(Baghdad--Iraq) A little known part of President Bush's new plan for Iraq has the civil war torn country coming together under the Golden Arches by July of 2007, the scheduled opening date of the first "culturally sensitive" McDonald's. At a groundbreaking ceremony Wednesday, Secretaries of Defense and State Robert Gates and Condoleezza Rice, along with a Ronald McDonald clown, turned over the first three shovels of dirt. White House Press Secretary Tony Snow dubbed it "the President's new vision, McGuns & McButter."
The Golden Arches were the winning bidder over competing chains Wendy's and Burger King. Secretary Rice stated that "Wendy's bid was quite aggressive, but in the end the chain couldn't adapt to the cultural changes necessary to make the venture viable." Sources close to the negotiation claim talks stalled because Little Wendy refused to don the traditional berka. Repeated calls to Wendy's have not been returned.
However, McDonald's has aggressively retooled their Iraq franchise "to satisfy the tastes, both cultural and cuisine, of its new market." According to a press release, this will include new promotions. "Imagine a smiling Ronald, but holding that smiling head in his hands. Our Buy Two Big Macs And Get A Free Ronald McDonald Hostage Doll giveaway (with detachable head for mock execution) will provide insurgents of all ages hours of fun."
The familiar McDonald's children's play area will also be "culturally aware of our new customers. Before kids can take off their shoes and pummel a brightly colored fiberglass head of Saddam Hussein, they first have to make it through McMineField. It teaches teamwork and coordination. But no harm if uncertain, little feet step on little mines. Each spring loaded mine catapults up at only 60lbs. p.s.i., just enough to toss the average 60 pound Freedom Fighter ten feet in the air. Not only will he live to fight another day, he'll also get a free Coke."
After completion of the initial McDonald's, three more are to follow by next year. Gates, Rice and Ronald were optimistic about the plan but tempered their optimism, as was evidenced by Robert Gates' statement, "That is if we can train enough Iraqis to work the shake and fri-o-later machines. But I will say this. We will immediately be delivering outside of The Green Zone."