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Bush Causes Cell Phone Ban 588

Posted by kdawson
from the security-through-headlines dept.
An anonymous reader writes "When President George Bush visits Sydney, Australia for the APEC Summit in September, all cell phone calls within the radius of a football field will be suppressed. The president's motorcade will be shadowed by a helicopter equipped with signal-jamming equipment. Terrorists have used mobile phones to detonate remote-controlled bombs in Iraq and elsewhere in the world." There are other ways to detonate explosives remotely. Doesn't seem like the smartest thing to let potential enemies know of such plans in advance.
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Bush Causes Cell Phone Ban

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  • by Magada (741361) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @08:43AM (#19159555) Journal
    Title should read "Al-Qaeda scare causes widespread FUD in US and Aussie govts".
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      And the response is FUD from the security officials. It's not stupid to leak plans like this. It saves actually having to put jamming equipment on the helicopter.
      • Re:Should read... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Architect_sasyr (938685) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @09:04AM (#19159865)
        I'm not likely to be a terrorist soon, but don't these people know what REDUNDANT control's are?

        That said, I have no doubts that said helicopter will also take out 802.11 signals because only a really dumb team would jam only mobile signals. As far as I am concerned the only reason these plans have been "leaked" is because people would otherwise be calling their Telco going "WTF MY PHONE DROPPED OUT".

        So yeah, ten points for a great idea, but try and think like a terrorist, and then how would you defend against that. I'm happy enough to bash the administration as much as the next guy (personally I think Howard [aussie PM] is a dick, but better than the alternatives), but sometimes we need to step back from the abuse and look at what we're really talking about...

        My $0.02 AU
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by maxwell demon (590494)

          So yeah, ten points for a great idea, but try and think like a terrorist, and then how would you defend against that.

          That should be obvious: Trigger the bomb by the jamming signal. As soon as the mobile phone doesn't find a network any more, the bomb is triggered. Additional call triggering can be used in case there just happens to be no jamming (in which case calling the phone would obviously work).
          • Re:Should read... (Score:4, Insightful)

            by gfxguy (98788) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @09:48AM (#19160713)
            Of course. Then it goes off long before Bush is actually in range.

            Silly Secret Service, don't you know suicide bombers are for kids? When they realize they can't do it remotely, someone will "martyr" themselves to get the job done. That's the insidiousness of Islamic fascists.

            That said, doing something is better than doing nothing. A lot of the complaints here seem to be along the lines of "why lock my car door when someone can steal my stereo by breaking the window anyway?"

            It just means you'll be limiting your opponents to only very serious players instead of wannabes.
            • Re:Should read... (Score:5, Interesting)

              by radtea (464814) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @11:39AM (#19162881)
              That said, doing something is better than doing nothing. A lot of the complaints here seem to be along the lines of "why lock my car door when someone can steal my stereo by breaking the window anyway?"

              There are at least two legitimate concerns:

              1) Various fairly obvious terrorist responses to these counter-measures will greatly increase the danger to bystanders without materially reducing the risk to the President.

              2) There is some suspicion that this has more to do with making it harder for legitimate democratic protesters to co-ordinate their actions than it does with preventing terrorism.

              Whether either of those things is sufficient to trump the needs of presidential security is a matter for debate, unlike the nearly-zero-cost behaviour of locking your car doors to protect your stereo. There is a point where people are going to say, "Enough! We've had it with all the intrusions into our daily lives in the name of counter-terrorist activity. I come from a society that has always valued liberty over security, and this is more than I am willing to give up."

              While the particular policy of jamming cell phones is relatively minor, it is symbolic of many other more significant intrusions. [pbs.org]
            • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

              by Rei (128717)
              Trigger the bomb to explode not on the *presence* of a jamming signal, but on the *weakening of the running average* of the signal strength (i.e., when the chopper is moving away from you). Sure, there are countermeasures to that, but you'd need to know that they're needed.

              Other options would include pressure + presence of jamming signal, noise + presence of jamming signal, motion detector tripped + presence of jamming signal, IR sensor tripped + presence of jamming signal, etc. The jamming signal could s
        • by Anonymous Brave Guy (457657) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @09:53AM (#19160823)

          So yeah, ten points for a great idea, but try and think like a terrorist, and then how would you defend against that.

          <obligatory>

          “Our enemies are innovative and resourceful, and so are we. They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we.” — George W. Bush, Washington, D.C., 5 August 2004

          </obligatory>
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by abb3w (696381)

          That said, I have no doubts that said helicopter will also take out 802.11 signals because only a really dumb team would jam only mobile signals.

