*Disclaimer: Sadly, no terrorists were harmed in the writing of this article… *
Firstly, happy Onam to any mallu readers! Today morning, my neighbor-Mr. Iyer , came over with this massive bowl of payasam and as usual bragged about his absurdly nerdy son getting into some top notch B-school in the city and blabbered about how the building secretary should do something about the rick stand opposite my place coz Mr. Iyer’s pampered brat “Doesn’t get ann Otto to go to hees Yem Bee Yae Ko-liage”. Yenna Rascalla! Anyway, coming back…On this overcast and drippy Friday as the city wraps its lungees and some walk up to Mount Mary’s, the festivities sure are doing their bit to level out the ‘antagonizing turmoil’ the recent terror attacks added to the government’s woes. As I skimmed through today’s Times of India, I must say I was disgusted by the way the whole aftermath of the Delhi blast was portrayed. Dramatic pictures of a young Rishabh watching his father’s cremation or even a wounded niece consoled by her family as the doctors try to salvage her Uncle’s life. What is the media trying to convey? I’d say it’s an outrageous stint to let each reader re-live the blast; something that we honestly don’t need to be doing.
Ahead of the 10th anniversary of the horrific 9/11 twin tower disasters, US security forces take guard as the threat of an eminent attack has sent America hurling into flash back to those live news feeds of planes thrusting into the World Trade Centre. Ironic isn’t it, coz earlier this year Obama himself ‘suited up’ in a designer tux and proclaimed that America had done the world a favor by taking out Osama. The speculation that followed the mysterious ‘snatch n grab’ op those Navy Seals carried out on that moonless night in Abbottabad, probably could be one of the reasons that raised serious doubts in the minds of US investors. Well nearer to home, in terms of geopolitics, a new era began post the 26/11 Mumbai attacks. The city cracked down on security flaws and the vested interests of most civilians was taken in hindsight. But alas, it was just that initial knee jerk adrenaline that saw a few additional cops around with visually bigger guns and what appeared to be camouflage bulletproof gear.
Russel Peters in one of his many brilliantly thought through pieces broke the ‘Arab’ stereotype and left an American audience stunned when he rubbished the ‘crazy terrorist’ notion most people have about Arabs. If you look closely, terrorists aren’t that hard to figure out. Now most people portray them as these religious fanatics, clad in black, a chequerred cloth around their faces just revealing their blood shot eyes, an AK-47 in their hands and them going ‘Akhllllamada kallldh…Boom’. Their motives are wrong, agreed, but the code they live by, is something India’s cops should admire and if possible adopt. I don’t mean strapping 5 blocks of C4 to your chest and blow up a criminal hideout but the sheer dedication these menaces have. Beating a terrorist on his home turf isn’t too hard. Coz believe it or not they are freakishly dumb and some, certified nincompoops. Oh, I almost forgot cyber terror. God, terrorists can be stupid. Sending a threatening email is like the height of how naïve terror groups are today. Counter Terrorism isn’t about fighting fire with fire; it’s about dousing a raging inferno and Obama’s glorious ‘Operation Geronimo’ has just pissed off a whole new generation of terrorists. Graduating from terror school is just as hard as getting into the IITs or the IIMs. But ask yourself how smart really is a terrorist. Well it may shock you, but wiki leaks reveal major terror screw ups that for once didn’t cost lives. America sure is the land of Burger King, Hollywood and Playboy but their premier universities, am sorry to say have educated most of the world’s terrorists. Wonder what graduation day for a terrorist batch would be like… But the truth remains coz in the nuclear winter like aftermath of the failed US economic policies as countless Americans try and claw out of bankruptcy, terrorism is again ringing her death knell as the 11th of September draws near.
In India too, days after Delhi bled, where do we stand today? How safe really are our cities? Trust me; better weapons for our cops will only blanket a sudden outburst. We need a kickass intel group that just focuses on tapping the hell out of suspects and going down right CIA style espionage with them. Our computer grids and networks with game-boy like security firewalls lure hackers in. With most of our defense secrets out on the internet, each time we buy a new ‘Star Trek’-like tech loaded jet, the media blows the story to the world, defeating the whole purpose of the bold CONFIDENTIAL stamp on military tactics.
I was in the bus the other day and this guy reading a news paper was gloating about an article on Katy Perrys’s pair of soft luscious massive…ahem…(go ahead, Google her)…and right next to that retarded article, read a headline “IAF secures stealth bomber”…that guy didn’t even look at it. The government is trying to do its bit; coz in an enormous country like ours twined in a maze of streets and villages it’s near to impossible to have a camera monitoring every corner. So instead of crying foul why not stop acting dumb and craving for more attention which the media like sly wolves are just waiting to unleash. Coz they sometimes are doing it at the risk of national security.
In the words of Mr. Iyer “We mallus are Yevery where, call cenders, muldi naashionelle kompaanis, you nyame it“, kudos to the malayalies ya. Must say. They’ve beaten everyone to it. I always feel if our country could be run just the way Mr. Iyer runs his household, we’d have out a man on Pluto by now. There always is something ravishingly pleasant and euphemism-ically speaking laid-back about any mallu family not to mention the strong smell of coconut oil you get when you step into their houses. They are never too critical and tend to see the bright side of everything. Now that’s something the majority of India’s society just can’t do. We just gape with dropped jaws at the facts and suspect which side the spinning top of a problem may land instead of tipping it over and ending the pointless wait. So why not try a mallu approach with terrorism too; instead of the regular charade - The media blows the news out of proportion, the opposition erupts in the immediate session of parliament quiet ‘photogenically’ if I must add, out of the blue you find articles on CCTV cameras flooding print media, a few exclusive interviews on prime time news with the home minister or in synch with the ‘In-thing’, some random guy starts fasting in his quest to become a newly minted Gandhi. Where is Anna Hazare by the way…?
Loosing someone you love is never easy. Terrorism has a gory reality no amount of humor can mask. First Mumbai and now as the terror masterminds proudly cross out Delhi from their story boards they do it not with traditional red felt but with the blood of the innocent victims whose lives they ruthlessly took. As the country tries to switch on the festive mood and fight back, picking up the pieces after every bomb that went off, India marches on. But unless the domestic problems and petty differences are sorted out, the terrorists will always have a field day. They aren’t geniuses or indestructible soldiers. We can beat them but only if we save the country from ourselves first. But it is the true grit and zest of an Indian that no terrorist bomb can blow away. My heart goes out to the victims' families in Delhi. Keep the faith, keep fighting back!