I can think of more than a few such instances since the beginning of the Iraq War. There was the statement by the Bush White House’s Press Secretary in the aftermath of 9/11 that reporters and Americans in general should “watch what they say” from now on, or, it was implied, they might be made sorry they hadn’t.
There was the priceless moment after the Abu Ghraib prisoner abuse was revealed when President Bush, attempting to explain the affair away, sprained his tongue trying to pronounce the name of the place where it happened: “Abu Gry-, Greehop-” And then the Decider decided to go for broke: “Abu Grum” he said firmly, and went on with his spiel.
There was the huge “Mission Accomplished” banner on the aircraft carrier, when in reality the conflict was just getting started. And, just last week, the President’s statement that the war in Iraq is not the kind that will end with a ceremony on the deck of an American warship, referring to the formal Japanese surrender on the battleship Missouri that formally ended World War II.
This Administration’s “new” idea for turning the tide of battle in Iraq, “The Surge,” is yet another example of reality betraying language. It’s more a drip, drip, drip – like a leaky faucet – than a huge blast, a tsunami that will sweep away everything in its path. Instead of a huge D-Day-like new army entering the fray, it’s a small- to medium-sized blip in troop levels accomplished by holding over some American units that were due to go home and cutting short the stateside stays of some other troops returning to Iraq early.
The more I thought about it, the less “The Surge” sounded like sound strategic thinking and the more it sounded like – well, I’m not sure. Something like this, maybe:
“The Surge” Farewell Tour: Najaf, Karbala, Tikrit, Ramadi, Fallujah (cancelled due to death of audience and destruction of city).
Last chance to hear them live!
With Grand Finale on rooftop of U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, featuring “Shock & Awe 2.” Pyrotechnical display by Badr Brigades, Mehdi Army, Sunni Army of God, and Kurdish National Front.
Plus, live via satellite from the U.S., the comedy stylings of Dick “The Name Says It All” Cheney and Condi “Foggy Bottom” Rice (Ms. Rice appears courtesy of Standard Oil of New Jersey).
And Grammy-winning rapper Doubya performing his hit singles “Damn, Damn, I Lost My Bam-Bam,” “Use Ta Hav 2 Dicks, Now I Jes’ Got 1, Since My Rum’s Fell,” and “Poppa Was a Weak-ass Son of a Ho, but Ah Went to Baghdad ta Finish da War.”
Culminating in the largest mass helicopter take-off in history!
Tickets exclusively through Clear Channel Inc.; 10 percent of all proceeds go to the “Scooter” Libby Defense Fund.