          On the other hand, there's a lot of spectrum, and if you are planning an assassination, local rules about "assigned frequencies" and "allowable broadcast power" really aren't a concern for the bad guys. An pro-am radio transmitter, tone generator, and a high-powered parabolic antenna (an old satellite dish?) shouldn't add more than $5k (at worst) to the cost of

      • by Joce640k (829181) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @09:18AM (#19160129) Homepage
        This is a perfect example of what Bruce Schneier calls "movie plot security" - looks good to have black helicopters flying around but doesn't really achieve much.

        http://www.google.com/search?q=movie+plot+security [google.com]

        PS: Yes, the Madrid bombers used cell phones to detonate the bombs, but they didn't do it by calling the 'phone. They used the alarm clock function.

        PPS: How till this prevent suicide bombers, etc.?
        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by JonathanR (852748)
          I don't know what everyone is banging on about. Everyone here knows that if you go Bush the mobile coverage is piss poor, no matter how good the propaganda from Telstra.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by antibryce (124264)
          They used the alarm clock function.

          But they were hitting a stationary target. In order to get the timing right to hit a moving motorcade they would have to be the luckiest people in the world. Much easier to have someone sitting a block or two away and watching for when the president's car is next to the trashcan or car or whatever they planted the bomb in.

        • by AdmiralWeirdbeard (832807) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @11:55AM (#19163207)
          "PPS: How till this prevent suicide bombers, etc.?"

          Homicide bombers, please.
          When you dont use the Bush-approved propaganda buzzwords, the terrorists win.
          And God kills kittens. Thousands of kittens each time.
          Think of the kittens.
    • by xENoLocO (773565) * on Thursday May 17, 2007 @09:39AM (#19160559) Homepage
      Remember. The terrorists are not winning.

      *jedi hand movement*
    • "When President George Bush visits Sydney, Australia for the APEC Summit in September, all dissent within the radius of a 5km of the visiting dignitary will be suppressed with immediate lethal force. During the days of the visit, curfew will begin one hour earlier and last one hour longer.

      Kids! Parents! Let's give Mr. Bush a cheery welcome to Australia! Additional chocolate rations have been approved for minors under the age of 16 wishing to cheer President Bush, these will be available after each event. Ad
  • by gravesb (967413) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @08:44AM (#19159567) Homepage
    I am sure that this isn't the only countermeasure that they are taking. Its good to publish this one, though, so people know in advance their cell phones won't work. The other counter measures probably don't affect personal electronic devices in the same manner.
    • by drgonzo59 (747139)
      It's also good to know if you are a terrorist that you should switch frequencies...you know...turn the knob to the left or right just a little.


      Also, let's hope that nobody has any emergencies while they wait for Bush to pass by...

      • by Gordonjcp (186804)
        Yeah, I was going to say - why not use an AM radio to control the trigger? With a decent antenna and a few watts of power you could trigger the bomb from literally hundreds of miles away. The mobile phone jammers are going to be so far out of the passband they won't make a difference.
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by stuntpope (19736)
          I'm mostly ignorant of the subject, but I believe cell phones are used as detonators by calling the phone, which then detonates the explosion. How would an AM radio be used for detonation purposes? If it's switched on, it's constantly getting signals. How would it know which signal was the instruction to spark the explosive?
          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by Lehk228 (705449)
            the crudest method is to trigger when some threshhold is reached, and the detonator is just a powerful transmitter. a better, but somewhat more complex method would be to detect a particular tone over x time, such as 120hz for 1 second.
          • by mustafap (452510)
            Because a small, simple mcirocontroller connected to it is listening for a coded signal. RC aeroplanes use this technique. Any electronics enthusiast could build such a device.

            Maybe I shouldn't have said that :o)
          • by Lehk228 (705449)
            i forgot to mention, the tone method is how many R/C cars were controlled back in the 90's. haven't had one since i was a kid so i don't know what they use nowadays.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by CmdrGravy (645153)
        Well I shouldn't imagine there will be many people lining the route waving to him and throwing garlands of flowers ( apart from maybe members of the government waiting to lick his boots ) so it will just be the normal people going about there jobs which this will interfere with.

