1 bombing suspect dead, the other at large after shootout

This just gets wilder:

BOSTON — The two suspects in the Boston Marathon bombings led police on a wild and deadly chase through the suburbs here early Friday morning that ended in the death of one of the suspects as well as a campus police officer; the other suspect remained at large while hundreds of police officers conduct a manhunt through Watertown, about five miles west of downtown Boston.

The one police identify as Dzhokhar A. Tsarnaev, at large.

The one police identify as Dzhokhar A. Tsarnaev, at large.

 The surviving suspect was identified as Dzhokhar A. Tsarnaev, 19, of Cambridge, Mass., a law enforcement official said. Investigators believe that that both of the suspects were Chechens, a law enforcement official said….

 The pursuit began after 10 p.m. Thursday when two men robbed a 7/11 near Central Square in Cambridge. A security camera caught a man identified as one of the suspects, wearing a gray hoodie.

About 10:30, police received reports that a campus security officer at M.I.T. was shot while he sat in his police cruiser. He was found with multiple gunshot wounds, according to a statement issued by Middlesex Acting District Attorney Michael Pelgro, Cambridge Police Commissioner Robert Haas, and MIT Police Chief John DiFava. The officer was taken to Massachusetts General Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

A short time later, police received reports of an armed carjacking of a Mercedes SUV by two males in the area of Third Street in Cambridge, the statement said. “The victim was carjacked at gunpoint by two males and was kept in the car with the suspects for approximately a half hour,” the statement said. He was later released, uninjured, at a gas station on Memorial Drive in Cambridge.     …

One report I saw they just killed the MIT officer execution-style, no chance.

What sequence of events has loosed mad, bloodthirsty Chechen brothers onto the streets of Boston?

I’m going to be traveling today but will try to check in. Y’all have at it…

89 thoughts on “1 bombing suspect dead, the other at large after shootout

  1. Phillip

    So they successfully elude identification for 3 days, during which time they neither issue any proclamations about who they were and why they did this, nor do they flee any distance at all from their residence. Then, once their faces are identified, they decide “hey, let’s rob a 7-11.” I mean, how much money are you going to get from a 7-11? Not enough to finance a belated travel-escape plan. Seems they wanted to trigger a glorious showdown with police, but the whole thing from the beginning seems a strange mix of styles, like these two brothers got their minds warped from video games and just freely adapted elements from several of them. I wouldn’t be that surprised to find that they had no overt political agenda whatsoever, more Klebold and Harris than McVeigh and Nichols.

    1. Mark Stewart

      That seems spot on, Phillip. They appear to have had neither an escape planned, nor did they initiate another terror strike. On the other hand, from the car chase and stoppage in Watertown, it would also appear that they had a lot of additional explosive devices ready to go. Maybe they were surprised to have been ID’d so quickly? Which would mean that they had planned for another major attack…

      Hopefully this is almost over.

      1. Mark Stewart

        The uncle calls then “absolute losers” who couldn’t find a way to settle in to life here. Lone wolfs , not jihadists.

        1. Bryan Caskey

          The Uncle sounded awesome – kinda like the Chechen version of Chuck Norris. I hope the police find the kids before the Uncle does.

  2. bud

    I’ll be interested to see how they obtained their arsenal. The irony of the recent senate rejection of a common sense piece of gun safety legislation juxtaposed against the ghastly chain of events in Boston should not be lost. Thank you NRA for making our country so very “safe”.

    1. Steven Davis II

      I just forwarded your comment to the NRA, they wanted me to pass along their message, “You’re welcome”.

      I wonder how many of those in Watertown right now wish they had more to protect themselves with than a kitchen knife and a whiffleball bat?

    2. Steven Davis II

      bud, are you going to request laws regulating the purchase and resale of pressure cookers without a background check as well?

  3. bud

    A pressure cooker without black powder or other explosive is useful for nothing other than cooking a pot roast so no I would not regulate pressure cookers. But I certainly would make sure any explosive substance can be traced. That’s something the NRA blocked several years ago.

    1. Steven Davis II

      Weird, I just sent a post and it didn’t even get sent to the “waiting” stage.

      Bud, are you going to require bomb making ingredients such as charcoal or acetone be traceable? I did two searches online for homemade bombs and black powder recipe and came up with instructions any 8 year old could follow, and purchase ingredients to make. As a kid we did the easy way and just unwrapped fireworks and create our own super firecracker or roman candle.

