Gut wrenching

The British Media has a phenomenon called ‘Silly Season’, when, because there is very little of substance happening (usually in August when all the political types are on their holidays) the papers are filled with even greater volumes of nonsense than usual.

In this vein, I spotted this story from the Sunday edition of The Scotsman, entitled Al-Qaeda killers hide bombs in stomachs which claims:

TERRORISTS may be planning a new wave of suicide bomb attacks using explosives hidden in their internal organs, it has been claimed. The alarm was triggered last month after an al-Qaeda militant, with a bomb planted in his intestine, attempted to assassinate a Saudi prince

This story has generated a lot of headlines to date, but this is the most outlandish I have seen yet. In his intestine? This is despite reports from Saudi that the guy in fact had concealed a small quantity of explosive in his underwear, relying on Saudi mores to ensure he would not be searched.

I always remember something Brian Jenkins said about terrorist ‘background chatter’. He said that a lot of the time the media comes up with outlandish stories about potential threats or modes of attack that the jihadist discussion groups pick up on and ask each other ‘Could we/Should we do this?’ and then the various intelligence agencies pick up on this and feed it into media reporting, in effect creating an echo or feedback loop.

I wonder where the bomb will have been located next? It appears to be reversing up the digestive tract. That he may have hidden the device up his backside sounds plausible, but in his intestine?

Update: As this story points out, even if doable, an internally smuggled bomb is probably not the most effective weapon:

“It sounds almost like drunk logic, where an idea sounds great until the next morning and you’re sober, going, ‘Noooo, that won’t work,'” said Paul Worsey, a Missouri University of Science and Technology researcher and inventor of explosives. “Unless you’re actually hugging somebody, nobody’s going to get badly hurt…The force of such an explosion would be in the direction of the easiest exit..The rest of the body would work like a sandbag against the blast … though it would be a mess.”

Sensible stuff.

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