November 8, 2010

"Four Lions"

From my movie review in Taki's Magazine:
In WWII and the Cold War, we faced enemies of the caliber of Wernher von Braun and Andrei Sakharov. In the War on Terror, however, a strikingly large fraction of Muslim would-be terrorists, such as the recent Underpants Bomber and the Times Square Fizzler, are screwups. ...

Directed by Chris Morris, who is apparently legendary in Britain for his TV satires (I confess to never having heard of him before), Four Lions is a British buddy comedy about five Muslim yobbos in Sheffield peer-pressuring each other into staging a terrorist attack on “unbelieving Kafir slags.” (The quintet is culled to the titular four when one, carrying explosives made from hydrogen peroxide purchased at the corner shop, trips over a sheep. CNN subsequently headlines: “ASIAN MAN’S HEAD FALLS OUT OF TREE.”)

Read the whole thing there.

The movie reminds me of when Greg Cochran would tell me, "Terrorists are idiots. Now, if I were a terrorist --" and I would exclaim, "No, don't tell me! I don't want to know. Don't even say it out loud! Echelon could be listening in."

24 comments:

Anonymous said...

Steve's column concludes with the common sense question of muslim immigration to the West and why it is allowed. This made me think of a headline from today:

WASHINGTON, Nov 08, 2010 (AFP) - US officials Monday extended a ban on air cargo from Yemen to include Somalia and slapped new restrictions on passenger goods on US-bound international flights after a foiled parcel bomb plot.

While we are banning cargo, why not go all in and ban further immigration from these lands?

Whiskey said...

Expecting the enemy to be eternally stupid is dumb move. Those Visigoths looked stupid to the Romans for a generation.

Sooner or later, an ambitious young Military officer in Pakistan, or Iran, will decide his best bet to power is a super-sized version of the Iranian Embassy Take-over. Which allowed hardliners to kill their moderate opponents and seize power.

Hezbollah, I can assure you, is not stupid. They blew up Khobar Towers in a high security environment. Before that, the Marine Barracks. The attack on the Cole was very successful, only the undaunted courage of the crew prevented it from sinking.

The ominous next step is using UAVs (its folly to think only we can use them) to deliver WWI style munitions. Various soft targets and professional, military personnel like that at Mumbai, causing maximum carnage in co-ordinated attacks. Or worse.

Whiskey said...

Let me add, the reason the smart guys are not attacking us now, is that we are finding and killing most of them.

However, places like Somalia and now Yemen, are the planning areas of targets, because we have far fewer human intel to guide UAV armed drones. In Afghanistan, we have enough angry cousins, victimized ex-business partners, people with grudges, to drop dimes on targets. This keeps the smart, ambitious young guys who start to make reps, dead fairly quick.

We don't have intel in Somalia, or Yemen (neither do the Saudis). And even a guy like Major Hassan can kill a number of people. Not so funny if its a member of your family.

Globalization by its very nature brings cheap Chinese consumer goods, the valuation of the renmenbi, and yes Muslim terrorism and the need to combat it right to your doorstep. The only way to stop it is to end globalism altogether, which would completely upend the entire world economic system and most major players inside the US. Its not a serious prospect as much as I'd like it.

Anonymous said...

A large section of the elite are disloyal to their native countries and think supporting massive immigration will display their sophisication. However, as bad as the English elite can be, America's are far worse. At least legal immigration cuts seem to be taking place in the UK. In the U.S., not even conservatives are questioning legal immigration and many want more of it!

Germany, by the way, has in the past few years, pretty much stopped legal immigration, especially from outside the EU.

Anonymous said...

I like how Whiskey just babbles on about nonsense, do you know how many low class enemies and threats the Romans dealt with over its long history that didn't end up bothering them? Do you think Plutarch would even mention a minor slave rebellion that only killed a few hundred Romans? The Visigoths were almost on par with the Romans in the conventional battlefield, the muslim terrorists aren't.

Anonymous said...

I always look forward to the comments to see what kind of ludicrous bilge water Whiskey is spewing. It's a free look into what passes for thought inside a "Scots-Irish" neo-conned "mind".

It always comes down to some strained explanation for why current aggressive US foreign policy entanglements are somehow "necessary" and if we stop, the Islamic Bogeyman will somehow "get us" - sort of like Lisa Simpson's rock that keeps tigers away - "it's just a stupid rock, but you don't see any tigers around here, do you?".

Yeah, and TARP and the stimulus "worked" because things would be even worse without them, or terrorists didn't attack us after 911 because "we were fighting them over there so we don't have to fight them over here" - all nice counter-factuals that can't be disproven, no matter how ridiculous they might be.

Of course the "anti-Islmophobe" types on the left who will promote this movie and things like it are just as ridiculous; they dismiss any and all threat from Islamics out of hand and encourage more of them to immigrate while demonizing any resistance to this as "racism".

Face facts Whiskey: Islam is, militarily, a toothless tiger. Arabs in particular constantly fail at modern warfare and the best they can manage is a loose disorganized guerrilla resistance - and even that can be largely neutralized once the clueless Americans realized that they can be simply bribed not to fight, and/or once you learn how to set opposing factions, tribes, and religious sects against each other. There's no military threat there; there's no hidden lurking genius or modern day Saladin who is going to suddenly emerge and turn the Moslem world into a modern day Nazi or Soviet "threat" to the West.

Moslem immigration on the other hand does pose a long term threat - and it is the one threat we could easily stop, if we wanted to. And we do; problem is, "we" don't run the government, hostile alien elites (whom Whiskey is happy to serve as an unpaid apologist for) do, and they want immigration to continue.

Wandrin said...

