Category Archives: terrorism

11 September 2011 – a day to celebrate our victory over a bunch of fanatical criminals

Ten years ago tonight, a bunch of fanatical extremist criminals hijacked planes and crashed them into American landmarks. They wanted to start a war between Islam and the West. They wanted to be elevated from petty psychotic criminals to super villains, the main enemies of the world’s last remaining superpower. They wanted that superpower to spend the next decade thrashing about after them, smashing up Islamic countries so that ordinary people in those countries who would never have had a bar of Al Qaeda would lose family members in the carnage and build up their own legitimate grievances against it. They wanted the surge in recruitment that would come from being taken more seriously than they deserved.

Like that was going to happen.

They wanted the West to abandon the civil liberties its citizens enjoyed and become more like the tyrannical regimes they wished they had the support to establish. They wanted their petty grievances, their pathetic “war” on the West to be taken so seriously by the West that the West would concentrate on little else. They wanted the West to get bogged down in unwinnable wars that would be a massive drain on its economies and tip many of them over the edge into collapse.

Fortunately, they didn’t get their wish.

We recognised that they were petty murderous criminals, not super villains (how absurd would it be for them to gain respect simply by killing more people?), distinguished them early from their potential allies in the Islamic world and worked with those people to root out and prosecute these unhinged criminals. We remembered that our long-standing Justice systems had successfully dealt with serious criminals before, and they were now rotting away in jails, stripped of their power, unable to influence or impress anybody. We found the criminals, we charged them with the crimes they’d committed, and – demonstrating once again how different we were to them – gave them fair trials. Of course, since they were criminals who had committed serious crimes, the evidence was strong, and they were convicted and sentenced to extensive periods of imprisonment. They’re still there, pathetic specimens, wishing they could have had the war they dreamed of, wishing for “martyrdom” and a glorious death. But we don’t give murderous criminals what they want.

The people of Iraq and Afghanistan participated in the “Arab Spring” and, like Egypt and Libya, overthrew their dictators. NATO assisted with air support, but the revolutions were run and achieved by the people of those countries, not forces imposed from outside. The Taliban and Saddam Hussein are on the run like Gaddafi, but with their entire countries united against them, nobody expects them to escape capture for long.

Yes, it’s been a decade in which the West stood strong. Its economies were not crippled by a decade of war. Its principles of justice and the rule of law remained strong and were an example to the rest of the world. The terrorists lost their chance to cause destruction and chaos well beyond their actual powers, and are now sitting miserably in jail like any other violent criminals. We were not distracted from the real challenges facing us – economic reform, the increasing power of China, climate change.

A bunch of psychotic radicals in a cave did not defeat us. How could they? We would have had to be led by total morons to have given them anything they’d wanted.

UPDATE: As Matthew puts it in a comment at Pure Poison:

Yesterday (or so), the bolinator was asking (roughly) “is the best they can do?”, referring to the maybe-truck-bomb that probably isn’t bearing down on new york and/or washington. Andrew – that’s all they could EVER do. Their one innovation was to take advantage of airline security that let people take knives onto planes and stage a really big truck bomb. It wasn’t a brilliant or unimaginable innovation – not only was it in the (now famous) “debt of honour” by tom clancy (not his best by a long way – I recently had to struggle to even remember what it was about, whereas cardinal of the kremlin’s a real ripper). It has (apparently) been used in a couple of movies, and was apparently even used on a TV show … broadcast in the US in 2001. It just wasn’t that !$@#ing clever.

Since then, in the US, it’s been amateur night. You have to be pretty desperate to consider that times square thing as anything more than slapstick. The fort hood shooting was just another in an endless line of shootings in the US. A total moron tried to run people over with an SUV, and ballsed it up. THAT’S the enemy. Try comparing these bozos to the IRA, and they’re really very ordinary.

No, Matt! They’re THE GREATEST THREAT THE WEST HAS EVER FACED!

