|(Sydney, Australia) – Police today ended the two-day standoff at a downtown café which saw an armed individual take 17 average, ordinary, everyday Australians hostage for personal gain.
For the record, hostage-taking is not on the Lindt Chocolat Café’s menu.
Self-styled Islamic cleric and Iranian refugee Han Haron Monis (also known as “Sheik Haron” and “Mohammad Hassan Manteghi”) was killed as police stormed the café and freed most of the hostages. Additionally, two hostages were killed and several were injured during the rescue attempt.
The 50-year-old’s grievance may have been with the Australian government’s role in assisting the United States with its war in Afghanistan.
“Or he simply may have been insane,” said a spokesman for Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, speaking on condition of anonymity.
While not yet ruled an Islamic Fundamentalist terror attack, two hostages were forced to hold up a black flag with Arabic writing during the siege. Apparently patterned after the flag of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) (also known as “Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL)” and “Islamic State (IS)” and “Al-Qaeda in Iraq”), the text was translated as “There is no God but Allah” and “Muhammad is the messenger of God” by Australian authorities. However, this translation is in dispute – as are Monis’ motives.
“This had nothing to do with Islamic Fundamentalism,” said an ISIS spokesman, speaking on condition of anonymity. “Han Haron Monis is not one of us. He’s nuts – even too nuts for us.”
Moreover, some have deciphered the black flag’s text as “Please Don’t Kill the Bloomin’ Onion” and “Curse You, Outback Steakhouse!” The restaurant chain recently announced the possibility of removing its signature appetizer from its menu, citing sagging demand.
The Central Intelligence Agency was having none of this.
“Give us a break!” exclaimed a CIA spokesman, speaking on condition of anonymity. “It’s terrorism, and it has nothing to do with food. Hey, we like the Bloomin’ Onion as much as anyone else. But removing something from a menu isn’t an excuse to riot or loot or take hostages.
“Besides, it has to be Islamic Fundamentalist terrorism. We’d look pretty silly waterboarding someone over something as simple as an appetizer.”