Sunday, October 12, 2008

Oh, Well Since You Quote The Experts...

Gordon Liddy, in Will, knows how to argue about ballistics:

Although airliner hijacking had been a problem for some time, the companies had resisted suggestions to improve security because of the costs involved. But when three huge jets worth tens of millions of dollars were blown up by the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), White House telephones sizzled with screams for help from the airlines. I was assigned to the task force that developed the "Air Marshall" program, and when the question arose concerning what armaments they should carry, the matter was referred to me.

I recommended the .357 magnum with high-velocity hollow-point ammunition. There was political resistance to the use of dumdum bullets, and I had to explain that they were far less dangerous to the innocent than solid "ball" ammunition because dumdums expanded and stayed in the target individual, expending all their energy in knocking him down, rather than going through him to hit an innocent bystander. I cited Nazi experiments using live Jews that determined one 7.9-mm solid bullet from a Mauser rifle could pass through and kill up to sixteen humans lined up in a row, and noted that while a stray solid-point round through the fuselage wouldn't result in explosive decompression of the aircraft, it might well sever a vital control cable or hyrdaulic line.

Now the point to my quoting this is not that Liddy was wrong -- actually he's right, as far as I know, about the facts of the ballistics -- but that he's always ready with the glib Nazi reference. Clearly he devoted much time and effort in studying the Nazis, but then he always was an admirer.