June 11, 2003
Fighting Fire With Fire

I wonder if the CIA has ever considered using tactics that take advantage of the fact that we are dealing with religious fanatics. What I mean is this. If I wanted to depress and disorient a fanatical Christian leader, I would see if I could arrange to have a giant disembodied hand appear while he was eating dinner with his henchmen and write MENE MENE TEKEL UPHARSIN on the wall. (Precise text varies from one translation to another: I trust the CIA could find out which version would be most appropriate for the hypothetical leader's particular sect.) Surely Industrial Light and Magic could come up with the proper equipment for such a feat? Would there be a proper Koranic equivalent for such a thoroughly and certifiably bad omen?

Posted by Dr. Weevil at June 11, 2003 09:51 PM

Interesting suggestion full of rich possibilities!

I'd always wondered if the CIA really DID ever experiement with 'helping' people hear voices. The voice of Allah would be, I think, unacceptable for an Islamic leader, but angelic visitation would be just fine.

Posted by: Michael Tinkler on June 12, 2003 07:33 AM

"Satanic Verses" indeed!

Posted by: Rob Ritchie on June 12, 2003 08:23 AM

Split the moon in half with a nuke. I read it somewhere.

Posted by: Tresho on June 12, 2003 09:27 PM

I'm rather surprised no one has started a rumor that the response to any further attacks on the USA would be nuclear obliteration of Mecca and Medina.

No civilized person would advocate such retaliation, of course, but those who most need to be deterred also harbor the most paranoid and Manichaean of fantasy worlds. They already believe the most outrageous untruths about the Other; the new rumor would fit right in. And any official denials would only confirm their convictions of its truth.

Posted by: David on June 13, 2003 02:45 PM

OOOOOH how delicious and tempting!!

Posted by: MommaBear on June 15, 2003 10:46 AM