Thursday, February 23, 2006

This deal wouldn’t go forward if we were concerned about the security for the United States of America

George Bush is going to India and Pakistan. He will be pretending that the latter is a democracy, not run by the military at all.
Pakistan has a lively and generally free press. I’m confident I will hear from them on my trip to Pakistan. (Laughter.) Occasionally, there’s interference by security forces, but it’s a strong press.
He will of course be milking American assistance after the Pakistani earthquake for all it’s worth.
The terrorists have said that America is the Great Satan. Today, in the mountains of Pakistan, they call our Chinook helicopters “angels of mercy.”
And today, he imparted the wisdom that “The destruction of a holy site is a political act intending to create strife.” And we know how much he hates politics. He reiterated American “commitment in helping to rebuild that holy site.” Like the Shiites actually want his infidel fingerprints on their golden dome.

Yes, I’m aware that sounded kinda dirty.

Asked about Dubai Ports ‘N Stuff, Bush explained the intricacy of the economics of the situation: “The management of some ports, which, heretofore, has been managed by a foreign company will be managed by another company from a foreign land. And so people don’t need to worry about security. This deal wouldn’t go forward if we were concerned about the security for the United States of America.” By this time, you will already have seen that last sentence 10 or more times. Now you’ve seen it again. It’s almost zen-like, isn’t it, I mean if the Buddha were a complete moron. But it’s the previous sentence that really sums up his message: people shouldn’t worry about it. He also said that people should be “comforted” that our ports will be secure, and that Bushies were “bringing a sense of calm to this issue”. It’s like the period a few weeks after 9/11 when they kept talking about making people “feel secure” flying again, rather than talking about making them actually secure.

Condi Rice has been touring the Middle East this week, possibly trying to find a country to run all those nuclear plants Bush wants to build. But she also tried with no success to convince Egypt, Saudi Arabia etc not to fund the Palestinian government. The Saudi foreign minister gave the perfect response, even if he probably doesn’t mean a word of it: “We do not want to link international aid to the Palestinian people with considerations other than their terrible humanitarian needs.”

In the headlines, “shrine fury” replaces last week’s “cartoon fury.”

Fortunately, General Rick Lynch reassures us that the shrine fury does not rise to the level of a civil war, because only 7 Sunni mosques have been destroyed by those “inflammated” by the Samarra bombing: “So we are not seeing civil war igniting in Iraq. We are not seeing 77, 80, 100 mosques damaged in Iraq. We are not seeing death on the streets.” Possibly the 130 killed (so far) were on sidewalks. (Update: AP headline: “47 Bodies Found in Ditch North of Baghdad.” See, we’re only seeing death in the ditches.) And OK, it’s only been a day since the bombing, but I’m sure it’ll blow over quickly, just like that cartoon thing. (Another update: some reports now have dozens of Sunni mosques being attacked. Lynch may be a little sorry that he actually defined what would constitute a civil war.)

Brokeback mountain, in Lego.

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