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War Game

Scene 1. The Pentagon.

Aide, Joint Chiefs of Staff: “Admiral Mullen Sir! Mark Sullivan, Head of Secret Service wants to speak to you NOW! We’ve got a problem.”

Chairman JCS: “Admiral Mullen here. What’s up Mark?”

Mark Sullivan: “Some crazy has landed on the roof of the spent fuel-rod building at the Davis Besse nuclear plant in Ohio. He claims his helicopter is full of C4 and if we don’t surrender he’ll blow the water out of the storage pool.”

Admiral Michael Mullen: “My God man, there’s over a thousand Nagasaki bombs worth of plutonium in that pool. If he blows the water out of that pond it will start a zirconium fire that can’t be put out. All the plutonium/nickel-95/cesium will vaporize into the atmosphere. The entire east coast will be toast!” How would you handle this?”

Mark Sullivan: “Uh, that’s your job sir, we just protect the president. You’re the ones who left the door wide open. Just a minute, President Obama wants to talk to you.”

President Obama: “Mike, what the hell are we going to do about this? Why aren’t these buildings protected against this? Can a sniper take him out?”

Admiral Mullen: “He’s probably got the explosives wired to go off if anything happens to him. To answer your question about preventing attacks on nuclear facilities Sir, Admiral Rickover warned about this and asked the Senate to let him dismantle all the reactors – precisely because they ARE sitting ducks. Reagan fired him. We take our orders from you and congress. It’s your problem now Sir.”

President Obama: “My problem? You’re supposed to be protecting us. Your socialist organization has charged the taxpayers $15 trillion dollars since World War II for protection. Why would you leave such an obvious gap in our defenses???

Admiral Mullen: “That didn’t happen on my watch Mr. President. Can’t cry over spilt milk. Seems it’s everyone’s problem now. Mike, do you still have this guy on the phone?”

Mike Sullivan: “We have verification he’s on the building in a Hughes 500. That helicopter can carry enough C4 to blow the entire building to smithereens. He left a call back number but it wasn’t his. I called it and Miss Cleo answered; said our future looked pretty dim.”

President Obama: “I thought she was in jail.”

Mark Sullivan: “I did too but apparently not; claims to know nothing about any nuclear sabotage. She knows we’re in trouble though. Maybe she really is a psychic.”

President Obama: “Oh, shut up. We gotta get this terrorist on the line. Mark, you talked to him. What did he say he wants, California?

Mark Sullivan: “Something about unconditional surrender, Sir. He said he’d call back soon.”

Scene 2. The helicopter

President Obama: “Who the hell ARE you?

Pilot: “Hello Mr. President. Right now, you can call me boss. I’ve told you my conditions, unconditional surrender or nuclear holocaust. Seems an obvious choice on your part. If I do set it off you guys will all be out of a job anyway for leaving the country unprotected. So will your hit men in that five-sided building. Don’t whine to me. It’s your own fault. You’re checkmated.”

President Obama: “Look, you can’t just overthrow the U.S. government. The people wouldn’t stand for it.”

Pilot: “Sir, the public hardly cares which mafia is charging them for protection so long as they actually get it. You obviously haven’t provided it. Look where you are now.“

President Obama: “We have to talk. This is insane. How about we just give you California?”

Pilot: “How about California, Oregon, Washington and British Columbia?

President Obama: “We don’t own British Columbia.”

Pilot: “I know, was just joking. I own it now anyway. No deal. I want every federal office holder in all three branches to resign in disgrace, pack up and go home immediately. We can start over with publicly financed elections and ban corporate contributions to congress. Might get a few honest representatives that way.”

President Obama: “I don’t have the power to do that.”

Pilot: “Of course you do. You’re the Captain. Haven’t you read Moby Dick? Issue an executive order and sign it. I’ll give you one hour.”

President Obama: “Wait, I need more time than that!”

Pilot: “OK, take two hours. I’m not going anywhere. You know this plant almost blew a couple of years ago; had a corrosion hole the size of a pineapple in the pressure vessel lid. You guys are insane for leaving these things open. I noticed you took campaign money from the nuclear industry. What was that all about?”

President Obama: “Can I get back to you?”

Pilot: “Sure, just be quick about it.”

Scene 3. The Oval Office

President Obama: “Rahm, this guy may be bluffing but we can hardly take that chance. How do you suggest we get him off that tin roof?”

Rahm Emmanuel: “Did you know these nuclear plants were so easy to breach? We’ve made nuclear superpowers out of individuals. Reason with him? Beg? Give him what he wants then kill him later? Hell, I don’t know. How about us getting on Air Force One and moving upwind of him, just in case? ”

President Obama: “Smart thinking. We can talk to him from the plane.”

Scene 4: Air Force One

President Obama: “Look girls, you can see Niagara Falls from 41,000 feet.”

Daughters: “Where we going Daddy?”

President Obama: “Oh, just a little bit of Presidential business in Alaska.”

Rahm Emmanuel: “We have the pilot on the phone Sir. He’s asking if the executive order is drafted yet. I told him yes. Do you want me to draft one now? He said to email it to him on his Blackberry. We have one hour left.”

President Obama: “You know, if he blows that plant millions will die. And he’s right, this government will fail. I can’t believe this is happening. Hand me the phone. I have an idea.”

Pilot: “Nice to hear from you Mr. President. Time is on my side, not yours. Make up your mind.”

President Obama: “I think you’re bluffing. I don’t think you have the nerve to pull this off. I don’t think you even have explosives with you.”

Pilot: “I’ve heard of poker players winning the saloon with a pair of twos. You want to take that chance?”

President Obama: “I guess not. What’s it going to take to get you to change your mind? Money? We can print up all you can spend, guarantee your freedom.”

Pilot: “Nah, I don’t want any money. I just wanted to prevent something like this from actually happening. It will, you know, unless you dismantle and secure these plants. You don’t even have no-fly zones over them. I can give you a dozen ways to breach them. This one’s just the easiest.”

President Obama: “OK, that’s it then. You have my word. No harm will come to you. No press will cover this story. Is that all?”

Pilot: “The press doesn’t cover any real story so I can believe that.”

President Obama: “Whew, now fly away and go home.”