What's more, the Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman seemed to take a swipe at the U.S. decision to remove the Iranian group MEK from a list of terrorist
organizations last year -- a move Iran strongly opposed.
"Giving permission for terrorist groups to operate and removing them from the terrorist list under the excuse of freedom will ultimately lead to
instability and will affect all of the people," Ramin Mehmanparast said.
Egypt's ruling Muslim Brotherhood went with its classic strategy -- releasing one statement in English and one
in Arabic. (This technique has not fooled many since the invention of the Internet).
In English, the Brotherhood's political party said it categorically rejected "as intolerable
the bombings committed in the U.S. city of Boston," and "offer[ed] heartfelt sympathies and solemn condolences to the American people and the families of
But in a Facebook post in Arabic, one senior Brotherhood leader condemned the
Boston bombing -- and then went on to link the attack to
the French war in Mali, the wars in Syria and Iraq, and even the violence in Somalia.
And borrowing from Glenn Beck's "I'm just asking questions" playbook, the statement wrapped up with this ominous query:
"Who planted Islamophobia through research, the press, and the media? Who funded the violence?"
While Russian president Vladimir Putin promptly denounced "the barbaric crime," one top Russian senator said the bombing highlighted how crucial it is for
the U.S. and Russia to work together to fight terrorism, rather than drawing up blacklists. It was clearly aimed at the recent
Magnitsky list created by U.S. lawmakers
to target Russian human rights violators (to which Russia responded with a list of its own.)
"It is important for the Russia-U.S. relations that the American side understands that the main threat for the United States comes not from the people on
the Magnitsky List, but from terrorists, and the administrations of our countries must make a mutual effort to fight this evil instead of making some lists
or counter-lists," Viktor Ozerov said.
The head of the upper house's Foreign Affairs Committee, Mikhail Margelov, chimed in with a similar remark:
"The Boston events are another reminder that instead of making blacklists that are only dividing us, we should unite," Margelov said.
If you don't have a politically agnostic statement to release, just don't release any statement at all.
Additions? Add them in the comments or tweet at me: @olgakhazan