16. Tragic Misspelling in Pakghanistan is Costly
Chivers, Rubin and Morgan, reporting for the NY Times on Friday in an article almost as confusing as the war itself, broke the news that the U.S. military was pulling its forces from the Pech Valley. The U.S. command had described the valley as “central to the campaign against the Taliban and Al Qaeda,” on Thursday. Marvin Acedia, spokesperson for Maj. General Campbell the commander for Eastern Pakghanistan, explained through a world weary smile that, “we were in the wrong valley.” “We are embarrassed to have to say,” he said, “that our translators failed us here, and we ended up in the Pech Valley because of a misspelling.” Acedia went on to say that, “you needn’t worry, as we have the valley central to the campaign under our control.” “Security concerns prevent me from providing any additional information—such as the location of the valley central to our campaign.” The Times reporters went on to describe how the Soviets had realigned their troops away from the Pech Valley in 1988, also because of a spelling mistake. Soon after, the Soviets got to go home.
A related NYTimes article details the demand of the Head of the Pakghanistani Spy agency (ISI) for the names of all CIA contractors. The CIA has made it quite clear through its chief spokesperson, who could not be named or photographed, that in spite of the occasional snag, cooperation with ISI is “strong and healthy.” We interviewed an ISI spokesman, who could not be named or photographed, at the weekly NATO fuel truck burning and mixer. The spokesman agreed with the CIA assessment and went on to say, “We only want the contractor’s names so that we can hunt them down and kill them like dogs.”
We found Stanley Spade, spokesperson for all the Pakghanistani contractors, at the International flight counter at Kabul Airport. Stanley would only say, “Is that my flight? Where the hell is my flight?” General Petraeus, safely tucked away in his super secret bunker, under the State Capitol in Madison, Wisconsin, could not be reached for comment.