    2. Bryan Caskey

      “But I certainly would make sure any explosive substance can be traced.” -bud

      Bud, do you even comprehend how vastly sweeping of a statement that is?

  4. Doug Ross


    Hate to tell you this but Massachusetts has the toughest gun laws in the country, enacted in 1998, From 1998 to 2002 the number of active gun registrations went from 1.5 million to 200,000. In 1998 there were 65 gun related murders in the state. In 2011, there were 122.
    Between 1998 and 2011, robbery with firearms climbed 20.7 percent. Aggravated assaults jumped 26.7 percent.

    Gun laws don’t do anything to prevent criminals from acquiring guns and using them in crimes.

    Hopefully Obama won’t use the Boston victims as props as he did with the Newtown families – who were victims of legal gun purchases.

  5. bud

    Doug, you want to know how many homicides, mostly with guns there were in 2011 in South Carolina with a population much smaller than Massachusetts? I’ll give you a hint it was far more than 122.

        1. Scout

          Seriously – I have wondered why this argument isn’t mentioned more. The first thing I think of when people say tightening things up will only affect legal gun-users and not criminals is the analogy of a drafty house. How can sealing up the holes where things get into the system not affect the whole supply in some way. We can’t trace where guns get into the system that eventually get into criminals hands always, but I suspect that making all possible entry points a little more managed will have to have some effect…..eventually. Probably not right away.

    1. Doug Ross

      How many murders were committed with guns that the background check would have prevented?

      1. Scout

        I don’t know any way we could get that data with the system as it is, but I strongly suspect there are some and maybe a lot. Is it not plausible that if you are a person who 1) knows you will fail a background check because of having a criminal history of some sort and 2) wants to obtain a gun for yourself for criminal purposes of your own or to sell to other criminals to make money, wouldn’t you choose to obtain your guns through avenues where you know no background check will be performed – such as gun shows? And if you succeed in achieving your aim in #2 and do obtain guns without having to go through a background check, is it not plausible that since you are either a criminal or are providing guns to criminals – that some of these guns purchased without a background check will be used to commit crimes, one of which could be murder.

        If this scenario is plausible, please explain how universal background checks will not impact criminals as well as law abiding people? Some of the guns getting to criminals have got to be getting onto the street through some of these sources. It may take awhile for the ones in the pipeline to work their way out, but tightening regulations would eventually have a trickle down effect. I feel.

        I think there should be liability attached to gun ownership. I know it’s not achievable in this climate because there would be no way to institute it without some people crying gun registry, but I think owning a gun is an awesome responsibility. If you own a gun and do not secure it appropriately and it is used in an accident or stolen and used in a crime as a result, you should have some culpability in the result.

  6. bud

    Gun laws don’t do anything to prevent criminals from acquiring guns and using them in crimes.

    They work well where they actually exist. Australia for one has seen a healthy decline in gun homicides since passing tough laws against guns. Fact is in states with tough laws like MA it’s not too hard to get a gun elsewhere. But even so those states have lower gun deaths. There really is no rational argument against closing the gunshow loophole. No it won’t stop all senseless shootings. But it will stop none and inconvenience very few.

    But here’s what I’ll offer on this issue. I’ll work with the conservatives to make the current gun laws work and refrain from any futher efforts to enact new gun safety laws IF they will do the same with Obamacare. Other countries live with what their legislatures pass by trying to make whatever passes work. Here we just keep on fighting the same old battles over and over and over and over and over again. Heck we can’t even accept the reality of hormonal birth control. The result is a nation that is losing it’s competitive edge by always acting as adversaries.

    1. Steven Davis II

      So what do Boston gang members use as weapons? Do you think the laws are an inconvenience to them? Gun laws onlyinconvenience law abiding citizens.

  7. Bart

    “But I certainly would make sure any explosive substance can be traced.”….bud

    Then you will have to trace almost every liquid cleaning solution sold in supermarkets. It is very easy to devise an explosive device using ordinary household chemicals and placing them in a pressure cooker with a crude triggering device only enhances their potential for injury and death.

