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Wear Your Body Armor ... and Ear Muffs

Karaoke bars, surprise packages and naked rioters.

April 01, 2002  |  by Commander Gilmore

What possible duty could give an officer more satisfaction than shutting down rogue karaoke bars? That's what the Cambodian National Police have been tasked with, and they're getting a little extra support from the Cambodian Army-tanks.

Citing years of wild drunken behavior, shootings, knifings, and truly horrible music, Prime Minister Hun Sen recently declared that enforcement efforts to date just weren't getting the job done. In a national radio address, he ordered police to search every city and town for hide-out banned karaoke bars, clean 'em out, burn 'em out, and then call in the Army to flatten the buildings with tanks.

Knowin' what we know about the terrible illness of Karaoke Madness, we're not sure if this tactic will work, but it's a good start. Today, Cambodia-tomorrow, Los Angeles and Cleveland!

They're Checking for More Than Anthrax

Even before the famous anthrax letters in the US, Interpol had their own hazardous-materials mail problem: poop-parcels.

Apparently the international police intelligence organization based in Lyons, France, has a long history of receiving hate-mail in the form of UPSed urine and "excrement express" parcels, which seems pretty bizarre, since Interpol isn't the kind of agency that goes out pinching dirtbags on the street.

One of their regular correspondents is a guy living in Miami who's been mailing "objectionable materials" to them since 1994. His latest package to Interpol was removed under tight security by a bomb squad and taken to a facility 60 miles away for examination. It was found to contain a slab of rotten meat, an empty cigarette pack, two rotten eggs, and a wad of "well-used" toilet paper.

Interpol declined to explain why the unnamed sender had a vendetta against Interpol, or why they hadn't charged him. We smell a conspiracy, and it smells, crap. C'est la vie. But we don't want to work in Interpol's mail room.

Another Case of Modern Culture Clash

Downtown N'Djamena, Chad, on a hot afternoon - hey, they're all hot in North Africa - and all the elements of an afternoon of fun and games are in place.

On one side of the street, you have a crowd of citizens protesting what appeared to be a rigged national election. On the other side, row upon row of helmeted riot police with guns and clubs. The crowd screamed and chanted, the cops moved forward menacingly.

And then it happened. The men disappeared; the remaining crowd was all women, and they all started taking off their clothes and throwing them in the street. The lines of police faltered, stumbled, and then stopped. The ladies had 'em right where they wanted 'em.

It's one thing to whup on a crowd of screaming protestors, but it's a whole different thing to thump on a buncha naked ladies, especially in a society where men must avert their eyes from uncovered women and most especially when there are news cameras rolling.

The police lines started back-pedaling, looking everywhere but at the crowd. Finally, they used tear gas to disperse the women, presumably while trying not to look directly at the protestors, but by that time everybody knew who won the encounter. And more protests-in-the-buff were being planned. Next time they expect worldwide satellite coverage.

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