        I don't see why he should need all this security though, even if the worst does happen and someone blows him sky high it's not like he's even remotely irreplacable and someone else can take over his job a couple of hours later withou
        • by Dog-Cow (21281) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @09:18AM (#19160137)
          You fail to realize that the "someone else" would be Cheney. I think Americans are more afraid for Bush's life right now than Bush himself could possibly be.
        • by VJ42 (860241) * on Thursday May 17, 2007 @09:24AM (#19160255)

          You could say this would be a major coup for whatever terrorist organisation pulls it off but it wouldn't be if you didn't let it and just shrugged your shoulders "So, you killed the president. So what ? Someone else is doing his job now".
          Bingo, you got it in one, that's exactly what our respnse should be to all terrorist attacks; over here we learned quickly that the best response to the IRA was to carry on about our bussiness, but just to remain a little more vigilant. Unfortuneately in the post 11/9/2001 world, our leaders seem to have forgotten that lesson, and instead are placing ever more draconaian and stupid "security meausures" in place to protect us from a vague threat that's extremely unlikely to affect 99% of the population even if the worst occoured. This is all the more puzzling as the provos (and now the dissidents) made Al Quiada look like amaturs.
          • by CmdrGravy (645153) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @09:48AM (#19160731) Homepage
            I agree, this puzzles me too. I remember when the IRA were in full swing, every so often we'd see a bombing or something on the news, there were posters in swimming baths warning you about bombs and there was a lack of rubbish bins in stations and that was it. I don't remember us needing half the special measures we seem to require now despite the fact on their record alone the IRA were far far more of a threat to the UK than Al-Quaeda are or likely will ever be.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by suv4x4 (956391)
      I am sure that this isn't the only countermeasure that they are taking. Its good to publish this one, though, so people know in advance their cell phones won't work. The other counter measures probably don't affect personal electronic devices in the same manner.

      Well, most of the big terrorist acts in the late years involved people who bombed themselves together with the bomb.

      To kill Bush, you'll find enough people ready to die for the chance to do it. If you don't care for your life, there are hundreds of w
  • Just curious (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Mateo_LeFou (859634) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @08:44AM (#19159583) Homepage
    What's the legality of using signal-jamming equipment? I mean for non-presidents. Obviously, whatever the president does is always legal.
  • Nothing screams low key approach like a helicopter blaring above.

    Wasn't Bush given a mobile phone after 9/11?

    How would they inform him if a problem occurs?
  • Helicopter (Score:5, Funny)

    by MECC (8478) * on Thursday May 17, 2007 @08:44AM (#19159591)
    Will people be able to hear anything he says in the open with a helicopter overhead?

    Oh wait that's right - it won't matter.

    • Re:Helicopter (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Hijacked Public (999535) * on Thursday May 17, 2007 @09:19AM (#19160163)
      If you are around US military helicopters much you quickly discover that our newer stuff is fairly stealthy.

      Most of the heavy troop transports still sound like they do in movies about Vietnam, but the light ones and most of the attack helicopters are very quiet once they get up to speed. Presumably the one assigned to Bush will be flying high enough to keep the rotor wash from mussing his hair so I doubt the crowd will hear it at all.

      It really is spooky to look over your shoulder and see an attack helicopter floating a couple hundred yards away when you had to idea it was even there.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Guysmiley777 (880063)
        What newer stuff? UH-60 Black Hawk and AH-64 Apache have been around since the early '80s. The Black Hawk is quieter than a Huey thanks to the four-blade main rotor and the Apache a little more so with the 55/125 offset tail rotor blades, but nothing in the Army inventory is really that new.
        The most quiet helo in the US Army inventory would probably be the A/MH-6, but that's only in the SOAR TO&E.
      • by Chris Burke (6130) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @12:22PM (#19163777) Homepage
        It really is spooky to look over your shoulder and see an attack helicopter floating a couple hundred yards away when you had to idea it was even there.

        Especially when you aren't anywhere near a war zone or military base, and it happens repeatedly as you're leaving work or headed to the movies. What do you want from me, Mysterious Apache Pilot?!
  • Helicopter? (Score:4, Funny)

    by carpe_noctem (457178) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @08:44AM (#19159593) Homepage Journal
    The president's motorcade will be shadowed by a helicopter equipped with signal-jamming equipment.

    I'm just hoping it's not black, for the sake of the tinfoil-hat crowd...
    • by camusflage (65105)
      I'm just hoping it's not black, for the sake of the tinfoil-hat crowd...

