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Tamerlan Tsarnaev’s ex-girlfriend Nadine Ascencao is now speaking out about their past and says they had an extremely abusive relationship.
“I went to his mosque a couple of times and even looked into converting to make him happy. I thought, ‘This is crazy’ — but I still did it for him. Tamerlan had taken my virginity and said he loved me because I was pure and hadn’t been with any other guys. I was in love and scared he’d leave me if I didn’t do what he said. Looking back I had a lucky escape.”
She went on to say that he tried to force her to convert to Islam:
“He became extremely religious and tried to brainwash me to follow Islam. Tamerlan said I couldn’t be with him unless I became a Muslim. He wanted me to hate America like he did.”
According to Nadine, Tamerlan would lash out and attack her when she didn’t follow Muslim customs or wore western clothes:
“He hated my tight trousers and made me wear long skirts. Towards the end I was wearing a hijab. He once ripped a pair of my jeans and hit me in the face with them. Tamerlan told me I should only talk to Muslim girls, not other ‘slutty’ girls.”
Perhaps the most disturbing revelation is that Tamerlan began seeing Katherine Russell (who eventually became his wife) on the side. But instead of hiding her from Nadine, he openly talked about her in attempts to “motivate” her to convert to Islam:
“He once made me learn a verse of an Islamic prayer and if I got it wrong he’d say, ‘Well Katherine can do it.’”
She didn’t seem the least bit surprised that Tamerlan could be a part of something so awful due to their abusive relationship and his disgusting behavior. But she was shocked by his brother Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s role in the bombing.
“I was more shocked Dzhokhar was involved. He was a nice kid.”
These shockingly disturbing details certainly shed some light on Tamerlan’s manipulative demeanor before the bombings.
Hopefully more people will speak out so we can learn more about what led to the horrific events that happened in Boston.
[Image via The Lowell Sun, Julia Malakie/AP Images.]