Dillis and doughnuts
You can't just go to war,
say, unless France, Russia and Syria approve
November 11, 2003
I understand there was some concern at the United Nations
recently. The Security Council met in front of TV cameras to discuss
these concerns, serious enough to prevent tea ladies doing their
for Dillis, an enterprising Filipina, who pushed in and circulated
with her basket around the neck.
The crisis was about stuff, you
know, and that thing (I read in the papers). The Syrian ambassador
observed to his American "colleague" Negroponte that the
American attitude in this case was "irregular" and "possibly unhelpful" ("I'd
wring your neck if you were in my prison cell and electro-prod you into saying
'yees...yees'?", he was thinking).
The disagreement I think concerned
an Israeli peace initiative to bulldoze Palestinian homes and build a shopping
for Jewish settlers from Kiev. The Americans were backing this because, they
said, the settlers had expressed a legitimate, entirely peaceful desire for
a mall with a Dunkin Donut kiosk, and also a golf course and big
"Negloponte you eat yu donut, and I give yu anudda one with
jam," Dillis interjects. She is incensed by the doughnut and its
irrepressible, rotund confidence. It seems to smile at you, come
She used to feed them to pigeons in the Philippines before Imelda
Marcos hit her with a shoe. That's when she left the "rand of tylanny"
to seek her fortune in evil America. (Imelda is back however, a
senator, and while she tearfully
acknowledges 'certain excesses' in her wardrobe, she insists, 'I ruvv de Firipino
Dillis recently asked the UN if she might reshuffle her basket
contents: less doughnuts, more fizzy. "Nein, zet iss not possible
vidout approval of French
ambassador," she was told by Haakon Gaagarland, the permanent undersecretary
at the UN Secretariat for catering and hygiene.
The point is, the United Nations is important. It represents
the hopes and aspirations of countless black, brown and yellow
speech writers, translators, counsellors and Dillis.
It is above all a legitimating body. You can't just go to war,
say, unless France, Russia and Syria approve ("Syria, land of biscuits"
is my new, serious,
song). These beautiful people detest war and the violation of international
law, harmony and peace. Just don't get onto the subject of domestic
and peace or "I'll smash yar faacking face ya liddle rat", as the Syrian
tourism and hospitality minister, Halim "Basher" Falafel murmured to
me at a party once.
These states have a right to be indignant at America marching
around, slapping democracy in people's faces. Who wants it, who
needs it? The
French are now left with eight warehouses full of Moulinex rice
cookers, cheese graters
and nuclear reactor parts.
A recent, I understand genuine, recording
of a French export hack and Saddam revealed this conversation:
"Yu like ziss rice Kooker,
"Can it kill?" asks Saddam.
"It is for ze rice dish
mainly, but maybe ve can adapt it if you buy too-touzand."
I once listened to a fascinating debate on BBC radio. A British
historian declared in his "old-world" accent that he would
not holiday in Pakistan
mistreated various minorities, like women for example, and there
was no democracy (what a racist, right?). But the bleeding-heart
liberal urged patience with a country
like Pakistan, struggling as it was with the "nation-building" process
get a move on, it's
not a post office queue.")
We should not impose terrible Western
values like "equality before the law" or "no discrimination",
we know are nothing but
colonialism in disguise. We should holiday there, buy their cheap
machine rugs, and wait another century before they shave and
the house instead of
running out like monkeys, throwing bombs and voting for the Taliban.
a battery of hot missiles, Pakistan has a seat at the United Nations,
where with pals Syria, Libya, North Korea and Zimbabwe (Axis
can vote resolutions, issue notes, statements, communiqués,
to better the lot of their happy (or else!) citizens, and just have
fun for goodness' sake
(Just to say, the characters or states mentioned here have no
relation to real persons or states, being entirely imaginary or
And what of Dillis? Quo vadis Dillis? Last night she thinks the
last jam doughnut talked to her. "Dillis, Dillis," it said, "you
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