October 24, 2004

A Cave in Tora Bora

A few days after writing, The Meeting , [below] I received a mysterious email from what looked, at first glance, like a Hotmail account, but whose headers pointed to a point of origin somewhere inside the "pentagon.mil" domain. The subject line read: "A Far More Plausible Scenario."

Whether it is "a more plausible scenario"or not, I will leave to my readers. Still, it does have an ending more chilling than any I could have imagined. And when you find conclusions that outstrip your imaginations, it is always a sign you are looking at something that just might have a grain of truth at the core.

Date: xx/xx/2002 Place: A cave in Tora Bora

The scene is lit by a four Coleman lanterns in the corners of the cave. In the center is a blindfolded figure in native Arab garb. Even bound to the chair, he exhibits defiance. He's surrounded by Special Forces troops. One is taking the picture that's going to buy him a new boat back home.

All of them snap to attention as a crisp "Ten-hut!" comes from up the cave towards the entrance. Even the trained eyes of the Special Forces Ops widen slightly when they see who is there.

"Sir!" they all snap salutes.

"Good job men", he answers. "Is the prisoner secure?"

"Sir,yes Sir!" they all answer with hardened pride.

"Excellent. Consider yourselves all promoted. Now leave us for a minute."

"But, sir...."

"No buts soldier. I'll assume you're right up the tunnel if I need you. I have some personal messages I need to pass on".

With a knowing, but restrained, smirk, the soldiers file out.

The visitor waits until the footsteps fade down the tunnel. "So", he begins, "we finally have you."

The prisoner doesn't react, but you can sense a black seething from beneath the blindfold. The visitor reaches forward, and pulls it off.

"Come on Osama, did you really think we wouldn't find you? You know, Uncle Sam gets really, really mad when you do live up to your end of the deal."

Osama Bin Laden looks at the visitor with eyes of steel. "I", he begins, "am a man of God. I am doing his bidding.".

"Oh cut the crap," the visitor says. "I don't have time to chat". He pauses. "I'm quite sure you can only imagine what we're planning on doing to you. Unfortunately, it's not a tenth of what we should. If I had my way, I'd drop you off in Times Square at high noon."

With a face of demonic calm, Osama replies "and they shall be as cursed as you in hell..".

"Christ on a bicycle!" the visitor exclaims. "Will you shut up?. Like it or not, I'm here to offer you a deal."

Even the great Satan himself is nonplused at this. There's a long silence as the two men stare at each other.

"It's like this", the visitor begins, "you made it too easy. By the time 2004 rolls around, everyone will have forgotten about you, Al Queda, Afghanistan, all that. Instead, they're going to be looking at domestic issues. We all know the little Bush hasn't got a chance."

Osama listens, not at all sure where this is going.

"The only way Bushlet thinks he can win is as a "War President", and the only war he can think of is Iraq. Trouble is, that's going to be too easy too."

Osama interrupts "You know we would have nothing to do with that, that...infidel. "

"Yes, yes", the visitor agrees, "all the Arab world knows Saddam is the weak reed, but they can't say it in public. Just shut up. Here's what we need you to do: we need the "war" in Iraq to last a long, long, time. Not too many casualties, but messy enough to keep it going".

"And how...", ask Osama, genuinely puzzled, "..am I to help?".

"Simple", the visitor says, "in exchange for certain, ah, concessions, we'll arrange for you to "do your business" in Iraq once we invade."

"Do my business?" Osama asks?

"You know. Terrorism. Bombings. Kidnapping. PsyOps has a complete plan for you."

Head reeling, Osama says, "You said deal. And for this, I get...."

"Your life, stupid. You walk out of here free, and stay free. Sure, you'll hear stories about us getting close, but it will all be press. Hell, you might even be "Captured" around election time in 2004, except it won't be you."

Osama pauses for thought, the old days of collaboration with the U.S. against the Russians coming back. "But, such operations, take..money, resources.."

The visitor waves his hand "Not to worry. When we "invade", we'll leave the ammo dumps and banks unguarded. You guys takes your fill. The only thing we'll guard is the oil ministry. We've even got maps for you guys so you know what to hit."

