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Pigs vs Al-Qaeda

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Step One: Breed a lot of pigs. All are to be trained to recognize and seek out a particular scent. This subtle scent is to be associated with food, water, sex, and every other enjoyable thing in a pig's life, such as truffles (a delicious type of mushroom that grows underground). Pigs are used as truffle-sniffers because they are better at it than dogs. Obviously this means that pigs have superior noses. We want these pigs to have a Pavlovian attraction to that scent.

Step Two: Seek out the Al-Qaeda supply chain and insert scent. This should be a lot easier and safer than trying to follow the chain to its myriad of destinations. So, eventually, all their equipment, and they themselves as the handlers of that equipment, will become associated with that subtle scent, which the human nose shouldn't notice.

Step Three: Outfit the pigs with different-frequency radio collars, all also having microphones. Prepare to simultaneously receive and record/analyze all the sounds that all the pigs will experience. A high-altitude blimp could be an intermediary for this task. Should there be gunshots near a pig, the radio collar would allow triangulation and locating the pig, so that the shots can be investigated.

Step Four: Ship the pigs to the Middle East and turn them loose, spread across thousands of square miles. Due to their conditioning, all will seek out that special scent, associated with food, water, sex, etc., which can only be found in that region associated with Al-Qaeda.

Step Five: Have a bunch of ready-response teams set to investigate radio-transmitted sounds of gunshots, as Al-Qaeda members, seeking to avoid spiritual contamination by the pigs which are attracted to them and track them down, shoot the pigs. (The teams should include more pigs, of course.) We ought to be able to eliminate most of that terrorist organization this way.

Vernon, Jul 19 2006

Satire http://www.youtube....sadam%20and%20osama
[monojohnny, Jul 21 2006]


       //We want these pigs to have a Pavlovian attraction to that scent// Would that be a strawberry or peach Pavlova?
AbsintheWithoutLeave, Jul 19 2006

       Genuinely surprised that this is one of your ideas - nowhere in all that text is a word entirely in capitals, nor is there any unusual capitalisation for emphasis. None of those fishies are mine, by the way.   

       Worth pointing out that not all of what passes down the supply chain will end up with operatives. I'm sure that their networks are used for running all kinds of stuff in order to raise funds.
david_scothern, Jul 19 2006

       If pigs were replaced by some machine, this might be a good idea [+].
sninctown, Jul 20 2006

       Wouldn't camels, or dogs, or cats be a less noticeable choice if you're sending them to the middle east? Pigs are generally considered unclean animals by moslems and jews. I think this idea would offend our "allies," if we have any, in that part of the world.
ye_river_xiv, Jul 20 2006

       i think that [vernon] is planning for the beliefs of those the pigs will be tracking down, and has modeled his idea around being able to tell when the pig has been shot. the real danger though is that terrorists aren't the only ones that feel that pigs are unclean, and therefore, not the only ones who might shoot at them.
tcarson, Jul 20 2006

       [david scothern], that's a good point, but suppose the scent was only added to military hardware, guns and ammo, in the supply chain?   

       [tcarson], you are correct.   

       [ye river xiv], what I wonder about is how pigs could have naturally fit into the Middle East desert environment, such that the humans in that area decided they were unclean. Perhaps along the rivers. I cannot think they ever were common animals in that region (and likely became less common, to whatever extent humans wanted to get rid of them). Nevertheless, I don't think the average Jew or Moslem would go out of the way to shoot a pig wandering the desert. It is the ones that the pigs actively pursue that would be freaked out, and shoot. Heh, heh, heh....
Vernon, Jul 20 2006

       Vernon, It actually isn't necessary to have seen a pig ever to declare it unclean. The dietary rules were very very specific, and provided for unknown animals. Even if pigs were from another planet, the Hebrews would still have been able to identify them as unclean because of their cloven hooves.
GutPunchLullabies, Jul 20 2006

       Ah, that explains the large packs of strung-out retired drug sniffing dogs clustering around meth labs in the midwest.
jutta, Jul 20 2006

       //Should there be gunshots near a pig, the radio collar would allow triangulation and locating the pig, so that the shots can be investigated.//   

       No more pig, sharpen tools and fire up the grill.
skinflaps, Jul 20 2006

       [GutPunchLullabies], the Jewish dietary rules don't object to cloven hooves. Any animal that chews its cud and has the cloven hoof is acceptable. Pigs have the hoof but don't chew; camels chew but don't have the hoof, so both of those are not acceptable. But deer, cattle, goats, sheep, and so on, are OK. Excluding fish, I don't know what the rules are about animals with neither trait (rabbits, lions, bears?). Next, it is my understanding that given half a chance, pigs will actually live fairly clean lives (nor are they the only animals that roll in mud on a hot day, to become cooler). I have no idea why the Moslems declare pigs to be unclean, unless they simply expounded upon the Jewish tradition that preceded them.   