    This is not rocket science and anyone with any degree of creativity can build the same thing the two “terrorists” did. When my buddies and I were in our teens, we made crude “bombs” using certain household items. And, if you want to “gas” a large number of people, all you have to do is mix two types of cleaning solutions, place them in a glass container and break it in a crowd. A good friend almost lost his sister because she mixed the two together and within minutes, she was overcome and was rushed to the hospital with blisters in her throat and lungs.

    What’s next on the regulation list bud? Explosive flatulent emissions?

    1. JesseS

      Yeah, but we might want to put a little more thought into how we deal with gallon containers of Pyrodex.

      I’ve been interested in black powder revolvers lately, but I wouldn’t whine and complain if I had to go through additional background check(s) for buying the stuff. It just seems like the responsible, reasonable thing to do. I wouldn’t even be bothered if I had to keep records of how much I used, how I used it, etc. Yeah, it is a hassle, but other than the recent industrial accident when was the last time someone blew up, say a federal building, with ammonium nitrate?

  8. bud

    Dang it Brad you really must find a way to let poster recall posts.

    “But it will stop none and inconvenience very few.” should read: “But it will stop SOME and inconvenience very few.”

  9. Kathryn Fenner

    Another weird fact reported on NPR was that they carjacked a Mercedes SUV with driver and drove around a long time, but released the driver unharmed! I think Phillip’s read sounds about right.

    Be safe all y’all in the Bosotn area!

  10. Karen McLeod

    No, gun laws won’t prevent criminals from obtaining guns, any more than laws against stealing prevent thieves or laws against murder prevent murder. Does that mean we should remove all laws from the books because they don’t work?
    As much as I would wish we could control explosives, anyone with just a little knowledge of chemistry (or these days anyone with a computer who is willing to search the web for awhile) can come up with an explosive device made purely from household materials.

  11. Mark Stewart

    Returning to the subject at hand, it would appear that these brothers fit the description of both foreign born and lone-wolf type terrorists. Having lived in Boston for 5 years (with both attending schools), we will need to see what their “rationale” was – was it jihad or alienation? Not sure it really matters, as this does not seem to be an internationally orchestrated attack.

    More sick and demented people behaving badly, just what the world needs…

    1. Kathryn Fenner

      Sounds from NPR reporting that the older brother had serious anger issues, but the younger was an easygoing, popular dude. Speculation that the older had undue influence over younger

      1. Steven Davis II

        NPR this, NPR that… just because you listen to the most liberal news reporting station this side of NBC doesn’t mean they don’t have their own slant to every story.

  12. bud

    This is both puzzling and scary. Seems at first blush these guys seemed to be living the American dream and just all of a sudden went on a crazy rampage. There has to be more to this story. But what?

  13. bud

    Household products may be used to create a bomb but not as good a bomb as explosives made for that purpose. Otherwise we could just make bombs out of household products and dispense with the manufacture of dynamite and other purpose-built explosives.

    Perhaps a bit of history is in order. In WW I the Germans developed chemical gas from chlorine. It worked reasonably well but the Allies were able to quickly develop effective counter-measures. Chlorine gas, as it turned out, quickly and easily dispersed in the atmosphere and it required a large amount of the stuff to be effective. So the Germans and Allies quickly abandoned chlorine in favor of phosgene and later mustard gas. Eventually extremely deadly nerve gas agents were developed. So while it is technically true that common household agents can be used to good effect they are really not in the same league with much more deadly stuff that can and should be controlled.

      1. Steven Davis II

        Why is it I can post at 10:30, and I can read other posts posted at 11:30 while mine still sit in “awaiting moderation”?

    1. Bryan Caskey

      So are you saying that you only want to regulate dynamite and other purpose-built explosives?

  14. Mark Stewart

    Meanwhile, back in Columbia a group of underage co-eds were mugged late night in a dark alley beside the CSX tracks on their way to a bar in 5 Points.

    It’s like never, never land – the same kinds of people continue doing the same stupid and illegal things. It’s almost funny since no one was hurt. Underage kids, stay out of the bars. Everyone, stay out of dark alleys late at night. Police, patrol, don’t turn a well-lit parking lot into a convenience store substation. Wanna be gang bangers, stay in school if you don’t want to find out your life is nothin but a dead end.

    I hope the girls’ parents sit them down for a little discussion on why being stupid doesn’t pay. And I am glad that the criminals were equally as stupid and didn’t waste more police time tracking them down.

