President expects Iraqi army to be “gellin’” by early 2007
BAGHDAD - President Bush has turned to an unlikely source of help in fighting the war in Iraq: footcare company Dr. Scholl’s.
The company, famous for curing foot odor and sweaty feet, will try to help new Iraqi forces coalesce and stabilize though its patented massaging gel insoles.
In a supervised demonstration, the First Iraqi Comfort Brigade marched for reporters, turning expertly on their heels and moving with a spring in their step heretofore unseen in the Iraqi military. With the men standing at attention, the drill sergeant, Salim In-Stephan, called out, “Are you men gellin’?”
“Sir, yes sir!” the brigade yelled.
“How gellin’ are you?” Sergeant In-Stephan asked.
“Sir, we are gellin’ like felons!” the soldiers answered. Approximately 35-40 percent of the new brigade are former Republican guard members accused of committing war crimes.
However, the demonstration was immediately broken up by insurgent shelling. The First Comfort Brigade scattered, while Sergeant In-Stephan began yelling for the men to start repelling the attack.
He was unsuccessful in rallying his troops, as the soldiers new footware helped them race past even terrified journalists to safety.
General Henry Sole, a former Dr. Scholl’s vice president of marketing and now U.S. Commander for the Strategic Tactical Evasive Podiatrics (STEP) unit, downplayed the quick instinct of the men to scatter. “We were impressed by the improved quickness of the men. Their footspeed has improved an average of 33 percent. We plan to harness that speed into light, highly mobile units that can counteract terror, or, at the very least, outrun the terrorists until they are out of breath and U.S. forces can pounce on them.”
While Dr. Scholl’s has previously served an advisory role on trenchfoot for the military, this marks the first time the company had taken an active role on the battlefield. President Bush hailed the company for making such a bold step. “We are confident that, within the next six to nine months, Iraqi security forces will be more gellin’ than Vasco de Gama.”
“Don’t you mean Magellan, Mr. President?” asked White House correspondent Helen Thomas.
“Yes, yes, Magellan. Thank you, Helen. I guess I should leave these questions for Scott McClellan!” the President said, clapping his hands and letting out his trademark laugh of three short hehs.
Some in Congress expressed skepticism with the President’s plan. “At, ah, this point, there’s no telling what he’s selling,” said Senator Ted Kennedy. “I am not at all confident that this will keep the insurgency from swelling.”
Indeed, some fear that insurgents will infiltrate the Iraqi Foot Brigades and steal their gellin’ apparatuses. One insurgent group, calling themselves the Al-Tinactin Brigades, displayed pictures of captured gellin’ insoles on their Web site, with the caption, “We are so gellin’, we are rebellin’, praise be to Allah.”
The American soldiers on the ground had mixed reactions to the efforts. “I’m happy the Iraqis will be more comfortable,” said Captain Dan Arches of the Marine Corps. “We’ve had a hard time bringing these different groups together, so maybe they can rally around quality footcare.”
But Private First Class Jeffrey Heels was much less sanguine. “They’re gellin’? Good for them. You know what would help me start gellin'? Some (expletive) body armor.”