The NEW Illustrated Guide to Mendacity and Folly in the 21st Century.
Posted on | September 8, 2009 | No CommentsBack at the beginning of the Iraq War in 2003–was it really over six years ago now? My, how time flies when you’re having fun!–we discovered that there were some interesting wrinkles in our treatment of the local populace. They did not especially like being called “hadjis”, “ragheads”, “towelheads”, or “sand niggers”, and seemed to get upset if they were politely told to “put your face in the ground mother****er or I’ll blow it off!” The effort to get the Iraqis to trust us became known as the “Battle for the Hearts and Minds”–to distinguish it from the “Battle to Bomb Saddam Hussein Back to the Stone Age,” which seemingly was mostly accomplished in three weeks. Although it took several more months to capture Saddam Hussein himself, we could congratulate ourselves on the Stone Age part, especially since parts of Baghdad still do not have 24 hour electricity, seven days a week. The Battle for the Hearts and Minds took a bit longer because even our leadership didn’t understand that breaking the Geneva conventions did not endear us to the populace, saying “Stop” to someone who didn’t understand English doesn’t always give you the right to open fire, and that Blackwater Security was a bunch of trigger-happy psychotics whose boss thought he was on a holy crusade. But I digress.
Now that we are back in Afghanistan, finishing the job that George Bush left against a country that probably shouldn’t have been invaded in the first place (if you remember, we demanded that the Afghans hand over somebody they neither had in custody nor knew where he was, giving us the excuse to invade, overthrow the Taliban government, find Osama bin Laden, and then give up on the 5 yard line so we could play in Iraq), what the media refers to sometimes as the “GOOD war”, destined to become the same quagmire that the British fell into in the 19th century and the Russians in the 20th, yet we still have our image problems. THIS time, it’s with our own allies. After the NATO air strike that killed 70 civilians (who we claim all but five of were insurgents and yes I’m quoting the Washington Times for the irony value), we then turned to a civilian hospital run by a Swedish charity, broke down doors, tied up four of the staff and two innocent bystanders visiting relatives, and forced patients out of beds while we looked for insurgents. Our MEN searched the women’s ward and ordered the staff to report if any insurgents sought medical aid before we gave them permission to treat them. The staff refused. According to Fox News (who else?) U.S. Military Challenge Allegations of Misconduct at Afghan Hospital. Someone who wasn’t there said that no one was tied up and doors were only kicked in with the permission of staff. Since civilian hospitals are supposed to be neutral territory, troops shouldn’t have entered in the first place. I suppose there was no misconduct because we didn’t shoot anyone or tase them, but really, tying up staff and visitors should be left for the BDSM club in Kabul.
In the meantime, we at Intravenous Caffeine have decided to remain on a once a week schedule for a while longer as we prepare a few items for publication. The first is a rendering of Edgar Allan Poe’s THE RAVEN which will be available here and at various conventions that I will be attending. Please see the link for further information and samples!