Worst job in the world: Recruiter for Al-Qaeda.
Let's face it, you're hardly going to have the best of West End offices with beanbags and a giant Jenga set, are you? More likely, you're going to be working from a cave in the middle of nowhere, or worse still, Yorkshire.
Mr Angry recently wrote his thoughts on this very subject, and not to be outdone, I've
Let us compare and contrast current and previous Reigns of Terror.
Frankly, back in the old days of the IRA, you knew where you stood as a terrorist recruiter. You'd be getting yourself young hardworking lads of a particularly cruel/enlightened*, murderous/heroic* bent who'd think nothing of bombing pubs full of civilians/legitimate targets*, shooting some bloke/legitimate target* in front of his family or torturing captured squaddies/legitimate targets* to death. But they'd be committed to the cause, and they only way they'd end up dead would be if they did something particularly dim-witted/courageous*, like starve themselves to death/ascend to martyrdom for the cause*.
Don't get me wrong. They weren't golden days by any means. They were shit. For a start, the bastards blew up my 13th birthday present, and I've never forgiven Gerry Adams. I work with a number of people who served in Northern Ireland and equal numbers who lived there who saw the full horror.
These new-fangled Al-Qaeda terrorists are a different kettle of fish. When you got a potential terrorist/freedom fighter* through the door, they'd say "Oh aye, I'd die for the cause", and you knew they didn't really mean it. In fact, they would much rather somebody else died for the cause, such as Earl Mountbatten.
The cause being, of course, to share power with Ian Paisley under a London-based democratically-elected government. Funny old world.
These days they cut out the whole reign of terror bit and go straight to the martyrdom. That's the impatient "Me" generation for you.
So, full circle, and there are groups of determined lunatics running about trying to kill us all TO DEATH again. And, as noted many times in the past, the current crop are just a bit disappointing. Shit, really. A sad indictment of the malaise afflicting our society since New Labour came to power.
In truth, Al-Qaeda's UK volunteers did record one spectacular success in the 7th July bombings, a nasty bit of work that probably made it harder for their followers to work in this country or across Europe. But when you note that their success, and their subsequent spectacular failure are known for their dates - 7/7 and 21/7 - the work of the Provos and their equally determined Loyalist opposite numbers all melds into one, dreadful murderous whole lasting decades because their operatives tended not to rub themselves out of the equation.
And there's the nub.
Recruiter: "Are you prepared to die for the cause?"
Terrorist: "Yes. Yes I am."
Recruiter: "Here's ten pounds of chapatti flour and a five gallon drum of hair bleach. Off you go then."
It's a self-rectifying problem. They're prepared to die for a cause. They die. They will not repeat offend. The number of available terrorists/freedom fighters/flash little twerps* tends to zero very quickly. Or in the case of any post 7/7 bomber, they get caught and spend the rest of their lives in Belmarsh Prison, getting bummed stupid by former IRA men.
Terrorist recruiter: Shit job.
Hardly a career, is it?
* Delete according to your political beliefs