Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Hardware Malfunction Impedes Diplomacy

The following showed up on the BBC News Web site about half an hour ago:
One of Barack Obama's fleet of armoured limousines has broken down in Israel after being filled with the wrong type of fuel, reports say. 
The car had been waiting for the US president's entourage to arrive when it was filled with diesel instead of petrol, Israel's Channel 2 reported.
Needless to say, there is something a bit ludicrous about arranging a state visit without knowledge of the fuel required for a fleet of armored limousines. However, Israel is the only country I know that sustained an accident in which the innards of an IBM mainframe melted; so very little surprises me about hardware-related mistakes over there any more. On the other hand, the next sentence of the story, which describes how the problem was resolved, brought a smile to my face:
A replacement limousine had to be flown in from neighbouring Jordan, Maariv newspaper said.
You never know when a good neighbor will come in handy! Meanwhile, as of the filing of the story, the damaged vehicle is still in a garage in Jerusalem.

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