06/29/05  Staffer Who Initiated "Spontaneous Applause" during Bush Speech Revealed

Washington, DC (APE) Claims by ABC News that applause from Fort Bragg troops was initiated by  Bush front people in his primetime speech last night, now appear to be true. Photographic evidence obtained by an unnamed APE photographer clearly shows none other than Karl Rove exhorting uncomfortable soldiers to applaud during key points in the president's address.  The APE photographer had apparently wandered into an area on stage where photographers were not allowed.  His name is being withheld at this time pending further Secret Service investigation.

The film was smuggled out of the army base prior to the photographer's arrest, and the APE editorial board met in a closed session and elected to run the story.

White House spokesman Scott McClellan said, "This is incredibly inappropriate and irresponsible journalism on the part of APE.  This is essentially providing aid and comfort to the enemy when we are at war. America is in the midst of a war of ideas, and the plain and simple truth is that the Democrats just don't have any.  This pathetic and sophomoric photo prank will just serve to increase the divisiveness in this country during a time of war.  We have on good sources that this may indeed lead to riots somewhere."

Karl Rove was reached for comment and had this to say: "Sure, I held up a sign, what of it?  The bottom line is that these proud soldiers are busy with fighting terror, and if I can help them think and react in certain situations, I'll do it.  You see, that is the difference between what liberals and conservatives learned from 9/11... conservatives immediately saw the threat and opportunity from terrorism and set about stealing (sp?) the will of the American people for the roadside bomb ahead.  But, liberals tried to divide the country by having everybody think for themselves and diffuse the path to glory.  I think we have clearly shown that we have left them in the ashes."

Military spokesmen refused to comment, but apparently as a prank this morning all guarded entrances to the base had the "B" removed from the sign and replaced with a crudely designed "F".