Monday, 21 August 2017

The Kiasu Guide to Spotting (possible) Terrorists

Our Minister for Law and Home Affairs has said that it is a matter of "When", not "If" Singapore has a terrorist attack.

You could of course try to run, but where? The recent bombing in Belgium shows us that there is no safe place really. Well, ok. Maybe Inner Mongolia. No one wants to bomb that place, but then again, unless you are born there, do you really want to go there? For good?

If you don't want to run or can't run, then how do you spot a Terrorist?

Well just the other day, there was an elderly man on a mobility scooter on the MRT. I thought, he's just an old man with mobility issues. He had an air tube running to his nose, and there were two air tanks behind him (strapped to the scooter). Then I noticed he had another tank in front of him.

Man, he has some breathing difficulties!

BUT... what if he was not? What if he were a terrorist PRETENDING to be an elderly man with mobility issues and breathing difficulties. Sure there is tube running from the "air tanks" to his face or nose, but how do we know if they are really air tanks? They could be fuel for bombs!

Well, in that case, he wasn't. Or he didn't trigger the bomb. I left the train a few stops after, and I didn't read about a train being bombed later.

BUT the point is, he could have been a terrorist!

A mobility scooter is a great vehicle for terrorists. It's cheap (well, cheaper than a car). Not licenced. Not regulated. Doesn't require expensive COE. And can go almost anywhere!

Best of all, the authorities have been forcing building developers to make their buildings accessible to wheelchairs. So these scooters can go anywhere a wheelchair can go.

Speaking of which, motorised wheelchairs are also great vehicles for terrorists. You can plant bombs under the seat, or disguised as a battery. The user could also strap bombs onto their bodies if they were suicidal. Nothing worse than a suicidal would-be suicide bomber.

Of course, they don't actually have to be wheelchair bound. They could just PRETEND to be wheelchair bound. Interestingly, a non-wheelchair user can pretend to be a wheelchair user, but not vice versa. At least not for long.

Of course an amputee can hide explosives in their prosthetics. Amputees have done so elsewhere to smuggle drugs. Why not explosive. I really don't see the MRT security officers being willing to stop an amputee, pull him (or her) over to one side, and asking the person to remove their prosthetics for a check.

That would be Awful! Or Awesome? No. Definitely Awful!

But in case you think I'm picking on the disabled (or rather, people pretending to be disabled), I'm not! (Except for Amputees).

People with electric skate scooters are also potential terrorists. Or rather, could be terrorists. Calling people with skate scooters "potential terrorists" sounds like they have the potential to terrorise pedestrians and other road users. Which I guess is a form of terrorism, but that's for another post.

Electric scooters and bicycles have huge batteries which could be replaced by explosives, rendering the bike or scooter a deadly weapon of terror (in another form). And you can't check for this. If the police or other law enforcement officer stops the cyclist or scooterer (scooterist?) and ask why they aren't using the motor, they just need to say they are out of battery power. Most people won't be able to tell a battery from a bomb disguised as a battery!

And what about pregnant women? Or rather women pretending to be heavily pregnant. With a huge belly bump. What if it were a bomb strapped to her belly? Would MRT security officers be willing to strip-search an apparently pregnant woman?

And the same suspicions can be cast on fat people. How do you know it's fat and not a bomb under that?

And then, there are baby strollers. Sure there are lightweight strollers that cannot hide a sandwich. Then there are MEGA-DEATHFUCK-STROLLERS-FROM-HELL. You may have seen them. They are the SUVs of strollers. Huge wheels (more like tyres), super lush cushioning. With deep pockets, and diaper (?) bags hanging off them or stowed beneath the seats. You will see them trying to push their way into a crowded train or lift. Inside will be one small baby but with the SUV stroller it takes up space that 4 adults could squeeze in. If I were an MRT security officer, I would stop and search these SUV strollers. Because I think these parents either a) own HUGE SUVs and are extending their obnoxiousness to their choice of baby strollers, or b) do not own a car so they have to over-compensate when they got a stroller for "Ah Boy".

And yes, the cushioning, deep capacious pockets, and various storage can hold bombs.

Finally, we don't go around armed in Singapore. If you see someone walking around with a sword, he or she is either a cosplayer or a terrorist.

And it needn't just be a sword. It could be a baton or just sticks.

And stunguns (and stun sticks) are illegal in Singapore.

But not selfie sticks.

Which can be used as extendable batons or weapons in a pinch. And if you are so inclined (and technically competent), you could convert a selfie stick into an extendable stun stick (or disguise a stun stick as a selfie stick). Or a stun baton. And put a sharp tip on the end, so it works as stabbing weapon. And hide a single-shot firearm in the handle (just put a bullet cartridge in the reinforced handle/barrel, and a way to trigger it).

So, anyone seen a pregnant woman on a mobility scooter, pushing a big-ass stroller while taking selfies?

That would be suspicious.


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