      Only the mind control ray helicopters are black. Sheesh, I thought everyone knew this already!
  • by SCHecklerX (229973) <thecaptain@captaincodo.net> on Thursday May 17, 2007 @08:45AM (#19159605) Homepage
    With the terrorists probably not using the most advanced triggering mechanisms, couldn't the jamming itself cause a bomb to go off? Anybody who understands how it all works, please comment.
    • by Dan East (318230) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @09:29AM (#19160361) Homepage Journal
      They typically wire the detonator in place of the vibrator motor in the phone. The motor is (relatively) large, the leads are fairly easy to access, the power source is continuous DC (unlike speakers, which is an analog signal), and it almost certainly is provided the most amperage of any other component in the phone. They then set the phone on vibrate, attach the explosives, and call the phone when they want it to detonate.

      Obviously the digital communication required to uniquely address the ESN of the phone, do the proper handshaking, and inform the phone that there is an incoming call is quite complex. The odds of a jamming signal being mistaken for the exact trunk-side communication required to indicate a call is infinitesimally small.

      Dan East
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by hankwang (413283) *

        They typically wire the detonator in place of the vibrator motor in the phone.

        Typically? Where did you get the stats? :)

        My phone provider sends me an SMS every now and then, and I get about one call a month by somebody who mistyped someone else's phone number. I wouldn't want to risk that while assembling or placing a bomb. The couple of cheap phones that I've owned don't have an option to switch the vibrator off for everything except calls from certain known phone numbers.

        • by Dan East (318230) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @10:16AM (#19161255) Homepage Journal
          More information can be found here. [officer.com] Of course, if they had some idea of when the event was going to happen, they could also schedule an alarm for the latest time they want the device to detonate. So they detonate manually if possible, and it falls back on the alarm if the signal is blocked. The article I referenced discusses many factors, such as timers, jamming, the lithium ion battery itself being part of the ignition source, and why law enforcement doesn't have access to jamming equipment (including the FCC sections prohibiting jamming).

          Dan East
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by chuckymonkey (1059244)
      Ok, having dealt with the systems in question I'll explain a little how it works. Basically they hook one cell phone to the bomb via electronic leads soldered to the ringer or vibrating component of the phone which trip some mechanism inside to cause the bomb to go off. They are not usually set to the frequency since then any cell phone could set it off potentially. So they set it up to be keyed to a specific phone number in other words which gives them control of when the explosion will occur. The jamm
  • Triggering Bombs by Remote Key Entry Devices

    I regularly read articles about terrorists using cell phones to trigger bombs. The Thai government seems to be particularly worried about this; two years ago I blogged about a particularly bizarre movie-plot threat along these lines. And last year I blogged about the cell phone network being restricted after the Mumbai terrorist bombings.

    Source [schneier.com]
    • by strider44 (650833)
      On Schneier's blog today on this topic there was one smart commenter with an interesting idea. What the terrorists should do is still rig a phone up to a bomb that detonates a second after phone signal is lost. This way you can plant a bomb and you know you only need to blow up an area the size of a football field!

      Isn't it wonderful that the terrorists have time to prepare now with so much warning? This is a movie plot threat straight out of James Bond. Security theatre at best.
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by errxn (108621)

        What the terrorists should do is still rig a phone up to a bomb that detonates a second after phone signal is lost.
        They'd better hope they're not using Sprint.
      • by bcattwoo (737354)

        On Schneier's blog today on this topic there was one smart commenter with an interesting idea. What the terrorists should do is still rig a phone up to a bomb that detonates a second after phone signal is lost. This way you can plant a bomb and you know you only need to blow up an area the size of a football field!

        Isn't it wonderful that the terrorists have time to prepare now with so much warning? This is a movie plot threat straight out of James Bond. Security theatre at best.

        It is conceivable that someone might be able to conceal a bomb along the motorcade route big enough to blow up Bush's limo as it passes by. A bomb big enough to blow it up while a football field length away should easily be detected by security when they pre-sweep the area along the route.

  • But seriously (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Magada (741361) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @08:47AM (#19159633) Journal
    Security theater at its very best, folks... Only there may be an ulterior motive here. The Seattle WTO riots were co-ordinated via cellphone. Someone has taken the lesson to heart. Oh well, it's back to walkie-talkies for the concerned activists.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Timesprout (579035)
      I agree, many people felt the restrictions imposed when he visited London, particularly those which kept the public away from him were driven more by the desire to keep anti-war/anti US policy protesters out of sight than any real security concerns. God forbid the propaganda machine be exposed to a divergent public opinion.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by dr_dank (472072)
      The Seattle WTO riots were co-ordinated via cellphone. Someone has taken the lesson to heart. Oh well, it's back to walkie-talkies for the concerned activists.

