Getting a piece of the terrorism pie

Everyone wants a piece of the terrorism game.

Since 9-11, there seems to be a sense of pride derived from being a victim, or potential victim of terrorism, with al Qaeda being the most fashionable threat. Recent intelligence has revealed Canada and Calgary as possible targets, which is about as hip as it gets.

When Osama Bin Laden mentioned Canada on his latest recording, it was like having our name dropped by Eminem. Someone likened it to when the Simpsons came to Canada, or when the cast of South Park blamed Canada for America’s societal ills. Sure, our underfunded military struggled to keep themselves afloat during their stay in Afghanistan, but at least somebody other than a misguided National Guard pilot noticed their presence! If the bad guys hate us this much, we must be doing something right!

And then a list was leaked out of Washington that named the Calgary Stampede as a potential terrorist target, along with the CN Tower and the Peace Bridge. Sure, the Stampede was only 22nd on the list, but at least it was there. Would you believe Edmonton is jealous? The Edmonton Sun’s Page Six columnist complained that “Calgary, Calgary, Calgary” gets all the attention while poor little Edmonton gets nothing. Apparently, none of Klondike Days, West Edmonton Mall and Refinery Row are worth blowing up. Whoever made that list obviously didn’t do their homework.

Well, Calgary wasn’t the only Alberta location on the list. The Fort McMurray oilsands are also a potential target. And that’s not the first time our oil industry has been named. Executives from one oil company recently claimed that within the past year, their facilities may have been checked out by “an agent of a foreign power” who may have been affiliated with terrorists. The statement not only makes one wonder if this is a ploy to get attention, but also raises a few questions about their security procedures.

When the original World Trade Center attacks happened, I was working at a local tourist attraction that is closed for most of the year. Other employees were attempting that day to justify not only why Calgary was the most likely target in Canada, but also why that tourist attraction might have been a potential target. The official response to the attacks was to increase the nighttime security detail from one man to two. If the terrorists of 9-11 wanted to strike a permanent sense of fear into our culture, they succeeded to the point where the entire Western world expects and almost wants to be a victim. It’s become a badge of honour to be on Osama’s “enemies list.”

Far be it from me to downplay the

seriousness of terrorism. I’m just getting a little tired of the media trying to convince us that we’re next. It will take a long time for the fear to die down, but crying wolf still has the same effect as it did in

Aesop’s fable. And really, Bin Laden and his cohorts have bigger worries than Canada’s frozen wasteland and Calgary’s annual rodeo.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.