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View Diary: Abbreviated pundit roundup: Boston's fighting spirit (93 comments)

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  •  While there is no way to always prevent "terror" (6+ / 0-)

    and there are no easy solutions we do seem to spend a lot of effort in things that are probably marginally effective while neglecting some fairly easy ones that seem to be at least somewhat effective.

    Apparently these devices were placed in trash containers. Here we still find opaque containers with metal parts (shrapnel) while, for example Paris:

    Since the 1995 terror bombings in France, public waste containers have largely been replaced by transparent plastic bags, in which it is difficult to hide a bomb.
    "Difficult," not impossible. Doesn't add to deadly flying objects. At least cheap. That does not mean Paris is "safe," just that one problem is slightly mitigated.

    Just as with firearm issues and public safety it is a matter of constant, often small, efforts at mitigation.

    The only foes that threaten America are the enemies at home, and those are ignorance, superstition, and incompetence. [Elbert Hubbard]

    by pelagicray on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 05:07:11 AM PDT

    •  Trashcans (3+ / 0-)

      were a favorite place for the FLN to hide bombs during the Algerian War as well. They hide your bomb perfectly and add to its potential to cause damage when they explode. Plus they are everywhere, which adds to the fear that the bombings create.

      •  Yeah, we've pretty well gotten rid of those metal (0+ / 0-)

        mail boxes but seem to have some less than desirable trash containers for this type of threat. I still see some concrete aggregate types around—not good.

        I was in London off and on during the IRA bombings, heard and felt one just after checking in my hotel once, and quickly learned about packages and suitcases. Same when I was in Spain during some of the ETA bad days. I still remember the reaction, stiff upper lip and all, of glares and a sharp intervention by a platform policeman when I walked about ten feet from my suitcase on the platform at Reading to read a timetable. Nobody much "terrorized," just aware and not dozing in a false sense of safety.

        Here? I noticed a suitcase completely unattended leaning against a wall in a crowed D.C. location. Looked for "authority" to report it and got a shrug. Not good.

        I don't like the way we reacted on 9/11—mine was a "well, it has come and worse than I'd expected" because it was to be expected sometime. I still do not understand the "life changing" aspect of that except for those that actually lost people. My only explanation is an almost unique "American" expectation of secure, serene safety in a dangerous world, a fuzzy pink comfort blanket of delusion suddenly shattered. Hell, in the seventies as we were developing cruise missiles it was noted any airliner is a "poor man's cruise missile" and we were regularly treated to airplanes hijacked and blowing up on the desert and such.

        The only foes that threaten America are the enemies at home, and those are ignorance, superstition, and incompetence. [Elbert Hubbard]

        by pelagicray on Tue Apr 16, 2013 at 05:52:35 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

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