In Billy Wilder’s wonderfully wacky 1961 political satire One, Two, Three, there is a hilarious scene which shows the young East Berlin communist spy (Horst Buchholz) being “tortured” by American CIA interrogators. Their secret method is to play a hit song from the period, “Itsy, Bitsy, Teenie, Weenie, Yellow Polka-Dot Bikini,” over and over, until the poor guy is reduced to blithering idiocy.
And now, the latest issue of Newsweek gives us a list of pop songs which have actually been used during military operations conducted by both the FBI and the CIA, and also during the interrogation of detainees in various American prisons in Iraq and Afghanistan and, of course, at Guantanamo. Among the torturous songs are “Welcome to the Jungle” (Guns N’ Roses), “I Love You” (Barney), “Hells Bells” (AC/DC), “The Real Slim Shady” (Eminem), “F–k Your God” (Deicide), “These Boots Are Made for Walking” (Nancy Sinatra), and the Sesame Street Theme.
So here’s my suggestion for how America can end all the wars that we are involved in, right now, in the Muslim world. Let’s fly our helicopters 24/7 over all these non-Christian countries, with speakers loudly blaring all our most beloved Christmas carols, the same ones we are already being subjected to in our grocery stores and department stores, even though it isn’t even Thanksgiving yet. Maybe that’s why people aren’t buying, and why the economy is down.
Perhaps with Dick Cheney’s help, the CIA can put together a good loop of yuletide ditties that’ll drive them loopy, something that’ll Git ’em at Gitmo. Maybe we can alternate the songs, in order to play Good Cop/Bad Cop with them. If telling them that “they better watch out, they better not cry” doesn’t work, then maybe those lyrics about “sleeping in heavenly peace” with “round young virgins” might do the trick. Who needs waterboarding? Play it again, Uncle Sam.