The method redefines what it is to be an "assassin."
The new trick came to light last month in a Saudi palace when an Al Qaeda operative, claiming to want to surrender, exploded in a failed attempt to murder the Saudi prince in charge of counterterrorism operations. The terrorist stuffed a pound of explosives and a detonator up his behind (or perhaps one of his buddies did it for him) in order to foil bomb detectors.
What I'm about to propose is gross and disgusting and downright insensitive. But it's culturally appropriate. And it's a quick, inexpensive way to see if we can damage terrorist recruitment and neutralize this new and dangerous Al Qaeda murder tactic. So here goes.
Rather than get alarmed about lacking the technical means to detect such bomb smugglers, we should use Arab and Islamic (and generally universal, lowbrow, adolescent) cultural traits to make terrorists too ashamed and embarrassed to turn their bottoms into bombs. And to humiliate their supporters.
This tactic is begging for ridicule. Terrorists hate being ridiculed. Sexually repressed young men hate being ridiculed. Islamist extremists hate being ridiculed. Mockery stains their honor. Most terrorists are sexually repressed Islamist extremist young men.
Therefore, it's time for the US and its allies, as well as the Saudis, to turn on the laughs by making fun of the butt-bombers. We can all think of ways to ridicule these weirdos in English - oh, the metaphors are just too plentiful and too crude to list here - and the Arabic language is likewise awash in backdoor humor. To say nothing of Pashto.
Let's start making fun of Osama bin Laden and his butt-stuffing buddies in Al Qaeda, and see how long this terrorist fad lasts. (My money is on the US being too politically correct to give this a try, but I hope I'm wrong.)
Rather than fear these freaks, we should be mocking them. In every country, in every language. It's perfect for the uber-homophobic, repressed, pseudopious culture in which the terrorists live. Let's see how many macho young men really want to meet their fate with the world knowing this: That their last act of piety was packing their fanny full of phallic-shaped C-4 and having their buddy detonate them with a cell phone text message.
Let's see how many virgins that buys them in the next life. And how many other Islamist extremist boys want to emulate him.
Bonus points: Al Qaeda is officially promoting the butt-bomber tactic in a new video it recently posted on the Internet. So we can pin this on Bin Laden personally, and take down his persona a notch or two with some good, old-fashioned locker-room laughs.
Here's a video about the Saudi butt-bomber (CBS calls him the "Trojan Bomber.")
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