The Year of The Exploding Underpants 45

The extraordinarily incompetent Nigerian underpant bomber somehow seems a fit conclusion to the year. The debate on my last post has garnered 235 comments already. What comes over most strongly is the absolute desperate, psychological need of the right for the “War on Terror” to be real.

Given the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan and the Israeli attacks on Lebanon and Gaza, of course there is huge resentment towards the West in much of the Islamic world, and a small fringe willing to carry that resentment into violence. That is an unavoidable consequence of the hundreds of thousands of deaths for which US, UK and Israel have been responsible.

But for the right, it is not enough that they have created a threat which is real; it must be not only real, but enormous. John Reid famously described the Islamic terrorist threat as being as great as the Second World War, whereas Tony Blair described it as an “existential threat”. Both are massive, incredible exaggerations.

The armaments, oil, and security industries, and the politicians they fund, of course make massive profits from the government policies, including wars, enacted in response to a massive exaggeration of the threat. But many on the right have a psychological rather than merely material need for an enemy, for an embodiment of evil, and for the idea of being involved in a gripping life or death battle.

This is difficult to sustain, as the actual battles involve merely our use of absolutely overwhelming power to devastate weak nations. Hence the disproportionately weak reactions must be hyped to sustain the narrative. The sad truth that a pathetic Nigerian wannabe terrorist singed his own gonads must be buried beneath a raft of stories that the explosive was powerful enough to blow a hole in an aeroplane.

The right are desperate to hear that the plane would have been destroyed, hundreds killed, and probably could have ploughed into a big building and killed thousands. In their fantasy world they are fighting off these disasters. In the real world, a Nigerian man singed his own gonads. That is not to excuse him. He planned to do harm and may be a very horrible person indeed. But he just singed his own gonads. It is also worth noting that, if he had destroyed the plane, he would have killed only one third of the innocent civilians who died on just day one of “Shock and Awe” in Iraq.

There is no existential threat to the Western world from Islam. Sorry.

45 thoughts on “The Year of The Exploding Underpants

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  • dreoilin

    “he would have killed only one third of the innocent civilians who died on just day one of “Shock and Awe” in Iraq”


    I was just asking myself today how the killing of all those on board that plane would have compared to the destruction of Fallujah, where an estimated 1,200 noncombatants were killed. And how coverage in our MSM would have differed from the scant coverage of the destruction of Fallujah.

  • Arsalan Goldberg

    How they compare is the race and religion of those killed.

    Some lives are worth more than others. White lives are worth more than Black, Brown and Yellow.

    But as Craig mentioned, this was a case of a young man setting his willy on fire.

    The Zionist claim that these people who set Willis on fire have state sponsors, if that was the case why wouldn’t the governments that sponsor them give them some anti-Aircraft guns or missiles to do some real damage instead of some yfronts that set willies on fire?

    And why this obsession with planes, if they wanted numbers, why wouldn’t they just pick up a gun or a knife and start killing people?

    I’m sure that will kill a lot more then a man setting his own willy on fire?

  • Jaded.

    Pretty much all we have had since 9/11 and 7/7 are plots and scares. There are several reasons for this:

    1. Logistically, it isn’t easy to carry out these false flag attacks. There are probably only a small number of individuals working for black operations. It must all take months to plan and execute.

    2. It’s bad for the economy when these attacks happen.

    3. The mass media is hugely controlled so they can spin out those two attacks to justify just about anything for decades.

    4. If we got attacked every month the incumbent government would get booted out of office. Furthermore, more and more people would start taking a serious interest in the issue and the house of cards would topple.

    As the awakening grows though, I wouldn’t put it past them to do some more killings to justify a complete lockdown. They really are monstrous people.

    So, let me get this straight in my head. Al Qaeda are a CIA media fiction perpetuated through the mass media with support from Mossad, MI5 and MI6. Who would have thought it? OH GOSH! 😉

  • KingofWelshNoir

    So true. Listening to the news reports you could detect a palpable sense of relief in their voices once they were able to assert there was enough explosive to make a hole in the plane. Up until that point it was all just too embarrassing. You are right: they didn’t just want that potential hole in the plane, they needed it. But for how much longer will Joe Public buy it?

  • Jaded.

    And what’s all this left wing/right wing bullshit? This is all about power, corruption and evil.

  • ed hall

    “He planned to do harm and may be a very horrible person indeed. But he just singed his own gonads.”

    That is quite possibly the stupidest comment I have ever read for someone who presumably prides himself on his insightfulness.

    He tried to blow up the plane but didn’t succeed so what the fuck is everyone getting worked up about.

    Laughable. No wonder you got the sack.

  • Jaded.

    Just ignore the MUPPET Craig. Everyone with two functioning brain cells knows you meant he wasn’t part of a deadly terrorist organisation. *Swoon* :-0

  • MJ

    Q. Why didn’t the Nigerian bomber blow up everything at once?

    A. Because his detonator was pants.

  • MJ

    Q. Why didn’t the Nigerian bomber blow up everything at once?

    A. Because that was not among his briefs.

  • David Allen


    You’re quite right to criticise the many Western politicians who hugely exaggerate the threat. But it is equally wrong to ignore the threat altogether, and to side with the 911 denialists.

