The PJ Tatler

An Entry in the Defense Department Essay Contest Honoring King Abdullah

The US Department of Defense is sponsoring an essay contest to honor the Saudi King.  Here is mine:

Dear King,

It is sad that you died of natural causes. I had an appointment in the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. It was cancelled at the last minute. If only you could have been there in my place. How much you could have learned. Or perhaps you could have been a passenger in one of the planes that hit it. No doubt you would have had a first class seat, right at the front of the plane. After all, great men like you don’t sit with the college kids and nursing mothers in the back. What joy you would have had, seeing New York from the air, at closer range than any has ever had, or at least had since Solomon Andrews buzzed 5th Avenue in a gliding balloon in 1866. Then you could have been among the first to enter the building, and gone out in a flash as you experienced the true glory of the cult you had done so much to promote.

Just think, if you had been on that plane, you might have displaced a standby passenger, who did not deserve to be on it, as you so richly did.

But I understand that you may have had other engagements. Perhaps you were at home, whipping one of your approximately 35 wives (your laws prescribe a limit of 4, but laws, like terrorist suicide bombings and beheadings, are for the little people). Or perhaps you were in Kabul, in the soccer stadium, honoring the crowd, as you shared the joy of the event as together you cheered the sequential execution of terrified women, heads blown out from behind, one after the other, for the crime of teaching girls to read. Clearly you had a right to be there, as it was you that paid for the education of the fans.

And now you have gone to the other world, where we are all equal. I appreciate the indignity you must be suffering as a result. There you are, together with the women in the stadium, the economy class passengers, the secretaries and mail room boys dispatched from their 84th story offices, and the NYPD cops who died trying to rescue them. None of these people appreciate you, at least not the way your would-be peers from around the world, weeping sincerely at the side of your casket evidently do.

Perhaps you can take up the matter with the King. I’m sure he will set things right.

— Robert Zubrin is president of Pioneer Energy, a senior fellow with the Center for Security Policy, and the author of Energy Victory. The paperback edition of his latest book, Merchants of Despair: Radical Environmentalists, Criminal Pseudo-Scientists, and the Fatal Cult of Antihumanism, was recently published by Encounter Books.