WASHINGTON, D.C.- Everyone is making tough choices to get by in the current economic climate, even al-Qaeda.
Al-Qaeda revealed to Al Jazeera Sunday that the economy has dictated how the terrorist group plans to takes down airplanes.
“We would much rather put bombs in our suitcases. Something like the bombs in that Kurt Russell movie, Executive Decision or a giant crate like Snakes on a Plane,” said al-Qaeda chief Dr. Ayman Al Zawahir. “But the truth is we just can’t afford it. Airline baggage fees are just way too damn high.”
With the typical airline charging $25 for your first bag and about $35 for your second, airline baggage fees quickly add up and the fees keep going up. The airline Spirit announced this month it will charge customers up to $200 round trip for their checked baggage. In 2008-09 the airlines collected $3.9 billion in checked-luggage fees.
“The airlines have priced us out of the suitcase bomb market. They are making it tough to be a terrorist,” said Zawhir. “The airlines high baggage fees have forced us to be creative.”
Al-Qaeda has focused their creativity on fashion. Ibrahim Hassan al-Asiri, the Saudi-born bomb-maker for al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsular first unveiled a line of vest bombs.
“The vest bombs really popped at first. But the suicide bombers complained they were too bulky, heavy, and lacked flair,” said al-Asari. “Besides vests were so pre 9-11.”
Al-Asari in response to criticism has recently rolled out a new line of underwear bombs for suicide bombers.
“The real challenge was making a bomb that gave the suicide bomber support but still allowed the jewels to breathe,” said al-Asiri. “Underwear bombing seems to be the latest spring trend. I just wish we knew whether they worked.”
Two suicide bombers have recently worn al-Asiri’s line of underwear, but U.S. security officials thwarted both. Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab was caught attempting to detonate plastic explosives hidden in his underwear while on board Northwest Airlines Flight 253, en route from Amsterdam to Detroit, on December 25, 2009. Abdulmutallab is currently serving life in prison without parole. Then in late April the CIA thwarted an underwear plot by an al-Qaeda affiliate that turned out to be a double agent for Saudi Arabia’s intelligence agency and a liaison for the CIA.
“You can’t trust anyone these days. He was the best man at my wedding. He was my friend,” said al-Asiri. “I even made him pinky swear he wasn’t CIA. I even checked if he had his fingers crossed behind his back. He must have crossed them when I wasn’t looking”
Zawhir hopes the U.S Congress takes up Sen. Mary Landrieu’s (D-La.) Airline Passengers BASICS ACT after the November election. The BASICS ACT would require every U.S. airline to accept a single checked bag and a carry-on free of charge. The BASICS ACT would allow al-Qaeda to check one suitcase bomb free of charge.
“The underwear were nice but you really can’t show that off to the world. A suitcase bomb on the other hand, you can show off,” said Zawhir. “Plus how funny would it be to see one of our suitcases on Travel Channel’s Baggage Battles. Watch Billy Leroy bid $900 on one of our suitcases only to get his face blown off. That’s good television.”