Thank your God for small mercies
October 1, 2003 4:00 PM   Subscribe

While the tragedy of the bombing in Bali was bad enough, evidence has surfaced that the bomb was incorrectly assembled, resulting in less than 1/3 of the device exploding (bare-bones link). Experts using computer modelling have worked out the net explosive quantity of the vehicle bomb outside the Sari Club was between 150kg and 300kg – as opposed to a potential 1150kg and that the toll could have been in the thousands had the bomb exploded as planned.
posted by dg (12 comments total)
There was an excellent three-part series on the Bali bombing in the CSMonitor a few months ago: How Al Qaeda lit the Bali fuse
posted by homunculus at 4:17 PM on October 1, 2003

well, that's a relief, I guess.
posted by scarabic at 4:22 PM on October 1, 2003

Yeah, but who cares? The more important thing at the moment is who leaked some apparently obvious and well known info on some wife of some dude. Now THAT's worth getting all worked up over.
posted by HTuttle at 7:52 PM on October 1, 2003

That's one hell of a non sequiter, HTuttle. More than one topic develops at the same time, no? World is a complicated place.
posted by crunchburger at 8:59 PM on October 1, 2003

Crunchburger, you are a filthy filthy liar. You may have animals somewhere in your heritage, and I cast aspersions upon your upbringing.

...even an autistic three-year old knows that the world unfolds ONLY to suit HTuttle. Any suggestion to the contrary is a dirty, possibly obscene lie, probably planted by crypto-syndicalist spies.

Now get back on topic by god, or there will be further recriminations!
posted by aramaic at 10:14 PM on October 1, 2003

Yeah, but who cares? The more important thing at the moment is who leaked some apparently obvious and well known info on some wife of some dude. Now THAT's worth getting all worked up over.

The man who was perhaps my dearest old friend died as a result of injuries he received in the bombing in Bali (like a lot of other people's best friends died, there, and in New York in 2001, and elsewhere), and I will not rest until I see George Bush, Dick Cheney, and their collection of greedy fascist scum tossed out of office in disgrace, if not incarcerated. Merely voted out would be adequate, but less satisfying.

They are at the roots of the reasons he and others died, more than Amrozi or his collaborators, who actually built and planted the bomb.

If the thin edge of the wedge to achieve that aim is to follow up a comparatively trivial illegality like L'Affair de Plame, I am willing to acknowledge that this is the way these things work, and will continue to get 'all worked up' over it.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 11:04 PM on October 1, 2003

even a 330 lb (150 kg) is pretty damn serious when you have such a small distance between the building and the bomb (from the photo's i've seen the area looks extremely urban), which means that not only the target building is heavily damaged but the sourrounding buildings are also seriously damaged (the irony of some of these bombings is that they cause more damage to sourrounding structures then those that are actually the targets (one example of this is what happened in nairobi attack, sorry, not a great link).

I can't really say that there's diminishing returns on the bomb size (i've only got into this business recently), but while the pressure wave impact can cause severe bodily harm (typically to those outside the structure), it's often the failure of the structure or the glass exploding in the building which hurts the largest number of people.

I'd say this type of attack on non-governmental structures is something that's probably going to grow in the future as more government buildings are built with blast loads in mind (there's currently a big push to do this). It makes me wonder how long it will be before we have to look for a hotel which advertises itself as "blast resistant" before we'll stay in it. There are days when i'm cynical about the basis for my job
posted by NGnerd at 11:33 PM on October 1, 2003

One hardly need consult an "expert computer model" to estimate that the explosives launched from afar by America upon civilians in Afghanistan, Iraq, and who knows where else exceeds "1150 kg". By more than just a little. Sometimes hourly.

Condolences again, stavros. As you say so eloquently, the world reels with violent death now....and our friends across nations die needlessly. This is the world. I hope we all continue to hold faith that a better day approaches.
posted by fold_and_mutilate at 11:35 PM on October 1, 2003

Fuck. Ing. Hell.
posted by twine42 at 1:24 AM on October 2, 2003

The more important thing at the moment is who leaked some apparently obvious and well known info on some wife of some dude.

Just for htuttle's Turd Blossom/Limbaugh talking points:

But Ray McGovern, who was a senior analyst at the agency for 27 years, says Mr Novak is wrong and Valerie Plame was in fact a spy working under "deep cover".

RAY MCGOVERN: She was operating as what the Soviets used to always call, "an illegal", okay. So she enjoyed no protection of an official passport or a diplomatic passport or anything like that, she was very really and truly a spy. Uh, if she were wrapped up, she'd end up in jail. She doesn't end up in the Embassy.

So she, because of this non-official cover, because she has no ostensible connections with the US Government, she was able to recruit agents who wouldn't go near a US Embassy with a 10-foot pole and so, those are the kinds of people you need to report on sensitive areas like what kinds of weapons of mass destruction materials might be shipped to Iraq or Iran, Syria or North Korea.

JOHN SHOVELAN: It would be a fair assumption to suggest that the CIA would be looking at how her contacts have been compromised since her name was published?

RAY MCGOVERN: Yes. This damage assessment has, was begun immediately. It will take some time to do of course. What normally happens is people just disappear into the woodwork and often we don't know whether they're hanging from a lamppost in Syria or whether they've just gone and fled to a different country.

LINDA MOTTRAM: Ray McGovern is a former CIA senior analyst. He was speaking to our Washington Correspondent, John Shovelan.

posted by y2karl at 9:50 AM on October 2, 2003

Can't wait to know these pieces of subhuman garbage have been converted into hamburger by an Indonesian firing squad.
posted by reality at 10:42 AM on October 2, 2003

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