Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Dozens Dead at Domodedovo - Observations and Opinions

Killing about 35 people at an airport is, I think, an act of terrorism.

This particular incident happened at the Domodedovo International Airport, which serves Moscow. The Russian president blames the airport's management, a variety of bloggers blame a variety of people and institutions - and I've got my own opinion.

Although Domodedovo International Airport management probably shares some of the responsibility: I think whoever arranged for the explosives to be carried into the terminal and set off is the chief culprit.

Maybe that's 'simplistic.'

Terrorism: Not So Much Fun Anymore?

One thing that sets this bombing apart from terrorist acts of decades past is that there doesn't seem to be a scramble to claim responsibility for it. I don't think that's because terrorists are becoming nicer and feel bad when the CIA, the Republican Party, Big Oil - or those lizard people - force them to kill people. I do think that an increased willingness by America and other countries to hunt down the people responsible has taken some of the fun out of saying 'we did it.'

Definitely the Work of Chechen Rebels: Or Somebody Else

There's a reasonable suspicion that whoever killed all those travelers was under the impression that mass murder would help Chechnya gain independence.

Right now, Chechnya is a small region that's part of Russia - because Russia's leaders want the region, apparently. Some folks in Chechnya don't like being part of Russia. Can't say that I blame them. On the other hand, I don't think killing folks who probably didn't care whether Chechnya was independent or not was a good idea. At all.

Or maybe the blast wasn't political at all. Maybe somebody didn't like the decor at Domodedovo International Airport, and was deadly-serious about interior design.

Unlikely? Of course.

Blaming Airport Management: Justified?

When I saw headlines about the Russian president blaming Domodedovo management for the bombing, I thought it might be a case of finding a scapegoat.

Turns out, whoever's running the airport may have made a really bad decision, when balancing traveler convenience and safety:
"...It said the security agencies , who were aware of the possible terror attacks, were looking for 'black widows' of the slain militants from the Caucasus, who had carried out all suicide attacks in past, including twin blasts in Moscow metro stations in March 2010 that left 39 people dead. According to Rossiya channel, police were also looking for four men suspected of involvement in Monday's blast in the international arrival lounge of the airport. 'They were spotted on the CCTV footage,' the TV channel said.

"The absence of security checks at the international arrivals gate was used by the alleged terrorists to sneak in with explosives, it reported...."
(Times of India)
No security checks at the arrivals gate?! That sounds - on the face of it - utterly daft.

I don't have enough facts to be sure - but the fact is that there are around 35 people who aren't alive today: and it looks like their deaths could have been prevented.

Related posts:In the news:About date stamps for the news links: It's 'tomorrow' by now, where the Hindustan Times and Times of India are located.



Chris Taus said...

Putin thinks and acts tactically in a very clever manner. He is never to be underestimated. But he comes up way short in the far-seeing strategy category. His leadership of Russia will hurt Russia and Russians long term. Not a small part of this deficiency of his is due to his cynical assessment of freedom and America. No one should be surprised by his alliances with really bad dudes, both Islamic and non-Islamic. It's in keeping with his worldview of things.

Brian H. Gill said...

Chris Taus,

I'm inclined to agree with you.

As I've said before, this isn't a political blog - and the condition of Russian leadership is a bit off-topic. However, I've discussed Mr. Putin a few times, including these posts: " 'The Americans Hanged Saddam Hussein:' Who Knew?" (November 14, 2008); "Russia Is Peace-Loving, Has No Territorial Ambitions: and Georgia is America's Fault" (October 19, 2008) (the first *could* be true, the second - is very unlikely); "Ballistic Missiles in Cuba = Anti-Missile System in Europe?" (October 26, 2007).

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Note! Although I believe that these websites and blogs are useful resources for understanding the War on Terror, I do not necessarily agree with their opinions. 1 1 Given a recent misunderstanding of the phrase "useful resources," a clarification: I do not limit my reading to resources which support my views, or even to those which appear to be accurate. Reading opinions contrary to what I believed has been very useful at times: sometimes verifying my previous assumptions, sometimes encouraging me to change them.

Even resources which, in my opinion, are simply inaccurate are sometimes useful: these can give valuable insights into why some people or groups believe what they do.

In short, It is my opinion that some of the resources in this blogroll are neither accurate, nor unbiased. I do, however, believe that they are useful in understanding the War on Terror, the many versions of Islam, terrorism, and related topics.