Thursday, 4 June 2015

The Humvee

Once inside the White House dreary, Drone Man pondered, worried, weary
Upon how his ISIS proxies were falling by the score –
Watching frontlines creeping, nearly weeping
Suddenly there came a beeping
As an SUV gently beeping, beeping at the Oval door.
“ ‘Tis some SUV,” Drone Man said, “beeping at my Office door
Only that and nothing more.”

Oh, Drone Man well remembers, how the glowing embers
Of burning Libyan cities into the sky did soar;
Eagerly he’d watched the TV – while he’d scanned the CV –
Of the puppet he’d meant to install when Tripoli was washed in gore
For the puppet who’d give him the oil of Libya like tribute at the door
A pliant puppet slave forevermore.

But more bombing, fighting, blasting, the puppets now beyond trusting
Grilled him, filled him with anger seldom felt before;
So that then he’d sat furious, but still not uncurious
If the same formula would work if tried over once more.
“I’ll use it in Syria, try it over once more
And capture the country from the desert to the shore.”

Presently he’d had inspiration, and filled up with new passion
“I’ll get me some cannibals,” he’d said, “and headhunters galore.
“I’ll fund them and I’ll train them, and on Syria I’ll rain them
And they’ll spread jihad poison as by spore.
They’ll overthrow Assad – ” and he’d raised his voice in a roar
“I’ll own his country, forevermore.”

Deep into jihad forums peering, filled with hatred seething, searing
Soon he’d found his cannibal headhunters, people he could love, adore
He gave them machine guns, he gave them cream buns
He filled their pockets with drugs and dollars, and waved them through his door.
“We’re Exceptional, Indispensable, Exalted, and therefore
History and facts are things to ignore.”

And then in Warshington sitting, his teeth all furiously gritting
He’d read of his jihad failing in the desert, failing by the ocean shore,
“Surely there’s something I can do, perhaps stage a gas attack or two
And bomb Syria to scrap, like in Libya I’d done before
Yes, like in Libya I’d done to Gaddafi before,
Until the wind finds ruins, and nothing more.”

Open wide he’d thrown his mouth, and issued orders, north and south
Of a campaign to be launched with bombers, missiles, shells and more
“First I’m going to destroy Syria, and then I’ll pause to sing an aria
Of my plans for Iran, Russia before the blood’s dry on the floor
Of how I’ll destroy China, Russia, before the blood’s dry on the floor
I’ll own this planet, to the core.”

But to his anger and surprise, nobody this time swallowed the lies
It seemed his war he wouldn’t have, his orders they’d all ignore
As he’d sat in his Office raving, for peace they had a sudden craving
It seemed, or at least his lies were too extempore.
“I’ll think a moment, other possibilities I’ll explore
And over the planet my drones will soar.”

Then suddenly he’d thought of ISIS, born of that other crisis
His friends and mentors Bush and Clinton had wreaked in Iraq before.
“That is the very thing, that will soon make me a king
I’ll throw them at Assad until he can take no more.
And the wind shall howl in the ruins of the desert, and the shore
There will be ruins, and nothing more.”

Through the wide-opened Turkish gate, a flood in swift-rising spate
ISIS struck like a tornado at the squabbling cannibals that had gone before
Oh it shattered and it killed, as the headhunters’ own heads spilled
Like skittles off their shoulders and rolled on the desert floor.
Until ISIS’ black flag flapped in the air by the score
As far as the eye could reach, and even more.

But then the counter-attack came, and ISIS soon lost the game
Forced back in Syria it fled to Iraq, back the tide its remnants bore
And Drone Man in his Office mourned, as his pets fast lost ground
To those he’d vowed to oust, and defeat stared at him once more.
“What can I do now?” And he looked up at the door
Where something beeped, just once more.

The door he threw open, whereupon like fingers groping
Uncertain and placating, something drove out on to the floor.
Its armour was set in planes and angles, weapons hung on it like bangles
On the wrists of an aging hippie clinging on to the days of yore.
“Why, ‘tis a Humvee, like a million I’ve seen before
Just a Humvee, and nothing more.”

