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Thousands Threatened as Rumsfeld Resorts to Weapons of Mass Deconstruction
July 18, 2003
Satire by Joyce McGreevy

WASHINGTON - What began as an attempted mass drugging of news media has spread throughout the United States, sources in Washington report.

The attacks, originally characterized by news analysts as "innocent attempts to confuse people about the truth" and later upgraded to "intent to hypnotize using a lethal tautology," have escalated in recent days. The broadest attack occurred Sunday on "Meet the Press" when Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld opened fire on the nature of truth itself.

Defending President Bush's claim in his State of the Union Address that Iraq tried to buy uranium from Africa, Rumsfeld sent countless viewers into illogic overload when he opened fire with a barrage of confusion disguised as an attempt at clarification: "It turns out that it's technically correct what the president said, that the U.K. does did say that and still says that. They haven't changed their mind, the United Kingdom Intelligence people."

Rumsfeld's assertion that the phrasing was accurate even if the supporting evidence was unsubstantiated triggered synaptic whiplash in viewers throughout several states. Paramedics on the scenes reported that several people suffered cerebral meltdowns as a result of trying to read any sense into Rumsfeld's latest statement.

After treating several whose intelligence had been assaulted, one paramedic remarked, "You have to understand, a lot of these people were already infected with Rumsfeld poisoning, and didn't even know it. Remember when he let fly with 'known knowns' and 'known unknowns'? That and the one about the future not necessarily being as unpredictable as the past really put a lot of people into serious brain cramp. So this attack is only the latest step in what could be a prolonged offensive."

If left untreated, this mass confusion could lead to permanent democratic paralysis, say political health experts at the CDC, or Center for Defense Control. They have urged people to immunize themselves by installing bullshit detectors and fog filters in their homes before listening to further statements by Rumsfeld. However, the CDC has also rescinded a previous recommendation that all Americans use alarms that emit piercing beeps in response to illogic, lies, and revisionist explanations. Asked why, the CDC cited complaints from users that "the damn things go on and stay on whenever Rumsfeld begins to speak."

White House insiders warn that Operation Obfuscate is only just getting started, and forces loyal to Rumsfeld have urged him to use all verbal weaponry at his disposal. They want him to explain that George Tenet, the newly appointed Secretary of Sole Responsibility, had simply shown his human side in allowing the now infamous "16 words" to be included in the text written for the president's State of the Union address.

"What you have to remember is that Tenet was attempting to not only interpret forged intelligence but also to translate British into American for a president who is not fluent in either language. The mere fact that the president was forced to mouth 16 words without taking a breath should tell you that President Bush had no idea what he was talking about and thus retains his right to be considered ignorant unless proven more so. Surely any Rumsfeld-thinking American can understand that."

On Wednesday Rumsfeld, accompanied by his smokescreen, dismissed concerns that the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq was based on faulty intelligence, or, as President Bush articulated it, "darn good intelligence." In a statement to the Senate Armed Services, Rumsfeld declared, "The coalition did not act in Iraq because we had discovered dramatic new evidence of Iraq's pursuit of weapons of mass murder." To which several members of the committee retorted, "Our point exactly."

Rumsfeld stopped short of responding to a charge that the U.S. was sent into war on false pretenses, disappointing admirers who had counted on him to point out that those were, in fact, actual and deliberate pretenses. However, Rumsfeld did dismiss the now-retracted report about uranium. "It was one scrap of intelligence along with, if you think back to Secretary Powell's presentation that included a great deal of information," he said. Rumsfeld was apparently referring to such incontrovertible evidence of global threat as Iraq's acquisition of deadly aluminum tubes, or as the President categorized it, "them things you use to hold in a roll of toilet paper."


Joyce McGreevy, who has written economic satire for Salon, a book for Sierra Club, and other books and articles, lives in Portland, Oregon.

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