File photo of former US presidential candidate Ron Paul.
Former US presidential candidate Ron Paul said the police manhunt of the suspected Boston Marathon bombers should “frighten us as much or more than the attack itself”.
“The Boston bombing provided the opportunity for the government to turn what should have been a police investigation into a military-style occupation of an American city,” said Paul on Monday.
The two-time presidential candidate further criticized the police in its aggressive manhunt of 19-year-old bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and killing of his 26-year-old brother Tamerlan, saying it reflected tactics used by a “military coup in a far off banana republic.”
“Forced lockdown of a city…Militarized police riding tanks in the streets. Door-to-door armed searches without warrant. Families thrown out of their homes at gunpoint to be searched without probable cause. Businesses forced to close. Transport shut down,” the former Congressional representative said of the search.
Residents of Watertown, Massachusetts and other communities - including the cities of Boston, Cambridge, Belmont, Newton and Waltham - were all ordered to remain in their homes during a police search for suspects.
Eventually, the crackdown failed as Dzhokhar was “not discovered by the paramilitary troops [who were] terrorizing the public…not by government surveillance cameras, but by private citizens who willingly shared their photographs with the police”, said the American physician.
On April 19, police killed suspected Boston Marathon bomber Tamerlan during a shootout and engaged in a chaotic door-to-door manhunt for his brother Dzhokhar in the Boston area.
Dzhokhar, the surviving suspect in the bombings, was wounded and later captured, having been charged with using a weapon of mass destruction.
This came as Dzhokhar admitted to his role in the April 15 Boston Marathon bombings that killed three people and wounded 260 others, before he was read his Miranda rights.
“Once the government decides that its role is to keep us safe, whether economically or physically, they can only do so by taking away our liberties. That is what happened in Boston,” Paul concluded.