Well that’s just what the green movement needs: an endorsement from al-Qaida’s murderer in chief, Osama bin Laden. Don’t tell me al-Qaida do “grow your own” in the Tora Bora mountains. Quick, alert the Pakistani military – we’re looking for six allotment beds and a recent cave-side delivery of locally sourced organic vegetables. If AQ operatives share bath water I just don’t want to know. You try getting the picture of Osama and one of his generals going top to toe in a tub out of your head.
“Please, Osama – I went at the tap end yesterday.” “Whose organisation is this? Uh-uh! Which one of you left this rocket propelled grenade launcher on standby? What have I told you? Now, budge up, you’re sitting on my flannel.”
I’ll grant you that living in a cave probably has a very low carbon footprint, as long as they’ve draught-proofed the door; and it is possible that his barbaric acts of violence have put one or two people off flying, but I just don’t want Bin Laden to come out on our side.
It’s bad enough when greenies in hairshirts treat climate change as an excuse to discuss compulsory veganism. I shudder when semi-retired socialists use it as the latest wheeze to bring down capitalism. Anyone who’s been outgreened by a point-scoring eco bore will know how ugly it can get. But al-Qaida? Any attempt to claim green credentials on their part would be as laughable as oil companies putting pretty mountain-scapes in their adverts. Over population may be the elephant in the room when it comes to talking about sustainability, but no one wants to see Dumbo flown into a building as a solution.
In his latest recording Bin Laden reportedly says: “This is a message to the whole world about those responsible for climate change and its repercussions – whether intentionally or unintentionally – and about the action we must take.” Action? What’s he going to suggest? Rechargeable terror cells? Compostable suicide belts? “When buying weapons at an arms fair – do please remember to bring your own bags.” It’s only a matter of time before he claims that large-scale atrocities such as 9/11 present great opportunities to recycle.
In the “new” recording he mentions the Kyoto protocol and Bush junior’s failure to act. Catch up, beardy – it’s Obama and Copenhagen now. To be honest the whole statement’s a bit dated and makes me think that this tape may have been made some time ago. Perhaps he’s got the wrong wattage of eco bulbs in the cave and can’t read the latest stuff. I wonder if he even knows about the East Anglia email scandal. That seems to be reason enough to get otherwise logical people to doubt years of peer-reviewed work from thousands of scientists, so imagine what it might do to a loose cannon like him.
The main thrust of his proposals is to bring “the wheels of the American economy” to a halt. He obviously hasn’t heard that hubris, greed and massive bonuses have already taken care of that, and the US is still polluting faster than a grass-eating Clarkson. “Stop consuming American products” and “refrain from using the dollar”. With the exception of Apple stuff (praise be upon them) I wasn’t aware that anyone was still consuming anything much from the US. What about China? Why hasn’t he stuck it to them? From what I heard it was China that slowed the Copenhagen talks down to the pace of a glacier. It’s all only half thought through and I fear that his “bring down the mighty US Satan” rhetoric might be the only card in his deck. Lost the remote control? Destroy America. Kids won’t eat their vegetables? Bring down the Stars and Stripes. Overweight? OK, bad example. But taped from an underground layer or not the issues around climate change and solutions to it are nuanced (which is why so few of the papers ever discuss it properly).
I wait with bated breath for the weekend columns in the Mail, Express and Telegraph claiming that George Monbiot and Bin Laden are one and the same person. I’ve suspected it for years. Osama bin Laden: cave-bound eco warrior, saving the world, one atrocity at a time.