Scientists Called In to Help Hunt for Gaddafi

After six months of fighting, the rebel forces finally invaded the Libyan capital of Tripoli. However, there is still unrest in the capital with reports of gunfights on the streets, though many feel  that the pro-Gaddafi forces will lose morale if Gaddafi himself is captured.  Intelligence services remain adamant that he has not left the country, leaving just 679,362 square miles to search.  The British government has turned to the scientific community for help.

Dr George Marsh, an ecologist from the University of Kent, was the first to accept the call.  His plan is known, officially, as “Quantative Understanding And Description of Rarely Apprehended Tyrants” (QUADRAT).  The QUADRAT system works by sampling a small area and then scaling these observations up for the entire country.

Dr Marsh was granted a substantial amount of funds and has reported that the situation in Libya “sure as hell beats having to write a grant proposal” and he “could do with a few more uprisings…especially in today’s economy”.  Dr Marsh has insisted that the money is not being wasted, stating “we’ve…purchased the first 100 same-sided rectangular sampling structures”.  The sampling structures are to be deployed by Chinook Helicopters.

quadrat
Gaddafi’s days are numbered

QUADRAT was formally tested four days ago, as the rebels were unable to locate Gaddafi.  Dr Marsh performed the first test himself; his Chinook scanned over Libya whilst he dispensed the structures out of the back.  Rebel forces have reported “a white man, dressed in a tweed jacket” who was “standing out the back of a helicopter casually throwing squares over his shoulder.”

Evidence of Gaddafi was not found in the first test.  Marsh identified the problem: “[although] I appeared to be throwing [the samplers] in a completely irrational manner…it was in fact too controlled to avoid bias”.  Marsh will now divide Libya into a large Cartesian co-ordinate grid and generate co-ordinates by completely random radioactive decay.  The sampling structures are then placed at 100 co-ordinates.  MI6 has lauded the plan as one of “simplicity.”

The newly revised system is set to go into action tomorrow morning; one can only imagine the level of hope and anticipation that the Rebel forces will experience when the great minds of the west unveil their master stroke.

Another method, involving the use of transects, has also been implemented by Marsh’s team. This will estimate the amount of torture per unit area, with Marsh hypothesising that this will increase the closer to the Colonel the group gets.

Critics of the plan have questioned the idea of using the Capture-Mark-Recapture method once Gaddafi is found in an attempt to further quantify the population of dictators in Libya.

STOP PRESSES: At the time of printing, we received word that Dr Marsh has been successful.  Of the 100 sampling structures one contained “40% Tyrant (+/- 1%)”, meaning every 1m2 of Libya (the size of the sampling squares) is 0.4% evil dictator.

Liam

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