July 6, 2003
Your friends at the Pentagon are developing an urban surveillance system that can keep track of you better. You, being people in foreign countries that are not the United States. This week.
The system was originally dubbed Broaden Identification Globally By Reaching Out, or BIG BRO, but it was renamed “Combat Zones That See,” because it’s so catchy. The new technology can record and analyze all of a person’s daily events, but will not lead to spying. If you haven’t said, seen, heard, read, or touched anything, basically you have nothing to worry about. It cannot be used for homeland security without extensive modifications, such as changing the color code alert status. (The system should not be confused with the T3 version, “Skynet,” which is instituted by an electronic dictator who rules in the future.)
The U.S. has suspended military assistance to 35 countries that have refused to protect American soldiers from prosecution by the International Criminal Court. The government is afraid the court could be used to try Americans for serving in those countries. Such prosecutions would be political, as they would be brought by professional America-haters—that is, people who don’t want Americans serving in their country.
Italy has assumed the rotating presidency of the European Union with a blistering defense of Italian Premier Berlusconi’s fitness to lead the Union. Berlusconi is not on trial for corruption in connection with the Italian media, which he owns, because he is immune from prosecution, thanks to a ruling by his government, which he owns. Berlusconi wrote in the daily Il Foglio, which he owns, “Nobody can teach morality lessons to the government elected by the Italian people, whom I own.” Reminded by a foreign reporter, whom he did not own, that Allied forces had once taught morality lessons to a previous elected Italian government, the Premier claimed immunity from that reminder. The Premier, who is being persecuted for speaking his mind, has previously explained that Western Civilization is superior to Islam and that Finns don’t know what prosciutto is.
The White House is mulling over a request by the UN to send troops to Liberia to help calm the civil war raging there. “We don’t go around sending troops just anywhere because they ask us to,” says a highly-placed source. “If they ask us not to, then of course we would be happy to go.” The administration is known to feel that it is too busy maintaining instability elsewhere to get involved in police actions where its forces are clearly wanted. “Being wanted leads to being charged,” said the source, “and being charged leads to be gored. Anyway,” he concluded, “we’re bushed.”
The army of Indonesia plans to set up vigilante groups to help maintain disorder in the rebel province of Aceh, which no one can pronounce and which is therefore boring, especially since the Indonesian military has only some of your tax dollars.
In keeping with the pullback of troops under the U.S.-provided road map for peace, Israel is building a wall around Bethlehem. The town is the first to be offered its own wall; residents of other towns will have to be satisfied with sharing the wall around the whole West Bank with other underprivileged towns. Terrorists denounced the wall, and were shot. Except for those whose denunciations were made in the foreign press, who were sent back to France.
Speaking of France, terrorist unions of performing artists went on strike against the curtailment of their unemployment plan, which covers periods of inactivity between their film and theater projects. According to investigative reports, an entire puppet troupe took advantage of this system to take a show about AIDS to Africa, instead of looking for a job. The White House has dismissed rumors it will call for regime change, saying that the U.S. has no strategic interests in the theater of Old Europe.
Former President Bill Clinton has denounced FCC moves to allow further monopolization of the media. In a column written for the New York Daily News, his apology for signing the 1996 Communications Act, which paved the way for the 2003 deregulation, was implied.