There's been a great deal of fuss about the Baghdad Blog Where is Raed?, with whole chunks of his blog quoted verbatim in various national and international newspapers. I hate to be the bringer of bad news, but Uruklink, Iraq's only internet provider took a direct hit last night cutting off Iraqi internet users from the outside world. This probably means that unless Salam can get a friendly foreign journalist to upload his work, last Monday's blog entry may be the last for some time. I hope I'm proved wrong.
"Odds and Sods"
Quality war and current affairs bloggage here.
And if you're sick of the sanitised news reports coming out of the Gulf, take a look at these scary war briefings purportedly from the Russian GRU military intelligence service.
The war to liberate penguin-kind has begun. Just don't encourage him.
We heart Humphrey and Duncan, because one of them is a duck.
In these troubled times, our congratulations to Britsh mountaineer Oliver Fotherington-Smythe and his Sherpa guide Apu Nahasapeemapetilon for becoming the first people to ascend the treacherous south face of Jennifer Lopez’ arse without the aid of oxygen. In the face of appalling conditions, they planted the Union Jack on the mountainous right cheek before jubilantly returning to base camp at the foot of the untamed Cleft Glacier. Fotherington-Smythe’s next project: an assault on the final frontier of human conquest - the twin peaks of Mount Britney.
It’s time to own up to Bad Things. When I was a kid, there were two matronly old women who lived down our otherwise quiet cul-de-sac. Ms Thatcher and Ms Widdecombe were a stern pair of battleaxes, the kind you always saw applauding far too enthusiastically at Conservative Party conferences, who wanted nothing but a quiet life without noisy little brats running up and down the street outside their house.
Unfortunately, we were those noisy little brats, and they hated us with a vemon only usually reserved for people with beards and socialists. That was fine, we hated them too, even though, bar one or two footballs tresspassing on their front lawn, we had done very little to antagonise them.
Our lives were made hell, and our parents fielded a never-ending stream of complaints from the curmudgeonly pair of old trouts, mostly for the heinous crimes of “shouting” and “riding our bikes up and down” while their curtains twitched. The complaints were taken with a huge pinch of salt, especially from John’s dad who had a nudge, nudge, wink, wink attitude that suggested something that our innocent wee minds couldn’t comprehend.
It came to a head with a knock on the door one evening. It was the police. They’d only gone and told the plod that we were nothing but a bunch of juvenile hooligans intent only on wrecking the Queen’s Peace and ripping apart the very fabric of their corner of Little England. OK, so what if most of it was true, we’d never harmed them, and now some nine foot tall bloke with a tit on his head was writing our names and addresses into his notebook.
If that’s the way they wanted to play it...
We bided our time. We waited for at least half an hour before John did the first “knock and run” on their front door. He hit the doorbell and legged it away before they had a chance to catch him. Then it became a matter of pride. We all had to do a knock and run or we would be expelled from the gang in disgrace. We got them every time. From behind a handy hedge we would titter in delight as either Ms Thatcher or Ms Widdecombe cursed our names in vain before slamming the door in fury.
It was fun, but, you know how these stories end, we just had to take it too far. It was the coup de grace. John scraped up a fresh and steaming dog shit left by my mental dog at the bottom of our garden and wrapped it up in a sheet of newspaper.
“Watch this lads” he said, carefully laying the package containing the dog egg on the doorstep of our large busted silver-haired nemesis. With his Junior Anarchist Club standard issue cigarette lighter he lit the paper, waited for it to get well aflame, hit the doorbell and ran for it.
The door opened.
“Oooh! Margaret! Margaret! Fire!”
Margaret came to the door in her carpet slippers, let out another “Ooooh!” and proceeded to stamp out the flames. You can imagine the results. Carpet slippers, red hot dog egg, screaming old biddies.
Twenty minutes later, there was this blue flashing light. It was a fair cop.
Enough years have passed to say that even the copper thought it was funny, and his stern lecture on our “public responsibility to our senior citizens” was delivered with tears of barely suppressed laughter streaming down his cheeks. He’s probably a chief constable somewhere, leaving steaming parcels of crap outside criminals’ houses by way of a warning. I would. That would be justice in action.