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Dubya's War

Rumsfeld: There's nothing wrong with a bit of looting
The United States Defence Secretary, Donald Rumsfeld, has tonight dismissed reports of mass chaos and lawlessness in Iraq as "exaggerated". "The so-called looting is not as bad as some reports have suggested," he said at a Pentagon briefing. "Yes, people are ransacking hospitals, burning down buildings and fighting each other in the streets, but it's not that bad. Stuff happens."

When asked what benefits the invasion of Iraq had brought its people, Mr Rumsfeld's response was clear. "Before we started this campaign there was a humanitarian crisis, people lived in fear of constant violence and were oppressed by an evil regime," he explained. "Now we have a humanitarian crisis, people live in fear of constant violence but they are free to do what the hell they like, whether it be looting hospitals or raiding government buildings. That, ladies and gentlemen, is what freedom is all about and that is what we have brought the Iraqi people."

Despite Mr Rumsfeld's enthusiasm, though, other people with an interest in the war are not as happy with the situation in some of Baghdad's cities. The British Chancellor, Gordon Brown, has reportedly requested that General Tommy "Gunn" Franks introduce a tax on looting in Iraq. "It is not fair that these people can get away with looting public buildings," he wrote in an email leaked to DeadBrain. "Perhaps if they were taxed at, say, 15% of the value of whatever they steal that might discourage them a little."

However, with the Iraqi currency worthless and no effective police force in place to implement the tax, it seems unlikely that it could be a success. The tax also faced immediate criticism from the Conservative Party, who rejected it as "another New Labour stealth tax". The Liberal Democrats also criticised the tax for not going far enough, adding that the equivalent of putting a penny on income tax would solve all of Iraq's problems ten times over, despite much of the population being unemployed.

General Franks is said to be considering both proposals equally carefully.

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