Operation Shock and
Awe got underway today when U.S. and British forces liberated the shit out
of Baghdad. Meanwhile at the port of Umm Qasr on the Kuwaiti border, in a
moment of inappropriate exuberance, U.S. Marines hoisted the American flag.
"Take that down, you morons," their commander ordered.
"Why, sir?" asked one of the Marines. "You mean we're not American?"
"No, you idiot," the commander responded. "This isn't a conquest, it's a liberation."
"Shall I hoist the Iraqi flag, then, Sir?"
"Do whatever you want."
"But the Iraqis are dead, Sir."
In the North, hostilities between the Turks and the Kurds prompted one viewer to wonder who would be the first reporter to spoonerize the pair into "Kurks and Turds." The prize went to Wolf Blitzer.
Today's press briefing was dominated by reporters pestering Ari Fleischer about whether President Bush was watching the war on television. They were disappointed to learn that no, he wasn't; the President was no fan of the tube. Some reporters voiced skepticism about this since they had noted the President's increasing resemblance to the recently deceased Mr. Rogers, as though he had donned the departed soul's gentle mantle. For instance the President had taken to speaking in a folksy manner of Iraq's "neighborhood."
"Look, the President goes to bed at ten o'clock," an exasperated Fleischer told CNN's John King. "He doesn't have time to watch the news and if he did it wouldn't be CNN."
The protestation served only to fuel reporters' suspicion that the President gets up at seven in order to watch Mr. Rogers reruns.
Work continued on determining the identity of the man with the mustache in the video released by Iraqi officials yesterday. The CIA concluded that the voice was indeed Saddam's and that therefore the rest of the man may also have been Saddam. But sources within the intelligence agency told news reporters that they had been in touch with a former mistress of Saddam, now in exile, who maintained the man was not Saddam nor even one of his forty body doubles. The sources did not reveal how she knew. She did not, for instance, have access to the sort of data that would enable Monica Lewinsky (and now, thanks to her, anyone in the world) to identify President Clinton under certain circumstances.
"That's why you shouldn't take a mistress," concluded CNN's Aaron Brown at the end of the report, to the titillated delight of the control room.
"Or if you do, don't exile her," grumbled a producer who'd been round the block a few times.
The CIA vigorously denied having used the consulting services of Saddam's ex-mistress.
"Maybe it was the Pentagon," they suggested, an indication that their longstanding rivalry with the FBI is a thing of the past.