I'm often fascinated by numbers. Late yesterday, the German news folks came out with an interesting story.
After the Berlin terror act (12 dead and 50-plus folks injured), there's this big open question of how it happened. The German cops do an amazing job and in four weeks, there are hundreds of pages of data/info on how this Tunisian guy got into the country, and what he managed to do over a year-long period. You didn't really need a truth-commission (the normal invention with incompetent politicians asking questions). So, they took that info and laid as a template across their known list of 547 individuals that they are watching on a daily basis.
Yeah....547 individuals out of 82-million....which the Germans have to devote assets, time, and money onto....but can't really arrest or detain, and kicking them out of the country isn't exactly an act that they are capable of.
How do you get on the list of the 547? That's a question-mark. Over the last year or two, journalists will hint that it tends to be leads that are developed....you were hanging out with some extremist guy and said something.....so some German security official simply made the decision that you needed to be watched.
This template from the analysis of the Berlin terror act? No one says much about this either. We know that the Berlin terrorist traveled around a lot, and was closely connected to the drug-trade (cocaine and ecstasy were his products). We also know that he seemed to get into alternate ID's and continually tried to get himself registered as a new immigrant....hoping for monthly welfare money (he was fairly successful at this)....attempting this nine times.
We come to this template exercise over the past week. Funny thing. Out of the 547 individuals that they say they are watching....they can't find three of them.
Yeah, they just up and disappeared.
The Berlin leadership and the cops aren't saying much. I'm guessing there is a full-scale man-hunt going on in the background. Associates and friends are being asked what happened to each of the three. Maybe they went back to the mideast. Maybe they went to Belgium. Maybe they just took a month off and are in some vacation resort. The longer that the three are not found? That's a problem.
One might sit there after a while and ask the question....did the three just dump their ID and go to a new name, new ID, new city? I'm of the opinion that this would be rather simple and that the German method of controlling the public just isn't the perfect system that everyone is led to believe. The fact that the Berlin terrorist sat and registered himself nine times under nine different ID's....makes me think that the system is fairly screwed up. The finger-print system should have done a review and within 24-hours been able to rat on the applicant that it matched another ID in the system.
Should people be worrying about the three? No one says much. Even if the authorities did worry, then what? A man-hunt for three guys that haven't done anything wrong yet? Even the cops would be laughing at that type of suggestion.
Over the next year, if any of the 547 individuals perform some act of terrorism....the authorities will be put into a corner and have to justify how the remaining individuals are allowed to walk freely. The minute you admitted that this many folks are not trusted anymore....but you can't arrest them, detain them, or remove them from the state....you invite public frustration. It's like being told that your particular brand of car has a unique problem and on rare occasions at 120 kph, the brakes on the front-right will go into full-effect....but it only happens three times a year on average across the whole nation....so you sit and accept this, but you quietly review options to dump the car and go to a new model with different company.