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Old 12-02-2019, 06:39 AM
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Bringing a narwhal to a knife fight - London "terrorist" attack


I haven't seen a thread about this yet, much to my surprise, but in case you missed it, here is the Wikipedia summary (because I'm too lazy to do my own recap):
Quote:
On 29 November 2019, a man on licence from jail, where he had been held for terrorist offences, stabbed five people in Central London, killing two.

The attacker was attending an offender rehabilitation conference in Fishmongers' Hall when he threatened to detonate what turned out to be a fake suicide vest and started attacking people with two knives taped to his wrists, killing two of the conference participants. Several attendees fought back, some attacking Khan with a fire extinguisher and a narwhal tusk as he fled the building, emerging on London Bridge where he was partially disarmed by a plain-clothes police officer. He was restrained by members of the public until additional police officers arrived, pulled away those restraining him, and shot him dead.
I'm guessing several of you did the same doubletake I did. Yes, that's right - a narwhal tusk. Despite being stabbed three times, a Polish chef at Fishmongers' Hall pulled a five-foot narwhal tusk off the wall (which was there for decoration) and chased the attacker, pushing him away with it to keep him away from anyone while another bystander sprayed the attacker with a fire extinguisher to disorient him.

While crazy extremists remain a blight on civilised society and I can only express condolences to the families of the two people who died from their stab wounds (and the three others, including Lucasz the chef, who were wounded), one has to marvel at the sheer grit of the general public in this country who up with this sort of shit will not put. Defeating a terrorist with a narwhal tusk is frankly the best thing I've seen since the attempted 2007 attack on Glasgow airport, where despite the would-be terrorist driving a jeep filled with flammable gas cylinders and, more importantly, despite the terrorist being literally on fire, a baggage handler saw fit to run up to him anyway and kick him in the groin so hard he tore a tendon in his foot. Because that's how they roll in Glasgow.
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Old 12-02-2019, 06:47 AM
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The tusks certainly look lethal.
https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.mnn...-narwhals-tusk

Good choice for a weapon grabbed off a wall.

I admire the grit that these people showed against the terrorist. It certainly helped save lives.

Last edited by aceplace57; 12-02-2019 at 06:50 AM.
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Old 12-02-2019, 06:50 AM
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There's a good picture here of the combined tusk and fire extinguisher defense, which ought to be visible above the paywall line.
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Old 12-02-2019, 07:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Gyrate View Post
Defeating a terrorist with a narwhal tusk is frankly the best thing I've seen since the attempted 2007 attack on Glasgow airport, where despite the would-be terrorist driving a jeep filled with flammable gas cylinders and, more importantly, despite the terrorist being literally on fire, a baggage handler saw fit to run up to him anyway and kick him in the groin so hard he tore a tendon in his foot. Because that's how they roll in Glasgow.
I followed your link and saw this bit:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wikipedia
On 18 December 2007, it was announced that Smeaton was to be awarded the Queen's Gallantry Medal for his actions;
The idea of the Queen awarding a medal for kicking someone in the balls made me laugh. The quotes from Smeaton's TV interviews are priceless as well.
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Old 12-02-2019, 07:10 AM
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The guy who kicked the burning terrorist in the nuts was a taxi driver called Alex McIlveen. Smeaton usually gets the credit though.

https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/entert...irport-9662053
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Old 12-02-2019, 07:42 AM
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The guy who kicked the burning terrorist in the nuts was a taxi driver called Alex McIlveen. Smeaton usually gets the credit though.

https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/entert...irport-9662053
I stand corrected. As indeed did the person who injured their foot kicking a burning terrorist in the groin.
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Old 12-02-2019, 09:26 AM
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I watched the news clip of the battle of improvised weapons against the London terrorist. I cheered every single time!

The fire extinguisher was brilliant. It had the added feature that the extinguisher itself could be used to bonk the attacker over the head.

But the narwhal tusk! The creativity, the cachet! Perhaps people will be curious enough to research narwhals, and discover this "unicorn whale."

Hooray for Londoners for fighting back!


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Old 12-02-2019, 10:17 AM
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The Scots were legendary fighters. The Scottish units in WWII were very respected.

Last edited by aceplace57; 12-02-2019 at 10:19 AM.
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Old 12-02-2019, 10:29 AM
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I'm wondering about the end of the confrontation. They had him restrained and disarmed, they had multiple officers on the scene, and then they shot him?
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Old 12-02-2019, 10:31 AM
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I'm wondering about the end of the confrontation. They had him restrained and disarmed, they had multiple officers on the scene, and then they shot him?
My question, as well.
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Old 12-02-2019, 10:43 AM
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I'm wondering about the end of the confrontation. They had him restrained and disarmed, they had multiple officers on the scene, and then they shot him?
Yes, It was reported that he had a fake explosive vest on. I'm pretty squeamish about shooting rather than capturing alive, even when he had already killed but in those circumstances I think the risks are too great to allow him enough time to trigger it.