There's a long pause. You could have heard a pin drop. Suddenly, Osama's face hardens "But the infidels, they must be punished, they must be....".

"Shut up!" exclaims the visitor, getting visibly impatient. "You can carry out your little crusade, just not in the U.S. In fact, we've got a list of, shall we say, "reluctant allies" that need a little goosing. You can Jihad all you want, just keep it outside of the U.S. of A. We might need your help a little in November of '04, but we'll get back to you."

Osama, visibly calmed, says "So, to be clear. You will let me go, and let my armies of God access money and munitions to punish you for invading Iraq, the only condition being that I don't attack you on your homeland?"

"You got it lil'buddy. Of course, keep those attacks here small, and try and aim for the civilians, if you know what I mean? We can get the folks stirred up back home with Iraqis women and children just as well or better than with grunts."

Osama considers.....

The visitor raises his finger "There is ONE more thing...."

Osama stiffens. He knew it was a ruse.

"At the proper time, certain members of the administration and, their, uh, families, will need some, uh, resources...".

Genuinely puzzled, Osama is silent.

The visitor pauses, then gathers himself. "Well, it's like this. You know the boss had an alcohol problem. And Cheney still does. And it looks like the daughters has it too. When the time comes, we're going to need some livers."

Even Osama shudders.

"So when we get you the word, you'll need to deliver up the right folks -- all under thirty, and, completely dry, if you know what I mean, of the right types. Once we get them, don't you worry about them one little bit."

Satan's right hand man is clearly nonplused. Even his false faith is shaken by what he's hearing.

The visitor moves around, and pats Osama on the back "Come on, you know you want to do it. This way, you still look like the hero, and our guy gets what he wants. You've delivered for us before with the Russians, and, well, 9/11, that was even beyond OUR expectations. Three time's a charm, eh?"

The visitor unties Osama, "You know we can get you again if you mess up, so don't even argue. I'm gonna leave her now, and we'll give you, oh, about an hour. Now you get your little brown butt out of here and back to your family, and we'll be talking again real soon now". The visitor tosses him a variety of cell phone unseen even in Tokyo. "This is secure. Fuel cell lasts 5 year. Heh, what if those tree huggers knew about that!" he laughs, as he starts up the tunnel.

Osama is still standing there bewildered when he hears the helicopters take off. But that's quickly replaced with satisfaction as he strides out of the tunnel, and into election history.

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Posted by Vanderleun at October 24, 2004 12:51 PM | TrackBack
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"It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood." -- Karl Popper N.B.: Comments are moderated and may not appear immediately. Comments that exceed the obscenity or stupidity limits will be either edited or expunged.

Oh, if Ludlum were still alive...

Posted by: Julius at October 24, 2004 2:13 PM


Posted by: Eric Blair at October 24, 2004 4:07 PM

I liked yours a whole lot more. This was written by an idiot with no real imagination. Osma does not speak english.

Posted by: op at October 24, 2004 6:14 PM

I wouldn't be quite so sure of that if I were you.

The Observer | Special reports | The making of the world's most wanted man: Part 1

among others.

Posted by: Gerard Van der Leun at October 24, 2004 6:47 PM

I had as many French lessons when I was in high school.

Je parle Francais a'la une vache d'Espagne. (Or something like that). I'd bet cash money he could not carry on a conversation in English. He might be able to read it, though.

Posted by: Eric Blair at October 25, 2004 7:51 AM

If this 'exercise in fiction' is true, then our government is as evil as Osama bi Laden. In which case, we don't deserve to win, and have lost all our credibility.

If it's not, then you're an idiot for suggesting this.

What exactly are you implying?
Our government is complicit in the Iraqi terrorist resistance?

I've enjoyed many of your articles, but you have a tendency to spin too many conspiracy theories into your yarns.

Better check your reality anchor before your next 'flight of fancy".

Posted by: Michael Hartrich at October 26, 2004 6:35 PM
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