No one in Boston will forget the drama of the manhunt for two brothers suspected in the Marathon bombings. Nor will anyone forget the courage of the officers involved, including Sean Collier of the MIT police, who lost his life, and MBTA Transit officer Richard H. Donahue Jr., who was seriously injured. On Thursday night and Friday, residents of Greater Boston experienced the type of siege that most see only in movies. All along, though, the cooperation among authorities, victims, and an intensely engaged public made it clear there was no way for the bombers to escape accountability by remaining undetected.
The brothers Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev appeared in surveillance images to have dropped off bomb-laden backpacks near the finish line. Their baseball-capped faces look like those of ordinary young men almost anywhere in the country. But they also fit the profile of a growing danger faced by American communities: disaffected young people, prone to one form of radicalization or another, hoping to act out their frustrations in a blaze of carnage.