Wed Dec 18, 2013, 06:09 PM
MrScorpio (60,307 posts)
What Would Happen If We Really Went to War Against Christmas?
You've heard about the "War on Christmas," a cynical but largely successful attempt by grown men and women to drive up cable news ratings and sell terrible books. But what about an actual war on Christmas? If President Barack Obama wanted to take down Santa Claus*, how would he do it? And would it work? A classified report obtained by Mother Jones sheds new light on the Department of Defense's plans. Take a look:
Overwhelming force: On paper, it looks possible. The United States has 16,000 military personnel in Alaska, mostly at major Air Force bases outside Anchorage and Fairbanks (home to the 354th fighter wing). A military airstrip at Barrow, the country's northernmost point, could also be used a forward operating base, as could Thule Air Base in northwest Greenland, 750 miles north of the Arctic Circle. The Navy and Air Force regularly conduct carrier group exercises in the Gulf of Alaska; so they're not exactly coming in cold.
But Santa's best defense is that the North Pole is—spoiler—really cold. The US Navy doesn't have any icebreakers, and the Coast Guard only has two, both of which are research vessels. (An amendment to the 2013 National Defense Authorization Act would have commissioned four new icebreakers, but that's still pending congressional approval.) And unlike the Russians and the Finns, the United States doesn't have any ground units specifically trained to handle polar climates.
Nor is Santa himself a pushover. Some images of the old man depict him with a Kalashnikov. Elsewhere, he's armed with a sword. Futurama's Robot Santa has some sort of laser blaster. In Scrooged, Santa is able to repel a terrorist attack with an M16A2; his elves carry M60 machine guns. Oh, and about those elves. According to NorthPole.com, "There are an unlimited number of elves because it takes a lot of help to keep the northpole maintained and the presents made every year" . Even if an expeditionary force succeeds in taking the workshop, the elves' sheer numbers make the possibility of a post-invasion insurgency likely. And then there's Santa's sidekick Krampus, a massive goat-demon who according to Germanic legend, captures his enemies in a bathtub, eats them, and transports them to hell. How do you stab the devil in the back? No, really—it's our only hope.
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