Friday, July 31, 2009


By : Mr. L. Paul Bremer, III, B.A., Yale, M.B.A., Harvard Business School; Risk Management Consultant, Marsh & McLennan Co., Inc. (2008-present); Chairman of the Iraq Reconstruction Project under the Coalition Provisional Authority (2003-2004); Terrorism Expert at the Department of Homeland Security (2002); U.S. Ambassador to Norway (1986) and The Netherlands (1983) under President Ronald R. Reagan; Speaks fluent French, Dutch and Norwegian, with a special emphasis on Norwegian/Dutch terrorism dialects spoken in Trondheim, Norway and Rotterdam, Holland; Real Estate Owner; Connoisseur of French Cuisine (excluding Algerian varieties); Republican.

We have a responsibility to bring freedom to Iraq. As Chairman of the Iraq Reconstruction Project during 2003 and 2004, I led key initiatives intended to eradicate Saddam Hussein’s legacy. Consistent with the President’s instructions, I had full authority to institute measures designed to introduce Iraqis to the joys of democracy. Due to increased security regulations during those years, I was unable to report the very great strides I made in Iraq. Now, however, I have received clearance to discuss my achievements. In my view, Americans will be proud to know that we are winning the war on terror. Iraqis are freer now than they ever were under Saddam Hussein’s tyranny. Thanks to my efforts, Iraqis have become less prone to terrorism. And thanks to my efforts, Iraqis have begun embracing American ways.

When I landed in Iraq six years ago, I recognized that Iraqis had to change their diet. I quickly observed that insurgents, Ba’ath Party officials, Republican Guard soldiers, al-Qaeda agents and rocket-toting children all shared one thing in common: They ate Iraqi food. They gorged themselves on pita bread, Iraqi-raised grain balls, falafel, Iraqi-grown wheat shoots and Iraqi myrtle berry cola. I knew from my diplomatic work in Norway that terrorism thrives on Arab-raised food; when Arabic-speaking people eat Arab-raised food, something happens to their DNA. After ten years eating falafel and pita, every Iraqi develops a dangerous propensity to build roadside bombs and chant violent anti-American slogans. I hired a consulting group to confirm what I already knew: Every time an improvised explosive device blew up in Baghdad, falafel crusts and myrtle berry soda bottles were not far from the blast site. Every time our troops shot an insurgent, they found terrorist-raised wheat seeds on his jacket, hands and beard. This evidence told me what I had to do: I had to change Iraqis’ diets.

I knew that freedom could never take hold in Iraq as long as Iraqis continued eating terrorist-raised crops and terrorist-bottled soda. I recognized that the road to freedom began with food. Only democratically-produced American foods could instill respect for democracy and freedom in the Iraqis. No matter how many troops we deployed and how many roadblocks we built in Baghdad, I knew our efforts were bound to fail unless we required Iraqis to eat foods that would set them free.

To combat terrorist diets, I did two things. First, I outlawed Iraqi farmers from harvesting their crops or saving the previous year’s crop. Iraqi-raised crops are terrorist crops. They contain nutrients that foster terrorism, anti-Americanism, violence and al-Qaeda sympathy. Iraqi crops turn Iraqi children into murderers and Iraqi women into suicide bombers. Under Provisional Order 81, I ordered troops to burn all Iraqi-raised crops and destroy all granaries. I made drinking myrtle berry soda crime punishable by imprisonment in Abu Ghraib prison. Similarly, I outlawed all domestic falafel and pita consumption.

At the same time, I understood that these measures would inspire some resentment in the native population. Thus, I provided several key exceptions. Notably, I allowed Iraqis to eat falafel and pita bread provided they contained only American ingredients. After all, American ingredients do not transform children into terrorist bombers or hijackers. To the contrary, American ingredients instill American values, including a desire to start businesses, purchase private health insurance, file tax returns, join sports clubs and buy cable television packages. Additionally, I permitted Iraqis to drink any soda not manufactured by Arabs. In this way, I ensured that they would not drink myrtle berry soda. But I preempted popular resentment by allowing them to drink Coca-Cola®, Pepsi®, Dr. Pepper®, RC Cola® and Mountain Dew® (in addition to all Diet and low-calorie variants for the same brands) on the express condition that they were bottled in the United States. According to my consulting group, Iraqis would not be angry as long as they had access to some sugar-based carbonated beverage. In this sense, my Provisional Order struck a satisfying compromise, all the while reducing terrorism and instilling freedom.

