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The White Helicopter

More good news.  Yes, Mr. Bush conceded yesterday for the first time that prisoners held as “terrorists” should be thought of as human beings, and be given the legal protections under the Geneva Conventions.  He said that he would withdraw a part of the executive order he issued in 2002 saying that terror prisoners had no rights. This is all thanks to the Supreme Court decision two weeks ago that struck down the military tribunals that he created after Sept. 11.  That’s two more for the tribe. 

This development made me think of Hunter’s Examiner column, which later appeared in his memoir.  It’s called  The White Helicopter.  Do you remember that story?  It’s about a French woman named Nadine who rescued her lover from prison.  They were both outlaws when they married in France in 1979 in separate prisons serving separate sentences.  After Nadine Vaujour was released from prison, she started taking helicopter lessons – which Hunter said  “Very difficult; you can’t hire many people who could fly a chopper in low over downtown Paris and park it in midair above a prison long enough to send a man down a line with an Uzi and come back up… Then put it down on the roof of the prison and carry her lover off the skid…”     

Finally one night, in the white helicopter, she hovered over the roof of La Sante prison.  A man armed with a submachine gun slid down a line to the roof, where he retrieved Nadine’s lover, who was waiting on the roof in a blue jump suit.  After he grabbed one of the landing skids, and was safely aboard, she whisked him away to a nearby soccer field, where the three disappeared.  

“Even a dumb brute can fall in love with a story like that.  It has the purity of a myth and the power of being simple flat-out true, and it spoke to our highest instincts.  It was a perfect crime, done for love, and it was carried out with awesome precision and a truly crazy kind of fearlessness by a beautiful girl in a white helicopter.”

–Hunter S. Thompson, Kingdom of Fear

As for the "terrorist" prisoners with no rights to speak of, I bet they don’t care if the rescue came from the United States Supreme Court or a beautiful girl in a white helicopter.  But it’s nice to know both are possible.

Until next time, your friend,
Anita Thompson


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