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donsu Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 02:37 PM
Original message
Smirk wants to restore the garden of eden (this is for real)
Edited on Fri Jan-23-04 02:40 PM by donsu
http://www.miami.com/mld/miamiherald/2004/01/23/news/wo...

An international group of scientists and engineers is working to reverse one of Saddam Hussein's most destructive acts -- the draining of a vast marsh some scholars consider the biblical Garden of Eden.

It's a monumental task that makes restoring the Everglades sound almost simple.

Once twice as large as Florida's River of Grass, the Mesopotamian Marshlands have shriveled to perhaps a tenth their original size, nearly obliterating a fertile source of food for Iraqis and an ancient culture of marsh-dwellers called the Ma'dan.

''It is the environmental crime of the century,'' Azzam Alwash, director of a project called Eden Again, told the Everglades Coalition on Thursday at Miami Beach.
-snip-
--------------------


the article also said:

"But political challenges may prove the biggest hurdle. Turkey and Iran both have interests in where water from the Tigris and Euphrates flows."

remember, the bushgang is buying up or taking, water rights the world over.
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Edge Donating Member (728 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 02:38 PM
Response to Original message
1. What? Are you serious?
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bif Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 02:39 PM
Response to Original message
2. Good use of $87 billion.
n/t
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Retrograde Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 06:30 PM
Response to Reply #2
25. better than bombing stuff
can we restore the Everglades while we're at it? And the SF Bay wetlands?

linda
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Zuni Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 02:42 PM
Response to Original message
3. I think that the marshes have to be restored
It was a catastrophic decision for man, beast and fauna to drain the marshes. It is among the top environmental disasters of our time, along with Saddam's dumping oil in the gulf and burning the Kuwaiti oil wells, the dessication of the Aral Sea in the former Soviet Union, the Ozone holes, the burning of rainforests in Brazil, the Indonesian forest fires (the worst in history).
I wish Bush would concentrate on restoring the Chesapeake Bay.
For once, bush has made the right decision.
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mopinko Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 02:44 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. oh puleeeze
he is so NOT gonna do this! spin, spin, spin.
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leesa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 03:07 PM
Response to Reply #3
7. Us servicemen have admitted THEY started the oil well fires, not
Saddam. Just a minor point but well-hidden by the US media. Sort of like the bogus babies thrown out of incubators story and the many other bogus Saddam stories.
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karabekian Donating Member (287 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 04:49 PM
Response to Reply #7
18. source please???
n/c
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stopthegop Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 05:03 PM
Response to Reply #7
21. got a link to a reputable source.?
otherwise it's slander....
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RBHam Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-04 01:39 AM
Response to Reply #21
34. Joyce Riley
Gulf War researcher and crusader for vets affected by Gulf War syndrome - has been told, by soldiers who participated in it, that they had blown the oil wells after the Iraqis had left to effect world opinion.

Do a google search. Joyce Riley. Gulf War Veterans. She does a radio show, the Power Hour or something like that.

Think about it. Who benefitted from the oil fires? Halliburton was one company who got government contracts to put them out. It also worked well as propaganda, along with the incubator story fraud (brought to you by a powerful PR firm)and the cover up of the April Glaspie/Saddam Hussein meeting - all orchestrated events used in the Armed Force's "psychological operations". Total War - with the media acting as little more than spokesmen to spread lies and disinformation..
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JohnOneillsMemory Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-04 03:21 AM
Response to Reply #34
41. I remember reading an interview with a Special Services guy who said this.
I'm going to search my archives for it but I distinctly remember reading an interview with a soldier who said that it was his job to stay ahead of the US forces and blow up the wells and then fall in with the regular army when it showed up.
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muriel_volestrangler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 03:01 PM
Response to Original message
5. What has this to do with the Turks?
It's in southern Iraq - way downstream from Turkey. And I wouldn't have thought it would have much effect on Iran either - the rivers flow into the Persian Gulf from the marshes.

