Monday, 16 July 2007

Mythbusting Monday II: Man-Eating Badgers Not Actually a Secret Terror Weapon of the British Army

This myth may not be as well known in the US and UK, but apparently in Iraq many of the people around Basra believe the British Army has been releasing man-eating bizarro badgers into Basra to eat and terrorize the populace.

They appear to be non-dangerous honey badgers who have come to the area because of flooding in their usual habitat north of the city.

Best. Myth. Ever.

As web-based political cartoonist August Pollak says, not many people in the world get to say, "We can categorically state that we have not released man-eating badgers into the area." as a part of their official duties.

When I was living in Reading, England nearly four years ago, I was watching tv with one of my then-housemates. One of those when-animals-attack shows came on. When these come on in the US, they usually feature rather horrific encounters with bears, alligators, mountain lions, or zoo elephants. In the UK edition, the highlight of the 'wild animal encounters' was a badger that got stuck in somebody's empty swimming pool. A badger. I was discussing this with my housemate whom I was watching with, and she said of badgers: 'They can be quite vicious you know.' Alaska has grizzly bears. India has cobras. Africa has black mambas. South America has tiny barbed fish that swim up your urethra when you pee in the water. Australia has an untold number of nightmare creatures. England has badgers.

Pmmfth. That was me stifling laughter at how non-dangerous Europe is compared to every other continent in the world.

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