(A serial book excerpt)
Previous installments: After Flight 93 crashes into the White House on 9/11/2001 killing President Bush as was originally planned, Dick Cheney, the Vice President, is made the leader of the country. He begins immediately to make changes.
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Rumsfeld entered the office, his hands tightly clenching a bunch of papers signaling that something was up.
“Dick, France is not going along with the idea of attacking Iraq. Chirac has already made a press conference stating so.”
Cheney’s face turned black. “Bastard!” he hissed. “I always knew you couldn’t trust the French for anything.” He mused for a moment. “We will make them look bad. Denounce them to the public. In my next speech I’ll make them look like cowards. I’ll make that brie eating wimp regret having stiffed me! All we really need is the Brits support any way.”
“The Russians have condemned the attack as well.”
Cheney’s malevolent sneer turned to a sarcastic grin. “Now there’s a surprise, isn’t it? Since when do the Russians ever support anything we do anyway? They pretty much automatically veto anything we decide upon! There’s nothing new to be said about them.” He paused and thought. “There is no need to worry about the Ruskies. They put up a big front when it comes to matters like this, but they will stay inside their safe little borders.”
He turned and looked out the window. “No matter. We’ve got enough other countries behind us. And all the world knows they attacked us first. It will be just like 1998 all over again.”
Time would soon prove just how wrong he was.
The frequency of the meetings with the big boys of both the governmental and the financial worlds increased. Often the two blended. They became to be almost like Cabinet meetings. In some ways they replaced them.
“There is no question of it. We must go back to nuclear missile production. These deals we made with the Russians might have been the right thing at the time, but the world has changed since then. We need to reconsider their usefulness. We cannot afford to let our advantage over the rest of the world slip. Even Pakistan has the bomb now for Christs sake! If we fall behind who knows what these other countries would like to do to us.”
“Yes, a lot of the ones we screwed would like to get a few chops at us.”
The blaze went into Cheney’s eyes at this. The telltale red began to cover his face.
“So what are you, Kimwald? A commie? Maybe you ought to go over and and give those chinks a kiss.”
“A lot of the anger these other nations have against us is deserved. We haven’t always been the good neighbors we pretend to be.”
Cheney was livid. A thin line of rationality in him kept him from grabbing the other man’s face. “I don’t need to hear your shit! There are too many fuckers like you in this government, blocking progress, whining about this and that. If guys like you were out of the way I could… (he realizes his stumble)..we could get somewhere!” He gets threateningly close to the man and raises a finger to his face. “Here is something to think about- you are either with us or against us! Think long and hard about that!”
He stormed out.
Kimwald stayed put, mildly shocked by the reaction, but not entirely surprised by it. After a moment he looked over at the other personnel and said “…with us or against us? Is that how it is?”
No one said anything for a few seconds. Then, finally, Johansen, always the loudest one, took the boldness to say “Get with the program Kimwald!” although it had been news to him as well.
After the talk, General Parchensy, one of the higher-ups working in the background on the Iraqis War, approached Cheney as the conference broke up.
“Sir, if I might have a word with you.”
“Certainly General Parchensy.”
“I am sorry to see this sort of attitude running rampant in our government these days.”
“Thank you General. It seems to come with the job.”
“If you have a moment, Sir, I have something in a similar vein that might interest you.”
“Sure. I don’t have any appointments for a couple hours. What do you have?”
Parchensy opened up the case he was carrying. “Let me just have a moment to get set up.”
He pulled out a gleaming all steel computer and turned it on.
“We have been working on a series of new devices that might change the whole picture. You are aware, of course of the drones we use for observation in the Mideast. We now want to up that ante a bit.”
A picture came into focus. It was a drone as he had seen earlier in briefings, but this one was bigger, having both a larger fuselage and broader wingspan.
“This, President Cheney, is the Predator, the first drone that is a missile. It can be directed with great exactitude to a target and, at the last minute, released from our control to do its job.”
Cheney was obviously enthused. He was silent for a moment, not reacting in any way save for a smile on his face. “Great! Now we have something that we can really smack these gnats with! How accurate is it?”