      Don't take the propaganda bait by lumping in legitmate activists with those who destroy property and incite riots.
      • Re:But seriously (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Lehk228 (705449) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @09:17AM (#19160101) Journal
        Don't take the propaganda bait by lumping in legitimate activists with agents provocateurs sent by the government.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by rhakka (224319)
        Yeah, the WTO was a huge riot.

        I'll tell you what. You tell me how much damage you would expect a 50,000 person RIOT to do in downtown seattle. Personally, I'm pretty sure if 50,000 people RIOTED, seattle would have been left a smoking ruin.

        Then compare that to any accounts of real damage done. Pay attention to any pictures you find, make sure they aren't of the same few stores actually.

        I think, if you aren't a fool, you'll realize that for a 50,000 protest, very, very little damage was done. The police
  • Golly gee (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Psx29 (538840) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @08:48AM (#19159639)
    that's great and all but I was under the impression most serious terrorists didn't really care if they die or maybe even intent on blowing themselves up anyway.
  • by Rik Sweeney (471717) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @08:48AM (#19159647) Homepage
    Put this technology into cinemas.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 17, 2007 @09:04AM (#19159867)
      No way. Then theaters will have to pay millions upgrading audio systems to drown out the helicopters.

      I say we just punch the fuckers.

    • by _.- thimk! -._ (898003) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @09:27AM (#19160337)
      I hear this suggested periodically, and it's, simply put, a very poor idea, that's not been thought through at all.

      There are a lot of us who DO really have to have cellphones and pagers active 24x7, who are also smart and polite enough to put them on vibrate only, and to leave the theater if we need to respond. And, no, I'm not just talking geeks. That includes members of the medical and law enforcement professions, as well, where receiving an unexpected page or call really may be critical, and yes (not trying to be melodramatic), might just save someone's life.

      Stop thinking technology is the answer to what is a SOCIAL problem. Grow a spine, and hold people responsible for their actions and their effect upon others around them, rather than trying to hide behind a bad technological band aid.

      The answer is NOT to restrict the use of technology for those who use it properly, but to throw the asshats who are disruptive out of the theater, regardless of whether or not they happen to have a phone, or a pager.

      (God forbid that anyone should actually have any personal responsibility, or actually have to confront someone obnoxious.)

      </rant>

      We now return you to your regularly scheduled pithy remarks about the idiocy of using this technology to attempt to protect a man so (deservedly) loathed that they think something like this might actually be necessary. I, of course, refer to the continuing dissemination of FUD, not the jamming, per se.
  • by rjamestaylor (117847) <rjamestaylor@gmail.com> on Thursday May 17, 2007 @08:49AM (#19159655) Homepage Journal

    There are other ways to detonate explosives remotely. Doesn't seem like the smartest thing to let potential enemies know of such plans in advance.
    What makes you think this is the only countermeasures they are employing? Perhaps they just want to get the word out about why a helicopter is tailing the President and why people's cell phones seem to be losing signal in his powerful presence. That is, maybe they want to explain the obvious stuff in advance.
  • Sounds pretty mild (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Timesprout (579035) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @08:49AM (#19159657)
    They practically wanted to take over London when he visited. US agents were to be armed and given ridiculous powers (the we can shoot who we want and are not to be held accountable was particularly amusing). The usual visiting dignatary events were ignored and large portions of the city were closed to the public if Bush was anywhere near.

    The heavy handed approach is a really good way to make a very poor impression with the citizens of nation you are visiting.
    • Maybe this is because we Brits are so under the US thumb - sorry, enjoy a special relationship - that they can get away with it whereas no-one tells an Ausie what to do!
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Cow Jones (615566)

      US agents were to be armed and given ridiculous powers [..] large portions of the city were closed to the public

      The same thing happened when he visited Vienna (Austria), my home town. Vienna is one of the safest cities in the world, but that day we heard the sound of helicopters non-stop, and there was a general uneasiness in the air, probably caused by the many radio and TV announcements. The US Secret Service took over the city, the airport, etc, and the local police were told to aid them and follow th

  • 911 (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 17, 2007 @08:56AM (#19159749)
    Help, i need the police! The presidents motorcade is approaching and I can see a sni.. hello? hello?!
  • Seriously if can't move around outside a bubble like that then maybe you should think seriously of staying home. John Howard is one of your biggest friends. It's not like you're going to a Muslim Lesbian rally in Afghanistan or anything.
  • You'd just need one traffic accident with someone unable to summon help because their phone was jammed...
  • The following occurs between 02:00 and 02:01 UT

    (Presidential motorcade passing by)
    Secret Service Agent: (Opens cell phone) "Hello, get me Jack Bauer. ... Hello ... HELLO"
  • Hang on... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by itsdapead (734413) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @09:03AM (#19159843)

    a helicopter equipped with signal-jamming equipment

    So much for mobile phone radio frequencies interfering with saftey-critical avionics! I guess milirtary helicopters don't have the most vulneable equipment (namely the credit card readers in seatback phones).

