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Pentagon, White House Rocked by Muppet Prisoner Abuse Scandal
Above: Just another casualty at Abu Sesame Prison.

SESAME STREET (SP) — In the midst of a prisoner abuse scandal that has already done immeasureable damage to the reputation of the United States military, a new scandal has emerged that threatens to bring it into even greater disrepute.

Satiric Press has obtained exclusive photos which depict dozens of "Muppets", the felt-skinned residents of Sesame Street, being subjected to unspeakable acts of torture, dismemberment, and sexual humiliation while in military detention. Meanwhile, the Pentagon announced this week that it has launched an investigation into the suspicious deaths of at least eight inmates in the Abu Sesame prison facility, including former Muppet Coalition Leader Bert, who was found hanging by his neck from the ceiling of his tiny prison cell.

Other Muppet casualties include Cookie Monster, who was apparently force-fed a massive quantity of baked goods until his stomach literally burst, and Elmo, who is alleged to have been tickled to death.

Above: Cookie Monster was living proof that gluttony can be a deadly sin.

All Muppets were placed in custody more than a year ago after being branded as suspected terrorists. In most cases, they were held without bail, and weren't even charged with specific offences, yet had no legal recourse available to them by virtue of the Patriot Act.

The terrorist threat posed by Muppets was first identified by the Bush administration after satellite news channel Al Jazeera broadcast photos of an apparent meeting between Al Qaida Terrorist Network kingpin Osama bin Laden and Children's Television Network ringleader Bert. Photos of the yellow cone-headed Muppet in concert with other known terrorists were discovered soon thereafter, and have been authenticated by the Pentagon.

Above: These incriminating photos appear to have precipitated the Muppets' downfall.

It didn't take long for investigators to establish terrorist links with other rogue Muppets, including Bert's life partner Ernie and his precious "Rubber Ducky", both of whom are alleged to have been loyal members of Saddam Hussein's Baath Party.

Above: Who would have suspected that these were senior officials in Saddam Hussein's Baathist regime?

The litany of abuses alleged to have been inflicted upon the Muppet prisoners include making them crawl on their hands and knees, forcing them to wear dog collars, and eating out of a bowl.

"Just because I happen to be a dog doesn't give anyone the right to treat me like one," said Rolf, the sultry jazz piano player best known for his co-starring role on the Muppet Show.

The abuses are also alleged to include Muppets being subjected to spontaneous rectal examinations and bodily cavity searches. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld attempted to play down the severity of these allegations. "I'm not a lawyer, but I don't think this sort of thing meets the legal definition of torture," he said. "We are talking about puppets, after all."

Above: At least the inmates of Abu Sesame were always well-fed, says Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld.

The scope of the prisoner abuse scandal may well extend beyond the boundaries of Sesame Street. Just yesterday, the Pentagon released disturbing photos of former Flintstones cast member and Abu Sesame inmate Barney Rubble, curled up on the floor of his cell in a pool of his own blood, the apparent victim of a gunshot wound to the head. He was pronounced D.O.A. at the prison's hospital facility.

Above: Barney Rubble was already dead from the hemorrhaging caused by a massive head wound by the time that his body was discovered.

Actor Stephen Baldwin, who portrayed Mr. Rubble in the film "Viva Rock Vegas", struggled to maintain his composure after being apprised of Rubble's untimely death. "As much as Barney Rubble was a gifted entertainer and comedian, he was an even better human being," said Baldwin, his voice trembling with emotion. "Right now, Betty, Bam Bam, and the entire Hanna Barabara family are in mourning."

The conduct of several Sesame Street residents who worked at Abu Sesame, including Maria, Gordon and Bob, is being investigated, and they are now each facing a possible court martial. Brigadier General Mr. Hooper has also faced a barrage of criticism, with several Democratic Senators calling for his resignation, despite the fact that there is no definitive evidence that he ordered or was even aware of the abuses perpetrated under his command. Although the investigation is ongoing, President Bush didn't hesistate to give Hooper an unqualified vote of confidence, stating at a recent press conference that Hooper was doing a "superb job" in very difficult circumstances.

Michael Moore, who recently won the Palme D'Or at the Cannes Film Festival for "Fahrenheit 9/11", a scathing indictment of President Bush and his handling of the war on terror, believes this latest controversy is just more of the same, but could have been even worse. "Thank goodness that Muppets are not anatomically correct," said Moore. "I can't even imagine what sorts of abuses they might have been subjected to had they been equipped with genitalia."

Above: These Muppets may be monsters, but that doesn't necessarily make them terrorists.
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