Mr. Kamen has unearthed an e-mail that has been circulating for some time among senior administrative officials.
"’Recently, in a LtGen [John] Bergman, USMC, statement for the 25 March [congressional] hearing, OMB required that the following change be made before going to the Hill,’ Dave Riedel, of the Office of Security Review, wrote in an e-mail.
"’OMB says: “This Administration prefers to avoid using the term ‘Long War’ or ‘Global War on Terror’ [GWOT]. Please use ‘Overseas Contingency Operation.'”
“Riedel asked recipients to ‘Please pass on to your speech writers and try to catch this change before the statements make it to OMB.’
“An OMB spokesman took issue with the interpretation of OMB's wishes. ‘There was no memo, no guidance," said Kenneth Baer. "This is the opinion of a career civil servant.’
“Referring to the phrase ‘global war on terror,’ Baer said, ‘I have no reason to believe that would be stricken" from Hill testimony.”
The prospective change has produced something of a cottage industry among some bloggers offering suggested titles for the late lamented “global war on terror.”
* The War of Northern American Aggression
* That Trouble in the Middle East
* Overseas Man-Caused Conflict
* The Roosting of Our Chickens
* Operation Wacky Iraqi Attacky (wait, that was Bush’s suggestion)
* Our Contribution to the Zionist Conspiracy
* Bush’s Mess