    In other news: President stung to death by bees driven into a frenzy by mobile phone radiation... (Yes, yes I know the mobile phones affect bees thing has been debuinked).

  • I for one welcome our new presidential cell-phone jamming overlord. Actually, I just wish he'd go away, and not come back. And I want a refund on my taxes. Make that two of 'em.
  • Doesn't make sense... In Iraq, they installed cellphone jammers on the HUMV's... and it worked for about a month..
    Now the bombs look for the LACK of cell phone signals to go off.

    This is stupid.
  • You need helicopter- horsepower to carry something that has to over-ERP 3 watt cell signals for a few hundred yards?

  • There are other ways to detonate explosives remotely. Doesn't seem like the smartest thing to let potential enemies know of such plans in advance.

    Well, this is George W. Bush we're talking about ...
  • I live in Sydney and I can see how the subj could appear trollish, but we've been given a one-off public holiday for this. I don't care what the fuck Bush or Howard or any of their cohorts do for just those 4 days. Howard has abolished the "Land of the Long Weekend" so lets make this a send off. As an added pinko idealistic nostalgia dream - how about us mere consu^H^H^H^H^H pions make it the start of an annual boycott from dronedom?
  • Does it matter..... (Score:2, Informative)

    by chrism238 (657741)
    That this article [abc.net.au] solidly refuses the claim? (of course, you have to believe another politician from the Coalition of the Killing).
  • 1. Build bomb
    2. Attach a mobile phone running windows mobile
    3. Attach triggering to a process which polls a website, if it can't reach the website it sets the timer to go off in 30 seconds.
    4. Jamming devices blocks cel signal..
    5. 30 second countdown to detonation activates, giving enough time for the motorcade to get closer.

    And letting people know about this ahead of time is the worst part... I'm not a huge fan of security through obscurity, but there's a difference between being obscure and telegraphing y
  • by DoofusOfDeath (636671) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @09:13AM (#19160041)
    To have Bush covered in a cone of reduced civil liberties is perhaps the most honest herald to ever signal a leader's presence.

    His "legacy" practically writes itself.
  • Famous quote (Score:3, Insightful)

    by scottennis (225462) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @09:17AM (#19160109) Homepage
    There really isn't any need for bloodshed
    Just do it with a little more finesse
    If you can slip a tablet into someone's coffee
    Then it avoids an awful lot of mess


    I guess the point of terrorism is to make a really big bang, not just commit "murder by numbers".
  • by eck011219 (851729) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @09:24AM (#19160247)
    Is that an American football field or an Australian Rules football field?

    Seriously, though, can't we just use yards or meters? I don't know about other countries, but here in the U.S. we spend more mental energy envisioning big rotating or end-to-end football fields around or next to things.
  • Schneier's Comments (Score:4, Interesting)

    by trawg (308495) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @09:25AM (#19160281) Homepage
    Bruce Schneier has already commented on this [schneier.com] and the effectiveness of such a measure. He's written about things like this before - it's interesting, once you start thinking about security related issues (especially if you read his blog, I guess :), you read an article like this and go "well, gee, I guess now The Evil Terrorists know this one particular method won't work, they can just cross it off their project plan for this particular event and focus on other more effective measures".

    Also, hopefully noone has an actual emergency while this thing is going past. I'd hate for someone to have a heart attack or be trying to call in a fire or something and not be able to use their cell phone. Or dial for the police in case they see suspicious people near the motorcade. You know, like people with beards.
  • by Anne_Nonymous (313852) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @09:30AM (#19160385) Homepage Journal
    When I can't talk on my phone while drinking a cup of coffee, and reading the paper, and watching TV, while driving to work in my SUV... the terrorists have won.
  • by camperdave (969942) on Thursday May 17, 2007 @09:32AM (#19160431) Journal
    So America has finally wizened and have sent Bush to a penal colony. Good on ya, Mates!

If A = B and B = C, then A = C, except where void or prohibited by law. -- Roy Santoro

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