Scenes from a Cakewalk

One of the funniest television shticks I’ve ever seen was but a moment: on an NBC television special hosted by Don Rickles in the early 1970’s, the network decided to feature another of its stars, and asked Rickles to point him out. Rickles did so, as follows: “Ladies and gentlemen, its Mr. Bob Hope! I guess the war must be over!” [It wasn’t.]
Fast forward to a less funny moment in what has now moved into the ranks of bloodiest American military adventures, and what now passes for “entertaining the troops”, an event attended by around 1,000 service personnel (same number roughly as combat dead) at Camp Liberty, Iraq, where the “celebrities” were Robin “It’s pronounced Ork” Williams, former Denver Broncos quarterback John Elway and (wtf) “sportscaster” and model(?) Leeann Tweeden…
Well, in a world where Senator McCain can tell us he has no confidence (whatsoever) in Secretarissimo Rumsfeld and his handling of the Iraq fiasco, and His Holiness the President’s response is that Rummy is doing a “tremendous job” (an upgrade from his previous “superb job”), I guess this is what our troops get (they’re sure as hell not going to get decent armor for body or vehicles, or anything like an appropriate overall strategy, as we continue to merrily ensure our ultimate defeat with each “offensive” we “win”).
Well, hey– we’re killing more of them than they are of us… so we’re winning, right? Lessons seemingly not learned by Senator McCain. A lesson not learned, for that matter, by Senator Kerry (or the rubes in Iowa and New Hampshire who foist him on us as Democratic nominee because they valued “winning” over principle and thereby achieved neither). Had Kerry, of course, been willing to acknowledge that just one mistaken politically opportunistic vote for war was a gross mistake and that the only way to “support our troops” was to extricate them from the Mesopotamian killing fields ASAP, he would almost certainly now be the President-elect.
No matter. Shades of the last time we measured “winning” in this peculiar manner of “more of them than us”… Cheesy USO shows… Can helicopters from the embassy roof be far behind?