Saturday, February 11, 2006

Future Bush Script: An Encounter In Bern



Richard Perle is watching a chess match take place in a park in Bern, Switzerland. He finds the match rather slow going and predictable. Both players are employing mediocre strategies, so Richard regards their analytical abilities to be barely superior to those of a typical State Department intelligence analyst operating from a Foggy Bottom cubicle. This saddens him.

Repairing to a nearby bench, he takes out his copy of the 1852 Poëmes Antiques, by Charles Marie René Leconte de Lisle. Recently reprinted in a handsome limited edition, a friend from the Persian Gulf armaments purchasing community was kind enough to gift him a copy. As he begins to read, a particular stanza from the poem “Dies Irae” catches his eye:

Et toi, divine Mort, où tout rentre et s'efface,
Accueille tes enfants dans ton sein étoilé;
Affranchis-nous du temps, du nombre et de l'espace,
Et rends-nous le repos que la vie a troublé!

Lenconte de Lisle’s perceptive verse, with its absence of pity, embrace of fate, and acceptance of loss, gives Richard a measure of contemplative quietus amidst the profligate laughter emanating from some nearby wastrels.


Further concentrating so as to drown out the annoying bark of a distant dog, Richard begins to find some of ‘the repose that life has disturbed,’ as Leconte de Lisle would say. Still he is concerned that some conservatives back in the States may not appreciate his reading of French material in public at such a politically sensitive time.

Mindful that several intelligence agencies, some allegedly friendly, others obviously hostile, may be watching him, he reasons it is best to err on the side of discretion. Tucking the book of poems discretely inside a copy of recently obtained bound blueprints for the French made Crotale NG VT1 (RF proximity fuse) hypervelocity air defense missile, he begins to read again. Suddenly an attractive woman in her late thirties approaches him.Though there is no sign of rain, she is carrying a closed umbrella. She seems Italian. Alas, her face is an unfamiliar one to him.

Woman:
Hello Mr. Perle. (Roman accented English) How are you today?

Richard Perle:
You look familiar.

Woman:
Familiarity breeds contempt.

Richard Perle:
That is what you say.

Woman:
Contempt has its uses.

Richard Perle:
What is useful is not always pleasant, but victory vindicates. You look pleasant. Should I be worried?

Woman:
Love conquers all. As long as one loves victory, one need not worry.

Richard Perle:
Spoken like true Roman, not a teller of real truth.

Woman:
What is truth?

Richard Perle:
You tell me.

Woman:
Rome is the Eternal City. Don't you think what is eternal must be true.

Richard Perle:
Nothing lasts forever. Rome is a nice place to visit, but I would not want to live there

Woman:
Bern is a nice place to live. Thank God, I only have to visit.

Richard Perle:
Silvia told me it was tourist season. Did she send you?

Woman:
Yes she did. She arranged a package tour.

Richard Perle:
Pierre?

Woman:
Pierre and Françoise.


The woman with the umbrella hands Richard a colorful flier that says, among other things, “Sylvia’s Swiss Tours - Bern For Three Nights and Two Days. Meals included.” Richard notes the back of the flier contains a handwritten address that is vaguely familiar to him. The woman then walks a block and half away, gets on the back of a waiting motorcycle, and speeds off.

Richard folds up the woman’s flier and puts it into his suit pocket. After sitting down and reading for a few minutes, he gets back up and walks over to the trashcan. For the benefit of those who may be watching him, he pauses to confirm that the woman has left the park, then he removes a replica of the flier from the same suit pocket that contains the one she just gave him. This replica flier is the same in all respects to the original, except that it has an incorrect meeting address penned on the back. Crunching the replica up, he tosses it into the trashcan then leaves the park nonchalantly and heads back to his hotel room.

Minutes after he leaves, one of the chess spectators takes out a candy bar and begins eating it. When done eating, he walks over to the trashcan to throw away the wrapper. Along with the candy wrapper, the chess spectator drops a magazine into the trashcan. When he then reaches into the trashcan to retrieve the discarded magazine, he discretely removes the crumpled flier that Richard Perle just discarded. Tucking that flier inside his retrieved magazine, this fellow then leaves the park. Someone sitting nearby, who just witnessed this discrete, if not discrete enough, retrieval of the discarded fake flier, waits a minute then begins to follow him.


Continued in Part Two: When A Toast Will Be Proposed

7 Comments:

At 5:02 PM, Blogger Frederick said...

What a delight.

 
At 10:25 PM, Blogger enigma4ever said...

oh great...Can I be Umbrella Woman..please???
( I picture her looking like Emma off the Avengers)

excellent...

 
At 1:08 PM, Blogger Dem Soldier said...

Oh can't wait to read part two....lol

 
At 9:18 AM, Blogger Dr Leo Strauss said...

Alas, this is better than the fantasies Richard would tell holding court at plain but good Bethesda, MD sushi bar "Matuba" to amuse David Frum's new collegiate summer interns.

Richard needs some good fantasies to escape the post-Lord Black doldrums. Doubtless his secret dream would be for this new tale to unfold with a rogue cell from Le Cordon Bleu Chefs -- perhaps on a mission to silence Simone Ledeen and her deviationist cooking school.

 
At 12:26 AM, Blogger Renegade Eye said...

That post was brilliant. All that creativity is making my brain explode.

 
At 9:50 AM, Blogger Alicia said...

You are rocking, my man! In honor of the more-than-timely demise of the Hammer, I have a new ode to him, if you care to stop by!

 
At 11:04 AM, Blogger A.E. said...

Brilliant. You've captured the essence of the neocons' James Bond fetish.

 

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