Monday, August 5, 2013

Terrorists and Tornadoes

I have a recommendation for the National Weather Service, FEMA and other groups who ensure the safety of people in Tornado Alley.

On any day that a tornado is possible (before one is even identified as existing), those groups should immediately tell the residents of the states affected that the state must be evacuated immediately (at best) and if not possible, the residents should be told to stay in their basement all day until the all-clear is given.

As to where evacuees should go, well, that’s up to them.  If they should wander into another state that is also being evacuated, I’m sure they will figure it out with minimal loss of life.

Sounds silly, doesn’t it?

Imagine the loss of productivity, the anxiety and everything else that would exist if on any given day, you knew you were being evacuated with little or no specific information and without even a tangible threat being identified.

Then I think of the terror threat currently being described by political leaders.

Officials appear to suddenly know that the terrorists have their plans in-hand, they are in position to attack, what the attack method will be and that the attack is imminent.  This all comes from the greatest amount of “chatter” since before 9/11 and we all know what our careful monitoring of that chatter prevented, don’t we?

We know all this information because according to some officials, the terrorists are now so brazen that they are broadcasting all of this information in-the-clear and not making any effort to hide the communication.


So they are doing all of this in-the-clear and yet the one thing they are not broadcasting in-the-clear are the targets and the timeframes.


It reminds me of one of the greatest deceptions of World War II.

When the Allies were preparing to invade the beaches of Normandy, they needed the Germans to believe that the invasion was going to be in Calais, France and so they created Operation Fortitude.  In Operation Fortitude, they created fake armies, landing craft, tanks and planes and planted them in various bases in Scotland and England, positioning them as genuine military assets.  They also generated a lot of fake radio traffic reflecting the activities that such a large operation would generate, knowing the Germans would intercept and be fooled by this in-the-clear traffic.

The Allies had the Germans convinced that they were going into Calais. Meanwhile, they completed Operation Overlord planning in secret, the result of which was the successful invasion of Normandy.

When I hear that someone is allegedly broadcasting top secret info in the open, it doesn’t suggest to me that they are brazen.  After all, who could be that brazen or stupid?  I am amazed that hundreds of thousands of intel people and billions of dollars in intel investment could be so naive as to believe it either.  If they have been fooled, my understanding of their credibility just fell through the floor.

It suggests to me one of several other things:

1. The messages are a distraction by terrorists to keep us from looking at something / someone else.

2. The messages are an effort by terrorists to watch us spin our wheels in a frenzy when the terrorists don’t actually intend to do anything – a “for fun” project on their part.

3. The messages in fact do not exist and are a distraction by our own side to keep us from looking at something / someone else, either military or political in nature.

4. The messages in fact do not exist but they enable someone to complete an alternate agenda, either military or political in nature.

I could have added a fifth one, that the terrorists are testing our response to threats but since they allegedly sent the info in the clear, it wouldn’t really represent much of a test.

I’m not a conspiracy guy by any stretch

However, the stories I am seeing in the news do not align with the allegedly intelligent people they are originating from and within that gap, lies a nugget of truth that remains elusive.

Do we want to know what is contained within that nugget of truth or would we be better off not knowing?

And at what point does it become too late to learn the truth, beyond which nothing can be done anyway?

Your guess is as good as mine.

In service and servanthood,


PS I just checked the forecast for the state of Oklahoma and they are forecasting hot weather and rain for Wednesday.  Maybe we should evacuate the entire state now, just in case.

You can’t be too careful you know.

Meanwhile, I am reminded of a blog that I published recently regarding learning from our mistakes when it comes to this kind of stuff - History–A Source of Entertainment, Not Knowledge.

But there is one thing we shouldn’t forget …..

Regardless of the authenticity of the messages being shared by the media, one should never forget that the people who serve in embassies overseas are brave people, working under difficult conditions in countries that are not always enamoured with our lifestyle.  They must always be protected and we should be grateful for what they do considering the risks they take upon themselves and their families.


The notion of creating distractions reminds me of the day that John Kerry was discovered to have been relaxing on his yacht when the events of the coup in Egypt were unfolding and as a result, he was accused of allegedly not performing his duties as Secretary of State.  On the day when the heat from the press was at its greatest, his wife was suddenly rushed to the hospital with a seizure and all attention turned to her.  With attention focused on her for the next few days, people eventually forgot about Mr. Kerry’s alleged lack of attention to his duties and the news faded into obscurity.

Ms. Heinz Kerry may have indeed suffered a seizure.  I don’t know.

But then I think of the illness that Hillary Clinton suddenly experienced when she was being asked to testify in regards to Benghazi.

It is curious that lately it seems that every time the government is challenged on something, we get a corresponding “event” that serves as a distraction from that challenge.

Such is the fodder for conspiracy people.

Good thing I am not one of them. Winking smile

Addendum 2

It turns out that the intelligence community has known for months about an alleged pending attack and chose to announce it just prior to this weekend.

The big attack was supposed to have occurred yesterday and as we can all see, it did not happen despite the hype (or hyperbole). 

I can’t help but buy less and less into the argument that such announcements are actually preventing events from happening.  When no evidence is ever produced (under the guise of national security), the credibility of some agencies slips as a result.

The problem with this is that if those agencies cry wolf too many times, there may come a time when citizens need to heed their warning but won’t.

It won’t be the fault of the citizens – it will be the fault of the people who told them to be constantly vigilant, cautious and afraid.

The other issue is that if someone is using such announcements for personal, professional or political gain, they will need to “up the ante” moving forward in order to achieve the same result.

A disturbing thought indeed.

Perhaps we need another war to rally around.

Yes – that will fix it quite nicely.

Any takers out there?

Addendum – August 12, 2013

Some sources now allege that the entire threat was not based on fact at all, according to this article.

Sadly, we will never know the truth, given that the truth is buried under many layers of “national security”.

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