Clearly envious of the way cool reaction Chancellor Angela Merkel got by ignoring Chinese warnings and being the first German Chancellor to openly welcome that treacherous Tibetan trouble-maker and no good bodhisattva of compassion incarnation the Dalai Lama himself, President George W. Bush has decided to up the ante and become the first sitting US President to appear publicly with the inscrutable separatist revolutionary, too. Worse still, the Dalai Lama will be awarded the Congressional Gold Medal the following day, the US Congress’s highest civilian honor.

Taking place at a time of increased tension between Tibetan monks and Beijing, and we all know what unpredictable violent jerks Buddhist monks of any kind can be, much less Tibetan ones, White House aides figure that with any amount of luck this move will piss off the Chinese at least twice as bad as the Germans did, maybe even a whole lot more.

Merkel’s meeting with the Nobel Peace prize recipient (Al Gore will stop by next year) “seriously hurt the feelings of the Chinese people and undermined China-Germany relations” and led to among other things the cancellation of human rights talks scheduled for December in Munich. American diplomats are sure that the Bush meeting “is bound to get all kinds of stuff canceled”, too.

The Chinese people did not immediately respond to questions about just how hurt their feelings will be this time, but experts fear the worst because in the meantime no one is answering the phone anymore.

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