Some guy tried to light an explosive devise, ended up producing a mediocre fireworks show inside of an airplane. So, he failed, ended up with burned balls. Now we have heroes and tighter air travel regulations. Also: he was Al-Qaeda.
LOSER: Abdul Farouk Abdulmutallab—or whatever his name is—tried to light a mixture of powder he'd taped to his leg, trying to kill everyone on board. Asshole. Well, he was foiled. And again, as Ravi pointed out yesterday, news organizations didn't even get his name right:
ABC news are naming that suspect as Abdul Farouk Abdulmutallab, who they say is an engineering student at University College, London. (Wall Street Journal: "Abdul Mudallad"; MSNBC: "Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab".)
Heh. He doesn't deserve to have his name correct! Paging Alessandra Stanley! I'd call him "Fuckface FireBalls Magoo" but I think that'd also denote a #SorryGabe tag, and I'm far past my quota for the month. Scary moment of foretelling, however: his Dad had called the U.S. embassy in Nigeria six months ago to warn them of his son's radicalization. Eegh.
BRIEF HISTORY OF LOSERS LIKE HIM: You'd think terrorists would know that it's probably a bad idea to fuck around on an airplane, because people on airplanes who are near them will undoubtedly kick the shit out of them on the regular, and ask questions later. Terrorists, don't you get it? Airline passengers all around the world—and especially Americans—will not hesitate to give you a down home ass stomping if you wild out. Richard Reid tried to do it in 2001, they kicked the shit out of him. Some guy shouted "I've got a bomb" in January and they kicked the shit out of him. This guy had an argument with an off-duty pilot, and they kicked the shit out of him and duct-taped him to his seat. Etc, etc, etc. Basically, if you even remotely appear to look like you're going to bring some ruckus on an airplane, your fellow passengers will kick the shit out of you. As was the case here. Good on those passengers. Or good on this one passenger!
WINNERS: Us! Because he failed. Also, this good looking fellow named Jasper Schuringa, who was identified as the guy who stopped Paula Abdul Farouk Whatever.
"I pulled the object from him and tried to extinguish the fire with my hands and threw it away," Schuringa told CNN. Schuringa said his hands were "pretty burned" after incident, but said the injuries were minor. "I am fine. I am shaken up. I am happy to be here."
You will also be happy to belatedly be the recipient of an abundance of ass in your stocking for Christmas. Dude's already got a Facebook fan page, which includes a marriage proposal. NICE.
LOSERS: People traveling into the US on international flights. If you're flying into America, and you look even remotely upset about your honey-roasted peanuts, you're going to be read the riot act and sent to a dark room with a lightbulb as soon as you land. The increased security measures this thing has prompted go something like this:
- Passengers on international flights coming into America only get one carry-on.
- During the final hour of your flight coming into America, you won't be able to get out of your seat.
- Or access your carry-on baggage.
- Or have "personal belongings or other items on their laps."
- And possibly, no electronics at all during international flights going into America. This is unconfirmed as wide policy, but if true, will make sitting next to me very awful, as Radiohead's oeuvre is typically my flight music of choice, and I will be forced to hum Kid A for upwards of six hours the next time I take an international flight back to America (next week). Or if I'm feeling really sadistic, Pablo Honey.
Remember when you used to be able to go to the gate and meet people at the gate? That was at the beginning of this decade! And here we are, at the end of this decade! Where some people can't even take a piss for the entire hour final hour of their flight. The times, they are changing.
Biggest Assholes: Al-Qaeda. Everyone who was pretty sure he wasn't an Al-Qaeda operative and just an asshole with thankfully bad engineering skills is wrong: he's an associated asshole.
Best Schadenfreude: The kid probably burned his balls really badly. The Red Hat Ladies of Terrorism—What? They're everywhere and nowhere at once. It makes sense.—sewed "80 grams of PETN, a compound related to nitro-glycerin used by the military" into his underwear by their top bomb maker in Yemen. If this guy's their top bomb maker, well, he's probably getting a demotion today. Awful upshot, however? Everyone's balls will be examined more thoroughly whenever they travel here on out:
The device intended to blow up the Northwest flight was made at the location in Yemen, according to Abdulmutallab, and consisted of a six-inch packet of powder and a syringe with a liquid. Both were sewn into the student's underwear so they would be near his testicles and unlikely to be detected, he told agents.
Basically, terrorists mess up everything for everyone. Trenchant Geopolitical Observation: Everyone should just blow out their cherry bombs and chill the fuck out.
[Top Photo via Getty Images]