Ethan Switch - Thursday, 20 February 2003
By now, every Australian should have received the taxpayer funded mail out of the Federal Government's Terrorism Kit. Not long ago a copy was delivered to a mysteriously flowering bush outside the Head Office of The Wax. Unsure about why it would be laying on the ground I ventured over a suburb away and grabbed a copy from somebody's mailbox. With all the time that has passed, if they wanted to keep theirs they would have taken them in.
Putting back the other envelopes which fell out of the slot the walk back to the office was marred by the fact that the newly acquired package was crooked, menacingly so. But one cannot always read into things that may have occurred naturally due to wear and cocaine.
But onto the review...
Terrorism 101: Sowing The Seed
Making sure that no Australian matters individually, the package opens with a clear misuse of paper. The message may be important, but it doesn't matter who listens in. The following letter is printed on two single-sided Australis leaves, further showing the contempt the Government has for the environment and future generations. If something can be said about someone's writing wherein the As look exactly like Os then I haven't yet heard it. For all I know, it could hint at some duplicitous nature or something even more nefarious, this is the signature and script of the Prime Minister of Australia, John Howard.
Terrorism 101: The Element of Surprise
The heavily rewritten note directs the reader to the accompanying booklet. It makes no mention whatsoever of the surprise one might find on opening said booklet. When the spine of the manual is eased through the simple act of opening the pages, a stiff card with a magnet explodes down toward the lap. Luckily the card - or known to others who don't own an actual fridge magnet as a "fridge magnet" - is too thick and slow to cause any damage, by way of paper cuts or the like.
A valuable lesson should be learnt here: when the infidels are expecting the Spanish Inquisition, you've already lost the battle and your life watching Monty Python was squandered. Prepare the insanity defence.
Terrorism 101: Cover The Bases
Not to make any collateral damage feel unwelcome the introduction to the booklet informs the blind and sight-impaired of a number to call for a copy in either Braille or audio format. Showing multiculturalism is not yet dead there are also other languages that the booklet is printed in. Information is also included in the back in various combinations of glyphs.
The most important thing you can walk away with is that the more 'innocent victims' caught in the blast radius, the better.
Terrorism 101: Outline the Obstacles
In order to carry out a terrorist attack it is best to know what obstacles lie in wait. The sections entitled, "Protecting Australia" and "We Can All Play A Part," outline such hurdles one may have to overcome: new anti-terrorism laws, tighter border controls and strengthened forces. Included in this section is the number for the National Security Hotline one can call to direct a diversion plan so that the focus on the real target can be lessened. It also points out to the beginner terrorist some good targets, critical infrastructure being just one of them. Another front most aspiring suicide bombers fail in setting up an attack is the exposure and attention they draw to themselves and the intended targets. The second section also lists a couple of past examples of threats gone wrong.
Always learn from those who've come before.
Terrorism 101: Worst Case Scenario
There are times when things have gone wrong and a premature explosion has spoiled the greater plans of later on. What To Do In An Emergency and Essential First Aid come to the assistance of the assailant who may not yet wish to become a martyr for the cause. The final two sections give a quick and effective run down of what to do to lessen the hurt of an explosion that is triggered before the time given or even if the martyr failed to live up to the dream.
As they say, "Never unwrap the ticking present if the birthday boy/girl aren't even in the room."
The decoding of the instructions was perhaps the hardest part of the reading. The fact that it was printed on thick stock, disheartening. No doubt a misdirection of funds.
Overall, the Australian Federal Government have produced a rather clean and simple "how to" that can be used quite effectively for the terrorist within all of the unAustralians.
Government funded terrorism could not have been better disseminated.