Fiction Fest: Joel Narlock’s ‘Drone Games’ takes center stage

Drone Games 2x3 WEBYou’ve probably seen them, the cute little drones that bring us new and exciting views of buildings and events that we’ve never seen before. Even Amazon is talking about using them to deliver packages in the not-too-distant future. But what if drones were used to wreak havoc and terror on humanity?

Such is the plot in Joel Narlock’s new book, “Drone Games,” which will hit the market on Oct. 14.

It’s domestic terrorism as you’ve never seen it before. An al-Qaeda cell uses cutting-edge drone technology to circumvent post-9/11 airport security measures. Within eight hours, two planes crash. The President faces an unthinkable decision: ground all planes—and the economy—or keep flying and risk more deaths. Based on real-life technology, “Drone Games” is a fascinating fictional account of terrorism’s future.

Can’t wait until Oct. 14 to order your copy? You can pre-order it right now from online retailers.

EXCERPT:

From the author: While millions of Americans go about their daily lives, halfway around the world al-Qaeda hatches a deadly new terror plot. The target: US commercial aviation. It’s unthinkable in its devastation. It’s brilliantly easy in its execution. And it’s capable of bypassing all the security measures the United States has implemented in the decade since 9/11.

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“We must change the way we think, Ali,” Al-Aran said. “Our targets must be economic. Bin Laden knew this, and now Zawahiri has also reached that conclusion.” He leaned forward. “Look at the attacks in Boston and Kenya. What do we gain if a soldier with a backpack manages to break through the defenses in a US airport? A few hundred dead and perhaps one aircraft. The Americans will grieve, their president will predictably speak of healing, and then they will assess and bolster their front-end security. A completely shortsighted victory. But when multiple aircraft begin to mysteriously explode in flight, the Americans will have no choice but to close their skies and their airports. The financial impacts, even for a few days, will be fantastic. Imagine five days, or ten. What if we could clip the wings of seven thousand passenger planes indefinitely?”

The two men contemplated that for a moment—the legs of a major transportation sector broken. The economy of the United States brought to its knees once again by al-Qaeda.

“We have always known that America’s airlines are a golden target and worthy of sacrifice, but there are others. I have a soldier poised in London, a courier who has devised a completely foolproof and undetectable way to carry fifteen kilograms of dried meat—meat that is infected with bovine spongiform encephalopathy—from Heathrow to Miami, on a passenger aircraft, no less. His team will mix it with common feed pellets and then harmlessly sightsee across America, visiting cattle feedlots, pastures, and even family farms. Or perhaps he could use drones? Within a month, the raw fear generated by hundreds of confirmed outbreaks of mad cow disease will devastate the US beef industry.”

Naimi turned back to his newspaper. This was precisely what Zawahiri had been advocating in recent jihadi blogs produced by their media wing, as-Sahab: to bleed America’s economy as punishment for the continuous war on Islam and Muslims.

“When would the first aircraft fall?”

“In nineteen days,” Al-Aran answered. “Monday, May 18. Akil has selected a morning departure. I need only your approval.”

There was an extended silence, as if everyone in the café had knowledge of the conversation and was waiting for the pronouncement.

“The earth, water, and fire operations must wait,” Naimi calmly ordered. “You may attack America’s airlines.”