“Very, sir. We could land it on a car with the controller being on a ship in the Arabian Gulf.”
Again there was momentary pause from Cheney as the full ramifications of it went through his brain. “This is super! How long before it is operational?”
“It is already field tested, sir. We could have the first batch ready for shipping in a week.”
“Great. Let’s get these things over there were they can be used. No sense keeping something like this in a warehouse somewhere.”
The General looked at I him somewhat surprised. “No need for Congressional approval sir?”
“We can’t afford to let precious things like this wait around and stand the chance of being still born before they are even given a chance. It will get my approval and that will have to be enough for anyone.”
It took time for the smile to break out over Parchensy’s face. “We will have them ready for you sir in a week.” He extended an enthusiastic hand. “Nice doing business with you sir!”
“Same.” uttered Cheney, smiling conspiratorially back. “But let’s keep this between us.”
“Understood, Sir. Totally understood.”
Cheney sat on the veranda of his Wyoming ranch. Here is where he often took his vacations. He came back here to fortify himself, to get away from D.C. His sort of mentality reigned here in this region, well entrenched in the sage-brushed rolls of land. Here he could talk to his conservative think tank men, Johnson and Albson, without worrying about there being too many ears to hear about.
“Bush was a set up guy. A patsy who loved the fanfare, who would hold the nations attention out front with speeches and baby kissing while the real machinery ran in the background. This nation was built upon capitalism and that is the blood that makes it run. We don’t have time to dilly dally with other things. All these whiny bastards going on about the environment, civil rights, social security and all these other wimpy things need to be pushed aside. They are just lucky they don’t get eliminated like they do in China or North Korea. Send them over there and let them see what life is like.”
“Our status as the richest country in the world is slipping. We have the know-how to rule the world and we can do it through finance, not through government. Government is the old fashioned way, the way it was run in the days of kings and queens. Now we are in the days of Presidents and Prime Ministers. But even that is old fashioned. The world needs to be run by corporations. They are organized. They don’t put up with bullshit. Organizations have the power and clout to move things ahead. If a few people get trampled, that is the way it is. The world is only so big, someone is going to get squished. It is simply that way. And only a few can be at the top. The rest just have to do their job and shut up about it. And government needs to be our tool, not our policeman. It should serve us. We are the new elite. We are the ones running the show. And that is why we have set it up this way.”
“That is why we are here backing you up, President Cheney.” Johnson said. “What works for you works for us. We know we are the ones that need to be leading the nation. Our money and our power gives us the insight into how our society works. We can’t leave the decision making up to the hamburger flippers. Everyone can just go along with the way we run things and that will be best for all.”
Cheney smiled up a sincere smile, one that still had a touch of a grimace in it. “I always felt I could trust you gentlemen. I know you know how to watch out for your interests and those interests of those around you.”
“I thank you, President Cheney, I thank you. You are ushering in a new era of American greatness- the advent of the corporate nation, a nation that runs on the strict principals of capitalism and that the wolf should have dominance over the sheep.” Johnson smiled broadly.
“We must go, now President Cheney. We know we are busy and so are you. Adieu!” he said, mock tipping his hat to Cheney, his gestures and tone vaudevillian as he exited . Cheney nodded in return and waved.
After they had left Cheney sat back and took in his environment. It always felt good to come back here to his homeland and relax. People here were of the same mindset as him. And of course he was a hero here. The Big Guy. The Great Success. No one prodded him here.
He closed his eyes and let the sun bake his face. Warm summer days like this were heavenly. He was able to forget about Washington and politics and just be peaceful. It was too bad he couldn’t get away more often.
After a few moments he opened his eyes and gazed around. The prairie, occasionally broken by near mansions and small, solitary stands of bushes and trees, rolled endlessly out in all directions, giving one the impression of eternity made tangible. No wonder it was called God’s country, but only that of a white God, a bible God. The gods of the Indians had been massacred long ago and forgotten. There was a new authority now, and all images thereafter had to conform to that.
TO BE CONTINUED
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The complete book of 9/12/2001 is available from lulu.com under that exact title for $10.00 plus shipping. Soon to be available as an e-book.