Morris is one of those "pushing the envelope" types. The aim is to shock - comedy is incidental.

"At least legal immigration cuts seem to be taking place in the UK."

Pre-election noises. They're rowing back on it now.

Anonymous said...

Good point good point. This is the reason I find it so hard to believe that Muslims really masterminded 9/11.

Mr. Anon said...

"Anonymous said...

I like how Whiskey just babbles on about nonsense, do you know how many low class enemies and threats the Romans dealt with over its long history that didn't end up bothering them? Do you think Plutarch would even mention a minor slave rebellion that only killed a few hundred Romans? The Visigoths were almost on par with the Romans in the conventional battlefield, the muslim terrorists aren't."

Yeah, whatever happened to the great jihadi motor-boat invasion of 2008, Whiskey?

Black Death said...

This is just a great topic for a wonderful comedy. Blowing up buildings, subways and airplanes full of innocent people. How witty and original. If this film is successful, I can think of some new topics in a similar direction. How about a movie about the Ku Klux Klan lynching blacks, but the Klansmen are so stupid that the rope breaks. Or maybe one about a bunch of Nazi thugs going to beat up some Jews, but they all fall in the river instead. A real side-splitter.

Yes, a lot of terrorists are stupid, but not all of them. There are people out there right now who would like to cut our smug Western throats. And some people want to make a joke of it?

Anonymous said...

Every time I go through TSA security in the airport I think about how fortunate we are that terrorists are idiots. Just by observing the security, I've come up with many ways to bypass current measures. it's easy. Unfortunately, all it would take is having half a brain and dedication.

MQ said...

Whiskey lives in his own special world.

I think one reason why we get the idiot terrorists is that there is actually no real percentage for the smarter Middle East types in targeting the U.S. for terrorism. Hezbollah is plenty smart -- they fought Israel to a standstill -- but they have no reason to strike at Americans and a number of reasons not to. Iran is smart, but U.S. policy serves them fine as is. Bin Laaden was smart, but he had a good strategic reason to strike at the U.S. (provoke an overreaction that would destabilize key ME regimes), and it worked.

The thing to be afraid of is if our policy backs an important ME actor into a corner in such a way that they feel they have to use terrorism to develop a deterrent capacity against the U.S.

Peter A said...

The muslim threat is not terrorism - it is low IQ immigrants further diluting our talent pool.

tommy said...

The movie reminds me of when Greg Cochran would tell me, "Terrorists are idiots. Now, if I were a terrorist --" and I would exclaim, "No, don't tell me! I don't want to know. Don't even say it out loud! Echelon could be listening in."

Now, if I were a terrorist I wouldn't be plotting anything over the phone or internet so I wouldn't have to worry about Echelon.

Anonymous said...

T99: The only way to stop it [Globalization] is to end globalism altogether, which would completely upend the entire world economic system and most major players inside the US. Its not a serious prospect as much as I'd like it.

Sorry, but the "sane" world could cut off all non-petroleum contact with the Arab world [no more raisins, dates, oranges, shoddy cotton fabric; no more passports/green cards/student visas; no more tourist trips on our part, etc etc etc] and the "sane" world wouldn't even notice it:


The Arab world facing the challenge of the new millenium
By Henry T. Azzam
books.google.com

...Growth in real per-capita income of the Arab countries was the lowest in the world. The region's GDP per capita contracted by 2 per cent annually between 1975 and 1990 compared to an average of 1.2 per cent growth for developing countries as a whole. Per capita real growth was barely positive during the 1990-1999 period at an annual average of 0.6 per cent, far below the performance of other developing countries in Asia and Latin America...

The Arab world's non-oil merchandise exports of around $65 billion in 2000 were marginally higher than those of Finland, whose population does not exceed 5.5 million...



The demographics of radical Islam
By Spengler
atimes.com

...Excluding Indonesia, the Muslim’s world literacy rate stands at only 53%, against 81% for China; Arab literacy is only 50%. Only 1% of the population owns a personal computer. It is delusional to believe that the Arab world, which now exports (net of oil) as much as Finland, might come to compete with China, India and the rest of Asia in the global market for goods and services...

Anonymous said...

"Now, if I were a terrorist"

Surely that should be, "Now, if I were a terrorist"

Anonymous said...

I assume that the "Four Lions" movie title is a play on the nickname of the English national football team, the Three Lions.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/England_national_football_team

Anonymous said...

"smart guys" are not getting killed because they don't hang out in Yemen with the goats and wannabes. They work at Revolutionary Guards installations in Iran or else are infiltrated closer to intended targets as "sleeper cells". And we will hear from them when things go bad enough for Iran in conventional warfare to make them go unconventional.

David said...

Their latest squib?

http://tinyurl.com/266saje

Whiskey, don't hold them so tight. You'll damage them.

Anonymous said...

Yes. Stop immigration from the Muslim world and pay the already settled immigrants to go back. Common freakin sense, except in Washington DC and apparently also Brussels.

ATBOTL said...

"At least legal immigration cuts seem to be taking place in the UK."

I don't know where you got that idea, but nothing of the kind has happened. UK politicians, from both parties are always saying they will cut immigration, but they never actually do it.

Wandrin said...

"There are people out there right now who would like to cut our smug Western throats. And some people want to make a joke of it?"

The point the film makes (completely unintentionally imo) is that cutting throats is (on average) about the limit of their abilities therefore the critical thing is to stop them getting into a position where mobs rampaging around the streets cutting throats becomes a viable miltiary strategy i.e immigration.

The Anti-Gnostic said...

It's real funny until somebody loses an eye.

Anonymous said...

Muslim immigration should be stopped. That would be the first best way to prevent terrorism on western soil.