January 30, 2003
A Short Guest Editorial

[And now for something completely different. Sort of. The following article was submitted by John Haney, a friend, photographer, and keen practicioner of off-colour humour. A veritable plethora of references, and maybe a bit of levity. A good excuse to say "veritable plethora", anyway.]

Bush's Blue Balls
A Short Editorial

I am pleased to have just read, from the Sydney Morning Herald, via (and courtesy of) Dru Jay's web site Misnomer, that, in preparation for a war in Iraq, George W. Bush has a plan in the works termed "Shock and Awe". This is a concept whereby the United States would bombard Iraq with approximately 800 missiles in 48 hours so that the effect would be rather like "[that of] the nuclear weapons at Hiroshima" Harlan Ullman, military strategist, croaks. "We want them to quit, not to fight..." so that any battle in Iraq would take not "days or weeks but minutes." The article goes on to note that operation "Shock and Awe" would target power sources and water sources in Baghdad. Hmmm. I think I can draw a worst-case scenario of all that water and electricity blowing-up and spraying this way and that. "Shock" no doubt! There will be no shortage of mustachios standing straight-up. Not to mention a lot of people in the desert without any more water or electricity.

posted by dru in article

Whilst reading this article, I found myself becoming more aroused by the second. The thought of 800--eight hundred!--missiles weaving intricate vapour trails high above the desert sands, careening luridly toward water towers and generating stations began to make my glands moisten. In his famous 1994 comedy routine No Cure For Cancer, comedian and actor Denis Leary enthusiastically claimed "That was the ultimate American dream for me during that Persian Gulf War. I was sitting in my living room naked, with a can of Budweiser and a three inch steak watching the war live on TV. I had a six foot erection with a giant cheeseburger on the end of it." Now I know exactly what he meant. The thought of the long, hard, smooth-steel of the missile shaft penetrating the supple, rippled corrugated tin roof of an Iraqi water storage facility sends bolts of scintillation coruscating along strategically-placed nerve endings in my lower midsection. Imagine a resonating explosion sending everything flying: water and hot steam and fire and, climactically, a massive puff of smoke (to finish it all off), rising triumphantly into the shattered Baghdad air. I was, indeed, both shocked and awed. Like the young Marlow in Joseph Conrad's Youth: A Narrative, "I had moments of exultation..." Now, finally, I understand George W. Bush.

All of a sudden I had a clear view into Dr. Strangelove's atomic ecstasy and, more currently from The Lord Of The Rings: The Two Towers (no pun intended there!), into the curious tear trickling down Grima Wormtongue's cheek as he surveys Saruman's ten-thousand-strong army of fighting Uruk-hai, as the Uruk-hai squawk, belch, and wave their spears and scimitars in anticipation of war. In fact, this image conjures up a frighteningly real and present one. All I have to do is to take the fantasy of this scene from The Two Towers and replace Saruman and Wormtongue with Cheney and Bush, the Uruk-hai with the ten-thousand-strong armies of U.S. soldiers, and exchange the blue-eyed, blond women and children cowering in Helm's Deep with, let's say, brown-eyed, black-haired, Iraqi women and children (and men too, of course).

So why should Bush change his mind now? He has amassed such a force that not to let it burst forth would certainly stifle the lust brimming in his loins. How many quills are there on a porcupine? 800? All of those throbbing missiles, bristling like quills, are quivering in anticipation of leaping on Baghdad and giving Saddam (or any number of his Groucho-mustachioed look-a-likes) a wicked pricking. Of course, Saddam will probably be miles away, launching a much smaller barrage of glistening guided missiles as far as they'll go--Kuwait, Israel if he's lucky. There's no reason that Saddam shouldn't get off too; I've seen the footage of him firing a rifle from his balcony while gazing down on a sea of supposed supporters--he holds that gun so tight and doesn't pull the trigger, but squeeeeezes it. I'm just amazed that last Fall, when the Italian former porn star offered herself to Saddam in exchange for a peaceful Middle-Region -East, Saddam didn't rise to the occasion. Perhaps he is a man able to control his pleasures. Or perhaps it might be more correct to suppose that he is a man who carefully selects his vices.

Unfortunately for Saddam, he hasn't got as many% missiles as George and dammit, they aren't as big! They don't go as far. Like the V-1 rockets Hitler lobbed across the Channel to London during World War II, Saddam's missiles might go as far as the gas lasts then plop. With all the oil sitting under him, one would expect that Saddam could make enough gas to fuel a missile to Orlando (surely he would aim at Disney World) but then the missile would be bigger than the Gaza Strip and would surely be discovered by some meddlesome inspector. So considering all of this, there is a fundamental imbalance in the endowment of the two male egos at the centre of this disco party. It's just unfortunate that George and Saddam aren't arguing about who's got bigger bell-bottoms, as opposed to missiles. (Although, I must say, I don't think either one of these men has ever touched, much less worn, bell-bottomed trousers in his life.)

Another fundamental problem is the blasted civilian population--it has gotten in the way yet again. In nature (I surmise), when two alpha males have a conflict over who is truly the alpha male, they usually bite one another until the first one dies. I've never heard of an alpha male toad gormandizing the entire pack of female and baby toads to kill the other alpha male toad. But this comparison does a disservice to toads, alas. To continue this distasteful analogy, we can imagine two alpha male toads sending flurries of beta toads into the shallow end of the pond to bump heads and gum one-another while the alpha toads burp on their elevated lilly pads. Now I realize that toads don't live in water. Still, when we take away the missiles change the species, we have a miraculously objective notion of how ridiculous this conflict really seems to be.

Unfortunately, all of his missile talk seems to have given George the red, white, and blue-balls for battle. Having doddled so long in military foreplay, to stop now would surely kill him. Considering this, I can see why he gnashes his teeth and crinkles his nose so much when he speaks. Why doesn't everybody else want to go along for the 'ride'? France and Germany--"Old Europe"-- are trying to shake George off their pant leg and, still gyrating, he seems angry and confused as to why. If Jacques and Gerhard knew George's fundamental, animal-lust pain, thyey would certainly sympathize, wouldn't they? Perhaps their reluctance (as well as the entire world's reluctance, excluding Tony of course) to go to war simply reveals that they have less (being more) to make up for with long, hard, explosive cruise missiles.

We can only hope that in the days, weeks, and months to come, George W. Bush will decide that he doesn't have to shower the arid desert with 800 cruise missiles and so-called smart bombs in a period of 48 hours, and that he can find another way to purge himself. Maybe Colin Powell could find George the phone number for that Italian former porn star

John Haney