You have to love the Net. It brings stuff out into the open that would never reach you if a few big papers and TV networks still decided what we got to see. Now every nut case with a few rupees to spend at an internet place can broadcast his message to the world. Which, most of the time, is "Blam!"
Take that big attack on foreigners in Saudi Arabia at the end of May. The raw details weren't that funny: 22 people shot dead, terrorists escaped... Downright depressing. But every time they started filling in more details, the funnier it got. The part that got me chuckling was the way the Saudi p.r. guys were saying that lots of hostages were rescued by "Saudi special forces." Now I don't want to be disrespectful, but if I was a hostage and I heard that Saudi special forces were coming to protect me, I'd start making my peace with God and writing my blood type on my arm.
Some countries are good at "special forces," some aren't. The Brits are probably the best. The Israelis used to be just as good, but I get the feeling they've been slipping up lately. Ever since they tried to poison that guy on the streets of Amman a few years ago and got caught by the Jordanians -- I mean come on, the Jordanians! -- I've had my doubts.
And way, way, waaaaay down on the list of countries that have good special forces is the Saudis. You need hard people to make good commandos, and the Saudis have had it way too soft for way too long.
When I imagine a Saudi rescue operation, it's guys in white robes at the cargo bay of a C130, pushing giant bundles of cash down onto unsuspecting guerrillas, hoping that the falling dollars will knock the bad guys out. Or at least get them more interested in sports cars and less high on death. So I figured the Saudi commandos part of the story had to be phony.
And sure enough, the terrorists put out their own version of the massacre on the Net, and they said the Saudi special forces never even showed.
That wasn't the only interesting bit in these crazy Jihadis' email, either. I wish I could've seen their original statement, but nobody will print the online address. Anybody out there know it? If so, email it to me and I'll ask the eXile guys to put it on their site.
In the meantime we have to go with the little bits they've translated. And whoo boy, those are wild enough!
Their first stop was Khobar Petroleum Center, and the terrorists just strolled in, because they'd shaved their beards (hey, Allah would understand!) and put on Saudi military uniforms. A British oil exec pulled up just as they were getting started, and they got the day's work off with a bang by killing him. Their version: "We saw the car of the British director and we liquidated him." You catch that "liquidated"? It's funny how cool words for killing somebody come and go. I haven't heard "liquidated" since I stopped watching James Bond movies, but maybe it's staging a comeback.
The terrorists were trying to be very careful not to shoot Saudi Muslims, because they'd gotten a little slack, killed a few locals, and it turned out to be bad p.r. So what'd they do? Like any good people-person would do, they got the locals "involved in the process," which is how my asshole boss would say it: "We asked our brother Muslims, where are the Americans, and they showed us..." Now what's funny is that when the TV crews asked the locals about this, they all said, "What, me? Help terrorists? Why, that's crazy talk!" It all depends on who you believe. But put it this way: if you're a Muslim janitor working for American execs in the middle of the Iraq mess and the Gaza mess, and some Koran-quoting maniac with a Kalashnikov asks you where the Americans are, would you really get on your high horse and go, "No, I will never cooperate with terrorism! Avast, you villain!" Well, if you would, you should be teaching Sunday school somewhere. In fact I'm surprised you're still alive. Nature has a way of weeding out people like you.