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MI6 Swaps Bomb Making Info With Cupcake Recipe On al-Qaeda Website 149

Posted by samzenpus
from the now-you're-cooking dept.
The British Intelligence agency has unveiled its latest weapon in the war on terror, cupcake recipes published by the Ellen DeGeneres show. MI6 hacked an online al-Queda magazine replacing instructions about how to “Make a bomb in the Kitchen of your Mom" with a web page of recipes for “The Best Cupcakes in America” from Ellen's show. From the article: "It included a recipe for the Mojito Cupcake – 'made of white rum cake and draped in vanilla buttercream'- and the Rocky Road Cupcake – 'warning: sugar rush ahead!' By contrast, the original magazine featured a recipe showing how to make a lethal pipe bomb using sugar, match heads and a miniature lightbulb, attached to a timer."
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MI6 Swaps Bomb Making Info With Cupcake Recipe On al-Qaeda Website

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  • by Mabbo (1337229) on Friday June 03, 2011 @12:19PM (#36331974)
    *puts on sunglasses* ... those cupcakes were dynamite.
  • ... British cooking. I'm not sure this was an improvement.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      I thought British cooking was banned by the Geneva Convention. WTH? Is the UK a terrorist state now?

    • by gbjbaanb (229885)

      and I've heard about American comprehension. I'm not sure you do anything to shatter the stereotype.

    • by KiloByte (825081)

      Note what the blurb says: ... recipes for “The Best Cupcakes in America”. Since it was MI6 guys doing the cracking, this says a lot.

  • Dear Al Qaeda reader,

    Have a cake on us.

    Yours,

    MI6

  • Wrong approach (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Clueless Moron (548336) on Friday June 03, 2011 @12:27PM (#36332036)
    The replacement instructions are obviously bogus and will be ignored. What would be smarter would be to subtly modify the bomb recipes so that they simply won't work, or will blow up in the terrorist's face.
    • by symes (835608)

      I guess the worry is that they'd be able to work out what the small change was, or worse inadvertantly blow themselves up and take a few unsuspecting neighbours. Plus humour is a nice way of countering the lonely disenfranchised basement dwelling types who might be attracted to this sort of thing.

      • Re:Wrong approach (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Hal_Porter (817932) on Friday June 03, 2011 @02:44PM (#36332626)

        It was funny when the nutters tried to blow up Glasgow Airport. They tried to ram an SUV full of propane and petrol into the building but got stuck between concrete bollards designed to stop ram raiders. Then set fire to themselves but were attacked by a baggage handler who gave some funny interviews. Incidentally these guys were NHS doctors which makes you wonder how competent they actually were at treating people.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Smeaton_(born_1976)#Television_interviews [wikipedia.org]

        There was much talk of failed terrorist attacks and they even had some American terrorism expert saying "these guys must have taken the short bus to terrorism school". Someone else said "maybe we're entering an era when people on fire in cars on fire get drive around and everyone just considers it normal".

        The whole terrorism thing isn't viable if people laugh at you - it will be hard to recruit people if the last lot died horribly and become a national joke.

        • by gweihir (88907)

          Ahhahahah, I remember them. Talk about being incompetent in the extreme. Probably one of the best examples for Bruce Schneier's "Portrait of the modern terrorist as an idiot."

        • Michael McIntyre (comedian) sums it up in this live performance at the Apollo theatre [youtube.com].

        • The whole terrorism thing isn't viable if people laugh at you - it will be hard to recruit people if the last lot died horribly and become a national joke.

          Adam Hills [youtube.com] on the Glassgow terror attack.

        • Incidentally these guys were NHS doctors which makes you wonder how competent they actually were at treating people.

          Well, if the rest of the NHS is anything to go by, not very. One gets what one pays for after all or less than half of what one pays for when government taxes and spends your money for you. Isn't socialism wonderful?

        • by mpe (36238)
          The whole terrorism thing isn't viable if people laugh at you - it will be hard to recruit people if the last lot died horribly

          Or in other cases didn't even manage to get the "suicide" bit right...

          and become a national joke.