The fact that it turned out to fake is irrelevant.
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Old 12-02-2019, 10:43 AM
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I'm wondering about the end of the confrontation. They had him restrained and disarmed, they had multiple officers on the scene, and then they shot him?
One of the intervening civilians said in an interview that the perp had one knife basically duct-taped to his hand, and I don't know when that was taken away from him (before or after being shot).

There was also the fake bomb vest the perp was wearing. I'm not sure when they discovered it was fake (probably after the cops shot him).

Bottom line, it's not clear that they disarmed him before shooting him.
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Old 12-02-2019, 10:51 AM
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He had a knife taped to at least one hand. Was the taped knife gone before they shot him? The way I read it, they had gotten the un-taped knife away but someone was just restraining the taped knife arm.
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Old 12-02-2019, 11:03 AM
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I believe it's standard protocol where there is a bomb vest involved - there's no guarantee it's fake without close inspection, and the risks of close inspection (to both public and police) are too great. It's a horrible necessity as things currently stand.
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Old 12-02-2019, 11:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Gyrate View Post
the person who injured their foot kicking a burning terrorist in the groin.
...must've created one hell of a headache for the poor health care worker who had to code their injury under ICD-10 guidelines.

I'm sort of confused why the OP felt the need to put the word terrorist in "scare quotes" but the narwhal tusk makes for an extra feel-good story.
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Old 12-02-2019, 11:14 AM
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That does make it more reasonable, and I certainly don't expect them to determine that it was fake in the heat of the moment. But even if it were a real bomb, they don't know how it's triggered. I'd be worried about a deadman's switch.
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Old 12-02-2019, 11:43 AM
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I'm sort of confused why the OP felt the need to put the word terrorist in "scare quotes" but the narwhal tusk makes for an extra feel-good story.
Because he had a fake vest, mostly. I mean, you can still carry out a terrorist attack with knives but it's rather pathetic.
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Old 12-02-2019, 11:58 AM
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That does make it more reasonable, and I certainly don't expect them to determine that it was fake in the heat of the moment. But even if it were a real bomb, they don't know how it's triggered. I'd be worried about a deadman's switch.
I think the calculation goes along the lines of.....

-if it is a deadman switch and we shoot him we are fucked
-if it is a deadman switch and we don't shoot him we are fucked
-if it is a manual trigger and we don't shoot him we are fucked
-if it is a manual trigger and we shoot him we may not be fucked

The only real chance to not be fucked (assuming a real vest and a real intention to use it) involves shooting the terrorist.
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Old 12-02-2019, 01:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Machine Elf View Post
One of the intervening civilians said in an interview that the perp had one knife basically duct-taped to his hand, and I don't know when that was taken away from him (before or after being shot).

There was also the fake bomb vest the perp was wearing. I'm not sure when they discovered it was fake (probably after the cops shot him).

Bottom line, it's not clear that they disarmed him before shooting him.
It was also reported that he pulled back his jacket to show the bomb vest, indicating, I suppose, that he was neither subdued nor compliant. Under those circumstances I can understand why he was shot.
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Old 12-02-2019, 05:40 PM
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FYI the tusk is technically a tooth (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Narwhal#Tusk). Definitely a "cool" improvised weapon

Brian
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Old 12-02-2019, 05:57 PM
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Because he had a fake vest, mostly. I mean, you can still carry out a terrorist attack with knives but it's rather pathetic.
Two people I died - I think that means you should have skipped the scare quotes. Just because the guy was an inept terrorist doesn't mean he wasn't a terrorist. I mean, heck, he killed more people than the underwear bomber who set his crotch on fire on board an airplane.

Daaesh/ISIS/whatever we're calling them this week basically want to scare people into converting to their brand of Islam. Apparently, they haven't realize that "scared" is not the same as "cowering", "paralyzed", or "panicked". Apparently, in the UK "scared" is synonymous with "pissed as hell and we're going to f*** you up". Go ahead, scare the British, you'll get people shoving a narwhal tusk in your face, kicking you while you're not only down but on fire, and in general saying "bring it on!"

Last edited by Broomstick; 12-02-2019 at 05:58 PM.
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Old 12-03-2019, 05:33 AM
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Two people I died - I think that means you should have skipped the scare quotes. Just because the guy was an inept terrorist doesn't mean he wasn't a terrorist. I mean, heck, he killed more people than the underwear bomber who set his crotch on fire on board an airplane.
Okay, I agree. I'm not emotionally invested in the scare quotes.

