Saturday, November 25, 2006

Breaking curfew

A mention of this on today’s Now Show reminds me that I forgot to relay the story that the manufacturers of “Welsh Dragon Sausage” are in trouble with the trading standards people because the name inadequately describes the product. As the Now Show put it, the dragons from which the sausage is made are not in fact Welsh.

Iraqi President Talabani says that an emergency security conference was a success. Hurrah! Evidently, “All parties agreed on the importance of working together and really participating in Nouri Maliki’s government of national unity.” Gosh, I’m sure everything will be fine now. I don’t know why no one thought of holding a pointless conference in order to mouth platitudes before now.

New White House spokesmodel Scott Stanzel says that this certainly isn’t a civil war (“We’re constantly asked that question, and while the situation is serious, Prime Minister Maliki and President Talabani have said they do not believe it is a civil war.”), but all this killing and shit is bad. “It is an outrage that these terrorists are targeting innocent civilians in a brazen effort to topple a democratically elected government.” You’re missing the point, Little Scotty II: no one needs to topple the “government” because it is irrelevant. Also, of course, the militias are associated with the parties and politicians who constitute the government – any day I’m expecting to read about a firefight between the Health Ministry and the Ministry of Education – with the difference that the militias can actually get things done, albeit evil things. The government can’t fill in potholes; the militias can, but, like those Welsh Dragon Sausages, you really don’t want to know what they’re filled with.

Sorry. I made that joke but even I was grossed out by it.

I’ve read several stories about Iraq today that begin like this one: “Defying a government curfew, Shiite militiamen stormed Sunni mosques in Baghdad and a nearby city on Friday, shooting guards and burning down buildings...” Etc, etc. Every one of these stories insists, for some reason, on mentioning along with all the other atrocities, the wanton disregard of the curfew. Does their wickedness and perfidy know no bounds? Did they also run any red lights on their way to pour kerosine on Sunnis and burn them alive?

There was an exception to the Baghdad curfew, according to the BBC: “The only vehicles allowed out were those carrying the coffins of Thursday’s bombing victims.” So, um...

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