PUNXSUTAWNEY, Pa. – Senior defense and intelligence officials confirmed today that groundhog and famous prognosticator Punxsutawney Phil had predicted another 10 years of armed conflict for the United States, setting the stage for rising domestic tensions and embroiled diplomatic relations in the years to come.
“Blood, death and the savage destruction of innocence, ho ho!” the chubby woodchuck cheerily chortled. “Fire, brimstone and another generation of broken youth, oh boy!”
Top-level CIA officers have been conferring with the squirrely seer since 2005, according to sources, two years after it became strikingly clear that the mission in Iraq was, indeed, far from accomplished. Recently declassified documents revealed the CIA’s consultations with the gregarious groundhog have cost the agency nearly $100 million, though what extravagances the portly prophet indulges in remain undetermined.
“Oh, Phil’s just a swell guy, a real dandy fella, boy, I tell ya,” one agent said, on condition of anonymity, tipping his top hat while extolling the woodland soothsayer’s virtues. “And to think, he’s right fifty percent of the time! I don’t know about you, but I’ll take those odds any day.”
Emerging from his lair in Gobbler’s Knob, sources confirmed that Punxsutawney Phil prophesied at least ten more years of bitter strife and bloodshed in the Middle East, assuring the fevered propagation of geopolitical discord, burgeoning defense expenditures, growing dependence on private military contractors, and an increasingly inept Department of Veterans Affairs likely to be bankrupt by 2025.
“Oh gee willikers, it looks like those rapscallions just don’t know when to let up, but our boys will show ‘em what for!” whistled the merry marmot. “No nation has ever benefited from prolonged warfare, but golly, the military-industrial complex is in for a real treat, ho ho!”
“Phil brings such valued insight to our defense strategy,” said Gen. Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. “We’d have been a lost cause without his sage advice plunging us deeper and deeper into continued operations with a clear, defined purpose.”
At press time, White House sources reported that President Barack Obama had broken a mirror in the White House’s Executive Residence, ensuring at least seven years of bad luck for future occupants.