I was watching the telly a couple of days ago and being a bloke I was watching a show about special forces and in particular the SAS.
Well, following the massacre of Israeli athletes at the Munich Olympics the Germans decided they needed a specialist counter-terrorism force and set-up GSG-9. Of course as you can imagine setting-up such forces is not something you can do overnight and a few years down the line the still fledgling GSG-9 had a “situation” to deal with which made them feel a little out of their depth. So they called up their pals in Hereford who duly said they’d help-out.
This was the situation. Some terrorists (I can’t for the life of me remember whether they were Islamists or Marxists or Marxist Islamists or even the People’s Front of Judea and I don’t really care) had seized an airliner and it was on the ground in Germany. The passengers were tied up with their own neck ties and stockings and had been drenched in duty-free spirits. Storming an aeroplane is not easy at the best off times but that sounds especially tricky hence the reason the Germans called-in our more experienced lads.
The plane was duly stormed by the SAS and GSG-9 and done very successfully. Of course in such situations one of the real concerns is identifying through the smoke and stun grenades who is a terrorist and who is a captive. Not this time though because the terrorists had in a way which seems perversely like a corporate bonding trip or perhaps a hen-night chosen to all wear identical Che Guevara T-shirts – you know the one. So the soldiers merely planted their rounds between Ernesto’s eyes. Job done.
In the many dismal annals of terroristic incompetence that one must rank up with the Palestinians who blew themselves (and no-one else) up with a car-bomb because of a cock-up involving daylight saving time. You see as proud jihadis they refused to live on “Zionist Time”. Alas, nobody had told the bomb-maker of this. In fact it’s up there with the shoe-bomber Richard Reid who will have many, many years to ponder the fact that he is sharing a cell with “Chopper” Dave and not paradise with dark-eyed houris for the very simpole reason that rather than take a cigarette lighter onboard the plane he took a single match that alas fizzled.
Actually there are quite a few such examples of terroristic incompetence. I recall the two jihadis scrobbled by the Met who came-out onto the balcony of the flat they’d holed-up at and a copper shouts-up, “You got anything up there we ought to know about?” To which one of them replies, “What, like a bomb or something?” which attracts a withering face-palm look from his co-conspirator…
Or indeed Carlos the Jackass. Yup, the man who shot the boss of M&S in the face at point blank-range and only caused minor injuries. Or Indeed Comrade Che himself who whilst going insurging round Guatamala forgot to take his asthma inhaler and therefore the towns and villages his gang raided were not chosen for strategic or political reasons but on the basis of the availability of ventolin. “We are here to liberate you and execute the lickspittle capitalist running-dogs and BTW you ain’t got an inhaler have you because the boss is wheezing something terrible?”
So, no, that T-shirt ain’t cool except for one redeeming feature. The iconic image is the work of Andy Warhol, one of the most commercial of artists. There is something I think to savour about that…