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North Korea Successfully Detonates Nuclear Scientist

PYONGYANG—Hailing it as a significant step forward for their ballistic weapons program just hours after suffering a failed missile launch, North Korean leaders announced Monday they had successfully detonated a nuclear scientist.

Tokyo Portal Outage Delays Millions Of Japanese Warp Commuters

TOKYO—Saying the outdated system needed to be upgraded or replaced to avoid similar problems going forward, millions of inconvenienced Japanese warp commuters expressed frustration Thursday following a Tokyo portal outage that caused delays of up to eight seconds.

Earth Ranked Number One Party Planet

FRAMINGHAM, MA—Noting its high concentration of nightlife, droves of attractive singles, and atmospheric conditions allowing liquid alcohol to exist, the ‘Princeton Review’ on Monday ranked Earth the Milky Way galaxy’s top party planet for the fifth year in a row.

Nuclear Warhead Thrilled For Chance To Finally Escape North Korea

PYONGYANG—Saying its spirits were immediately buoyed upon hearing Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un’s recent statement that the military was close to developing an intercontinental ballistic missile, a North Korean nuclear warhead reported Tuesday that it was thrilled for the chance to finally escape the country.

Pope Francis Carves Roast Cherub For Vatican Christmas Dinner

VATICAN CITY—After pulling a probe thermometer from its thigh and tasting a piece of crispy golden-brown skin, Pope Francis began carving a slow-roasted 18-pound cherub for the Vatican’s annual Christmas feast, sources within the Holy See reported Sunday.

Vatican Putting Out Feelers For How Public Would React To Another Children’s Crusade

VATICAN CITY—Saying they had been giving some thought recently to the idea of sending legions of Christian boys and girls to retake the Holy Land and wanted to gauge the level of support, Vatican officials reportedly began putting out feelers Wednesday to determine how the public might react to another Children’s Crusade, much as was attempted in the year 1212.

John Kerry Scrambles To Stop Bunker’s Self-Destruct Sequence As Russian Oligarch Taunts Him From Bank Of Monitors

BOGDARNYA, RUSSIA—Working frantically to gain access to the system’s override settings at the computer terminal controlling the impending implosion, Secretary of State John Kerry scrambled to stop the self-destruct sequence of an underground bunker located thousands of feet below the Russian countryside Tuesday while oligarch Dmitry Granovsky taunted him from the numerous banks of monitors positioned throughout the facility, sources confirmed.

Islamic Awakening Inspires Man To Defect From ISIS

MOSUL, IRAQ—Telling reporters he had renounced his role as a militant and would soon be relocating in order to seek out an environment more conducive to fully devoting himself to his newfound religious faith, 24-year-old Huzaifa Quraishi confirmed Tuesday his recent Islamic awakening had inspired him to defect from ISIS.

CIA Orchestrates Coup D’État To Replace Entire Population Of Venezuela

Agency Installs Pro-American Populace Of 30 Million Venezuelan Citizens

CARACAS, VENEZUELA—Sources are confirming that the Central Intelligence Agency has orchestrated a coup d’état in the South American nation of Venezuela, toppling the country’s 30 million residents and replacing them with an entirely new, pro-American populace.
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Afghan Presidential Election A Celebration Of All Forms Of Government

Afghan citizens line up to vote in, sabotage, or just observe August's presidential election.
Afghan citizens line up to vote in, sabotage, or just observe August's presidential election.

KABUL, AFGHANISTAN—With challenger Abdullah Abdullah dropping out of November's runoff election, Afghan president Hamid Karzai was effectively reelected to a second term last Monday, evidence, world observers said, that Afghanistan has become a shining beacon of democracy, theocracy, autocracy, and authoritarianism in an otherwise troubled region.

"This election has proved to the world that Afghanistan is capable of conducting free, barely free, and not-so-free elections in which some or all forms of government are embraced," President Karzai said during a staged victory rally in front of his presidential palace. "We saw democracy: having an election in which people line up to vote; despotism: having your associates harass and suppress those who intend to vote incorrectly; dictatorship: ordering a widespread media blackout to cover up any and all violent activity; and theocracy: the Taliban actually having more influence and legitimacy than me no matter how many times I am unfairly elected. "

Added Karzai, "This a great day in Afghanistan for all 180 diametrically opposed forms of government."

From villagers in the most remote regions of the country to citizens in the poorest districts of Kabul, millions of Afghans lined up Aug. 20 so their voices could be heard, muffled, altered, and ignored.

According to U.N. officials charged with overseeing the vote, the election was a progressive step for Afghanistan's women, who were able to participate in both the democratic and totalitarian process by casting their votes and then having them immediately discarded.

De facto president Hamid Karzai pledges to illegitimately rule the country with an iron fist by the will of the people.

Analysts also said this week that the sudden cancellation of November's runoff election further proved Afghanistan's commitment to either an autocratic or plutocratic political system, or perhaps a marionette system concealed behind a nominal, logocratic bureaucracy.

"Today I am very happy and proud to be an Afghan citizen whose vote fully counted in the 2009 presidential election," Kabul resident Ajani Karmal told reporters while officials from Hamid Karzai's government, Taliban leaders, members of the opposition United National Front, al-Qaeda operatives, and nearly 160 tribal chiefs carrying various forms of weaponry looked on. "Yes. Very, very happy."

While the election is being hailed as a testament to Afghanistan's devotion to autocratic, theocratic, and possibly even oligarchic ideals, it was not without its share of tragedy. On the day of the vote, Taliban insurgents fired more than 120 rockets in Kandahar alone, causing many Afghans to lose their lives in the name of whatever form of government they were or were not actively participating in.

"People have to realize that any burgeoning exilarchy, autocracy, or tyranny will, from time to time, experience setbacks," Robert Carlisle, an international adviser to the Free and Fair Election Foundation of Afghanistan, told reporters. "The same goes for a burgeoning feudalistic, fascist, or kratocratic society, which is another thing we've had here over the past several months. Actually, if one has ever studied consociationalism, there was a little bit of that, too."

Nonetheless, world leaders representing every form of government from democracy to autocracy collectively praised the Afghan election as a powerful symbol of the country's ongoing commitment to various principles of some kind or another.

"I would like to send my congratulations to President Karzai and the people of Afghanistan for showing that, even in the most dire of circumstances, democracy is capable of flourishing," President Barack Obama said Monday. "I'm glad we have an ally in Afghanistan."

Obama was not alone.

"I would like to send my congratulations to President Karzai and the people of Afghanistan for showing that, even in the most dire of circumstances, a dictatorship is capable of flourishing," North Korean leader Kim Jong Il said Monday. "I'm glad we have an ally in Afghanistan."

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