    Good to take a break from thinking about murderous and injurious mayhem, which all the more completely senseless and pointless.

    1. Kathryn Fenner

      The part the doesn’t add up is the route they took. They had to go out of their way to be there. Normal folk would go west on Devine, north on Saluda and west on Greene. One has to wonder why they went via the dark alley. Did Siri mislead them, or were they looking for something there?

      1. Steven Davis II

        It’s the girls’ fault. Or at least that’s what you’re saying. Those poor mistaken urban yoots di’in do nuffin.

      2. Mark Stewart

        Ah, I had not considered that there might be culpabilty on the sorority sister side, but that makes even more sense now…

  15. Juan Caruso

    The quality of reported news must be considered suspect due to normal confusion. A few points to ponder:

    + KTVA -11 (Alaska) Reported, “The brothers are not students and Dzhokhar was not enrolled in medical school in the U.S.” Makes sense to me (2nd year medical student at 19 YOA? I think not).

    + FOX NEWS reported driver of carjacked SUV is female (not intentional Mislims target).

    + Deceased bomber brother, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, 26, named after the “Sword of Islam” A.K.A. the “Scourge of God”, Tamerlane. (should be self-explanatory?) Before Usama bin Laden there was Timur the Lenk (Tamorlane): “This ruthless Muslim, calling himself “the Scourge of God,” led an army that exterminated 80,000 souls in Delhi, vanquished Afghanistan, and beheaded thousands of Christians in the process. Tamorlane died in 1405 at age 69. Pacification and appeasement were futile.”

    Juan Caruso doubts these young fellows acted alone. If the younger bomber should die, identifying a mastermind, handler and other activists becomes more problematic for law enforcement … There has been some evidence of a bomb-capable cell in the Hartford, CT. area since 9-11. (Has it eluded the FBI this long?)

  16. bud

    So are you saying that you only want to regulate dynamite and other purpose-built explosives?

    I smell a trap. If I say yes then I’ll be accussed of being soft on crime. If I say then I’ll be branded as a defended of the nanny state.

  17. Bryan Caskey

    I wonder what will happen if one marathon runner injured in the bombing comes out for stricter immigration policy.

    1. bud

      Probably nothing. Our system is not designed to ever change much of anything but only to debate things endlessly. If an epidemic of puppy kicking were to suddenly break out in this country the pro puppy kicking lobby would be quicky out in force condemning any proposed anti puppy measures as ineffective. Anyone who wants to kick a puppy will always find a way. We should enforce the puppy cruelty laws that are already in effect. If we outlaw puppy kicking what next? Will the federal government pass laws outlawing kitten tossing or goldfish swallowing? Clearly the wording of the second ammendment extends to the rights of puppy owners to kick them so long as it does no permanent damage. To paraphrase Charlton Heston if you want to take my puppy you’ll have to pry his warm, furry body from my cold dead hands.

  18. Norm Ivey

    I wonder if this is going to be a tale of an older brother who never acclimated to or was accepted by American culture. In his need to belong he adopted a Chechen or Islamist agenda or both. He lashes out at his perceived tormentors (the Americans on Patriot’s Day) a la the VT shooter. Younger brother idolizes his older brother and gets dragged along for the descent into Hell. Younger brother may have bled out in some shed or has taken his own life by now.

    1. Mark Stewart

      I hope he bled out in some shed, Norm. Otherwise, other people – especially the police – remain at high risk.

  19. Bart

    Events like this one brings out the worst in many, the best in most. One liberal writer opined in his column about how much he was fervently hoping the bomber(s) would be a white male(s), preferably a conservative, right wing Christian or something to that effect. I guess his comments were rendered useless after his lengthy tirade against “racist, fascist, intolerant, ignorant, and irrelevant” white men when it turns out the culprits are in fact Muslims. Kinda ruined his “raison d’etre” after venting his spleen about the evils of being a white male in America.

      1. Bart

        Sorry, couldn’t find the article but another host on Current TV said the same thing. Once I find it, will post information.

      2. Bart

        Salon writer, David Sirota wrote “Let’s hope the Boston Marathon bomber is a white American “.

        1. Bart

          The same writer in response to his critics on his piece responded with another article and this is his last paragraph closing the article in Salon on Wednesday, April 17.

