Social Question

johnpowell's avatar

Is anyone else kinda shocked it took terrorists so long to figure out car + sidewalk?

Asked by johnpowell (15435points) August 18th, 2017

All the shit with shoving a bomb in your underwear and getting onto a plane. Refining hydrogen peroxide and so on. All you really needed was a credit card and a Hertz.

And I know it might feel like I might be making light of today’s horrible incident. But I am not. I just don’t see how you do anything against this tactic. WhiteISIS is even using it.

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20 Answers

Earthbound_Misfit's avatar

I’m not really shocked at how long it took terrorists to figure out this was an easy way to attack people, but I do wish they hadn’t thought of it. It’s impossible to prevent such attacks. I know our councils/state governments are putting more concrete bollards in to make it harder to drive down pavements and mow people down. You can’t do this everywhere though and bollards everywhere are unsightly.

JLeslie's avatar

It is a fairly simple way to harm a lot of people. I wish they hadn’t thought of it. I wonder if the people doing it are suicidal? See, with the bombs and planes it’s a suicide mission. With the cars I guess they have a chance of getting away. I don’t know if the car scenario fits in with how some extremist groups push the idea of having a wonderful life after death if you martyr yourself.

flutherother's avatar

Analysis: A worrying trend
Gordon Corera, BBC News security correspondent

“Barcelona is just the latest European city to witness the terrible effects of a vehicle attack on an iconic or “soft” target.

In Nice a year ago, Bastille Day celebrations were targeted, then a Christmas market in Berlin. In London, Westminster and London Bridge, as well as Finsbury Park, saw cars and vans used as weapons.

In the UK, new barriers have been put in place to mitigate some of the risks at key locations and there is discussion of imposing checks on those renting vans, but security services in Britain – as well as across Europe – are all too aware that there are limits to what they can do to spot and stop those planning murder in this way.

The weapons employed are readily available and there is little or no training, co-ordination or planning required. This means there are few points where individuals can be spotted by the intelligence services.

Although so-called Islamic State has released a statement saying what it calls its “soldiers” had carried out the Barcelona attack, it is not yet clear whether there was any direct link to the group or if they were simply inspired by its call to act. The language used often indicates the latter.

Either way, authorities will be bracing themselves for the possibility of further attacks of a similar nature.”

I’m not too surprised. Even terrorists who act alone like to copy the methods of those who went before them. After an unthinkable event happens once it will be done again and again unfortunately.

MrGrimm888's avatar

Not at all. This was a tactic available for a while now. I used to use this reference in gun control debates. I think a person who wants to hurt a lot of people can probably do it. Doesn’t take a gun. Just ruthlessness, and execution. Just a vehicle. Well, realistically, a soft target and a vehicle.

Soft targets will always be a problem. Lots of people in a small space, not built as a military target, and less than ideal plan for such.

Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and Asia are all ahead of the US, in the terrorism front . Their threat is more likely.

In the US, we have a higher likelihood of “domestic” terrorism. As evidenced in Charlottesville…

It is the government’s job to protect it’s citizens from domestic threats of terrorism too. Regardless of how close to their party’s beliefs they fall…

The KKK, and others like them, should be viewed as insurgents. PERIOD. They are as bad,or worse than ISIS in the Middle East. Worse?.. Yeah. Less brainwashing, more choosing, in America.

Where is this all headed? Who knows…...

I do know that this is bull shit. And humans should be getting away from this crap… But one thing causes the other, and so on.

What an amazing, special being we could be. If we could coexist. ...

ragingloli's avatar

Not as glorious a way to enter heaven as a good old fashioned bomb belt or storming a place with AKs. Some bush leage terrorism.
Remember when they allegedly flew entire planes into buildings? Whatever happened?

PullMyFinger's avatar

This is just one of many ways that these people can ‘make their statement’ and go meet Allah (or swim with their 50 virgins, or whatever), and variations of this are likely here to stay. This is only the latest “Small body-count with big publicity” idea.

We can minimize the chances of ‘being next’ by just staying in the house all day, every day. But who wants to do that ?

Smashley's avatar

I’ve always taken a certain comfort in this, actually. Of course, the ways to commit mass murder are many, and a vehicle makes it fairly easy, but this has been the case for years. The fact that these attacks arent happening all the time, everywhere, means that by and large, sanity is the norm and the actual number of terroristic crazies out there must be pretty low.

kritiper's avatar

Yeah, they’re not the brightest bulbs in the box, are they??

