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Monday, November 07, 2005

Immortality Calling

James Bond author Ian Fleming:
Fleming's amateur intelligence work paid off. In 1939 he was offered a job as personal assistant to the Director of Naval Intelligence. The position allowed Fleming to indulge his love of plotting and gadgetry, to exploit his networking skills and to develop unsuspected organizational talents. It also gave him the naval rank of Commander, a relatively lowly rank, but one with a resonance he enjoyed.

He set up an intelligence commando unit, which would follow invading troops and recover intelligence-related material. The unit saw action in the Allied invasion of Germany. Fleming was also in charge of Operation Goldeneye,– a contingency plan for a Nazi invasion of Spain, and devised Operation Ruthless. This was a plan to obtain a German codebook by crashing a captured aeroplane into the Channel, where the crew would be rescued by a German minesweeper. The 'survivors' would then kill the German crew and hijack the ship. The operation hit repeated snags and was eventually shelved.
Vice President of the United States Richard B. Cheney:
Having figured out that the general was being too cautious with his fourth combat command in three decades of soldiering, Cheney got his staff busy and began presenting Schwarzkopf with his own ideas about how to fight the Iraqis: What if we parachute the 82nd Airborne into the far western part of Iraq, hundreds of miles from Kuwait and totally cut off from any kind of support, and seize a couple of missile sites, then line up along the highway and drive for Baghdad? Schwarzkopf charitably describes the plan as being "as bad as it could possibly be... But despite our criticism, the western excursion wouldn't die: three times in that week alone Powell called with new variations from Cheney's staff. The most bizarre involved capturing a town in western Iraq and offering it to Saddam in exchange for Kuwait." (Throw in a Pete Rose rookie card?) None of this Walter Mitty posturing especially surprised Schwarzkopf, who points out that he'd already known Cheney as "one of the fiercest cold warriors in Congress.
I hereby volunteer to help Big Time find a book deal. Enough with the Vice Presidenting already.

Time to buy a small Greek island, sip a little Grappa and share your bountiful literary talents with the world, Dick. No really, I mean it man, you've got the gift. Call me.