It could be affected by the Turks' plans for the upper river, but that's different.
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leesa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 03:04 PM
Response to Original message
6. As his brother destroys OUR largest wetland area (Everglades)
Is this AFTER he bombed it and contaminated it for thousands of years with uranium?
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theboss Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 03:25 PM
Response to Original message
8. That's a weird headline
Something needs to be done about the marshes. Draining them was one of the biggest (if not the biggest) environmental catastrophes ever.
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donsu Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 03:45 PM
Response to Reply #8
11. agree, but do you really think this has anything to do with

restoring the environment?

it's about water, where it flows, who gets it, who doesn't, how much they pay for it. that's the bottom line. the profit to be made off water and the politics of using it in power plays.
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Cleita Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 03:37 PM
Response to Original message
9. I am not against this for unbiblical reasons.
It is an environmental disaster that should be reversed. If Dumbya thinks it's the Garden of Eden then whatever it takes to get him interested in doing something positive for a change is okay with me. I just hope he doesn't award the contracts to Halliburton. We, the people, should insist on open bids.
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Columbia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 03:40 PM
Response to Original message
10. The marshes were drained
so Saddam could hunt down and kill the marsh arabs who used the marshlands to hide and provide sustenance. Restoring the marshes is a necessary thing for the country to be self-sufficient.
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pfitz59 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 03:58 PM
Response to Reply #10
12. BINGO! Give that man a cigar!
Someone who knows the true story!
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stevedeshazer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 04:53 PM
Response to Reply #12
20. I second that
The Marsh Arabs are vital to any semblance of a restored Iraqi economy, not to mention the environmental benefits. But the Tigris and Euphrates rivers have been stopped upstream by dams. It's a tall order to restore the marshes.
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Columbia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-04 01:44 AM
Response to Reply #20
36. The Tigris and Euphrates
do indeed have dams upriver, but they are not stopped, they continue to flow all the way to the Persian Gulf. You are right though, it will be an extremely monumental undertaking to restore the marshes. It will probably take at least a decade (ok, wild guess there).
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ConsAreLiars Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-04 01:10 AM
Response to Reply #10
31. That is a common allegation
There might even be a grain of truth in it. Do you have a link?

Even if the Cons are trying to play up this Eden stuff for the obvious reasons, this has been an ecological disaster that was recognized as such for some time`by the UNEP (UN Environmental Programme), A study of this was produced in 2001, updated 2003, and is available through this web page:
http://www.grid.unep.ch/activities/sustainable/tigris/m...
or directly here:
http://www.grid.unep.ch/activities/sustainable/tigris/m...

There is not just some simple reason like your "Saddam is a BAAD man." The damage results from the same sets of circumstances that caused the Dead Sea to dwindle in size and the Everglades to be drained.

From the Executive Summary:
-----------------
The basins ecology has been fundamentally
transformed as riparian countries entered the
Age of Dams in the late 1950s and which is
continuing into the twenty-first century. The
cumulative impacts of the construction of more
than thirty large dams, particularly those
recently built in the headwater region of
Turkey under the Southeast Anatolia Project
(GAP), have been enormous. This is
graphically illustrated by the fact that the gross
storage capacity of the dams on the Euphrates
is five times greater than the rivers annual flow,
and twice that of the Tigris. Furthermore, this
level of unprecedented human control of the
rivers waters is bound to rise, as at least twenty
more dams are planned or are currently under
construction. One of the most important
impacts of such development is that it has
substantially reduced the water supply and
effectively eliminated the flood pulses that
sustained wetland ecosystems in the lower
basin. In addition, there has been a marked
degradation of water quality in the
mainstreams of the Tigris and Euphrates, due
to saline return drainage from irrigation
schemes and dam retention of sediment and
The Central and Al Hammar marshlands have
completely collapsed with respectively 97% and
94% of their land cover transformed into bare
land and salt crusts, while less than a third of
the transboundary Hawr Al Hawizeh/Al Azim
remains. This remaining area is also under
high risk of disappearance due to upstream
activities, including the recently inaugurated
Karkheh dam in Iran and associated water
transfer designs to Kuwait and the planned
Ilisu dam in Turkey.
-----------------

As for the Marshes specifically, drainage plans (detailed in Section 4) began during the period of British colonialism (pp. 23-24):
-----------------
... However, no specific engineering plans
were developed to drain the marshlands
(Irrigation Development Commission, 1951).
Work on a Main Outfall Drain (MOD) to
remove the saline drainage waters, later known
variously as the Third River and Saddam River,
started in 1953. Construction of the MOD,
however, was done in several stages and
implemented on an ad-hoc and piecemeal basis.
As construction of the MOD progressed in the
1970s and 1980s, the focus gradually shifted
from building an irrigation drainage system to
marshland reclamation. Concrete engineering
proposals were developed to drain the
marshlands proper (Nippon Koei, 1972). On the
Euphrates this was to be achieved by diverting
Euphrates flow from Al Hammar marshes and
flushing it out directly into the Persian Gulf.
While drainage of the Central and Al Hawizeh
marshes was to be accomplished by capturing
the flow of the lower Tigris distributaries into a
massive complex of canals which would channel
their waters to the Persian Gulf via the Shatt al-Arab.
These works, however, remained on the
drawing board during the Iran-Iraq war (1980-
88) and the marshlands remained relatively
intact up to the mid-1980s. The transboundary
Al Hawizeh marshes were in fact disrupted more
by military activity than drainage plans,
as it became transformed into a frontline
combat zone during the Iran-Iraq war (Fig. 15)
(Scott, 1995).
Following the end of the second Gulf War in
February 1991 and the ensuing civil unrest in
southern Iraq, a massive hydro-engineering
programme was launched to drain the marshlands.
-----------------

