Tuesday, 17 September 2002  
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The Speech Writer...

The UN General Assembly is still stunned after the two aggressive speeches by the Prime minister of India and the President of Pakistan. Never before have the two leaders attacked each other so forcefully and spitefully at any international public gathering "Actually its all my fault," whispered a dishevelled looking fellow to me, as he stood outside the United Nations building in Manhattan, New York.

"Your fault?" I asked incredulously..

"Yes" said the man as he looked furtively around to see whether anyone was listening, "I wrote both their speeches." "You did what?" I shouted, astounded.

"Please don't do anything to me," pleaded the speech writer, "I needed the money. Its difficult to live in this city on just social security." "I don't believe you, " I said, "you actually mean that both those hard hitting speeches that Vajpayee and Musharraf delivered at the UN were written by you?" "Yes," said the dishevelled fellow. "I'm good at it. I used to write all Bush's speeches, till he fired me." "Why?" I asked.

"He said that he didn't need any new speeches anymore, said he wanted to save the United States the expense, and that the one I wrote last on smoking Bin Ladin out would do for another year or so." said the speech writer miserably. "It becomes tough on us speech writers when our speeches are used again and again, then we see unemployment looming ahead." "So you wrote two new speeches for these two sworn enemies?" I asked still in shock.

"Not really," said the dirty fellow. "I just used some of Bush's old speeches, made a few changes here and there, like instead of saying 'bomb Afghanistan', I put in 'Pakistan' and in the generals speech, instead of 'threatening Iraq,' I mentioned 'India." "No wonder both sounded equally warlike and militant," I said. "What could I do?" wept the man.

"You could have been honest and written them different speeches," I said. "I tried to," wept the man. "Why didn't they agree?" I asked.

"Couldn't afford it" said the speech writer. " So I offered them a mass discount if they bought the same speech, they grabbed it, said something about foreign exchange and not having too much shopping money." "But you shouldn't have used one of Bush's old speeches," I said, disgusted.

" I am a creative man," said the writer, " If I get paid well , I write well, if not I peddle my old stuff!" "Why are you telling me all this?" I asked the man as he looked round the corner again.

"Because I need your help," said the dirty speech writer, opening his wallet.

"What kind of help?" I asked warily.

"Those two paid me in rupees," cried the speech writer bitterly They said they had run out of dollars. Please could you give me dollars in exchange for these rupees, so I can go over to Mac Donald's and buy myself a hamburger with the money... please..?

clements@vsnl.com

HNB-Pathum Udanaya2002

Crescat Development Ltd.

www.priu.gov.lk

www.helpheroes.lk


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