CAMP LEMMONIER, Djibouti — China's first deployment of troops to the African nation of Djibouti, which also hosts a major US expeditionary base, has set the stage for a prank war likely to produce an increasingly wacky exchange of hijinks between the opposing forces as well as possible cataclysmic global conflict, sources confirmed today.
The first rotation of Chinese units to the East African nation departed Zhanjiang last week, prompting the Pentagon to begin a careful assessment regarding the degree of collegiate tomfoolery either side is willing to endure before initiating an armed response that could re-align the global balance of power while killing millions.
Scenarios presented to Defense Secretary James Mattis reportedly include an assessment of the second and third-order effects of either base's water supply being contaminated with laxative, and to what degree a Chinese attempt to FedEx large packages of glitter to Camp Lemmonier might risk a military confrontation that would shatter the global economy and irradiate the Taiwan Strait for decades.
Although Pentagon representatives declined to comment, sources told Duffel Blog that "no course of action has yet been ruled out," to include releasing into the Chinese camp several greased pigs painted with the Tibetan flag.
"I would not at all be surprised if we see U.S. forces covertly re-route a City Wok restaurant's phone number to the Chinese commander's encrypted phone line," said retired Army Col. James Russell, Duffel Blog's senior analyst for superpower shenanigans.
"Obviously, the US wants to avoid any hilarity so humiliating that it provokes a Chinese cyber-attack that cripples the US government and leads to a bloody brawl between the US Navy and People's Liberation Navy the likes of which has not been seen since Midway," he added. "But the prospect of being able to make a 'ha, got eeem' taunt against China is an enticing one."
At press time, all US forces in the Horn of Africa have gone to PRANKCON KNOXVILLE, the highest state of alert for the threat of geopolitical gags.