by Jordan Zakarin
Al-Qaeda in Iraq head Abu Hamza al-Muhajir apologized to Dick Cheney in a press conference on Tuesday, a day after the American Vice President made a secret visit to Baghdad and accidentally shot the terrorist leader in the face.
“My family and I are deeply sorry for all that Vice President Cheney and his family have had to go through this week,” al-Muhajir said. “I very much regret the incident and take full responsibility for the Vice President’s furious discharge of bullets at my face at point blank range. Mr. Cheney has served as an inspiration for a new generation of radical Islamic terrorists, and for that I will forever be indebted to him.”
Cheney was on a two day trip to the Iraqi capital, where, never venturing more than a mile outside the heavily fortified Green Zone, he hailed the “spectacular” progress in security. He met privately with leading Iraqi politicians and religious leaders, and at one point met with al-Muhajir, who took over as the top ranked jihaddist for Al Qaeda in Iraq after founder Abu Musab al-Zarqawi was killed in 2006.
The gunshots were fired during a brief hunting outing embarked upon by the two leaders. Lining up a young schoolboy in his crosshairs, a traditional sport in Iraq, Cheney’s aim was obstructed by al-Muhajir entering his line of fire. Recalling his incisive, take-no-prisoners style of decision making, the Vice President discharged his gun anyways, lodging round after round into the terrorist leader’s face. Displaying a rare moment of remorse, Cheney grunted for help. After two ambulances were hit with roadside bombs, a third finally made it to the scene.
Reasoning that “accidents do happen”, al-Muhajir nonetheless asked forgiveness for failing to remove himself from the Vice President’s line of vision, and said he hoped that the incident would not change the administration’s strategy in Iraq.
At another point during his trip, Cheney met with oil field administrators, hearkening back to his days working in the energy industry. He urged the Iraqi government to open up the growing number of functional fields to international investment, delivering an ultimatum of sorts for those that held the key to the rebuilding of the Iraqi economy. If they failed to make the oil fields available to investment, Cheney threatened that he and his partner H.W. would “drink [their] milkshake” and divert of the “ocean of oil” beneath the country’s collective feet to private companies.