Don’t Look at New York in That Tone of Voice



New Yorkers may not have the best reputation, but there’s no denying that we got the smarts to somehow keep this “ungovernable city” humming. That can generate some resentment.

Here’s an example: In 2009, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, an Iraqi citizen held prisoner at a US-controlled detention facility in Iraq, was released by the Iraqi government. That was under an agreement signed the year before by everyone’s favorite president and super-smart Decider, George W. Bush.

Upon this guy’s release from that detention facility – according to US Army Col. Kenneth King – al-Baghdadi said, “I’ll see you guys in New York.”

But this turns out to be something more than the usual “Give my regards to Broadway” kind of statement. Although it wasn’t seen as a threat at the time and Liberty Travel agents were probably scrambling to get his phone number, everything is different now.

Turns out this al-Baghdadi character is the leader of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). This is the same group that has claimed responsibility for the mass executions of 1,700 Iraqi government soldiers, the horrifying images of which have been bloodying the pages of American newspapers of late. (Warning: graphic content.)

Taken at face value, and there’s no reason not to, the mass executions by ISIS are among “the worst atrocities in the region,” surpassing the Syrian chemical weapons attacks that killed 1,400 people.

So… back to that part where the leader of all this bloody hell says, “See you in New York.”

New York City is almost too used to terrorism attacks. (Need we list them?) And psychotic villains threatening us are, of course, nothing new. But New Yorkers aren’t exactly the kind of people you should mess with. Never were.

Remember, way back in 1942, in Casablanca, when the Nazi Major Strasser toyed with American expatriate Rick Blaine, asking him if he could imagine Nazis occupying the greatest city in America? Rick’s reply was succinct:  “There are certain sections of New York, Major, that I wouldn’t advise you to invade.”

Is it any different now? New Yorkers foil evil plots every day. Whether our dry cleaners, tap-dancing neighbors, bank tellers or Donald Trump concoct them, we’ve usually got what it takes to put those criminal masterminds in their place. We’re famous for our wit and ingenuity. SO: If Iraqi terrorists attacked tomorrow, what crafty thing would today’s New Yorkers do? What do YOU think?


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