Vol. 2, Issue 15, April 13, 2004
Next Target in War On Terror: Spain
The war on terror took an unexpected turn yesterday when President Bush announced to a stunned nation that he was declaring war on Spain.
"Terror knows no boundaries," the president stated in a televised address. "Fortunately, neither does our Air Force. Last night I authorized our armed forces to take Madrid. It may be a bitter struggle," he added, "but we are on the side of right, and I am certain that justice will prevail."
Relations between the United States and Spain have traditionally been on the cool side; Spain was officially neutral in World War Two, although its government was largely sympathetic to the Nazis. In recent weeks, Spain has made international headlines when several explosions on trains throughout Madrid killed over 190 people in the country's worst-ever terrorist attack. In the days following the explosions, a new government was elected which opted, among other things, to withdraw its troops from Iraq.
"The rapid capitulation of the Spanish government to the train attack demonstrated to us that Spain is not a friend that can be trusted," said Bush. "And where I come from, a friend you can't trust is no friend. And," he finished with a flourish, "if they're not a friend, they must be an enemy."
Some analysts have suggested that the primary reason for attacking Spain is to provide the president with an easy military success in time for the November elections.
"Iraq has turned into a public relations nightmare," said Paul Vance, senior analyst at the Cato Institute. "The White House essentially had no exit plan, and has found rebuilding the ruins of the country a daunting task it was not prepared to pay for. Now, Spain is a different story altogether. Its relatively modern infrastructure will be a breeze, comparatively, to restore. Plus, the last Spanish-American war worked out really well for us."
The Spanish military is not expected to provide serious resistance to the three carrier groups now operating in the Mediterranean. However, Spain is a member of the European Union and could theoretically call upon the assistance of better-armed allies such as France and Germany.
"We are absolutely not going to stand by and watch this happen," said Irish Prime Minister Bertie Ahern, the current leader of the European Union. "I'm convening a subcommittee immediately, believe me."
Despite the potential involvement of other nations, Bush seemed confident that the unilateral decision to invade Spain would quickly win the approbation of the world.
"We are not worried," he replied. "It's not like Spain is part of Europe or anything."