Friday, January 15, 2010

Helpful advice for Americans going to the Vancouver Olympic Games

Americans arriving to enjoy Vancouver Olympic Games

The U.S. government is at it again. Along with the extremely useless colour-coded warning signs at airports that seem to be permanently stuck on orange (high terrorist alert), the government is now warning U.S. tourists who are attending the Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver next month to be on the alert for terrorists.

"Al-Qaeda's demonstrated capability to carry out sophisticated attacks against sizable structures - such as ships, large office buildings, embassies and hotels - makes it one of the greatest potential threats to the Olympics," the U.S. State Department said in a fact sheet on the Games posted on its website.

No specific credible threats have been identified, the U.S. government said. However, Americans planning to attend Olympic events or participate in large-scale public gatherings during the Winter Games should use caution and be alert to their surroundings, the advisory said.

Americans are advised to be especially alert when outside Olympic venues. "As security increases in and around Olympic venues, terrorists could shift their focus to more unprotected Olympic venues, open spaces, hotels, railway and other transportation systems, churches, restaurants and other sites not associated with the Olympics."

As an aide to potential American visitors, I thought I would add some specificity to the State Department’s unhelpful and completely ass-covering advice.

It is important to note that many people in Vancouver look like terrorists. I don’t know what it is about the west coast, but boy do the weirdoes ever like flock there. For an American, stay on orange alert the whole time you are there.

In case you are wondering what an Al-Qaeda guy looks like, below is typical example. Look closely at his features and his dress.

Also, Al-Qaeda has been known to recruit women, so examine the appearance of this one for clues.

Now here is the most likely person you might meet in Vancouver. He is not Al-Qaeda, he is a Sikh. Note closely the difference between his appearance and Al-Qaeda guy. It should be obvious.

You will find Sikhs predominately driving taxis, so they will be around hotels, restaurants, railways and other transportation sites. It is most unlikely to find them in churches, unlike Al-Qaeda guys who apparently will pray anywhere.

You will find Sikhs in abundance at malls. But why would you be going to malls anyway? The goods are not nearly as worthwhile purchasing as your own American offerings in terms of selection, styles, sizes, etc. and you will be paying big Canadian taxes you would avoid by shopping for the same unnecessary stuff in the U.S.

Why should you distinguish Sikhs from Al-Qaeda? Well, for one thing Sikhs don’t generally subscribe to the view that the only good American is a dead one. The same cannot be said for Al-Qaeda.

Sikhs sometimes wear a ceremonial dagger called a Kirpan. It is legal in Canada, even in schools. Al-Qaeda guys usually sport an AK-47, but as these are illegal in Canada it would be exceptional if you spotted somebody with one of these in Vancouver. However, if you do, leave the area at once.

You don’t want to cause a panic by alerting security personnel to the presence of a terrorist unless you are completely sure the person in question is an Al-Qaeda guy, because the immediate vicinity will be quarantined and you will be held up for hours by police and soldiers and will lose your restaurant reservations.

To avoid this problem, you could employ self-help, the way the passengers on the Detroit-bound plane did recently.

Stroll up to him and engage him in casual chit chat. Ask him how long he is will be in Vancouver. Ask him what he thinks of the city. If he indicates that he is here for the Olympics, ask him what his favourite sport is. Then while he is thinking about his answer, quickly ask him who he thinks is the world’s best cricket bowler. If he doesn’t immediately snap out two or three names that all sound South Asian then you might be dealing with an Al-Qaeda guy who will looked puzzled and simply shrug his shoulders.

If that happens then ask him if he likes the Biathlon. If he is an Al-Qaeda guy he has got to like that one. Anything involving shooting is big turn-on for these folks. You can seal the deal by immediately asking him if he knows the muzzle-velocity for an AK-47. If he quickly responds with 2,300 feet per second, you have pretty much nailed him. A Sikh will only looked puzzled and shrug his shoulders.

Here is a sure fire way to sniff out Al-Qaeda guy. Wait until you are in a crowded elevator or standing in a long line waiting to get into an event or a restaurant. Then shout as loud as you can, "Takbir!" If the suspect shoots up his fist and responds with "Allahu Akbar!" you know he’s the real deal.

I hope this has been more helpful than the advice of Hillary Clinton’s minions and, if you can leave your terror aside for few days, enjoy yourself.

Welcome to Canada.

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