Thursday, July 17, 2008

Republicans Love A Good Hostage

So, another election cycle and another Republican getting involved in a hostage rescue. When we heard the news about the Columbian hostage rescue, those of us who were around during the Reagan years probably thought of Ronnie's negotiations to delay the release of the Iranian hostages until after he took office. But here they were in the thick of a story about ending a hostage situation instead of prolonging it. And they say that an old dog can't learn new tricks...

"What a coincidence," we thought, "an embattled Republican candidate in desperate need of some anti-terrorism news to prop up his campaign decides to take some time off from campaigning for a little Central American junket. The old coot probably just wanted a little sun, but what ho? He just happened to be in town when a daring mission rescued American hostages from terrorists. What a stroke of luck!"

Except, as it happens so often with the Republicans, their story started to unravel almost immediately. White House mouthpiece Dana Perino said he had no information about the raid beforehand, but someone forgot to tell McCain, because he was busy spreading the word of his briefing on the classified, top secret mission. Oops!

The State Department said that the US had nothing to do with the rescue, but had known it was in the works for months. The Pentagon said that the US was not involved. Then McCain and U.S. Ambassador William Brownfield spilled the beans and said that the Columbian operation had extensive help and "close cooperation" from the Americans. Shocker!

The Republicans knew for months, and they pulled their candidate from the campaign trail to put him on the ground in Columbia just in time for a hostage rescue that they helped pull off. This sounds not so much like a coincidence, no?

And now it comes out that the rescuers violated the Geneva Convention and have put Red Cross workers around the world at risk by dressing up as Red Cross workers. Their story now is that it was just one guy, and he was "contradicting official orders", but that story doesn't even pass the giggle test.

First, here's the thing about uniforms: they're uniform. It's right there in the name. If there's one guy wearing something different, he kinda stands out. Don't they have Sesame Street in Columbia? "One of these kids just doesn't belong." You're telling me that not one guy asked "Hey, Jorge, what's with the Red Cross, pendejo?" You can't even start a park district soccer game without someone checking to make sure everybody's wearing the right uniform, but during a highly-sensitive military operation the guy wearing a giant RED CROSS went completely undetected by everyone around him?

When you put a big red cross on your chest, you stand out. It's kind of the point. Wearing a "don't shoot me" sign only works when it's not discreet. If you can't see it from the other side of the battlefield, it's somewhat ineffective. Are we to believe that they couldn't see it from the other side of the helicopter?

Second, since when do you have to issue "official orders" to a military unit not to dress up as the Red Cross? That's a little odd, isn't it? By the way, don't dress up as the Power Rangers either. Saban has vicious trademark lawyers, dude. They'll fuck you up.

Congratulations. It's pretty difficult to come off as the douchebags when you're being compared to hostage takers, but you did it. Kudos.

Oh, and of course they managed to have a naked, blindfolded prisoner exposed to mixed company before the helicopter even touched down. What is the deal with right wingers and their fetish for naked dudes with blindfolds, anyway?

My first and dearest fan Flan has graced me with an award that I really don't deserve. I need to find some more deserving bloggers to share the love and then I'll post it.

1 comment:

vikkitikkitavi said...

I was suspicious of the timing as well, but I never delved into it, so thank you for this post. Very interesting.