BY NOW you've probably read about the Pentagon-financed public relations program that paid journalists to plant feel-good news stories written by the U.S. military in Iraqi newspapers.
It's bound to be leaked sooner or later, so I'm going to come clean and fess up to my part in another multimillion-dollar government program. This one paid humorists, including me, to write pro-American jokes to be slipped into the pages of Arabic-language giggle sheets like Al Laffiya, Boffolah, Khomedei and Hardeharharharam.
I'm not proud of my part in this covert campaign to win the hearts, minds and funny bones of the Iraqis, but all I was doing was trying to level the field of horseplay. Insurgent gag-writers, awash in diverted oil money, were provoking laugh riots with George Bush moron jokes, not to mention devastating chestnuts like this lethal side-splitter: "Question: How many occupying American devil soldier crusader dogs does it take to change a light bulb? Answer: 1,000 -- one to hold the bulb and the other 999 to use atom bombs to turn the entire village in a clockwise direction!"
I knew we couldn't win this fight with our rubber chickens tied behind our backs, so I joined an elite and, yes, well-compensated unit composed of our nation's top quipsters -- The Coalition Satirical Authority Special Farces. We quickly retaliated by deploying an impressive array of laser-guided rib-ticklers. Here's one: