In a recent post of Mosilager's, he talks about how lucky we are that the enemies of democracy are so inept. I have to add that many of the friends of democracy are just as inept, George W. Bush being a sterling example of this. But buffoon that he is, it sounds like Bush has a ways to go before he gets top (or bottom) billing.
In Mosilager's post, which I personally found very interesting, he talks about a failed coup attempt in Zambia. The ringleader of the coup, Captain Solo, was eventually arrested and thrown into prison. So far it sounds like your standard coup attempt, except that the failed coup attempter is a Star Wars character. The part of Mosilager's post that I enjoyed the most, though, was his thoughtful follow up on the fate of Captain Solo and his henchpeople:
“There is an epilogue to this, the coup plotters were all jailed. After a few years a bunch of Ukrainians got thrown in jail as well for overflying a sensitive military institution. Then Captain Solo and company were back in the news complaining that the Ukrainians were too strong for them and treated them badly and ate all their food and so on.”
This is wonderful, and thanks to Mosilager for posting it.
Because you have to wonder a little about Captain Solo. In the first place, in many if not most places in the world the fate of leaders of failed coup attempts is often spectacular and abrupt. They don't seem to get much of a chance to really experience the hospitality of the government they just tried to oust, at least not for longer than it takes to form an execution squad:
“Hello, Louie? Doing anything on Monday? Did you get that problem with your Garand rifle fixed? Good. Because there was another coup attempt. Yeah, I know, I think we have three or four failed coup attempters to shoot this time. Good news, though, we'll be on TV, probably get good coverage now that soccer's over. Lucky thing I just got a haircut.
“Yeah, Louie, I've got to get my shoes cleaned too. I keep telling them to put a plastic tarp down under the failed coup attempters but the TV people say the glare from the plastic ruins the wide-angle shots. I know, I know, it's a shitty job but what the hell, the benefits are good – we're the ones still living when the day's over, right? HAHAHA. See you on Monday. Bring ammo for six in case it's a busy weekend.”
So Captain Solo's hard time in the slammer maybe isn't as hard as it could be.
And that's not all – not only is Captain Solo in prison sucking up Zambian tax dollars instead of pushing up daisies, he's bitching about the company. Here's a guy who thought he could run Zambia complaining about big strong Ukrainians using harsh language and eating his food. To me it sounds like Zambian prisons are pretty cushy places. Somehow I don't think Captain Solo would be complaining much about the food if he was on, say, Rikers Island. He'd be too busy learning that the American word “bitch” has several meanings. It sounds like the Ukrainians would fit in just fine there eventually, though. Probably the Ukraine has a Rikers Island or two within its borders somewhere.
Maybe I'm jumping to conclusions about the cozy little prisons in Zambia. If you notice, Mosilager states that the Ukrainians “treated them badly and ate all their food and so on.” The phrase “and so on” could be concealing a host of grisly and horrific fates that would make strong men faint outright if they heard of them, let alone me. So maybe it isn't such a sweet deal after all.
Nah. It is a sweet deal: they're bitching about the food. You can only can do that when you're alive.