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French FNARRista speed-cam bomber scores own goal

Exploding ping-pong ball cracks him off at the wrist

The smart choice: opportunity from uncertainty

A French postal worker and alleged speed-camera bomber reportedly had both hands blown off by one of his own improvised bombs yesterday, at his flat in Clichy-La-Garenne to the west of Paris.

The Telegraph reports that an unnamed post office employee, 41, is suspected by police of belonging to a mysterious group variously referred to as the Front Nationale Anti Radar or Faction Nationaliste Armée Révolutionnaire. The bomber was said to have exclaimed "I am from the FNAR*," when fireman-paramedics arrived at his flat following the explosion.

A post-office colleague of his was also arrested, and the injured man was said to be in "critical" condition following the blast. The local mayor reportedly said that 12 "sticks of dynamite"** were found at the flat, and the Telegraph adds that there were also "ping pong balls that are used to increase the strength of an explosion"**.

The FNAR* is thought to be responsible for blowing up a number of radar-equipped speed cameras in the vicinity of Paris. It has apparently demanded a "total stop" to immigration, tax cuts, a more laissez-faire atmosphere in motoring enforcement, and €4m. In exchange, the FNAR's cam-bombing campaign would cease.

Interior minister Michèle Alliot-Marie said that “multiple clues” indicated that the bomber was a FNARRista. Indeed, given the apparently rather limited nature of the group's activities and arsenal, he may have constituted much of its membership.

Somewhat less from the Telegraph here. ®

Bootnotes

*We would like to suggest the addition of the word "Radical", for obvious artistic reasons.

**Technical note from the Reg bomb-disposal desk: Sticks of actual dynamite would be a rare find, as it hasn't been made or used widely for decades. There are various kinds of pyrotechnics, fireworks etc. in tube-and-igniferous-fuse format which would be likelier given the apparent nature of the case. Certainly, if the bomber in question had any genuine high explosives it would be silly to fill ping-pong ball bombs with them. Ping-pong or golfball "bombs" normally have ordinary combustibles packed inside to make a louder pop. About the only way to hurt yourself with devices of this sort is to wrap your hand around them before they go off, or expose your eyes to them.

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