          It looks an even bigger joke if the authorities appear to putting most of their efforts in to stopping these idiots when there are people operating in the UK. Responsible for the recent death of PC Kerr. Apparently able to place working bombs wherever they feel like.
      • by AHuxley (892839)
        Plus humour is a nice way of countering the lonely, disenfranchised, multilingual, basement dwelling image of people who might be attracted to joining MI6?
        Sets a new image of the service - well away from the death squads and extraordinary rendition of the distant past.
    • Good idea.

      They should have changed the instructions to the ever-popular "how to make crystals" article that regularly pops up on 4chan. Change the name to "how to make semtex" then wait for hilarity.
    • Re:Wrong approach (Score:5, Interesting)

      by mr1911 (1942298) on Friday June 03, 2011 @02:44PM (#36332624)
      You assume that wasn't done.

      If you are not absolutely sure you got in and out undetected, make it look like you are after something else is a good way to hide your true intention.
      • You might be up to something. I just heard that al-Qaeda had amazing benefits. Mi-6 might just trying to copy their benefits package
        "More proof of its corporate structure: As odd as it sounds, al-Qaida had excellent HR benefits. The seized documents showed that al-Qaida paid an unusual amount of attention to its fighters and their families. Married members were allowed to have seven days of vacation for every three weeks worked. " ( npr [npr.org])
    • Meanwhile, an attempted suicide bomber failed to detonate in front of the American Embassy in Egypt today. His cream filled cupcakes failed to explode.

    • by maxume (22995)

      They actually corrupted the PDFs. The cupcake instructions aren't even legible in a pdf viewer.

    • Beware the Deadly Cupcake!!!
  • lol rum (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mustPushCart (1871520) on Friday June 03, 2011 @12:28PM (#36332040)

    Its the extra kick in the balls when they put up an alcoholic recipe knowing fully well that its against Islam

  • I would have gone for a bacon-wrapped pork tenderloin recipe. Sort of a kick in the nuts within a kick in the nuts.
  • by ArchieBunker (132337) on Friday June 03, 2011 @12:31PM (#36332076) Homepage

    Someone post the recipe already, sounds delicious.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    It seems to me that MI6 has shown considerable insensitivity to the Muslim readers of this magazine by including alcoholic cupcakes among the recipes.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      It seems to me that you have shown considerable insensitivity to the Muslim readers of this magazine by associating Islam with a website of Al Queda. Other than the fact that they use Islam as a cover for political violence, they have no more to do with the religion than the Ku Klux Klan does with Christianity.

    • Isn't that the point?
    • It uses sugar, match heads, and a light bulb. What more information do you need? I think this might actually cause a very dangerous Streisand Effect.
      • by gweihir (88907)

        It uses sugar, match heads, and a light bulb. What more information do you need? I think this might actually cause a very dangerous Streisand Effect.

        I don't think so. Most people that need instructions on how to build a pipe bomb (any decent engineer or physical scientist should not) end up blowing themselves up because of stupidity. My personal favorite is one guy in Germany a decade or two past, that filled a steel pipe with black powder and then tried to hammer the end shut. Needless to say that was not a good idea. I think he survived though, minus a few hard to replace body parts.

        So I am all for keeping pipe-bomb recipes on the web, it cuts down on

      • but... those are all common ingredients in modern breakfast cereals!

        • Well, why do you think they were made so popular? Come invasion tomorrow, we're fully prepared for guerilla warfare! ~
    • Well, I tried to make a batch of cupcakes from the Ellen Degeneres site, and my stove exploded. Maybe you should start looking there.

  • Who said those limey British bastards at MI6 don’t have a sense of humor?
  • SWEEEET!
  • are to die for...
  • Now they will be putting pipe bombs in cupcakes.
  • Did MI-6 properly license the copyright to the recipe from WarnerBros (the producers of the Ellen Degeneres Show).

    Will WarnerBros pursue MI-6, who will disavow all knowledge? or perhaps the alQueda site for re-publishing the recipe without permission?

    • Re:Copyright? (Score:5, Informative)

      by julesh (229690) on Friday June 03, 2011 @01:07PM (#36332274)

      Will WarnerBros pursue MI-6, who will disavow all knowledge?

      They wouldn't even respond. MI6 (or rather SIS... MI6 was a name used by the media to refer to the organization when its existence was a badly kept secret but nobody knew what it was actually called) enjoys crown immunity [wikipedia.org] from prosecution (except for tort or contract violations -- copyright violations are neither).

