(WASHINGTON, DC) DNA removed from black and white hair follicles has revealed the identity of a stray cat found in Iraq as that of Socks, Bill and Hillary Clinton’s White House cat. Apparently, the war-bedraggled tabby was found feeding on scraps outside of a reporters’ compound in Baghdad, Iraq.
In a story that New York Times war correspondent John Burns broke last week, reporters have witnessed young Iraqis regularly feeding as many as 60 stray cats with platters of leftover rice and lamb. Burns is quite sure of the count because, as surging American troops were fighting in Baghdad and al-Anbar province, he tallied “how many cats we had seated for dinner.”
While Burns adopted a stray he’d heard mewing one night in 2005, and saw it through two litters of kittens in 18 months while suicide bombings occurred “even miles away,” blogger Throckmorton Strethers had his eyes fixed on something else, a gaunt, fur-matted black and white cat that seemed to howl louder than the rest of the strays.
Strethers, founder of Two Eyes On Iraq (www.twoeyesoniraq.com), a website dedicated to reporting on the reporters who report on the Iraq war, began noticing a resemblance to Clinton’s famous White House cat, Socks. “As he fattened up, and as his hair grew out, I kept thinking, ‘Isn’t that Socks?’” Strethers said.
The cat’s behavior revealed another clue. “His head was always first in the bowl,” Strethers recounted. “And he had a way of ingratiating himself with the other reporters in the compound by slinking around the legs of the guy who had the biggest leg of lamb.”
During Bill Clinton’s presidency, Socks occupied the role of “first pet,” and was often carted to schools and nursing homes. Critics, however, contend that the Clintons used Socks to soften Hillary’s reputation as an uncaring shrew.
Critics buttress their argument by pointing out that at the end of Clinton’s second term, Socks was dumped on Betty Currie, Bill Clinton’s personal secretary, and, except for a brief photo op with Currie in 2005, hasn’t been seen since.
Strethers says that he hopes to emulate Buckhead, the mysterious poster who exposed as forgeries the documents used by Dan Rather to try to impugn Bush’s service in the National Guard. “He caused Dan Rather to resign in disgrace, and I think that my revelation is going to cover that wicked witch Hillary up to her eyeballs in kitty litter.”
However, it’s hard to tell judging by the reaction from potential voters. “I cannot believe for one minute Mrs. Clinton would send Socks to the war in Iraq,” said Sarah Nuttles, who was buying a pro-Hillary button in New York City’s Washington Square.
New York City resident Jonathan Birnbaum disagreed, calling Hillary, in an obscenity-based tirade, “a war monger from the get-go. She signed on to that EXPLETIVE DELETED Bush’s EXPLETIVE DELETED war and sent our EXPLETIVE DELETED high school dropouts to EXPLETIVE DELETED fight a EXPLETIVE DELETED war EXPLETIVE DELETED Hillary EXPLETIVE DELETED her insides EXPLETIVE DELETED cat to Iraq.”
No one has offered a reasonable theory explaining how Socks came to Iraq in the first place, nor have the Clintons yet come forward to claim him. Socks remains impounded at Reagan National Airport in Washington, DC.