While genocidal impulses may have been a factor (as with the "displacement" of the US's indigenous population), the marsh dessication is a bit more complex than your comments suggest.
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Columbia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-04 01:56 AM
Response to Reply #31
38. It really is that simple
While genocidal impulses may have been a factor (as with the "displacement" of the US's indigenous population), the marsh dessication is a bit more complex than your comments suggest.

Your own source proves it as it is. I'll add my own experience over there speaking to farmers who became farmless after the drainage.

Following the end of the second Gulf War in
February 1991 and the ensuing civil unrest in
southern Iraq, a massive hydro-engineering
programme was launched to drain the marshlands.


I don't see why people always argue with me about Saddam's horrible deeds and the Iraqi people being better off now without him. Personally, I don't agree with the war for several reasons, but I always get attacked when I present simple assertions regarding the war's positive aspects (not saying you are doing this, but others have in the past). Oh well.
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ConsAreLiars Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-04 03:12 AM
Response to Reply #38
39. I guess you missed this part
"The basins ecology has been fundamentally
transformed as riparian countries entered the
Age of Dams in the late 1950s and which is
continuing into the twenty-first century. The
cumulative impacts of the construction of more
than thirty large dams, particularly those
recently built in the headwater region of
Turkey under the Southeast Anatolia Project
(GAP), have been enormous. This is
graphically illustrated by the fact that the gross
storage capacity of the dams on the Euphrates
is five times greater than the rivers annual flow,
and twice that of the Tigris. Furthermore, this
level of unprecedented human control of the
rivers waters is bound to rise, as at least twenty
more dams are planned or are currently under
construction. One of the most important
impacts of such development is that it has
substantially reduced the water supply and
effectively eliminated the flood pulses that
sustained wetland ecosystems in the lower
basin."

I don't see any similarity between that and your undocumented talking points.
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Columbia Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-04 04:36 AM
Response to Reply #39
42. Why are you so afraid of the truth?
http://www.hrw.org/press/2003/01/iraq012503.htm

Large-scale government drainage projects have virtually wiped out the Marsh Arab economy and, along with severe repression, forced the displacement of at least 100,000 of the Marsh Arabs inside Iraq. More than 40,000 others fled as refugees to Iran. The Marsh Arabs have suffered some of the worst repression in a highly repressive political system, said Joe Stork, Washington director of the Middle East and North Africa Division of Human Rights Watch. In the event of war, there is reason to fear that the marshes area will again be a battleground, with devastating consequences for those who remain.

Many of the governments acts of repression against the Marsh Arabs, because they were part of a widespread and systematic attack, constitute a crime against humanity, and Human Rights Watch called for an international tribunal to investigate and punish those responsible.

Human Rights Watch urged the Iraqi government to release those Marsh Arabs it still holds in detention, and to clarify the fate of those who disappeared following arrest. The government should also compensate the victims and the families of those who were arbitrarily held, tortured, disappeared, or executed, Human Rights Watch said.

