Guest post by Dr. Laniac
First off, I want to thank my friend "Scarlet P" aka the Freewayblogger for inviting me to become a guest here at his blog. My own blog, Dr. Laniac's Laboratory, has fallen into some disrepair since I took on a demanding new job last year. I'm hoping that the responsibility of providing fresh content for this site will encourage me to write more often.
Now, as to the President's war escalation speech last night.
I always try to catch the Chimpinator's major speeches. Not that I think they'll help explain what's going on -- more like I'm afraid my magic Bush decoder ring will get out of sync and I won't be able to figue out what the hell he's talking about anymore. After listening to the latest offering, however, I'm afraid that's just what has happened.
I get the basic level of unreality that must be maintained, i.e. that Iraq=9/11. That whole "Sunni-insurgents-(al Qaeda)-trying-to-run-us-out-of-Iraq-and-follow-us-home" conceit. After all, the man can't admit that the small number of foriegn fighters that came into Iraq after the US invasion don't justify abandoning Afghanistan and spending blood and treasure to overthrow Saddam and find his non-existant nucular weapons of WMD.
So, of course our main enemy in Iraq is Jihadi's and "dead-enders". But we're gonna send most of those new "surge" troops we don't have to Baghdad to clamp down on the sectarian violence, where we're likely going to have to clash with Moqtada al Sadr in a major way.
Magic decoder ring, second pass: al Sadr is a Shia cleric and anti-Iranian militia leader who's party was instrumental in getting the current prime minister his job. At least until Sadr pulled his members out of parliment because Maliki was going to cooperate with Bush. His Mahdi Army is a major source of the sectarian violence in Baghdad.
So, the Bush plan (which is really the Iraqi plan -- seriously, that's what they were saying today. Even CNN couldn't figure that one out) involves the Iraqi parliment that's unable to meet (because Sadr's allies have pullled out and they don't have a quorum) passing a bunch of legislation that'll be really key. And we're gonna crack down on that Iranian influence, because the only people we're not going to be fighting in Iraq now are the Iranian-allied Shia factions (and of course the Kurds who are just waiting for partition).
At this point, my magic decoder ring started babbling about last season's Battlestar Galactica, that Bush was obviously a Cylon, (an incredibly incompetent Cylon,) and how we had to get the hell out of there now. I had to reboot it, after which it reported a serious kernel error and wanted to send an error report to the Department of Homeland Security. I denied its request to do so. (I think it was crying.)
Then Bush starts talking about how we're going to start passing out money to Iraqi's so they have a reason not to blow things up and have confidence in their government. The decoder ring made a snide remark about bricks of cash being handed out by soldiers two years ago with no accountability and how well that worked out. And then it just started repeating "halliburtonhalliburtonhalliburton". I restarted the translation service.
Luckily, the speech entered more familiar territory at this point, allowing the processor to cool and the decoder ring to simply print out "extended pandering about the bravery of troops, gratuitous 9/11 references, calls for sacrifice (for troops entering their third tour of duty, that is, not the tax-cut rich of Bush's base), etc., etc.
I'm afraid I'm not going to make it through another speech with my current decoder. I understand Apple's releasing a new model of iDecoder with a built in phone that will auto-dial 911 if you have a medical emergency from listening to the President. Comforting and likely very popular as the new iDecoder will be, I suspect I need the mini-Cray supercomputer-decoder, though. I'm converting my savings account to Euros so I'll be able to afford that one by the time Bush gives the speech explaining why the "surge" hasn't worked so well. Give it a couple of Friedman Units.