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Author's Note: The image of the t-shirts is the entirety of the spam I was sent. The reply is below. Excellent suggestions donated by Joshua Newman.

Subject: Re: Iraq T Shirts - Help with your support!
From: Jonathan Land <>
Date: 04/16/2003

Dear Good Citizen,

Speaking for the 13th Marine Exploratory Division stationed out here in Baghdad, I can't tell you how much your effort touches us. Of course, we'd appreciate it more if you were here in the shit, taking a more pro-active role in covering our collective ass out in the field, but that's ok. I'm sure those t-shirts are flying off your shelves faster than a fighter pilot with an itchy trigger finger flies off the battleship to take out the enemy. Man. That's the first time I think I've ever called them "the enemy". Typically the boys and I read the Stars and Stripes for the latest in dehumanizing references. I prefer "camel jockey", but it's not as catchy as the Vietnam terms like "gook" or even "Charlie".

I hope you're donating enough money to the Red Cross to make a significant contribution to my fallen brethren. Well, the ones who fell enough to be merely injured and not killed. And may your personal profits from these t-shirts let you grow accustomed to a lavish lifestyle throughout all future Middle Eastern nation invasions! It's your right as an American, and that's why we're here (circa three weeks ago).

It seems like a lot of folks back there in the states aren't behind the military action and I just don't get it. Have you ever had that dream when you were a kid that you were invisible in a toy store and you could just grab whatever you wanted? Well, we're living the dream, my friend. My wife tells me that they're showing lots of news footage of Iraqis looting, but they don't show where the bounty is being hauled off to. Well, it's going straight into the military's barracks. Televisions, office furniture, crates of Rollerball pens (the good ones), they're all coming right here. I feel like a cross between a slave-toting ancient Egyptian elevated on a Godly pedestal and a present-day disgruntled employee on the last day of a job raiding the office supply closet. It reminds me of when I was a teenager, raiding my parent's liquor cabinet whenever they went out for more than five minutes.

I don't know how we're going to pass these "savings" onto you folks back in the fatherland, but I'm sure we will. When it comes to reading about history (or at least listening to history audio books), President Bush is a first-class fanboy, so I have a feeling that he'll update the classic "a chicken in every pot" line for his re-election campaign to be "a chair in every home", but I'm just postulating.

I just want you to know that this whole thing isn't about getting cool free stuff, or even oil (which all the boys are mailing home by the barrel to convert to gas to fuel the easy-to-assemble jeep parts they're sending home like Radar from M*A*S*H). There's a much bigger plan in effect here that will shock and awe your ass! I hope I'm not divulging too much information, but what you guys know as "Operation Iraqi Freedom" in the States is really part of "Operation Manifest Destiny 2003" over here. The President has a bold new vision of John O'Sullivan's 1839 text. Where the original Manifest Destiny was the blueprint for America's coast-to-coast westward expansion, this year's model has a bolder, more global view. Global as in: The Earth will be ours!

We're starting with the third-world nations here in the Middle East because we've got some great excuses to make it look like the US military is not, in fact, taking over the world and that we're protecting ourselves/liberating the oppressed/*insert excuse-du-jour here*. Our test-run abolition of all Arab nations will make what we did to the Native Americans look like your basic suburban roach extermination. After we've built up our arms even more than before by pulling this amazing repo job on our antiquated 60's weapons which we've sold around these parts, we'll position ourselves to take out stronger un-cooperative nations like France, and then shiv our few remaining allies in the back. What, you thought that emancipating ourselves from England back in the day was enough? We want revenge! Always did, always will.

Yes, Patriot, the American Invasion is here to stay, and I'm not talking about the top of the Iraqi pop charts. Everyday here is a holiday. It's like the 4th of July and Christmas made sweet love and had a baby, which is cool, since we're going around colonizing the place after blowing shit up and converting all these damn pagans to Christianity at the bidding of Our President Bush. He's the biggest, baddest Christian since Jesus.

I can't tell you the sense of accomplishment we feel here so far, but our own government isn't allowing us to do the "touchdown funky chicken dance" that we deserve. Like what was up with us having to remove the American Flag off of the head of Saddam's statue? We conquered the damn country and flattened his punk ass, it's not fair! If the Iraqis revolted, their flag would go up, but nooooooo we do all the bombing and they get all the glory. We even pulled the statue down for those scrawny runts. That felt good. It was a significant historical image that I'm sure is still being re-run on the news every evening, like landing on the moon, but this time the craters were man-made with beautiful, efficient American weapons. Politics aside, I'm telling you, it's both a literal and figurative blast.

It's not all fun and games here though. Last night I crapped a sand castle in the shape of the entire New York City skyline. I don't know how that stuff gets into our fatigues, but it does. It made me doubt how the uniforms would hold up against a chemical attack.

That's not the worst of it though. My squadron recovered the enclosed map of troop locations from a captured Republican Guardsman we captured while performing a sneak attack which evidently was less sneaky then desired. He bought it from Geraldo Rivera for the low price of the sparing of his life. The Arabic translator said that while in captivity the soldier kept talking about how great America's rock-bottom prices are. It really pissed me off that this guy got such a great deal.

Well, enough of my bellyaching. I just wanted to thank you for your support and tell you what you can be looking forward to in the months and years to come.

Officer Third Class Jonathan Land
13th Marine Exploratory Division

P.S. Do you offer bulk discounts? Me and the boys would love to wear these around town when sampling the Baghdad "nightlife" in our civies.

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