“The body’s buried,” said Rusian Tsarni, the uncle of Tsarnaev and the only person willing to take responsibility for the body. “That’s it.”
Unfortunately, that’s not it. Civic leaders in Caroline County, Va., where Doswell is located, are outraged over the move. They didn’t want the body there, and were never even asked if they wanted it.
“We feel the same way most of America feels,” said Floyd Thomas, chairman of the county’s Board of Supervisors. “We’re very angry over the bombings.”
The Washington Post reported that Virginia Muslim leaders are unhappy with the decision as well.
“The whole Muslim community here is furious. Frankly, we are furious that we were never given any information. It was all done secretly behind our backs,” Imam Ammar Amonette of the Islamic Center of Virginia told the Post.
What a needless controversy.
Someone in authority — perhaps in our state government — should have taken a cue from the United States government, which knew exactly what to do with the body of Osama bin Laden: Bury it at sea. Far out at sea.
The sea, of course, is a no man’s land, a place where there will never be a memorial to the deceased. The United States quickly buried bin Laden’s body somewhere in the deep blue specifically to avoid the kind of controversies that developed over Tsarnaev’s resting place — and to prevent the al-Qaida terror leader’s followers from turning his grave into some sort of holy site.
Besides all the security and image problems Virginia has been saddled with, it now has to wonder whether fanatics will try to turn Tsarnaev’s grave into the shrine of a “martyr.”
We’ve just created that shrine.