Thursday, 25 July 2013

sehtest or the bundeswehr is everywhere

Walking through my neighbourhood, I found a quite curious piece of detritus in the street. This white flier with a mysterious black square bears the equally inscrutable but unusually polite proclamation (in English und auf Deutsch) this a training (ranging) leaflet of the Bundeswehr—from a battalion for operational information stationed quite a distance from here. The translation reminds the finder of this piece of paper out of consideration for the environment to please litter (but surely they meant to please don't) and in case of questions, to please contact the competent unit—which begs more questions than clarification of what one is now holding.
I wonder about the glossy black square—does it contain an invisible message, like a camouflaged QR-code or something to calibrate drones or satellites? Or is a paper-bomb, really mean to check “our distance abilities” projected like a paper airplane or dropped by a very obliging and careful pigeon? What it just something tossed accidentally along the way to somewhere else? Does the German army hope that people ask questions or return it?  It's a little strange but nice that there is some transparency and explanation, but I suspect it's not enough to prevent imaginative speculation.