Friday, December 05, 2008

I have not been able to get this one thought out of my head.

What if, on that fateful night in Mumbai, some of the guests at the hotel - maybe those who were in point blank range of the terrorists' rifles and had sub zero chances of survival - had decided on the spur of the moment to hurl themselves at the gunmen, instead of towards the floor? What if four or five of them, emulating th jihadis, had decided to say bugger all to personal safety and in a moment of insane passion, had decided to take the gunmen down, with them?

Nearly 200 people dead. More than 300 injured. Over 500 people against a mere 5.

Just imagine if, the next time something like this happens, a few regular, common, normal Indians just decide to become as suicidal as these fanatical men, and make up their mind to take the bullet head on, but not lying down?

What if some of those guests at the Taj had gotten disgusted enough with all these terror attacks to forget for a moment about instinctive survival? What if eight or ten or fifteen people had jumped each rifle wielding maniac?

Sure. The first few would have definitely died. But even with rifles and grenades, its impossible to stand up to over a dozen people charging at you, people disgusted enough, frustrated enough and pissed off enough to risk certain death.

Can you imagine if that happens the next time? Can you imagine what'll happen if these jehadis actually pass on their frenzied way of being to us? Where we are matched as equals with them - because just like them, we no longer care if we die. For the larger cause.

Except, in our case, the larger cause is Peace & Security.

Just imagine.

12 comments:

Jagjit said...
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Jagjit said...

I love it. I love that completely. I mean we have a solution here. More than a solution - a setback to the gun-firing terrorists' intentions of spreading terror.

On that ill-fated day, two hundred people were destined to die. I think they knew that. What if some of them did what you said. It would have been another story altogether...

riya said...

thanks for your comment jagjit. I know its a crazy and slightly impossible thought, but if these terrorists push us a little bit more, it may actually become reality....

pavita said...

I think its a chilling possibility that has struck many of us. I have always wondered how the situation would have turned if the 200 people in the convention centre had actually turned onto the terrorists and faced them head on - what could 5 boys, even armed, have done to 200 bodies closing in on them.
I dont believe its a solution of any sort to the larger problem. Because essentially its a frenzied response to madness. Which may just lead to even more chaos and fear in the larger perspective.

pavita said...
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riya said...

I dunno pavi. It took India to come up with a non negotiation hijack strategy in 2005, after the 1999 Kandhar debacle, for hijacks to completely stop as a means of terrorism in India. If terrorists know that their highly expensive, highly planned, totally fraught with danger plans are not going to work, why will they use those tools? If they know that terrorising a large group of Indians with guns and rifles will not work, because the Indians have started to retaliate instead of taking it lying down, then this too will cease to be an option for them. The reason I say this is because this new audacious approach is an innovation for them, going beyond the standard bombings. If they realise that this new innovation works, then they will just keep doing it.

riya said...

The real point actually is not whether it would work or not. Work, it is bound to. But the point is, which one of us, wrapped up in our affections, committments and tug of relationships and life, would dare to do it. Would I, while cowering on the floor, with images of my daughter's face flashing in front of my eyes, dare to get up and charge at a menacing creature wielding a rifle? Very unlikely. And every single person of the 200 who died must've had the same thought. It WILL work if the first person charges. But WHO will be that first person? That crazy fictitious filmy character 'jo sar pe kafan bandh lega'??

Gorky said...

I believe that this is what somewhat happened on the flight that was supposed to hit the Pentagon during the 9/11 attacks.

Forget bravery - there are some very practical aspects of the scenario that you have mentioned.
The perpetrators have the benefit of prior planning their assault.
"The brave one", who leads the assault from the hostage side does not know how many people will follow him. There is hardly time to take a consensus on the matter - there is so much chaos. Once the terrorists take hostages - they forbid all communication between the hostages, for the very same reason.. Some people might actually do so provided they know that some people (at least) will follow their move.

I am very sure this thought would have crossed more than one person's mind at the Taj and Oberoi.. But they did not act because they thought that they were alone!!!

You say "Would I, while cowering on the floor, with images of my daughter's face flashing in front of my eyes, dare to get up and charge at a menacing creature wielding a rifle? Very unlikely. "

But if your daughter was with you, caught in the same situation and you knew that charging at this creature wielding a gun would ensure her safety at least? I think your answer would be "highly likely".

Sharath Chandra said...

Good grief ! Riya, you should be locked up and let out only on Public Holidays , Gandhi Jayanti

What happens inside your head should stay inside your head . Hmmph :)

CurlyGirlie said...

I like the thought but I think u forget that the terrorists had AK - 57 which I have come to understand unleashes 57 bullets per second or some such - even if all 200 had rushed them - they would all be dead! the Taj might have been saved but I don't think in this case, you were talking about saving the Taj as a major criteria. There was also an article about how the young terrorists were amped up on amphetamine which again makes them more trigger happy and more likely to withstand an assault such as that!

Saptarshi said...

An interesting thought. The same thought occured to me when the passengers of United 93 fought back on 9/11. What was going through their minds ? I think it's natural animal instinct(and I include humans here) to duck for cover on sight of a larger more powerful predator. It's very rare that a group of prey gangs up and chases the predator away. I guess United 93 was a rare incident!

pavita said...
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