Bombs in breast implants?!

The Sun today put out a story alleging that female suicide bombers were being fitted with bombs disguised within breast implants so that they couldn’t be detected by airport screening devices, according to “terrorist expert” Joseph Farah. Supposedly, the method was picked up in “chatter” among terrorists in Yemen by British intelligence services after the Detroit bomb attempt last year, but unnamed “top surgeons” claim that the method is feasible. The surgeons responsible, naturally, were trained in the UK’s “leading teaching hospitals”. (A story featured on the right-hand sidebar, interestingly, is about a guard taking a picture of a female colleague with one of these scanners, leering at her and complementing her on her “gigantic” breasts.)

Why does the bombs-in-breasts story sound like hogwash? Apart from anything else, a timer-based explosive device would not go undetected in airport security scanners, because it would necessarily involve metal (the picture of explosives with a little clock in their report is pretty hilarious, by the way). Anyone with medical metal parts in their body, such as rods used to straighten their spine, would have to answer for it when going through the metal detectors at airports, so these women would have to as well. Breast implants, of course, do not use metal. The only devices which go undetected are those detonated chemically, and it would surely be noticed if a lot of women known for pro-terrorist views started having implants.

The other night, on Radio 4, there was a programme on about an effort by MI6 to plant false news stories in the media about Northern Ireland. They started off clever, circulating one story that a bomb which had gone off outside a pub frequented by Catholics (and was planted by Loyalist terrorists to kill Catholics) had in fact gone off inside it, implying that it was an IRA bomb that had gone off by accident. Later, they got over-confident and their stories became increasingly wacky, including one warning women against secreting explosives in their underwear. This story is obviously right out of the same book. These days, of course, they don’t have to rely on unattributable stories from a black propaganda wing of MI6; they openly attribute it to MI5 or some “terrorism expert”. But that doesn’t mean it’s not nonsense.

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