Wednesday, May 26, 2004

Behind the clown nose

2 British MPs are planning to come over and help get Kerry elected. Alan Duncan and Simon Burns. Tories. One of them a gay Tory. Whatever.

It makes sense, given how firmly up Dubya’s butt Tony is, and how badly it works for him. (Later: better biological metaphor by Simon Jenkins in the London Times: “GEORGE BUSH has Tony Blair round his little finger. Indeed I wonder sometimes if Mr Blair is his little finger. When the hand waves the finger waves. When the hand bombs, the finger bombs. When the hand says come, it comes.”) (Jenkins also compares Blair’s plan to send 3,000 more troops, to the holy sites yet, with Churchill’s Dardanelles folly and Gladstone’s sending Gordon to Khartoum. You gotta be impressed. Americans’ ability to apply history to the understanding of foreign policy is confined to how much any given war is or is not like Vietnam and how much our enemy-of-the-day is or is not like Hitler.).

A few days ago Colin Powell said that of course coalition troops would leave if the Iraqi government asked them to. So Blair probably felt safe saying the same thing, evidently believing that Powell has something to do with American foreign policy, which makes him like the actress in the joke who’s so stupid she fucks the writer. Except on the same day, Powell said that US troops would actually do whatever they felt like doing, rather than deferring to any furriners. Blair’s people then had to explain that, evidently, what Blair had possibly meant to say was that if the Iraqi government asked the occupying forces to leave, the British would do so but the Americans would tell them to go fuck themselves.

The real question, which some shrew reporter actually asked, is less will troops leave, but what happens if the US decides to invade Fallujah, say. Can the Iraqis veto the operation? Can Iraqi generals refuse to let Iraqi troops participate? The answer is no and no. I think the Powell position is that we will leave if asked, but that if we stay, we’ll do whatever we damned well want. All or nothing.

Al Gore doesn’t like George Bush. Really. At length. Do you think Kerry will discover this level of passion and outrage 3½ years after he loses to Bush?

The Wall Street Journal has a piece on all that sovereignty we’re transferring. Bremer has been appointing “commissions” with 5-year terms to do the real work of government. The piece quotes the Iraqi in charge of the Ministry of Communications, to whom no one in the occupation government bothered, ahem, communicating, that they were transferring to one such commission all the powers he thought he had to license tv stations, newspapers, and regulate cellphone companies.

Bushism: “I'm honored to shake the hand of a brave Iraqi citizen who had his hand cut off by Saddam Hussein.”

Or possibly by Jack Bauer.

Another meaningless vague warning about possible terrorism in the USA? Or are they really just trying to suggest that a vote for Kerry means the terrorists win? Ashcroft: “The Madrid railway bombings were perceived by Osama bin Laden and Al Qaida to have advanced their cause. Al Qaida may perceive that a large-scale attack in the United States this summer or fall would lead to similar consequences.” (That quote came from Slate. I tried to get more context, but neither the Justice nor Heimat Security’s websites have anything on this oh-so-urgent warning, not having been updated for a few days.) I did find DOJ’s children’s homepage, with an especially slutty, half-naked representation of Justice.

LeftI points out that the prospective UN resolution on Iraq would let the US keep troops there forever, unless rescinded by a UN resolution, which the US could veto.


Speaking of clowns, one of Barnum & Bailey’s was just arrested for child porn. Spanky the clown. Customs Agent Albert Fitchett: “But behind the clown nose this man appears to have been supporting an industry that trades in the exploitation of children.”

A 3-point exit strategy that’s better than Bush’s 5-point one, not least because of the two fewer points:

1) Kill all the ones who are trying to kill us, in such a way that none of those who presently do not want to kill us suddenly start wanting to kill us.

2) At the moment of the death of the last person who wanted to kill us, race quickly out of the country before some additional person suddenly decides he/she wants to kill us, thus necessitating our continued presence in Iraq, in order to kill him/her.

3) Having left Iraq quickly, do not look back, so as not to witness individuals claiming they would have liked to kill us, which would then necessitate a return to Iraq, in order to etc., etc.

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