       [jutta], I don't think the dogs are trained in quite the same way I had in mind for these pigs. Not to mention that the dogs need to recognize a variety of scents, and I'm on focussing on one. Part of the reason this Idea is half-baked is because I don't know what scent would be best for it. Any suggestions?
Vernon, Jul 20 2006

       //Seek out the Al-Qaeda supply chain and insert scent. // ...wuh?
moomintroll, Jul 20 2006

       I think the whole pig thing was inserted into religion as it was a sensible thing at the time. Pigs are very similar to humans and can transmit disease more easily than other animals. This is not so much of a concern these days but back then when the family pig lived in the back yard it was an issue.   

       Mind you, having said that, you'd think there'd be a rule about not eating rats.
marklar, Jul 20 2006

       Not even onna stick?
david_scothern, Jul 20 2006

       Wouldn't work - we all know that Al-Qaeda are shape-shifters....   

       See link...
monojohnny, Jul 21 2006

       If we can seek out the Al-Qaeda supply chain of military hardware, could we not just cut out the middle...pig and fit it with radio transmitters? They wouldn't have to be all that powerful, and could just transmit a 'squark' occasionally to avoid detection.
Loris, Jul 22 2006

       I don't think that Al-Qaeda is to be truffled with.   

       From Pulp Fiction, apropos to UB, regarding pigs and rats:
Vincent: Bacon tastes gooood. Pork chops taste gooood.
Jules: Hey, sewer rat may taste like pumpkin pie, but I'd never know 'cause I wouldn't eat the filthy motherfucker.
theircompetitor, Jul 22 2006

       1. How did pigs live in the mideast? When the dietary rules were laid out 4000 years ago, the Mideast was probably a different place - more water,more forests etc.   

       2. What's wrong with pigs? I have heard it theorized that most of the rules in Leviticus were to avoid disease. Trichinosis is a bad disease and if it prevalent at the time those rules were laid down, it may have beento keep people healthy. Likewise shellfish are proscribed, and shellfish can transmit various diseases. As regards lions, it looks like animals with paws are out as well. A quick read through Leviticus (interesting stuff) shows a lot of the rest is health related too - how to manage skin diseases, how to deal with dead animals (eg: you cant eat them if they die for unknown reasons) and so on.
bungston, Jul 22 2006

       //Vernon, It actually isn't necessary to have seen a pig ever to declare it unclean. The dietary rules were very very specific, and provided for unknown animals. Even if pigs were from another planet, the Hebrews would still have been able to identify them as unclean because of their cloven hooves.//   

       I believe what Vern is intrigued in is the fact that the religious documents of these groups specificially mention the pig as an example of an animal that is unclean for having a cloven hoof, but not chewing cud. Interestingly, the rabbit is said to chew cud, but have no cloven hoof. The seafood law has a similar two part law: fins and scales are required. Better make sure the tuna's dolphin safe...
ye_river_xiv, Dec 11 2008

       The point here is that fanatics are pathological by definition. They can be fanatic in more than one way. I don't have to care about the rationale behind a declaration against pigs, to realize that for people programmed from birth to be intolerant of pigs, at least some of those people (the fanatics) can be relied upon to behave in a particular stimulus/response fashion. Which this Idea tries to exploit.
Vernon, Dec 11 2008

       I'm not sure the people you are talking about are that intent on the goal of global pig extermination. They just don't eat them - if anything, a pig might feel altogether safer in a strict Muslim nation, than the same pig living in Denmark, for example.   

       But assuming the rest of the logic is sound, you should achieve the same results by substituting prostitutes, homosexuals, apostates, adulterers, rapists or pirates.
zen_tom, Dec 11 2008

       ...or thousands of Americans sporting stars & stripes patches on their shoulders.
DrBob, Dec 11 2008

       Oh yes, or that. In fact, that last method seems particularly effective.   

       Perhaps a pig that through selective breeding might begin to exhibit a stars-and-stripes pattern on its back. Once complete, the technology could be sold to Coca Cola and other Big-Brand types.
zen_tom, Dec 11 2008

       If we can find the supply chain and hardware in order to put the scent on, why then send in pigs, why not just go straight to the armed squads?
Germanicus, Dec 11 2008

       [zen_tom], no global extermination intent necessary; just a desire by bad guys not to be followed by an undesirable animal; that's all it would take to cause them to kill the pigs described in this Idea.   

       [Germanicus], of course. But this IS the HalfBakery....
Vernon, Dec 11 2008


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