

See all newsletters

Show Comments
Most Read



Success! Check your inbox for details.

See all newsletters

Your Three. Videos curated for you.
Play Videos
What can babies teach students?
Unconventional warfare with a side of ale
A veteran finds healing on a dog sled
Play Videos
A fighter pilot helmet with 360 degrees of sky
Is fencing the answer to brain health?
Scenes from Brazil's Carajás Railway
Play Videos
How a hacker group came to Washington
The woman behind the Nats’ presidents ‘Star Wars’ makeover
How hackers can control your car from miles away
Play Videos
Philadelphia's real signature sandwich
Full disclosure: 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1 ghoul
Europe's migrant crisis, explained
Next Story
Anjuman Ali · April 16, 2013

To keep reading, please enter your email address.

You’ll also receive from The Washington Post:
  • A free 6-week digital subscription
  • Our daily newsletter in your inbox

Please enter a valid email address

I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Please indicate agreement.

Thank you.

Check your inbox. We’ve sent an email explaining how to set up an account and activate your free digital subscription.