          “That gets back to the original point: The reason to hope that the bomber is a white American is because in a country where white privilege and double standards so obviously affect our national security reactions, that outcome will better guarantee that the reaction to Boston is a bit more measured.”…David Sirota

          After all is said and done, the terrorist bombers were still Muslims, not white supremists, rednecks from the South, or any other white skinned American villian as Mr. Sirota hoped it would be. Well, in the case of the younger brother, he did become a naturalized citizen on 9-11-12. A bit ironic don’t you think?

          1. susanincola

            Are you saying they’re not white? They’re certainly Caucasian, in the most literal sense of that word.

          2. Bart

            “Are you saying they’re not white? They’re certainly Caucasian, in the most literal sense of that word.”….susanincola

            You know perfectly well what the inference is and trying to change the intent is a little disingenuous. The writer was referring to “white priviledge” as in being a white male, born in the USA, “non-Muslim”, and most likely a conservative Christian in the context of his article. The pejorative use of “white priviledge” in this instance was a clear reference to the writer’s fervent hope the terrorists were not Muslim.

  20. Mark Stewart

    Now that there is a subject to arrest, I hope that Lindsey Graham is proven to be a total bonehead. I have a hard time believing he could show such incredibly poor judgement, but there it is. He did.

    1. Bryan Caskey

      Listen up. The US Constitution DOES NOT require that criminals be read their Miranda rights. What the Constitution requires is that criminals may not be required to make self incriminating statements that can be used against them at trial. Accordingly, to avoid these “compelled” statements, law enforcement reads these Miranda rights to criminals.

      In an unusual circumstance (cough – terrorism cough) law enforcement might forego the Miranda warnings. This is the difference between intelligence gathering and criminal prosecution.

      Now, having said all that, I don’t think for one second that this kid is a situation where we forego Miranda to get intel.

      However, Graham is simply pointing out that we do an analysis here. Which we should. It’s not a “bonehead” thing to consider. It’s analytical.

      1. Mark Stewart

        Tell you what, Bryan, save this response of yours for 10 years, then reread it. You may find your future self has a different perspective.

        In any event, I was not referring to Miranda rights; I was referring to Graham’s statement that considering these cretons to be “enemy combatants” may be the most appropriate course of action. No, it is not. These are criminals, and they (assuming the younger brother survives) should be adjudicated in criminal court.

        1. Phillip

          Well, as Bart said above, the events of this week have brought out the best in some in and the worst in others. Clearly Lindsey resented being not front-and-center in this story earlier and now has found a way to inject himself into the forefront of the conversation with the capture of this second bomber.

          Lil’ Lindsey is the polar opposite of the spirit shown by Bostonians this week. That spirit said, you want to terrorize people into not going about living their daily lives, you picked the wrong city, buddy. Lindsey instead says “America is a battlefield because the terrorists think it is.” In other words, he wants us to define the terms of the battle on the terrorists’ terms, not ours. Could there be any clearer portrait of a man who’s already lost the “war on terror” in his own small, cowering mind?

          If you start deciding that crimes committed by American citizens on American soil can be tried outside the civilian judicial format, and instead by military tribunal, well, Lindsey, you might as well dredge Osama’s skeleton up from the ocean and shake that bony hand, saying “Congratulations, Osama ghost. That’s game, set, and match to you.”

          Terrorism is about asymmetrical warfare. It can only succeed if people allow themselves to be terrorized. It seems to have unfortunately succeeded in Lindsey’s case.

          1. Doug Ross

            Phillip…I have $1000 to contribute to your campaign against Lil’ Lindsey. Your post captures the “essence” of Graham perfectly. BUSH 2014!!!! Hey that just might work in SC. 🙂

          2. Bart

            It is not an excuse but maybe we sometimes forget that Graham was a judge advocate in the US Air Force and his first inclinations on terrorist actions would naturally be influenced by his military background.

            I am neutral on the issue of whether to try the surviving terrorist in a military, federal, or civilian court, as long as he is tried and has representation in any court by a competent attorney. As much as my natural reaction is to “hang the – – – from the nearest tree”, in a civilized nation, we observe the rule of law first and foremost. If we don’t, then we are no better than countries that punish first without regard to justice.

