Yet More Fear-Mongering from the DHS

Al Qaeda is sewing bombs into people. Actually, not really. This is an "aspirational" terrorist threat, which basically means that someone mentioned it while drunk in a bar somewhere. Of course, that won't stop the DHS from trying to terrorize people with the idea and the security-industrial complex from selling us an expensive "solution" to reduce our fears.

Wired: "So: a disruptive, potentially expensive panic based on a wild aspirational scheme? Actually, that sounds a lot like al-Qaida. And the TSA."

Me: "Refuse to be terrorized."

Posted on December 14, 2011 at 6:17 AM • 34 Comments

Comments

JanDecember 14, 2011 6:40 AM

This is actual movie plot, it was done by the nemesis "Joker" on the latest Batman movie. It was cell phone activated, which was implanted too.

PhilDecember 14, 2011 7:00 AM

They are aware that the human body is like one big sack of water, aren't they? Less explosion and more big messy SPLAT.

Wasn't there something like this a few years ago, where a guy stuffed his rectum with explosive in Saudi Arabia? I think I remember reading the body ended up absorbing most of the explosion. As you would expect it to.

Roger LancefieldDecember 14, 2011 7:09 AM

I thought we'd moved on to Al-Cybaeda, the dastardly /bin/ladenov and his hordes of piratical crackers?

I've got a large lump sum of fear and terror here ready to do its duty, but I'm finding the US government's investment advice rather confusing :-/

MMCDecember 14, 2011 7:13 AM

Phil - indeed - there was a recent Mythbusters episode about it and how well it works to protect others. (2007 Ep 12 "Grenades and Guts"). So, DHS, even if they ignore ALL the things they have at their disposal COULD HAVE LEARNT ABOUT IT ON TV!

Brett ODecember 14, 2011 7:31 AM

SOOOO therefore the government should declare that DHS is a terrorist organization. Makes sense.

CalvinDecember 14, 2011 7:50 AM

How else will DHS justify their pitiful existence (and wasteful spending of billions of taxpayer $$'s) if not through fear mongering?

Then again, maybe this is their way of getting the masses of sheeples to quietly accept the backscatter machines!

TrishDecember 14, 2011 9:13 AM

You have to wonder who the terrorist is here; afterall a terrorist is one who creates terror.

PaeniteoDecember 14, 2011 9:39 AM

@Calvin: "accept the backscatter machines"

AFAIK, these things cannot look *into* the body (just beneath clothing), so they would actually be completely ineffective.
So, if anything, this is a way to require funding *beyond* simply nude scanners.

MeDecember 14, 2011 9:41 AM

@Calvin:

"Then again, maybe this is their way of getting the masses of sheeples to quietly accept the back-scatter machines!"

Could be, but then again, implanted devices would SPECIFICALLY not show up on back-scatter, this is a known limitation to the tech (on top of all the unknown/classified limitations).

llewellyDecember 14, 2011 9:57 AM

If a friendly stranger at the airport asks you to have a package sewn to your body for them, tell them no.

Terry ClothDecember 14, 2011 10:17 AM

   Grammatical point: It took me a few seconds to parse ``Actually, not really.'' I read about sewing bombs into people. Then I read ``actually''---wow, they're really doing it. _Then_ I read ``not really''---huh? What's going on here?

   I'd replace the `Actually' with `Well'. But that's probably just me.

Aj ReznorDecember 14, 2011 10:51 AM

Drug cartels have used this method to smuggle drugs, even inside of dogs. So... when do we start checking dogs for explosives? I've shipped a dog, a lot of people have. They don't get more than a courtesy sweep for anything inside their carrier (and they're allowed a lot more fluid than we can carry on).

As for what the DHS is waving flags about; it's been a plot device in movies. Outside Hollywood, one no-more-believable paper citing the same as DHS:
http://www.groupintel.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/Bunker-GroupIntel_BodyCavityBombs.pdf

jdDecember 14, 2011 11:14 AM

Movie plot from NCIS, which is actually a lot more plausible: Triggering an EMP in central L.A.

Snarki, child of LokiDecember 14, 2011 11:25 AM

@Brett O:
"SOOOO therefore the government should declare that DHS is a terrorist organization. Makes sense."

Clearly, DHS has been infiltrated, with AQ terror implants in their brains.

Dastardly islamic terrorists! Now we'll have to flush out whatever tiny amount of gray matter is still in DHS noggins to eliminate the threat.

Clive RobinsonDecember 14, 2011 12:49 PM

@ Kingsnake,

"... or can I use the traditional route?"

Hmm there are two traditional routes depending on if your orientation is normal and if you have the guts for it. Basicaly it translates to one down or one up .

As far as I'm aware at the moment drug dealers chosse to go down and wait for things to pass to get there reward on earth. Whilst those seeking the proverbial 72 virgins generaly are less patient and chose to stick it up for a quick end.

So I hate to ask but are you thinking dope or ATP?

Dave C.December 14, 2011 2:21 PM

...or what about sewing it into a dead person for transport. I dont know how airlines handle/x-ray dead people.

Dave C.December 14, 2011 3:51 PM

@ Z.K.

Yes you are right. I now remember the scene where explosives are inside of a dead person and the guy is trying to defuse them. Perhaps it was a subconcious idea on my part. However how do airlines handle dead people? I dont know the answer to that.

Dirk PraetDecember 14, 2011 6:53 PM

It's the only way they can continue justifying their existance and the related cost. It's starting to sound more and more like the boy who cried wolf. Or the emperor's new clothes.

John N.December 15, 2011 1:18 PM

So, it's just an addition to the questions they ask about your electronics -

"Have your electronics been repaired or out of your possession any time recently?"

"Have you had major surgery under full anesthesia within the last 48 hours performed by a medical team that included anyone with a Middle Eastern or other foreign accent?"

"Within the last 48 hours or have you met an attractive woman at a bar, gotten drunk, gone to a hotel room with her, passed out, woken up in a bathtub full of ice with unexplained stitches on your back and found a plane ticket on the counter and a note written in lipstick on the mirror that said, 'Enjoy your vacation!'?"

PrometheeFeuDecember 15, 2011 6:13 PM

I feel bad for suicide bombers. Now that their leadership has realized they can generate just as much terror by thinking out loud, it seems unlikely Al Qaeda will do anymore hiring...

JayDecember 15, 2011 7:02 PM

@PrometheeFeu:

I wouldn't have thought job security was such a big factor for suicide bombers... ;)

jacobDecember 19, 2011 2:36 PM

@reznor. yep, pop goes the puppy.

I have said for years some idiot is going to try to stuff a bomb up his bum and then we are in for a world of hurt. "personal" patdowns will take on a whole new meaning. We tell our kids to not let strangers touch their special places. then, well if they have a badge, it's ok. next, if someone has a badge, they can stick a finger.......???

Jeez, just amazing. Al Jazeera is even wondering about us. We are going to pass legislation that allowing indefinite detention of american citizens for whatever reason. We can kill 'em already. (I thought we were over this, after detaining Japanese citizens)

Maybe I am too old and cranky...Is really just me?

Leave a comment

Allowed HTML: <a href="URL"> • <em> <cite> <i> • <strong> <b> • <sub> <sup> • <ul> <ol> <li> • <blockquote> <pre>

Photo of Bruce Schneier by Per Ervland.

Schneier on Security is a personal website. Opinions expressed are not necessarily those of Co3 Systems, Inc..