    If you treat all this as just a big laugh, a suitable subject for underpants jokes, what do you think that ordinary people will make of you?

    They will see that 250 innocent people might easily have died, and that you don’t much seem to care. You won’t get popular support or understanding that way!

  • Jaded.

    David Allen:

    ‘911 denialists.’

    LMFAO. Now that’s ‘seriously’ funny! 9/11 and 7/7 is only a big joke to the sickos that did it. That’s the black operations units of the CIA, Mossad, MI5 and MI6 and their cronies. From our parliament Tony Blair certainly knew and maybe one or two more. Then there’s Bush and his inner circle. This is all ordered by the shadowy behind the scenes psycho twats that wield economic power and are members of sad, sheeplike secret societies epitomised by the Rockefellers.

    Watch this from 14.25 to 15.40.

    All of it is good but ‘Call him when you’re elected’ sort of sums it up!

  • peacewisher

    @David Allen

    This would be a good point, but… this Nigerian man was clearly known to the intelligence services from more than one source. It looks like THEY risked the lives of those 250 people on board by just letting him get onto the plane. No wonder Obama was going ballistic on the media yesterday.

  • Jaded.

    No lives were risked. It was a controlled set up and they ‘helped’ him get on to the plane.

  • Barbara Suzuki

    Lives certainly were at risk. We know from eye-witness accounts that there was some fear and shouting before the fire was extinguished. Imagine a confined full cabin-load of pax in various stages of panic ‘fight or flight’ responses as the a/c approaches the runway. Only luck prevented more injuries or death.

  • Jaded.

    Run that by me again. How exactly were lives at risk? Fear and shouting? People tilting the plane by moving around? I saw some of the passengers interviewed afterwards and they didn’t look traumatised to me. He lit his pants, harmless pants, and then a security service agent jumped on him as planned. Now we get new wars and restrictions on the public. End of story. Grow up and use your brain Barbara. It’s not hard to figure out.

  • Barbara

    No need to be rude. I am polite to you.

    The dangers of pax panic cannot be breezily dismissed.

    Fear, shouting, and jumping out of seat in the confined space of a cabin in an a/c coming in to land is a potentially very dangerous situation. Why would you want to deny that? Have you ever been in an a/c of pax in a panic? I have, and it resulted in several injuries.

    The situation was volatile, and could have lead to disaster. Luck prevailed, but nobody could have foreseen that.

  • dreoilin


    What’s “an a/c of pax?” You’ll have to forgive me, I was never part of a flight crew/staff.

    Meanwhile, I gather that these new full body scanners destined for use at Schiphol are microwaves. There will be health worries raised. They can cook your skin. So I’m reading, anyway.

  • Craig


    Now Hitler really was an existential threat, but there were plenty of jokes about him flying around in WW2. But you wouldn’t have accused those making the jokes of making light of the casualties of the blitz.

    Think, Dave. You are reinforcing the view that the only politically acceptable stance is both po-faced and terrified.

    I have not said he was not a threat. He was. But an underpants bomb that does nothing but damage the wearer’s genitals is undeniably comic.

  • Barbara

    a/c – air craft

    pax – passengers

    I was aircrew with an Arab airline based in the Gulf for seven years. In my time there was panic during an attempted hi-jacking by a mentally disturbed man, and during a pax attempting suicide with an aircraft knife (!) in throes of passing a kidney stone, as well as on occasions of extreme turbulence.

    Each time the pax were in danger from each other and from being unrestrained by seat belts during the a/c’s descent.

    I don’t believe in any floating existential threat from Islam, but I believe in attention seekers, I believe in evil-doers, and I believe in nutters (including religious extremists).

    To dismiss the ‘exploding underpants’ incident in such a cavalier fashion as a “risk-free” manufactured scare to cow the populace is *imo rather naive. Anything could have happened.

    *in my opinion

  • anticant

    “I don’t believe in any floating existential threat from Islam, but I believe in attention seekers, I believe in evil-doers, and I believe in nutters (including religious extremists).”

    I entirely agree. The root of our problems since well before 9/11 is a carefully fostered atmosphere of paranoid fear which makes it easier for those ostensibly concerned about our ‘security’ to keep us docile.

    A book written during the Cold War, but still very relevant, is Dorothy Rowe’s “Living With The Bomb”, in which she examines the questions ‘can we live without an enemy?’ and ‘must we always fear the Stranger?’

  • Jaded.

    Barbara, this is all planned well in advance by nasty control freaks that want to hold sway over as much of the planet as they can. I do get a bit passionate, but i’m not going to apologise for it. This is serious stuff. I would watch this if I were you if you haven’t seen it. Listen to what he says and think about it, i’m not suggesting you just swallow it.

  • dreoilin

    “Anything could have happened.”

    I agree. But that doesn’t mean it wasn’t manufactured, either.

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