Sunday, May 15, 2005

The long national nightmare is over

Condi Rice is visiting Iraq. Since it’s the first second [sorry, my bad; she was along for Bush's plastic turkey visit] time she’s ever been there, she feels qualified to tell the Iraqi people how well everything is going and that they should just have patience. “Iraq is emerging from a long national nightmare of tyranny into freedom,” she said.

Wonder if she knew that the phrase “long national nightmare” was first used in Gerald Ford’s inauguration speech, referring to the Nixon years? No, I really don’t: of course she didn’t know that.

She took the opportunity to give a new version, Mark XXIII I believe, of the explanation for how 9/11 required the invasion of Iraq, saying “This war came to us, not the other way around.” Mark XXIII incorporates the crusade for democracy into the argument. See, “The absence of freedom in the Middle East -- the freedom deficit -- is what produced the ideology of hatred that allowed them to fly airplanes into a building on a fine September day.” Note her awkward use of the pronoun “them,” rather than a term like hijackers, terrorists or Al Qaida; she’s hoping that if she glides quickly over that part, listeners won’t remember that none of “them” were Iraqis and that we started the War to Make the Middle East Safe for Democracy in precisely the Middle Eastern country that produced the fewest terrorists.

2 from the Sunday Times:
Error of the week

A teenager who forced open an industrial container in the New Zealand port of Ashburton was caught in an avalanche of peas that flooded through the open doors. The 17-year-old was trapped, unable to move, in a chest-high pile of peas and arrested after police used a forklift truck to free him.

Costume of the week

A protester was turned away from a government meeting in British Columbia, Canada, because he was protesting at the dumping of raw sewage by dressing up as a giant piece of faeces.

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