Paul Andersen: Suffering from a cold? Bomb Iraq |

Paul Andersen: Suffering from a cold? Bomb Iraq

“I’b got de kide ub code dat clogs de head.” Translation: I’ve got the kind of cold that clogs the head.

If you were living with me for the past 10 days (and you’re lucky you weren’t), that’s how my words came out. With the sensation of jellybeans stuffed in my ears and cotton balls jammed up my nose, my head has been more packed than the mosh pit at a Pearl Jam concert.

I’m not writing for sympathy. God knows I’m not the only one with this head cold. Anyone with school-age children is either recovering from it or incubating it. This virus seems to be in the very air we breathe.

And this is where the fear mongers are having a field day. Rumors are circulating that this is not just an ordinary head cold, but rather the result of a germ agent unleashed against the world by Saddam Hussein and his sinfully sadistic scientists.

We have all heard about how evil Saddam is and about the horrors of which he is capable. The fact that he is being accused of causing head colds in the Roaring Fork Valley is a sign that the propaganda war against Iraq is a huge success.

The Bush administration is now perfectly poised for a new and startling campaign to promote its warmongering: “Got a cold? Bomb Iraq.” Every American with a case of the sniffles can justify the use of lethal force against our avowed enemy, giving new meaning to the “Cold War.”

The release of cold germs shows not only Saddam’s malicious side, but his genius for military strategy. Smallpox can be thwarted by a simple inoculation. But the common cold? There is no cure and sufferers endure misery for days, possibly weeks. Smallpox is nothing compared to a Booger Bomb.

It might be unpatriotic to suggest this, but I suspect that the real beneficiaries of a head-cold attack are the American companies that make tissues and cold remedies. This enormously profitable industry profits from widespread illnesses and could benefit from such a scourge.

According to alarmists, however, the head-cold campaign is a clear demonstration of Iraq’s insidious efforts to make Americans suffer. Not only does this Cold War reduce our productivity, it hampers our leaders from trumpeting their damning proclamations. Imagine our commander in chief issuing his umpteenth martial challenge to the evil one with a plugged up nose.

Instead of cursing “Saddam,” Bush would blurt “Daddam.” Instead of hissing “Axis of Evil,” Bush would blubber “Axis ub Ebil.” The effect of the president’s bellicose diatribes would be lost to his impacted sinuses. His tough Texas twang would be terribly tweaked.

If I am, in fact, suffering from Saddam’s heinous viral attack, then the daunting challenges in a pre-emptive strike against Baghdad are glaringly obvious. The Marines will need enough cold medication to literally treat an army.

So, here come our troops, marching up to Baghdad with a chorus of sneezing and honking noses, an olive-drab hanky in every pocket. Iraqi soldiers on the front lines will find it easy to identify our troop movements just by listening to the hacking coughs of our GIs.

If our defense contractors figure out a way to stifle sneezing and wheezing, then the Iraqis will be able to smell our troops from the ocean of Vick’s Vaporub smeared on their chests. The drop in American troop morale from acute rhinitis will necessitate resurrecting Bob Hope for one last tour.

As an early casualty in the War Against Iraq, I can proudly say that I have suffered for my country. Does that make me a hero? It does if you knew the pain I have endured from chapped nostrils and the way I have bravely gone on with my life.

Still, I can say with deep resolve that Saddam will not win this war by spreading a head cold, even if it reaches every last American. We are made of sterner stuff, and I can see no reason to capitulate to Saddam, even if we all run out of Kleenex and Excedrin.

You’ll have to hit us with something harder than a mere head cold, Saddam! And I have one final word to say before I …”ah … ah … ah-choo!”… Take that, you evil scoundrel!

[Paul Andersen thinks war paranoia is nothing to sneeze at. His column appears every Monday.]

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