The Floating Gulag
by Rocky the Diabolical Cat™ As I gained consciousness I realized something was amiss: I was no longer in Rome with Dianne, I was aboard a naval vessel. I was on the deck, manacled spread-eagle style, roasting in the hot sun. A prisoner was repeatedly pushing a big steel ball up an incline; once the ball reached the top of the incline, it rolled back down to the bottom. I looked around and saw prisoners of all nationalities being tortured by interrogators and soldiers.
I was aboard a floating gulag.
My interrogator approached me. "We know you're Sheik Rahman! Admit it! We know you're a terrorist! Admit it!" he screamed.
"Dear fellow," I replied, "I believe you have been personally afflicted by the American fascism virus."
My witty reply earned me a beating with a dog o' nine tails. Next I was stood on a box, a hood was thrown over my head, wires were attached to my testicles, and my very cathood was shocked. Then I was thrown inside a sleeping bag, which was zipped closed so I could neither see nor breathe, and I was pummeled. Thereafter I was pulled from the sleeping bag, and a doctor and a psychologist looked at me through huge magnifying glasses. "Beat him some more!" they cried in unison.
So they tortured me some more, and I lost consciousness.
When I was conscious again - was it hours, days, weeks later? - I asked my interrogator about the man pushing the steel ball up the incline. "When those human rights pansies called us a gulag, why, that hurt Rummy's feelings, and Georgie Boy's and Dickie Poo's too, because the trick of the Russkies' gulags was to murder traitors through pointless labor. So we've got all sorts of Afghans and Arabs and such on the ship doing pointless heavy work all day long. It'll kill 'em! But this is a War on Terrorism, er, I mean a Struggle Against Violent Extremism!" he screamed.
"It seems to me that your boss and his junta are the foremost practitioners of violent extremism," I said.
He began beating me again. Before I lost consciousness, I saw a tiny black dot on the horizon. To be continued...