The Home Office’s never-ending quest for truth takes us today to Fallujah, Iraq, where dread terrorist mastermind Ali Musab al-Zarqawi is recruiting a suicide bomber to kill off a few more infidels in time for the American evening news. Not only the American military has trouble meeting recruiting targets. Suicide bombers rarely follow in their father’s footsteps (as most of them are blown to tiny bits before getting old enough to spawn), their retirement plan stinks, and re-enlistments are unheard of. Zarqawi is explaining the newest enlistment incentives to a somewhat reluctant recruit.
Zarqawi: Walid Hamal el-Fodder, welcome to al Qaeda. It honors me to meet one who shall soon be martyred and join with Allah. I wish only that I could join you in your glory.
Walid: Please, don’t let me keep you from anything. Actually I’m not so sure about the martyr part.
Zarqawi: Do you not wish to bring honor to your family and gain your reward of many virgins in Paradise? (nudges Walid in ribs with elbow)
Walid: My family needs more than honor right now. We have been living on dog feces and recycled water from airplane lavatories since you martyred our city by inducing the Americans to destroy it.
Zarqawi: Your generation are such complainers. When I was a young man in Jordan we would have sold my sister into slavery for a meal as fine as dog feces! What more could you want than to die as part of the jihad?
Walid: It’s the dying part I’m having trouble with. I’m thinking of joining the police.
Zarqawi: Then you shall surely die, with as many of your infidel masters as a martyr can take with him.
Walid: Still dying, huh? How about the Army?
Walid: Is there any part of the jihad that doesn’t involve me dying?
Zarqawi: No. (Smiles craftily.) Join us and you and your family can gain by your glorious martyrdom.
Walid: Your not going to give me the honor speech again, are you?
Zarqawi: Honor should be enough, but these are difficult times. I am prepared to offer you ten thousand filthy American dollars for your martyrdom.
Walid: Do I look like I just fell off a hummus truck? I won’t be here to spend it.
Zarqawi: We will give it to your family. Yes, that is the ticket, we will give it to your family.
Walid: So all I have to do is blow myself up and you’ll give my family ten thousand dollars.
Zarqawi: Ten thousand filthy dollars, you forgot filthy.
Walid: Sorry. Filthy. It will still spend, will it not?
Zarqawi: Yes, my young and naïve friend, it will spend.
Walid: And all I have to do is blow myself up?
Zarqawi: Not so fast. We must barter first, it is our way. Blowing yourself up is not the way to Allah. Killing infidels and their collaborating whore-dogs when you blow yourself up is the secret to martyrdom.
Walid: How many do I have to kill?
Zarqawi: As many as possible.
Walid: What’s my incentive? I mean, what’s the minimum I can kill and still be a paid martyr?
Walid: What if I kill more?
Zarqawi: Same deal.
Walid: No incentives?
Zarqawi: All right, ten thousand for at least five, and another three thousand apiece for every one over ten. Not ten thousand per piece, ten thousand apiece.
Walid: What about the ones that don’t die?
Walid: That’s not fair. The Americans have some great medical benefits. I might blow someone half up and he’ll recover.
Zarqawi: We do not pay you for killing someone who does not die. We are not running a welfare state here.
Walid: I can understand that. How’s this: nothing if he recovers, but partial payment for maiming? Maybe five hundred dollars for each arm or leg, a thousand for an eye?
Zarqawi: It is against regulations. I will tell you what I can do. I will add one virgin to your harem in Paradise for every limb or eye you destroy in a survivor.
Walid: It’s a deal. (sotto voce) Sucker.
Zarqawi: (sotto voce) Sucker.