Talks have been held in Moscow to discuss the adoption of Russian orphans by American families after Russia suspended adoptions earlier this month. The suspension following the case of a 7-year-old child who returned to Russia unescorted.
When the boy arrived at Moscow airport he was carrying a note from a woman in Tennessee who was supposed to be his new mother. The letter said that she no longer needed the child as she had just bought a kid from the Philippines who was "a much harder worker".
The Russian government described this case as "a monstrous deed" and "the last straw".
There has already been much anger about the way Russian children are being treated by their adoptive parents in America. "We believe that 16 children have died since foreign adoptions began in the mid-1990s." said one Russian social worker.
A Republican senator in Tennessee, where some of the deaths have occurred, said "These damn 'Reds' are always bitching about something. Okay, so we've had one or two problems with over-zealous beatings. A couple of parents MAY have over-stepped the mark when admonishing their slaves ... err ... children, however they were only exercising their rights as laid down in the 'Good Book' and only had the best interests of the godless little heathen tykes at heart."
When asked if such behaviour was appropriate in the 21st Century, the senator simply stated that "God's word is eternal and unchanging. If the 'Good Lord' says it's okay to beat the little devils within an inch of their lives, I'm not going to be the one to question his wisdom."
On reflection, the senator did acknowledge that perhaps a very small minority of cases had 'got out of hand' and assured us that he would 'personally' make sure that everyone knew the beating sticks had to be 'thinner than your thumb'. "That should put an end to the fatalities. Job done." said the senator.
An American negotiator in Moscow said the talks with his Russian counterparts had been productive but that he wasn't really bothered about the outcome.
"Hell, if we need cheap labour, for 'cheap' read 'free'" he joked, "to staff our factories we've got no shortage of little 'chicos and chicas' from south of the border who'll be only too happy to do the work for a bowl of rice and a few beans."
"You don't get anything for free in this country and if the little Ruskis want to get into the greatest nation on Earth and become part of the 'American Dream' then they're just going to have to 'work their passage' like everyone else."