But eliminating terrorist diets represented only one step toward ultimate freedom in Iraq. In order to fully bring liberty to the country, I had to make Iraqis start to think like Americans. Americans don’t want to kill other Americans. Therefore, I had to transform Iraqis into Americans, at least in spirit. Once again, food offered the answer. After destroying terrorist-raised Iraqi crops, I instituted a massive food delivery program from American farms. Specifically, I secured a $14 billion contract with Monsanto Corp. to provide genetically-altered American seeds to Iraqi farmers. These seeds would grow into American crops filled with nutritious American values. By transforming the Iraqi diet, Iraqis would slowly forget RPGs and IEDs and start believing in Domino’s Pizza®, Cadillac Escalades® and investment retirement accounts. In this way, I literally “sowed the seeds” for a democratic Iraq.

Democracy can only take root in a country that thinks the way we do. Iraq represented a difficult task for me because Iraqis are very different from Americans. For one thing, they speak Arabic. Arabic does not sound anything like English, or even Spanish. In fact, it does not even use the same alphabet. Basically, it looks like a bunch of dots and wavy lines. It is difficult to advertise American products to people who speak Arabic. Moreover, Iraqis dress differently and believe in a different God than most Americans. They also worship Osama bin Laden and pray five times a day. These are all sentiments that foster terrorism and hostility to traditional employment. I knew it would be difficult to overcome these differences. I knew it would be difficult to make Iraqis free. After all, Iraqis would not be Americans until they truly wished to work 50 hours at an insurance company or bank, then take their children to soccer practice on Saturdays. Iraqis would not be Americans until they bought their own health insurance and took out at least $90,000 to get an education. I understood my challenge. But I knew that American food would start Iraqis on the road to freedom—and being American.

Time proved me right. Over time, Monsanto’s seeds took root in the Iraqi soil, yielding American crops. American crops made their way into Iraqi stomachs, slowly changing their minds from terrorism to free market enterprise. By 2006, most Iraqi children said that they no longer wanted to be like Osama bin Laden, but rather John Mayer, “because he gets all the hoes.” Similarly, most Iraqi adults said that they would rather see a movie featuring Angelina Jolie or Brad Pitt than attend a Friday mosque rally denouncing George W. Bush as Satan. Attacks on American troops fell. Pizza Hut® and Burger King® franchises sprouted up. Strip malls, nail salons and Starbucks® Coffee houses replaced bombed-out insurgent strongholds. Iraqis began opening branch banks to provide mortgages and business loans to hopeful young entrepreneurs. Iraqis even slowly began abandoning Arabic for English. Thanks to their new diet, Iraqis were turning into Americans.

Although my work in Iraq had ended by 2006, I took quiet comfort in a job well done. I salute the Iraqis for their commitment to freedom. It takes intelligence to recognize that being American is better than being Iraqi. Yet Iraqis did not just become Americans to own larger cars and open banks. No, they understood that being American is much safer than being Iraqi, especially in a country under American military administration. By changing their ways from terrorism to Americanism, Iraqis saved their children from certain death in airstrikes, helicopter missile attacks and firefights. They also saved themselves from being randomly shot by American contractors. Diet did all this. After Iraqis began ingesting American crops, they no longer wanted to take up arms against the “hateful invaders.” Rather, they saw the Americans for what they were: Liberators bearing the torch of secular free enterprise and private profit for all—even for former terrorists and Arabic speakers. They not only wanted to abandon their old ways; they also wanted to be successful Americans with substantial incomes, homes, credit cards and garages.

Terrorism is a losing proposition. No suicide bomb or hijacking can stop the United States. We have too much to offer. We are too seductive. It makes no sense to wage futile war on the country that produces iPods®, Blu-Ray Disc® players and PlayStation 3®. Your children want to be like our children, no matter what terrorist dishes you feed them. Once they start eating American food, they will never take up arms against America again. Everyone wants our freedom. They just need to eat right first.

I performed a miracle in Iraq. But I achieved my goal because everyone on earth really wants to be an American. Those who say otherwise are just confused. They simply must change their diet to see the light. Once American food arrives in your country, it is just a matter of time before you start hungering for freedom. And super special sale deals at well-maintained shopping centers.

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