by Kenneth M. Kapp
In the course of three years, fifteen explosions ripped through rallies and marches sponsored by left-leaning groups – from Native American marches and BLM demonstrations, to Save the Whale and Protect Our Wild Rivers rallies. When someone leaked that Turkish Delight wrappers with traces of TNT and lipstick were found on the site of some of the explosions, the Dailies dubbed the terrorist Ms. TNT.
It was clear that the perp was more than capable with TNT. The FBI brain-stormed the significance of the candy wrapper. There was discussion as to whether they were planted on purpose. When someone pointed out that fragments of the candy wrapper were not found at all of the sites, another agent quipped, “Well, they could have been blown away, don’t you think?” he was glared down by the senior officer in charge and later transferred to a post in Miami.
However, they could not ignore the evidence. Wrappers of Turkish Delight, of one flavour or another, were recovered at 86% of the explosion sites; far too many to be dismissed as random or just someone with a sweet tooth who gets excited by big explosions.
One agent suggested that maybe this had something to do with a series of novels by C. S. Lewis, The Chronicles of Narnia, where a doctored sweet is offered to Edmund Pevensie by the White Witch.
Another suggested that the secret was locked in the confection, the lokum, a gel of starch and sugar with adjuncts of chopped dates or nuts. “Maybe it has something to do with the rosewater flavouring?”
A linguist sitting in the back of one briefing said they should look for a Romanian operative mocking the American left, since in Romania these confections were called rahat, an abbreviation of the Arabic rahat ul-holkum used to describe the confection. “Gentlemen, in Romania, it’s a euphemism for crap.”
No one disputed that peaceful demonstrations or rallies sponsored by liberal organisations were being bombed using TNT and people were being killed. The BMC (Big Man in Charge) couldn’t risk ignoring any possibility and assigned three of the junior officers to dig deeper.
They noted that the largest explosion occurred at a demonstration against the current Turkish President, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, and the next largest at protests against Supreme Leader of North Korea, Kim Jong-un. Fearing a domestic terrorist with a strong connection to Turkey, they culled lists of leftwing Turkish-Americans, putting their vitals in a file labeled “Candy Tooth.” They also added the names of any upper echelon diplomats who had served in Turkey together with the names of family members over the age of twenty.
These names were then run through a CIA programme designed to identify potential terrorists. Three families were identified as “Of Interest.” The Thark-Nortons were on the top of the list. The Hon. Thadeus Thark-Norton had been a cultural attaché with the American Embassy in Ankara. He was appointed by President Reagan, kept on by President Bush, but asked to resign by President Clinton in 1995. Thadeus’ daughter was born in 1985 and named Halide after Halide Edib Adıvar, much admired by Thark-Norton for protecting the status of the ruling classes. She also was a staunch supporter of the boarding schools for Armenian children which were similar to the infamous residential schools for Native Americans in the United States and Canada.
Once relieved of his diplomatic posting, the Thark-Nortons returned to the family plantation in Mississippi. Halide learned at her father’s knee and grew up convinced that some people are better than others. She also learned to shoot and ride. The students in her private school gave her wide berth, saying she was like dynamite and, behind her back, called her Ms. TNT, since she had boasted of blowing up the “outbacks” of some sharecroppers. Later, when questioned, one roommate recalled her fondness for Turkish Delight candies, and said she was in the habit of leaving the wrappers wherever they might fall.
The search for Ms. Thark-Norton began in earnest after an explosion at a voter registration rally outside of Atlanta. A wrapper was found and this time they were able to remove a finger print that matched one from Halide Thark-Norton that was on file from her father’s diplomatic days.
There were already numerous rumours on the dark net and ultra-right about “a Turkish Delight that was giving a fright to all those not on the right.” The FBI guessed that she was getting support from groups like the Proud Boys.
They didn’t think she was aware they were looking for her and thought it best to keep it a secret. There were two major liberal rallies coming up. They would lie in wait. They were reasonably sure that the rally scheduled for Native American Rights in Bde Maka Ska Park in Minneapolis would be her next target. They brought in a large undercover force and distributed her picture and operating profile. They were convinced that, as in the past, she would plant dynamite under the speakers’ platform.
They were a day late but not a dollar short. A close inspection the night before the rally found sticks of dynamite wired and planted under the speakers’ platform. These they disarmed but left in place, knowing that she would have to be in proximity to detonate them the next day. They would be on the look-out. They even arranged for additional support including police kayakers to be present on the Lake. No way was she going to escape their net.
Overnight, clouds moved in and by late morning, there was a steady rain turning to a drizzle. The rally went on as scheduled at 1p.m., albeit with a reduced crowd. The BMC calculated that Ms. Dud, as he now referred to Halide Thark-Norton, aka Ms. TNT, would probably wait until about 1:30, when the crowd would be at its peak. That was when the featured speaker was scheduled to go on. There were multiple drones circling, with cameras scanning the crowds and boats.
The BMC was in the command center. Software was monitoring images, analysing any unusual movement.One kayak was flagged. It started close to shore, two-hundred yards out, but ever since 1:20, it had been cutting across the water in a straight line to the speakers’ stand. Every couple of strokes, the paddler stopped and played with something sitting on the skirt of the kayak. Facial recognition software finally flagged the kayaker – it was Ms. TNT!
The alarm went out. She was quickly surrounded, and in the struggle that ensued, dumped in the water. The speaker was informed and explained to the crowd that the infamous Ms. TNT had now been defused.
When questioned why she tried to get closer, she said she was afraid the rain had caused a problem and that if she got closer, a stronger signal would be able to detonate the TNT.
The liberal papers had their own say and ended their articles printing the following moral:
The Turkish Delight and the fight by the right should learn that it’s not a drizzle that caused the fizzle but the truth and the voting booth.