Faisal, Farah and Lie Detecting

Everyone is going on about who this Faisal Shahzad is. As though they are supposed to know.

His neighbor has given some information: "He was quiet. He would wear all black and jog at night. He said he didn't like the sunlight."

He bought fireworks but according to the shopkeeper, those would not harm a watermelon. However, had he got them in the blackmarket it might have been different. I guess he is the stingy sort.

My question is: Why did the US and its agencies say immediately after the Times Square bomb scare that they did not suspect any Islamist group? How did this superpower with all the arsenal at its disposal make this pronouncement? And what changed? A guy who is a Pakistani and says he was trained in Waziristan. This sounds just too convenient, especially after Mehsud comes back from the dead and declares that the Taliban will attack the US. This fits in. Of course, they are still not taking it at face value for they don’t have to worry about the Taliban at all. They are thinking other nations. Or other cities.

Do remember that US intelligence had warned India of attacks in its major cities and our security and sniffer dogs went all paranoid. Either they were misled or they misled.

I wish that instead of a hotdog cart owner who was the one to smell the bomb it was a kebab seller. That would have been nicer.

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The truth serum is on its way out. The Supreme Court wants investigations to be based on techniques other than narco analysis and brain mapping.

While it is true that such information gathered through lie detection techniques is inadmissible as evidence, it might have helped in putting the cops on a specific track.

Is it inhuman, given the health risks? I’d imagine it is better than keeping undertrials in prisons for years.

Former IPS officer YP Singh made a pertinent point:

“The test helped reveal vital details. Now, the use of third-degree could increase. Professional investigators are essential to conduct probes minus scientific tools. But such professionalism is no longer left in the Mumbai police force. Narco-analysis was increasingly used as it was easier.’’

Will doing away with it make the police force more vigilant to the actual collecting of data and vital circumstantial evidence? I am wary. Think about the cases where clues have not been collected or have disappeared.

We might recall how disturbed our Balasaheb Thackeray was when a Naxalite under the narco influence said that the Shiv Sena had funded them. Wonder what the SS chief would have to say had the accusation been made after a few pints of warm beer, that he had a special fondness for at one time.

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Oh, here’s a story about how a Muslim woman is fighting her way into the fight club. Jordanian Farah Malhassa is a body builder. She says:

“Everyone is against me. No one understands why I want to become an international star in figure body-building.”

For six years she has been working out, managed to get all those tattoos, is now ready to go to Canada for an international competition, so there must be at least some support. I wish she would not create such a negative picture, since she is sitting in Amman and managing all this.

I think I understand her family disapproving and wondering why she wanted to “deform my body and make myself look ugly”. This is the general perception. We do have fixed ideas about the male and the female body. A man who is not of strong build or his manner not masculine enough is considered effeminate. Women who do not possess the right body type – differing in cultures (interestingly, this applies mainly to the female) – are made to become aware of it.

Farah might like muscles, but not all women do. Sure, she ought to have a choice and she has made it. Some of us just course through life training with the weight of our follies. And they come in different sizes.


  1. Oh yeah! The conspiracy theory nuts are out again. So the US is probably doing this to defame Pakistan/Muslim/Islam blah blah. Why can't you accept things even when the evidence is overwhelming. Typical feckless BS. Where is the sense of personal responsibility? It's always the other guy's fault. For a change, even the "blame RAW/Mossad/Hindu/Zionist" party is strangely quiet. I wish our intelligence agencies were that prompt. Oh and witness how there is no demand of dossiers and all that nonsense. The whole nation of Pak** is full of assholes. Btw, when is Hafiz Jackass is going to be put behind the bars? Talk with Pakistan..Stuff! They only understand the language of daisy cutters,those puffed up neanderthals.

  2. Prompt? Efficient?

    Here is Gary Ackerman:

    "On the other hand, this case did not necessarily display prowess at the much more difficult task of preventing and interdicting terrorist plots before they get to the stage where we have to rely on luck or the incompetence of the perpetrator to prevent injury."

    "I am not a technical explosives expert, but I do know enough to realize the amateurishness of the tradecraft employed in producing the device. Without helping future would-be bombers, I will say that you are correct to notice the aparent lack of a detonator. It seems (to me) that Shahzad intended for the firecrackers to set off the propane which would somehow detonate the fertilizer, but there are so many mistakes in such a plan that one cannot but marvel at the incompetence of the bomb builder."

  3. Farzana,

    Here we have a lot of muslims who are forced to say 'My name is Khan, but I'm not a terrorist'. Yes,it's a truth. But only a half truth. On the other hand we have a lot of muslim who are proud to say 'I'm a khan and I'm a terrorist'. It's not an easy job for a simple man to find out who is good and who is bad

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  5. Arjun,

    BTW, the Deobandi clerics of India, for all their faults, have stated their unstinted support for the Indian constitution. The Pakistani Deobandi clerics are the ones preaching hate and destruction of India.

  6. Deleted and reposting because I wrongly addressed Arjun instead of Das:
    "On the other hand we have a lot of muslim who are proud to say 'I'm a khan and I'm a terrorist'. It's not an easy job for a simple man to find out who is good and who is bad"

    Das, Notice that your post refers to muslims as a monolithic group -- Indian muslims say "I am not a terrorist" and Pakistanis are the ones who are proud to inflict pain on Indians (muslims and non muslims).

    The question you need to ask yourself is "why do I not differentiate between muslims on two sides of the border?" because Pakistanis make the exact same equivalence between Indian and Pakistani muslims.

  7. Das, Al:

    There may be a handful who will say they are proud to be terrorists, but it isn't only the Khans. It could be terror groups in various parts of our country, of the world and they have different motives and different issues to deal with.

    I understand your problem in not being able to figure out the good from the bad. Who would have thought a CM of a state would be silently watching as 2000 people in his state were massacred? Who would have imagined he'd get re-elected?

    Re. Deobandi clerics, I want them to lay off and not meddle in state affairs. Ditto the shankaracharyas.

    It is patronising, Al, that you mention the clerics stating that they adhere to the Indian Constitution. When there are riots, no one reminds those causing them to adhere to the Constitution.


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