_____________________

Acknowledging the crimes that Saddam has committed does not make one a Bush apologist.
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ButterflyBlood Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 04:00 PM
Response to Original message
13. dumb as that sounds, the marshes should be restored anyway
it's an environmental disaster.
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Serenity-NOW Donating Member (301 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 04:11 PM
Response to Original message
14. While that is a total bummer, what about superfund sites
right here at home? I'm not saying we shouldn't be part of restoring that but frankly I live on a mercury contaminated lake because work stopped on the superfund site at the other end of the lake. Most Americans live within a few miles of a superfund site just like me. I think it's the height of cynical hypocrisy to dose a country with DU then turn around and suggest you want to make things better for the environment there. Puhleaze.
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LeahMira Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 04:34 PM
Response to Original message
15. Could we tell him...
... that Biblical scholars now agree that the Garden was really at Yucca Mountain?
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Cleita Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 04:36 PM
Response to Reply #15
17. Hehe.
Maybe that's what we need to do. Tell him that God says he needs to give away all the money he has stolen from the US Treasury to the homeless and poor.
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HalfManHalfBiscuit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 04:35 PM
Response to Original message
16. I have no problem with that
Restoring environmentally damaged areas is a good thing. Lake Erie cones to mind.
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karabekian Donating Member (287 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 04:50 PM
Response to Original message
19. its a good thing
to restore the marshes. Good for the people and good for the environment. I believe we should start the process of the restoration. Set up the infrastructure to continue this and other work once sovreignty is transfered.
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yellowcanine Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 05:08 PM
Response to Original message
22. This falls into the "even a blind pig..." class
Restoring the marshes is a good thing. I don't think the American taxpayer should pay for it though. Calling it the Garden of Eden is a stretch also.
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blindpig Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 05:47 PM
Response to Reply #22
24. hey, I resemble that remark!
but you're absolutly correct any restoration would be a good thing, but I wouldn't hold my breath................
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JohnOneillsMemory Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 10:57 PM
Response to Reply #22
30. Those marshes really are considered by historians to possibly be Eden. n/t
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starroute Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-04 01:54 AM
Response to Reply #30
37. Not by any historian I ever read
Edited on Sat Jan-24-04 01:56 AM by starroute
To the extent anyone thinks the Garden of Eden may refer to an actual location, it's associated with the headwaters of the Tigris and Euphrates.

The second chapter of Genesis says, "There was a river flowing from Eden to water the garden, and when it left the garden it branched into four streams. The name of the first is Pishon . . . The name of the second river is Gihon . . . The name of the third is Tigris . . . The fourth river is the Euphrates."

Not only is this clearly describing the source of the rivers, not their end-points, but there are many lesser rivers in eastern Turkey, where the Tigris and Euphrates begin, which are candidates for identification as the Pishon or Gihon. There are no others down at the Gulf.

Besides, the area of the marshes was underwater all through the late prehistoric and early historical periods.

However, the Persian Gulf may have been a kind of Eden in a different sense. During the Ice Age, when sea levels were lower, it was a fertile, well-watered refuge in a generally frigid and hostile world. It seems likely that the "N" mitochondrial group, which accounts for the female ancestors of all Middle Easterners and Europeans, as well as many Asians and Native Americans, arose in that area as much as 70,000 years ago.
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JohnOneillsMemory Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-04 03:17 AM
Response to Reply #37
40. I remember that guy who hosted the PBS show 'Connections' saying this. n/t
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onecitizen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 05:12 PM
Response to Original message
23. I wondered how bush..........
felt about bombing and destroying the Garden of Eden. Since he's so religious and all.
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Pegleg Thd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 10:00 PM
Response to Reply #23
26. I'll bet
bushit & pickled want to play Adam & Eve there.
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Design8edGrouch Donating Member (78 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-04 05:48 AM
Response to Reply #26
43. Euwwww!
Edited on Sat Jan-24-04 05:52 AM by Design8edGrouch
I can't think of anything more icky than bushit & pickled frolicking nude. Wait, I just did, the two of them actually having sex. I'll be back later--I must go wash my brain out with a good lye soap.
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sweetheart Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 10:18 PM
Response to Original message
27. restoring the garden of eden
The garden of eden is a worthy project to restore... before humankind saw itself as separate from god. Then we can come to know nature and this planet as part of our complex ecosystem and embrace all the people of this earth as our brothers and sisters....

somehow, i suspect he's twisted the term to mean something else...
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OneTwentyoNine Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 10:27 PM
Response to Original message
28. No doubt using Halliburton Landscaping Service right??? eom
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gate of the sun Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jan-23-04 10:49 PM
Response to Original message
29. This guy is deranged
n/t
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kskiska Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-04 01:29 AM
Response to Original message
32. They'll turn it into a "Six Flags Over Babylonia" biblical theme park
And he'll rebuild the Tower of Babel and the Hanging Gardens of Nebuchadnezzar.

Just a thought: Wouldn't the Garden of Eden have been destroyed by the Great Flood?
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camero Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-04 01:31 AM
Response to Original message
33. All while they practically give the everglades
To the sugar barons.
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mike1963 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-24-04 01:41 AM
Response to Original message
35. Sounds good to me. Chimpy & Laura can be A&E, Cheney the serpent,
Rummy & Asscrack as Cain & Abel with Condi humveeing in from the Land of Nod...

:eyes:

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