Quote:
Daaesh/ISIS/whatever we're calling them this week basically want to scare people into converting to their brand of Islam. Apparently, they haven't realize that "scared" is not the same as "cowering", "paralyzed", or "panicked". Apparently, in the UK "scared" is synonymous with "pissed as hell and we're going to f*** you up". Go ahead, scare the British, you'll get people shoving a narwhal tusk in your face, kicking you while you're not only down but on fire, and in general saying "bring it on!"
Captain Narwhal there was actually Polish, but the point stands. Plus, as we learned in WWII, Poles in Britain are not to be fucked with at all.

And speaking of Captain Narwhal and Poles in Britain, I'm enjoying this cartoon today.
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Old 12-03-2019, 07:16 AM
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I followed your link and saw this bit:



The idea of the Queen awarding a medal for kicking someone in the balls made me laugh. The quotes from Smeaton's TV interviews are priceless as well.
Goodness gracious!
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Old 12-03-2019, 07:20 AM
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I believe it's standard protocol where there is a bomb vest involved - there's no guarantee it's fake without close inspection, and the risks of close inspection (to both public and police) are too great. It's a horrible necessity as things currently stand.
Plus it cuts down on available victims for the Wicker Man Festival.
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Old 12-03-2019, 09:37 AM
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Bringing a narwhal to a knife fight ...
Having clicked on this, I'm slightly disappointed to find that the weapon was merely a narwhal tusk.

This was clearly a clever, effective and commendable choice. But I think we can agree that bringing the whole narwhal would have been more badass.
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Old 12-03-2019, 10:03 AM
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The extinguisher was brilliant, but the narwahl tusk was inspired! Two brave civilians stepped into the fray, and brought whatever was at hand? Bravo!


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Old 12-03-2019, 10:14 AM
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While the bravery of the police etc during these events is without questions at least they are trained, somewhat expecting something and have support, weapons etc.

These civilians where just going about their day and then were faced with death, blood and fear. They stood up and showed who they really are. We'd all like to think we'd do the same but until it happens nobody knows. These men do know now and they should be all awarded for their bravery and potential self sacrifice. On a different day with a different bastard they may have been dealing with a real vest. I'm humbled by them and their actions.

Last edited by yojimbo; 12-03-2019 at 10:15 AM.
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Old 12-03-2019, 10:34 AM
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"It had the virtue of never being tried"

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Old 12-03-2019, 10:38 AM
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But the narwhal tusk! The creativity, the cachet! Perhaps people will be curious enough to research narwhals, and discover this "unicorn whale."
Narwhals actually are a "thing," at least here among my kids. The other day I heard my 5 and 3 year old talking about narwhals and I wondered how in the hell they knew about them, but they've apparently hit the mainstream, at least with young girls.
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Old 12-03-2019, 11:27 AM
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So, what the hell is a "Narwhal Tusk"?

Awesome! I think they should have "Narwhal Tusk" jousting tournaments.
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Old 12-03-2019, 11:31 AM
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I aspire to be the kind of GM who sics the players against a knife-wielding terrorist, and when a player says, "You said we're near a Fishmonger's museum? Is there like a narwhal tusk on the wall that I can grab?" I say, "Absolutely!"
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Old 12-03-2019, 12:19 PM
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The extinguisher was brilliant, but the narwahl tusk was inspired! Two brave civilians stepped into the fray, and brought whatever was at hand? Bravo!
There was also a third unarmed man who merely pummeled the bejeezus out of the terrorist with his fists once he was down on the ground (pithily dubbed "The Pedestrian" in the cartoon I linked to above).
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Old 12-03-2019, 12:27 PM
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Narwhals actually are a "thing," at least here among my kids. The other day I heard my 5 and 3 year old talking about narwhals and I wondered how in the hell they knew about them, but they've apparently hit the mainstream, at least with young girls.
I have the perfect Christmas gift suggestion for them.

[Fun nature fact*: the narwhal is the natural enemy of the koala]


*may not be an actual fact
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Old 12-03-2019, 12:32 PM
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Narwhals actually are a "thing," at least here among my kids. The other day I heard my 5 and 3 year old talking about narwhals and I wondered how in the hell they knew about them, but they've apparently hit the mainstream, at least with young girls.
If you think about it, they're stereotypical young-girl cuteness overload fare: a unicorn dolphin. SQEEE!

My 8-year-old is still young enough to be susceptible.
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Old 12-03-2019, 12:39 PM
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If you think about it, they're stereotypical young-girl cuteness overload fare: a unicorn dolphin. SQEEE!

My 8-year-old is still young enough to be susceptible.
Exactly. I was in Target the other day and saw at least two narwhal related items. Here's a link of "narwhal" hits from their website.
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Old 12-03-2019, 08:53 PM
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England set to ban narwhal tusks (tooths) in 5...4...3...2...

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Old 12-03-2019, 09:20 PM
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The Narwhals Song
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