The Fear of Monkeys - The Best E-Zine on the Web for Politically Conscious WritingThe Dusky Leaf-Monkey - Issue Four
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The Dusky Leaf-monkey, photo from Christian Artuso

Dusky Leaf Monkey
The average body mass for an adult male dusky leaf-monkey is around 8.30 kilograms, and for the female it is around 6.5 kilograms. The dusky leaf-monkey lives in the countries of Burma, Malaysia and Thailand. They prefers to live in closed primary forests, but are also found in old-growth secondary forests, plantation forests, and urban forests. They spend most of their time in the upper canopy levels of the forest, where they consume leaves, although they will also consume fruit and flowers. Social play in the dusky leaf-monkey includes wrestling, sham-biting, jumping on or over, chasing, fleeing, and tail pulling.




A Convenient Solution


Henry F. Tonn

      Donald Rumsfeld was distraught. As Secretary of Defense it was necessary for him to extract information from detainees at Guantanamo Bay to prevent further attacks on the United States in the aftermath of 911. As effective as some of his interrogation techniques had been to date, several prisoners had inconveniently died, and the ugly word "torture" was being bandied about by some uncooperative reporters in the American press. He needed to find a better solution to his problem.

      He called in his adjutant, a nicely attired young man in his thirties who was not only intelligent but highly ambitious. "I am sick and tired of being accused of being a monster," secretary Rumsfeld informed the adjutant without preamble. "It reflects poorly on me and on the government of the United States."

      "I agree, sir," the adjutant said. Rumsfeld could not remember the man's name, but consoled himself with the fact that all adjutants in the United States Government look alike.

      "We've got to find a way to extract necessary information from these people without losing them, a way that won't cause these bleeding-heart, panty-waist reporters to get all upset."

      "Yes, sir," the adjutant agreed.

      "Do you have a suggestion?"

      "How about waterboarding, sir."

      A look of puzzlement crossed over Secretary Rumsfeld's face. "What is that?" he inquired.

      "It's where you tie a prisoner down to a board and put a cloth over his mouth and nose and pour water on the cloth so he can't breathe. He begins to suffer from lack of air, and eventually passes out. Then you revive him and begin the whole procedure over again. It can be carried on almost indefinitely without killing him."

      Rumsfeld's face lit up. "Isn't this a form of strangulation?"

      "Some would call it that, sir," the adjutant reluctantly admitted.

      "But isn't it similar to that technique where people put a plastic bag over their heads while making love, and the lack of air enhances their sexual pleasure?"

      The adjutant pondered this idea for a moment. "I believe their have some qualities in common. Yes, sir."

      "Now we're getting somewhere," Rumsfeld exclaimed, rubbing his palms together excitedly. "They can't use the dreaded "T" word on me if I'm employing something that can actually be used to increase your sexual pleasure, can they?"

      "No, I don't believe so, sir" the adjutant agreed. His face continued to be expressionless, and Rumsfeld could not recall the man's name to save his life. Well, no matter.

      "Good. From now on, then, we'll use waterboarding. We'll call it an 'enhanced interrogation technique.' How does that sound?"

      "Excellent, sir. Excellent."

      "I'll write a memo to that effect," Rumsfeld said, moving over to his stand-up desk. "You've been very helpful, son. You'll go far in this business. You're truly a great American. "

      "Thank you, sir." The adjutant left.

      That night when the Secretary of Defense returned home from work his wife him greeted warmly, knowing how hard he had worked in defense of their country. "How was your day, dear," she asked solicitously.

      "An excellent day," he said, grandly. "A very excellent day. I think I finally solved this interrogation problem. They're not going to be able to accuse me of torture any more."

      "That's nice dear," Mrs. Rumsfeld said. "What would you like to drink with your supper."

      "Milk," Rumsfeld replied. "A nice, large glass of cold milk. I'm a growing boy."

      After dinner Rumsfeld watched a little television and then went to bed early. He slept soundly-- it was the sleep of the just.

Henry F. Tonn is a critic of the Iraq war who writes cynical parables of the George Bush administration.

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