Last year we noted that a Congressional investigation revealed that Homeland Security's "anti-terrorism fusion centers" were a complete joke
. They created no useful intelligence
, even though they cost a ton of taxpayer money, and they regularly violated American's civil liberties. In the wake of the Boston bombings, then, it might be useful to wonder how much the local fusion centers were involved in the process -- especially since the FBI had been aware of Tamerlan Tsarnaev and had interviewed him. Well... it turns out that the FBI didn't bother to share that with the fusion center
. The FBI did
share info with state and local police, but not with the fusion center:
A spokeswoman for the Boston Police Department said the Boston Regional Intelligence Center  was never notified about the FBI investigation.
In response, FBI supervisory Agent Jason Pack e-mailed a statement suggesting that state and local officials had ample access to information about the Tsarnaev investigation in 2011, through their participation in an FBI unit in Boston, the Joint Terrorism Task Force.
Once again, this has people wondering why we have these fusion centers in the first place.
If the FBI’s investigatory work with state and locals on terrorism is situated at the JTTFs, as it appears to be, what useful purpose do fusion centers serve with respect to terrorism? The jury is out on that question. But we know a bit about some non-terrorism related activities at the BRIC.
A public records lawsuit in 2011 showed that the Boston Regional Intelligence Center, like other fusion centers nationwide, devoted resources and time to spying on perfectly peaceful dissenters like Veterans for Peace and Code Pink.
Perhaps the FBI only makes use of the fusion centers when stopping some of its self-created