Saturday, July 16, 2005

Famous Detective Aids Scotland Yard in Bombing Investigation!

Reader's of Dream's End are the first to be informed that Scotland Yard is leaving no stone unturned in order to solve the recent case of "Terror in the Tube"! As part of this effort, they've turned for help to a famous detective, who, unfortunately, must remain anonymous for purposes of this sensitive work. All we can tell you is that he is Belgian, somewhat portly and extremely well dressed. We got a chance to speak with him right after he was briefed on the case. We met at a restaurant in an undisclosed (but very posh) hotel.

DE: It is an honor to meet you.

Famous Detective (FD): Mais non, the pleasure is mine.

DE: Tell us, why were you brought in on this case? It's obvious that Al Qaeda was behind this attack.

FD: Yes, mon ami, I think maybe a bit too obvious.

DE: Well, what do you mean by that?

FD: Tell me. What would the motivation for these bombings be?

DE: Clearly, Al Qaeda wants to intimidate Great Britain into pulling their troops out of Iraq and Afghanistan.

FD: Vraiment, and tell me, how do the British people feel about this war?

DE: Well, it's quite unpopular actually.

FD: And this bombing, it increases or decreases the public support for the so-called "War on Terror"?

DE: Well, it seems for now to be increasing support. Many of the Prime Minister's critics are backing off, at least for now.

FD: And would this not be the expected result of such an atrocity?

DE: I suppose so.

FD: I, as well, mon ami. A country pulls together in times tragiques. Which is why I must begin this investigation by wondering: who benefits from this atrocity? Par exemple, there are many rather extreme measures being proposed in order to combat Les Terroristes in London, non? And some of these measures were rather unpopular? And now, voila, everyone wants these harsher measures?

DE: I suppose so. Actually, a recent poll I read says exactly that, so I suppose you must be correct.

FD: And in America, likewise support for this war is fading and likewise concerns are growing about security measures domestique?

DE: Yes, but surely you don't suppose that the British or American governments are behind this attack?

FD: Quel horreur, mon ami! I never "suppose"! To suppose is to guess, and (Famous Detective) never guesses! Garçon!

(At this point, our detective began motioning for the waiter and I had to implore him to remain a few moments longer.)

DE: I'm sorry, I didn't mean to offend's just such an outrageous possiblity.

FD: It is my job to follow the facts, whether "inrageous" or "outrageous"! Now, let's look at this crime. The background of the men whose bodies were found and who are being blamed for this attack, it was filled with hate-filled politics and angry denunciations of their country?

DE: Well, actually, no. They seemed to be quite ordinary folks, as far as that goes. (Note: for some background info on the bombers, try here.)

FD: I see. And were notes found explaining their actions? Were there letters to their loved ones and children?

DE: No, again, I'm afraid.

FD: In fact, two of these young men had wives who were pregnant, non?

DE: Correct again.

FD: (He smiled at this point as he looked at his reflection on a silver cream dispenser and adjusted one stray hair oin his otherwise immaculate coiffure.) Oui, you see, (Famous Detective) deals in facts, not "supposes". Now, these bombs, three of them went off precisely at the same time, which led Scotland Yard to suggest they were detonated by some kind of timing device.

DE: Yes, I believe so.

FD: These men, they purchased return train tickets for their suicide journey, did they not?

DE: Yes, the Yard now suggests maybe they were not expecting the bombs to go off as soon as the timers started and never intended to commit suicide in the explosions.

FD: Well, they have to say something, as their initial "supposes" were clearly ridiculous. Men who make the journey to their suicides do not purchase the return tickets! So now they suppose that the men started the timers, expecting the explosion to be delayed.

DE: That's the current idea, yes.

FD: I see. And I "suppose" they thought that after the explosions, the trains would still be running so their return tickets would be of help. (At this point he muttered something under his breath I couldn't sounded like "...not even Inspector Japp..." but I can't be sure. He then sighed rather dramatically.)

All right, nevermind that. Let us get back to this matter of the timing of the bombs. It is a matter most curious. You have said that the police "supposed" that the bombs must have been detonated by the timing devices because the explosions were simultaneous, oui?

DE: Yes, we've established that.

FD: But they also suggest that the men started the timers while on the trains, and were expecting the explosions to be delayed?

DE: Yes...I'm sorry, Poi...I mean monsieur...but we've covered this.

FD: What does this mean, "covered this"? Nevermind. Try to follow along, mon ami. So this means that the men must have started their timers at the same moment exactement. In other words, you now have the bombers doing that very thing that the police said could not be done with such precision. (He smiled again, and nodded at the waiter who was bringing more tea.) Merci.

DE: AHA! But you are overlooking one crucial fact! The timers could have been set to go off at a particular time of day rather than a specific amount of time after the bombers started them.

FD: Bon, mon ami, tres bon! Now you are thinking like the detective. But tell me, the fourth bomb, did it go off at the same time as the other three?

DE: (sheepishly) Well, no.

FD: So it could not be the case that the timers were set for a particular time of day. Let me make it plain for you. These men showed no signs of being les terroristes. They left no plans or communications for the families they left behind and they purchased return tickets. Clearly, they expected to return from this journey. And then we have the timing most curious, so precise that it could not have been, according to the police, carried out manually, but had to have been a result of some sort of mechanical timing device. And yet, these men started the timing devices at exactly the same moment. Are we to suppose they had a timing device to begin the timing device? Ridiculous!

DE: Perhaps they started them while they were still all together...

FD: Then all of the devices would have exploded at the same time. This also assumes timers that actually functioned as opposed to blowing up immédiatement. If the timers functioned, the bombers would have known when to leave the scene.

DE: Well they had to set them off somehow!

FD: Non, mon ami, they did not. It is my contention that the men could not have known they were carrying explosives. Otherwise their actions and the timings of the explosions simply make no sense!

DE: Well, then, who do you think committed this crime?

FD: Bien. You expect the solution très rapidement, n'est-ce pas?

DE: I realize you only just arrived...

FD: Well, I cannot tell you exactly who comitted this criminal act most insidious, but I can tell you who knows the answer!

DE: Really? So soon?

FD: Oui! Ask, s'il vous plait, Monsieur Peter Power, and he will tell you!

DE: Who is he?

FD: He is the gentleman who works for the security company that was conducting the exercises to practice for just such an attack. The exercise was planned for exactly the same time as the actual attacks and the bombs exploded in the very stations targeted by the exercise! (Note, you can read an interview with Mr. Power here.)

DE: But he says it was a coincidence. And why would he have announced this "coincidence" if he had been part of a criminal plot.

FD: Mais non, mon ami, I did not say Mr. Power was to blame. I said he could tell you who was the planner of this crime most diabolique! Ask Mr. Power who employed his company to carry out this so-called drill, and you will be well on your way to solving this case! And now, you will excuse me, I hope. (Our Famous Detective rose to his feet as I rose along with him. He carefully brushed a crumb or two from his lapel and, satisfied that all was tidy, gave me a polite bow. He left me with these parting words:)

FD: Never forget, mon ami, that you must follow the evidence wherever it leads. You cannot let your little grey cells be distracted with preconceptions and prejudice. There is evil in this world, mon ami, but it does not always conform so conveniently to your expectations. Evil is not so accomodating, I'm afraid. Now, if you will excuse me, I've been called to America by a young Congresswoman to look into those events most tragic of eleven September. Adieu.


Blogger Amos Keppler said...

Great stuff, man. Are you an author? You should be, also because your adherence to facts.

I also loved your "You're Banned" article. It echoes a lot of what I'm feeling myself.

9:00 AM  

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