            The surviving terrorist is a naturalized citizen of the United States and as such, he enjoys the same rights and priviledges as a natural born citizen does who does not revoke citizenship or engages in hostile war actions against the country outside its boundaries. Timothy Mcveigh was about as heinous a villain and terrorist as any foreign born one and he was tried and convicted in a civilian court, eventually executed by lethal injection. There are several examples of foreign terrorists tried in civilian courts if one cares to do a little research.

            Reacting to an act of terrorism with courage and determination is one thing but to engage in acts of bravado is foolish at the same time. The failure comes when we ignore the fact of life that terrorists are among us and they can and will kill, slaughter, maim, and injure anyone they can if they are radically dedicated to an idea, cause, or a religion that calls for the death and destruction of non-believers. When we choose to belittle or chastise anyone who is genuinely afraid or terrorized as the good people in Boston were for almost a week, then we unwittingly become enablers of those who are more than willing to set off a “pressure cooker” bomb in a crowd. What we cannot do is allow our fears and threats of terrorism to paralyze us into inaction or invoke an over-reaction or knee-jerk reactions. Unfortunately, both sides of the aisle have more than enough practice doing both.

  21. Bryan Caskey

    Why is my future self going to think differently about what my current self said? On the issue of whether the US government should declare him an enemy combatant vs. try him civilly, I think that’s a different issue than whether to give him Miranda warnings. (Which I would note, we didn’t do.)

    My thoughts are probably too long for a “comment” here, so I’ll do an independent piece on it over at my little corner of the internet.

  22. Kathryn Fenner

    I think this enemy combatant crap has to stop, especially in the case of US citizens, but in the case of Miranda warnings, failure to give him one would not preclude criminal prosecution, merely using information against him, obtained through questioning him. They clearly do not need any input from him to successfully prosecute him for the bombings. There are plenty of photos.

        1. Steven Davis II

          Federal public defender… so he’s either getting someone who couldn’t get a real job out of law school or someone related to a Kennedy.

    1. Juan Caruso

      Sen. Lindsey Graham’s propasal (like most at this stage) are staged to attract his los base — conservatives. Sorry, Senator, your concept is both nonseniscal and transparently motivated.

      However, our chameleon senator makes legitimate sense in a global context… the U.S. alone enriches trial lawyers and hampers prosecutors with Miranda warnings. Mr. Caskey, you probably cannot reconcile Justices Anthony Kennedy’s and Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s citations of foreign law in our court, but it had best have an answer because 128 lawyers (at the U.N.) are aligned toward European standards.

      Please tell us you value U.S. sovereignty over U.N. standards. Or let your youthful silence speak for itself.

      1. Bryan Caskey

        Has anything I’ve ever said indicated that I don’t “value U.S. sovereignty over U.N. standards”? To be clear:

        U.S. sovereignty > U.N. Standards
        Coke > Pepsi
        Pie > Cake
        Grapes > Grapefruit
        Krispy Kreme doughnuts > Little Debbie Oatmeal Creme Pies

        1. Silence

          Bryan, where do you fall on the Oreo vs. Hydrox debate?
          And, who was the better Batman, Val Kilmer or Michael Keaton?

          1. Brad Warthen Post author

            Sargent York!

            I assume you’re saying it’s obvious that the original one was better.

            But the second one did a pretty good job of getting into the character. It was just weird having him be another guy…

  23. Kathryn Fenner

    Well, since the constitutional rights memorialized in the Miranda case are US constitutional rights, sure, no other country has them. I just watched a Danish TV show, though, and they have the right to remain silent and a right to an attorney. So does Britain.

    Does anyone really think that an assimilated teenager is not aware of his Miranda rights?

    1. Juan Caruso

      “I just watched a Danish TV show, though, and they have the right to remain silent and a right to an attorney. So does Britain. ” – K.F.

      If the right to an attorney before interrogation now exists in the U.K. it must be recent change. Europe (like most of the world) has remained comfortable with its brow-beating (‘beating’ emphasized) interrogations. Obviously, defense lawyers have NOT been present for such preliminaries, which are intented to suppress any ‘right to remain silent.’

      I, like other readers, am happy to be corrected by substantive facts. But I know that lawyerless interrogations were common in the U.K. around 6 years ago. After interrogation, attorneys were permitted. Quaint, no?

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