Ter­ri­ble news out of the Com­mon­wealth of Mass­a­chu­setts:

Two peo­ple were killed and at least 23 peo­ple were injured in two explo­sions that rocked the Boston Marathon steps away from the fin­ish line.

A senior U.S. intel­li­gence offi­cial said two more explo­sive devices were found near the area, and they were being dismantled.

The first blasts hap­pened at about 2:50 p.m. near the inter­sec­tion of Boyl­ston and Exeter streets. Bloody spec­ta­tors were car­ried away from the area, and wit­ness­es said sev­er­al vic­tims lost limbs.

“Peo­ple start­ed throw­ing down the bar­ri­cade and run­ning over one anoth­er. I lit­er­al­ly saw the garbage bar­rel explode, and I ran as fast as I could,” said one runner.

Boston police said two peo­ple died, and at least 22 were injured. Many tired and scared run­ners were seen wan­der­ing around the area, des­per­ate to find loved ones.

Boston police said that with­in the last hour, there was an addi­tion­al explo­sion at the JFK Library, but there are no known casu­al­ties or injuries from that explo­sion. Police don’t know if that explo­sion is relat­ed to the first two, but they are treat­ing all the explo­sions as if they are linked (which makes sense).

Police have so far refused to con­firm the num­ber of casu­al­ties but the tra­di­tion­al media is report­ing that at least two are dead and twen­ty-eight injured. All those injured have been trans­port­ed away from the scene.

At this time, we don’t have a lot of sol­id infor­ma­tion about this inci­dent, or who is respon­si­ble. But it appears these blasts were an act of ter­ror­ism, not an acci­dent, giv­en that there were mul­ti­ple explo­sions all in the same vicin­i­ty, and all dur­ing the after­noon of a pub­lic hol­i­day (Patri­ot’s Day) in Mass­a­chu­setts, when there are tra­di­tion­al­ly a lot of peo­ple downtown.

Mass­a­chu­setts Gov­er­nor Deval Patrick has asked peo­ple to go home (or back to their hotel rooms) and avoid con­gre­gat­ing in crowds.

The White House says that Pres­i­dent Oba­ma has been noti­fied and has direct­ed his admin­is­tra­tion to pro­vide what­ev­er assis­tance that Mass­a­chu­setts needs.

FOR MOREThe Boston Globe is live­blog­ging the after­math of the blasts.

EYEWITNESS VIDEO: A per­son who was near the explo­sions in Cop­ley Square has uploaded a short clip to YouTube. The clip begins right after the first explo­sion and shows reac­tion to the sec­ond. The Boston Globe, mean­while, has graph­ic footage of both of the explo­sions. Be warned: It’s not for the faint of heart.

About the author

Andrew Villeneuve is the founder and executive director of the Northwest Progressive Institute, as well as the founder of NPI's sibling, the Northwest Progressive Foundation. He has worked to advance progressive causes for over two decades as a strategist, speaker, author, and organizer. Andrew is also a cybersecurity expert, a veteran facilitator, a delegate to the Washington State Democratic Central Committee, and a member of the Climate Reality Leadership Corps.

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