In what is apparently intended as the light-hearted war story for Christmas readers, the Pentagon's website has an article about a US medical team which dealt with a rat infestation at Saddam's former bunker. Notwithstanding its potential to distract from the daily mayhem, the story functions as a perfect metaphor for the Bush-Blair occupation of Iraq. From how the rats got there --
The rats had moved in to take over the bunker when the American soldiers left and the limited access hindered the entry of predators. The rats had a secure nesting area with a high-calorie, high-protein food source and water.
thus replicating the rise of the Shiite militias when Tommy Franks had no plan to secure Baghdad in the summer of 2003, and the repeated rise of al-Qaeda in towns abandoned by American soldiers once a sweep had been completed ahead of the latest George Bush speech.
And then there's the declaration of a solution to the rat problem --
Sherwood [military rat specialist] decided to place poison near the now-empty pallets, which still contained ample food for the thriving rodent population, to rid the area of the problem. He said after placing the poison, his team returned and picked up dead adult rats by the hundreds and estimated many more may have died in their nests or in underground burrows.
The body count of the dead rats did lead Sherwood to believe the problem had been solved and shouldn’t happen again.
i.e. if we kill enough of them, the problem must have been solved.