Anatomy of an Assassination

Hold the fuck up.
This is too crazy not to post.
An video of an alleged multi-person hit team, plotting and carrying out an assassination in Dubai.
I came across this at Wired and subsequently in the New York Times.

As someone that reads a fair amount of non-fiction international intelligence and covert operations¬† books, this was breathtaking. Even if you allow for the possibility that some or all of it may not be true, I couldn’t peel my eyes away for the 27+ minutes.

The Wired piece discussed more of the specifics of how this allegedly was carried out. They also pointed out (thank god) the hole in this theory/accusation that you could drive an 18-wheeler through.

I liked the NYT piece because it covered possible political ramifications between countries. And it got extra points for including a quote about passports in a phonebooth… Or maybe I get credit for knowing the reference.

I thought it was interesting because when it comes to international covert operations, you never really can tell the truth from the intentional misdirection. (ProPublica just ran this piece the other day, suggesting “a 50 percent accuracy rate in an intelligence story was pretty good.”) Even when viewing the video for the first time in awe, I thought it was absolutely possible that the mere suggestion of what it was, coupled with some editing and zero percent truth or fact, could lead me to the same conclusion about this alleged assassination squad and their plotting, shadowing, executing and disappearance. The NYT piece went so far as to call the team “clumsy.” Was the team a bunch of bungling agents, or is it simply a sign of the times that an entire assassination plot would be caught on tape in a place like Dubai?

It’s interesting how something such as a videotape, while once thought to be ironclad proof, now often evokes more questions than answers and is rarely the last word.