Zaku's avatar

Even since 9/11 I have been less and less convinced that there is much of a real effort to conduct much terrorism outside the Middle East. If there were really an intelligent dedicated organization aimed to mess up the West, it would not take much imagination, but it would take more people willing to die to conduct the attacks.

It strikes me as sad and hmm… very inaccurate the way our media and government characterize what gets labelled “terrorism” or not. The resulting conversations are similarly really seeming to me to miss the mark, such as this question’s wording, even if it’s not really what you’re thinking, @johnpowell (I’m curious though, is it?).

That is, I don’t think that the car driving into people in Spain signals a significant tactical innovation. Maybe I’m a tactical expert after having played so many violent games for decades, but it seems a pretty obvious and not terribly effective tactic, though it has the advantages of not requiring anything but a car, and being terrorizing since it makes a normal thing into a weapon. Paranoid people can start fear cars… more ubiquitous security nonsense might be imposed. But there are SO MANY opportunities for violent attacks, that the ratio of attacks to population seems extremely low compared to the stories about the so-called war-on-terror we’re supposedly facing.

Lightlyseared's avatar

The real question is why is driving a vehicle into people terrorism in Europe but socially acceptable in the US?

JLeslie's avatar

^^Who said it was acceptable? Close to everyone is pretty horrified a woman was killed, and others were hurt.

My fear is the idiot who drive the car will be able to say he feared for his life if it’s true the crowd was swarming around him and acting in a threatening way. If that is true he has an arguable defense I think.

MrGrimm888's avatar

^If he was so afraid for his life, he shouldn’t have shown up at all.

I’ve never gone to a protest where I wasn’t nervous about violence, or possible arrest.

ucme's avatar

It’s Spain all they needed to do was hire a load of angry bulls & have them fuckers stampede down the streets would look like any ordinary day.

MrGrimm888's avatar

^Those bulls are domestic terrorists. I think a lot of them end up on a plate for their crimes…

JLeslie's avatar

@MrGrimm888 I mean in the moment. I get the impression the Nazis trying to defend his actions are arguing people were surrounding the car and throwing things. I don’t know if it’s true though. That he did it in self defense so to speak.

MrGrimm888's avatar

^Oh. I’m sure that once he crashed into them, they attacked him. No doubt in my mind. If I was standing there when NE plowed into us, I’d have tried to kill him.

JLeslie's avatar

I mean before.

johnpowell's avatar

Here is the part that slightly scares me. We are migrating from people that want to die for the cause (9/11, suicide vest idiots). This is easy since the source is finite.

So now we are dealing with bags of shit that are planning a escape. That ups the number of fools willing to try this shit. And that is kinda scary.

I can’t think of a good solution to that.

JLeslie's avatar

@johnpowell I’m hoping their numbers don’t grow. Those bags of shit, as you call them, have been around for a long time. Their numbers go up and down, and their demonstrations have been going on, but the national news usually doesn’t pick it up, and it usually doesn’t talk about it for a week 24/7. Charlottesville was a large turnout and had violence and a fatality, so it’s more newsworthy. Most of the media is looking to prove Trump is a Nazi, so they are more likely to cover these events with or without violence. Usually, they are nonviolent, but no matter what to me personally they are menacing and threatening.

It reminds me of the H1N1 flu scare. The media had everyone thinking the flu was going to kill millions. It became obvious fairly quickly that the flu counts and flu deaths were going to be within the typical average (although certain groups were at more risk than usual) but the media reported it as a “pandemic” and talked about it more than most years. My friends were convinced if they caught the flu that year they were dying. I had people asking for prayers all over Facebook if they had the flu, or knew someone with it, even if they had no indication of it being any worse than a typical flu.

I fear that giving these Nazi groups publicity will make their numbers grow. It’s a hard choice. We have been told that sitting by and being silent gives the Nazis license, but then at the same time, instigating or provoking violence by resisting is being part of the violence.

Nazi Germany the government was systematically committing genocide. In America, it is not our government. Not yet. I know people want to connect our president to it, and I do think he could have done a much better job denouncing these supremacists groups earlier, but our police are still arresting people who get violent, whatever group they identify with.

I was wondering if the national guard, military, or federal troops of any sort were at Charlottesville, or if it was just local police trying to control and keep peace and order at this demonstration. I don’t know the answer.

ucme's avatar

They were going to go with women drivers but were afraid they’d miss…<wears gormless grin>

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