Surely there’s a noun Norway could declare war on instead

Wait, so Norway isn’t going to create an expensive paranoid police-state “war on terror” apparatus that validates the persecution complex of people like the killer? Weird.

“It’s absolutely possible to have an open, democratic, inclusive society, and at the same time have security measures and not be naive,” Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg told reporters in Oslo. “I think what we have seen is that there is going to be one Norway before and one Norway after July 22,” he said. “But I hope and also believe that the Norway we will see after will be more open, a more tolerant society than what we had before.”

Oh, come on. Surely there’s an unrelated country they could invade?

“THAT’S what the people wanted to hear – not just the demise of one evil madman, but the end to all the killing.”

Here are some words I didn’t expect to see myself typing: I agree with Michael Moore. That’s an excellent piece on the Bin Laden killing, particularly on the importance of trials if you really want to defeat extremists – with the second World War as an example. (The headline quote is in relation to when people really started celebrating that victory – it was at the declaration of peace, not the earlier announcements of Hitler’s death or Hiroshima.)

ELSEWHERE: The copyright parasites in that country try to trademark the name of the SEAL team that took Osama down. Trademark it. Seriously.

Records show that just two days after bin Laden’s killing, Disney Enterprises, Inc., filed paperwork to trademark the name “SEAL TEAM 6.”

And Disney is pretty confident the utterly broken IP system that they dominate will let them.

Wait, so what does that make me?

Seen around the internet this week:

That sandal looks very familiar.

In fact, as the sequence of photographs at the above post shows, it’s the one I managed to lose at my brother’s wedding, before a kindly local with a boat – and, suspiciously, A BEARD – rescued it for me.

Still, if the Internet is right – and I’ve never known it to be wrong, or silly – then it’s my shoe on the water that proves Osama’s burial at sea, which means… oh my God.

I’m sorry you had to find out this way.

Land of the sheep, tormenter of the brave

Private Bradley Manning, the whistleblower who is being held in cruel conditions barely distinguishable from torture for allegedly releasing classified US documents such as the Collateral Murder video, has now been charged with 26 counts, including one punishable by execution.

And yet his fellow countrymen, for whom he released the material – so that they would know what is being done in their name – are not rising up in anger about his treatment. Far from declaring him a national hero and a brave fighter against the abuse of government power, they are contentedly sitting by while their government uses its immense power to crush him in a solitary prison cell. Even those who claim opposition to government tyranny as their most important principle, seem to have little problem with how this man is being treated – being treated, mind you, before even being tried.

Apparently Americans would rather not know in future what is going on. They’d rather whistleblowers were bullied in to keeping their bloody mouths shut, so the rest of the country could continue not to care what goes on around them.

The price of liberty is eternal what? Quiet, we’re watching TV to check that our politicians are wearing flag pins.

UPDATE: And now Manning’s being stripped every night because he made a sarcastic remark. They’ve decided he’s a risk of suicide – but they haven’t placed him on “Suicide Risk Watch”, probably because that would require an actual assessment by a mental health professional.

It’s punishment before trial, clear as day.

Oh my god! He’s got a phone!

If your mobile phone can really crash an airliner, then why the hell are you allowed to bring it on in hand luggage? Tweezers can’t, and they confiscate those…

Do they really expect us to believe that the next hijacking is going to be some guy holding up his phone and threatening to press the call button?

Meanwhile:

In July last year the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) ruled that mobiles do not disrupt aircraft navigational equipment if airlines install special technology, paving the way for travellers to be able to make calls and send text messages mid-flight.

The ACMA approved technology that allows an airline-installed, on-board system to relay mobile-phone signals.

If mobile phones that pretty much every passenger carries are such a threat, then why isn’t installing this technology mandatory for all airlines?

A thousand words

Perhaps this image will make the point where it’s needed – where thousands of cogently-argued words have failed:

(Courtesy of @Theremina.)