Saturday, October 06, 2007

It Was Like Water Torture (Part 1 of 3)

"What's that on Tony's bookshelf," the President of the War on Terror said. He sat at the lip of my Tora Bora box, kicking his dissembling legs.

I watched the dull cranberry sheen of his shoes.

"You told Jose Maria Aznar, the President of Spain, that it was like water torture."

"What's on the bookshelf?"

I said, "You told Aznar in February 2003 that waiting for the U.N. Security Council to check for WMDs in Iraq was 'like Chinese water torture.'"

"I'd like to take a look at that book there," he said, pointing to the top shelf.

"Tell me what happened when you met with the President of Spain in February 2003."

"It looks like a thin paperback."

He shaded his eyes from the window. Outside, the Mayakovsky Tree was silent, its bole fetid with squirrels.

"Is Chinese water torture like waterboarding?" I asked. "When you were waiting for U.N. approval, was the U.N. actually torturing you?"

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