Into the Oval the Humvee lumbered, and Drone Man slowly clambered
Into its turret and sat, listening to the engine’s roar.
For a while nothing he uttered, not even a syllable he muttered
Wondering why it had come in through his White House door –
While the machine sat in the middle of the Office floor
Engine rumbling and horn beeping, out there on the Office floor.

In the turret he sat behind the gun, and thought of all the fun
He could have firing it at Assad’s face, and at Putin’s even more
When suddenly in a twinkling, from nowhere he had an inkling
Of an idea that came to him, seeping in through every pore,
Like a black flag flying over an armoured door
Like a Humvee with an ISIS flag flying above its armoured door.

The machine gun like a wasp’s avenging stinger, or even more a pointing finger
Pointed him in a new direction he ought to explore –
Set him to some head-scratching, and a new plot a-hatching
A plot that would bring victory in his grasp once more.
And he thought, “No wonder my plans all failed before
I never had such a good one as this before.”

“ISIS has men,” said he, “but weapons and mobility
Are things that it must have for its wings to soar
And you, my Humvee, have just shown me
How I can get them these in ways the world will ignore.
How many Humvees does ISIS need? Your advice I implore.”
Quoth the Humvee: “A hundred score.”

So Drone Man sat thinking, and presently he started blinking
As new ideas came where old ones had gone before.
“Not just mobility,” he thought sadly, “ISIS needs also badly
Armour and much more than included in my plot du jour.
Where I can find a mine full of inspiration’s mystic ore?”
Quoth the Humvee: “The Pentagon’s store!”

Drone Man said “Now my way I clearly see, the way I’ll make free
With regulations that tie me down, and send weapons once more.
Tanks, artillery, you name it, I know now how I’ll send it
In ways that ISIS will get them, and win through once more
To the victory I promised them, that to them I swore.”
Quoth the Humvee: “You won’t bore.”

Drone Man stroked the Humvee’s top, thought happily of the crop
Of headless bodies in numbers never seen heretofore –
“I’ll arm the Iraqi, the army that I know perfectly
Will cut and run and leave the weapons for ISIS, like they’ve done before.
How do you like my plan? Tell me, I implore.”
Quoth the Humvee: “J’adore!”

“Then when ISIS captures it all, and it seems Iraq will fall
I can send troops and planes and even more weapons than I’ve done before
To destroy the tanks and Humvees, that ISIS will take when the army flees
I’ll send missiles that ISIS can capture in turn, to arm its armoured corps.
Is’t all right so far, or should I seek a system restore?”
Quoth the Humvee: “I assure!”

“Though I sometimes wonder, if I’m making a blunder
In assuming things will go as simply as I’m planning for.
How many hours before the weapons fall to ISIS? A year or more?
I can’t wait if it takes ISIS to capture the weapons a year or more.
How many hours? I’m afraid you’ll say a year or more.”
Quoth the Humvee: “Twenty four!”

While I’ve been waiting for a while – at least four years – for some topic I could write a parody of Poe’s The Raven to, I scarcely expected that the Imperialist States of Amerikastan’s fairly transparent attempt to arm its ISIS proxies would provide the inspiration. Still, the muse strikes in unexpected ways – rather like one of Obama’s Hellfire missiles.

What inspired this parody was the news that ISIS captured a billion dollars’ worth of Humvees alone in Mosul (again alone), and more subsequently in Ramadi, and that isn’t including all the artillery and Abrams tanks and so on that Amerikastan sent to its famous New Iraqi Army. And the solution after ISIS captured all that? To send even more Humvees, tanks and artillery to this same New Iraqi Army. As well as missiles to destroy the Humvees and tanks it already sent. I wonder what it will send when (when, damn it, not if) ISIS captures those missiles.

Damn it, I wish someone would give me a Humvee. After all I’m not going to turn it into a car bomb or machine gun anyone from it, and I probably deserve it more than some jihadi with nothing in his skull but mangled and misinterpreted material from the Koran.

If I was the Caliph Abu Bakr Al Baghdadi, I’d be composing a letter of effusive thanks to Obama right now.

Copyright B Purkayastha 2015



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