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Thursday, April 5, 2007

invent a terrorist plot; win a prize?

Bruce Schneier's blog, Schneier on Security has announced its second annual Movie-Plot Threat Contest.

Schneier is asking readers to "invent a terrorist plot to hijack or blow up an airplane with a commonly carried item as a key component. The component should be so critical to the plot that the TSA will have no choice but to ban the item once the plot is uncovered." Readers are invited to post their scenarios on Schneier's blog. Schneier is looking for "a plot horrific and ridiculous, but just plausible enough to take seriously." The winner gets an autogrpahed copy of his book (lame) and possible a sit-down with a movie producer (cool).

There are already a bunch of hilarious plot's on the website, including one about an Islamic girl band called "Unveiled" and one in which a terrorist replaces talcum powder with anthrax. Another plot forces the FAA to ban water from all flights due to its explosive interaction with sodium metal.

I like that Schneier has the balls to ask people to invent terrorist plots and post them online. During the climax of Bush administration power and post-9/11 absurdity, this would have been unthinkable and may have even caused a few FBI investigations (although we can't say for sure that it hasn't). He also deftly points out the pointlessness of current air travel regulations in the U.S.
We screened for guns and bombs, so the terrorists used box cutters. We took away box cutters and small knives, so they hid explosives in their shoes. We started screening shoes, so they planned to use liquids. We now confiscate liquids (even though experts agree the plot was implausible)...and they're going to do something else. We can't win this game, so why are we playing?
Post your entry here, Slob readers.

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