  • how to make a lethal pipe bomb using sugar, match heads and a miniature lightbulb,

    It might be more lethal if it contained an oxidizer.

    Just sayin'

    • that's what the bleach is for

      you take the... oof... OUCH! stop th-

      ~CARRIER SIGNAL LOST~

    • It might be more lethal if it contained an oxidizer.

      You mean something like pottasium chlorate, the main ingredient in match heads?

      • by julesh (229690)

        It might be more lethal if it contained an oxidizer.

        You mean something like pottasium chlorate, the main ingredient in match heads?

        Yes, only in enough quantity to oxidize the sugar, not just the fuel in the match heads.

      • by mpe (36238)
        You mean something like pottasium chlorate, the main ingredient in match heads?

        You'd need rather a lot of match heads. Before you'd have any chance of combining with sugar to make any sort of explosive.
  • by ArhcAngel (247594) on Friday June 03, 2011 @01:00PM (#36332256)
    Did anyone else read the headline and think that MI6 had given Al Qaeda bomb plans in return for a cupcake recipe?
    • Did anyone else read the headline and think that MI6 had given Al Qaeda bomb plans in return for a cupcake recipe?

      That's exactly what happened. Only thing is, the explosive will not blow up and the cupcake recipe contains a powerful laxative.

    • Yes, and having eaten Britsh food I can understand why.
  • instead of instructions about how to “Make a bomb in the Kitchen of your Mom” by “The AQ Chef” they were greeted with garbled computer code. The code, which had been inserted into the original magazine by the British intelligence hackers, was actually a web page of recipes

    So it sounds like this was an attempt at inserting recipes, and the result was actually raw HTML. Still accomplishes the DELETE PIPE BOMBS mission, but probably didn't get much more than an eyebrow-raise from the

  • by michelcolman (1208008) on Friday June 03, 2011 @02:36PM (#36332544)
    They swapped the recipies? I sure hope they copied the cupcake recipe to the Al Qaeda website and left the recipe on Ellen's website unchanged!
  • by Aaron_Pike (528044) on Friday June 03, 2011 @02:37PM (#36332552) Homepage
    The cupcake is a fib.
  • It should have been a doughnut post. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Doughnut_Day [wikipedia.org]> National Doughnut Day
  • Up Next: "Suspicious package found in airport discovered to be cupcakes connected to detonator"

  • by papasui (567265)
    The best bombs are made with love.
  • Put up recipes for bacon-wrapped scallops and for bacon cheese burgers. I just can't see how they could stay Muslim.

  • by kat_skan (5219) on Friday June 03, 2011 @04:33PM (#36333432)

    Al-Qaeda: What happen?
    Mechanic: Someone set us cup the cake.
    Operator: We get sprinkles.
    Al-Qaeda: What!
    Operator: Microwave turn on.
    Al-Qaeda: It's you!!
    MI6: How are you gentlemen!!
    MI6: All your bomb are belong to us.

    • by Threni (635302)

      > Mechanic: Someone set us cup the cake.

      Sigh...even the parodies are wrong. That would be:

      Mechanic: Someone set cup us the cake.

  • How long until there's a DMCA take-down notice for posting recipes from Ellen's show? Who gets the notice, MI6 or al-Qaeda?

  • ... was a lie?
  • We are here at an online al-Queda magazine webserver, where we've secretly replaced the bomb recipes they usually serve with Folgers Crystals. Let's see if anyone can tell the difference!
  • ...an advertisement for GitHub alongside this article.

    ("How to make a bomb" [fork me on GitHub!])

    Yes, cyberwarfare is an important part of tackling problems with terrorism, however I'm not really sure if replacing content wholesale like this is actually that useful of an idea.

    Wouldn't it be more effective to just tweak the bomb recipe so that it would subtly fail? If you replace a bomb recipe with one for cupcakes, no committed suicide bomber is going to stay and whip up some buttercream frosting instead

  • I remember seeing another article [publicintelligence.net] nearly a full year ago about this, but it was much more informational and less sensational. Now, it seems that this was all an operation by the good ole US. Imagine that.

    I'm more inclined to believe that the entire thing, including the original magazine, was a psyops project. Looking at it the way the Public Intelligence does is far less non-nonsensical than wasted efforts altering a file that is likely to have an offline original copy somewhere when you could just..

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