I was proud of deputy assistant secretary of state Steven Pifer when I read that he challenged President Putin on "deplorable violations of human rights" in Chechnya. This is a sticky issue that fell by the wayside when American courted Russian support in the lead-up to the war in Afghanistan. But Putin likes his yes-men, and doesn't take no guff from no-men with deputy-assistant-anything in their titles.
"I wouldn't like to comment on mid-level State Department officials," Putin sniffed. "I'll let Colin [Powell] deal with him," said Putin, a former KGB thug and now champion of democracy. "He's a pro and a very decent man. . . . But we have a proverb in Russia -- in every family there will be somebody who is ugly or retarded."
Pifer reportedly "declined to comment," but we imagine it would have been along the lines of "Am not!!!!!! U are the retard!!!!!"
In other news, Russia discovers Flash Mobs, takes them waaay too seriously.