CRAWFORD, TEXAS (AP)--President George W. Bush has begun digging a tunnel to serve as a secret back way out of his Texas ranch and to thereby avoid anti-war protester Cindy Sheehan and her growing band of thousands of followers who are camped along the only road leading out of Bush's sprawling 16,000 acre Crawford ranch.
The grieving mother of a soldier killed in Iraq has emerged as the most powerful focus for the majority of Americans who according to recent public opinion polls want U.S. troops to start leaving Iraq immediately.
Bush has awkwardly avoided meeting Sheehan by using helicopters and the presidential limo as he scoots back and forth from his ranch during his vacation.
"I finally decided to dig a tunnel away from Sheehan's Camp Casey," Bush explained to embedded reporters at his ranch on Monday. "I'm willing to do anything to get away from her and those other anti-war crazies! They just don't appreciate how valuable Iraqi oil is to our Republican oil companies. Can you believe it?"
Bush urged reporters to don a hardhat complete with miner's light from a nearby pile, and to grab a shovel and descend by ladder into a hole in the ground where Secret Service men have been desperately digging for the last three days.
"Just grab one of those shovels and pitch in to help me tunnel away from her!" he implored. "I've ordered one of those big subway tunnel borers from out east but it's going to take a while to arrive and set up. I want to tunnel all the way to Houston if we can!"
Bush added that he didn't want to use his limo or his helicopter anymore to zoom by the protestors since it made him look "petty bad" in the press.
"I don't see how I can attack Iran with all those protestors hanging around," he confided to reporters. "Jeezus, Iran wants to sell its oil in PetroEuros and not in PetroDollars! That could cause a crash in the US dollar! Saddam tried the same trick but I sure took care of him."
Bush added that he hoped to grab Iranian oil for Republican oil companies too.