Lard: Stops Suicide Bombers, Could Stop Pirates?

Several years ago, Israeli officials suggested using lard to deter suicide bombers, by placing containers of the rendered pig fat in buses and other popular targets of suicide attacks; the reasoning was that the threat of coming into contact with such an “unclean” substance would deter the predominantly Muslim suicide bombers. It’s not clear that the plan was ever implemented, so the effectiveness, if any, of this ploy is hard to gauge, but suicide bombings in Israel are down in recent years.

Now, some boffin somewhere wants to use lard to deter pirates, as well.

Maritime security expert Anthony M. Davis suggests, in an article on piracy rules-of-engagement:

“Personally, I would consider coating a portion of the decks where a pirate would likely climb aboard with a thick, biodegradable coating of lard. Once someone slips and falls in that mess, they can be an easy target to take them down.”

Obviously, there are unresolved details still to be worked out (who’s going to “take them down”, and how – and what do you do with a captured pirate, anyway?), but I suppose it has about as much promise as any of the other ideas being bandied about. And, let’s face it, it has the virtue of being cheap…

Thoughts? 🙂

Published in: Geekiness, General, Security | on December 9th, 2008| 6 Comments »

Both comments and pings are currently closed.


  1. On 12/9/2008 at 7:36 pm tess Said:

    besides — being highly amusing both when the act hits the deck, and trying to retain the catch!

  2. On 12/11/2008 at 10:40 am af Said:

    Sounds neat. Although when I read “what do you do with a captured pirate” I broke out into a sea shanty (a la what do you do with a drunken sailor).

  3. On 12/11/2008 at 10:57 am foo Said:

    Who will take them down? Maybe hired mercenaries?

    What to do with them?

    What, oh what, could we do with someone like that? We are at sea… we are surrounded with water, and there is no place we could put a…


  4. On 12/11/2008 at 12:11 pm Nemo Said:

    Foo: If you read the article, you’ll see there are some fairly major challenges to putting “hired mercenaries” onboard ships.

    And, while summary execution of pirates sounds like an effective tactic, I’m sure the bleeding-hearts of the world would object. I know it was semi-rhetorical, but, really, what do you do with a captured Somali pirate? You obviously can’t hand them over to what passes for a government in Somalia…

  5. On 12/12/2008 at 4:16 am Simm Said:

    Then there’s the whole crossing the atlantic-rough seas-washed overboard cause some idiot greased the decks thing…

  6. On 12/12/2008 at 11:22 am Nemo Said:

    Simm: “Lard friendly fire”? 🙂