Saturday, May 26, 2012

An Election In Egypt

When President Obama calls, I jump.
     It's the least I can do for the man who once saved my life in 'Nam.
     You see, our platoon was pinned down in the jungle by enemy fire, and we decided to make a run for it.  Better a live chicken, than a dead duck, as B.O. used to say.  A bullet caught me in my gut, and when Obama discovered I hadn't made it, he ran back to get me.  Only...
     ...he got the wrong guy.
     So he ran back.  And got the wrong guy again.
     By the end of our courageous retreat he had saved me, saved the whole platoon, and received the Congressional Medal of Honor for his trouble.  His feat was so impressive that President Kennedy himself came back from the dead to personally award B.O. his medal.
     That's why I wasn't surprised when he called me on a secure line when the time came for someone to fly to Egypt and "convince" Egyptian President Mubarak to retire.
     "Convince him with extreme prejudice, if you have to, just make sure the transfer of power is done peacefully.  And, while you're at it, make sure you keep the Muslim Brotherhood on the outside looking in."
     "That sounds like the kind of work we used to do in the 'Nam," I told him.  I thought awhile.  "Don't you miss it, B.O.?  Don't you miss the fun we used to have?  Like arranging the fall of Saigon?"
     I could sense that President Obama was smiling on the other end of our line, but I could also sense that he was slowly shaking his head as well.
     "C'mon, B.O.," I tried to convince him.  "Let's do it.  You and me.  Just like old times.  We'll fly into Egypt and--sharia don't like it--we'll rock the casbah!"
     Obama was silent.
     I knew he was tempted, but he couldn't say anything.  Even on a secure line, you have to watch your mouth.  You never knew when a Linda Tripp might be listening.  Plausible deniability.  I taught him well.
     The problem he had back then was that he was afraid he'd end up like Jimmy "One-Term" Carter.  When President Carter pushed the Shah of Iran out of power in the late 70's, that created a vacuum, and that vacuum was filled by the Ayatollah Khomeini...  and that's when Carter's problems really began.  Two tall towers later, and we can see what not having democracies or governments friendly to the United States in the Middle East can do.
     "Nature abhors a vacuum," Obama explained, "and I don't want another Ayatollah in there.  What I want is an Ayatollah of Rock-N-Rollah in there."
     "What happened, B.O.?"  I asked him, suddenly serious.  "Under Reagan and Clinton--heck, even under both Bushes--Egypt was perfectly fine."
     "I admit it.  I dropped the ball.  I never should have sent the unemployed youth of Egypt Spike Lee's movie, Do The Right Thing.  I thought it would keep them entertained."
     In the end, I had to decline.  Obama understood why.  Things had already gone too far.  The whole world was watching, just as it's watching now.  It's not like the old days, when Reagan bombed Gaddafi Duck.  These days you have to walk on egg shells.
     Well, in any given situation, if I'm forced to walk, then I'll take my cue from those great philosophers of old, The Bangles, and I'll...
     Walk Like An Egyptian.

Fifty Shades of Funny

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