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Akbar al-Habula Millionaire

Coming soon to your teevee

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The popular Fox "reality" show Joe Millionaire returned to the air this week with a hunky rodeo cowboy from Texas, who lives in a trailer borrowed from his parents, being stooged as a multimillionaire international playboy to a gaggle of money hungry Euro-hotties who'll do anything to get picked to be this boy toy's toy. Scandal ensues.

Fox couldn't find 14 American women who weren't somehow aware of the original Joe Millionaire gag, so the show's producers scoured places as far-flung as the Czech Republic, Sweden, Norway and Germany to find their new collection of dupes.

Brave New War has learned that Fox, long a trumpeter of Bush administration Iraqi war policies, had originally considered setting the show in Iraq to showcase the progress of American rebuilding efforts. Rather than having an American millionaire, it would have featured the equivalent of a well-off Iraqi. Called Akbar al-Habula Millionaire, the show was to feature a native Iraqi man who was said to own 18 goats, had running potable water and whose abode received electricity 24 hours a day. The producers eventually had to abandon the idea when they couldn't find any Iraqi women who believed such a man existed in post-incursion Iraq.

Despite being disappointed by the inability to bring that program to air, Fox is quickly developing other reality franchises as possible pro-Bush vehicles. We have learned that Deputy Undersecretary of Defense Lt. Gen. William "Jerry" Boykin, who got into a bit of a stew last week for saying that the man he's in charge of tracking down (Osama bin Laden) isn't the real enemy (Satan is), is being groomed for a revamp of Celebrity Boxing. In the renamed Celebrity Crusades: My God is Bigger Than Your God, Boykin will face off against a series of radical Islamic clerics. Just before meeting each one, say our sources, the general will beat his chest and shout, "Bring "em on!" Upon conquering his opponent each week, he will be congratulated with a hearty "They misunderestimated your God." Sweeps week under-cards being prepared are said to include Ann Coulter vs. Al Franken and Rush Limbaugh vs. Donovan McNabb (on condition that Limbaugh can pass the drug screening).

For its part, the Bush White House is bullish on the idea of getting involved in television production and is even considering making Executive Producer of Fantasy Island (with jurisdiction over all policy and intelligence analysts) a Cabinet level post. Similarly, Attorney General John Ashcroft has been named technical advisor to the CBS program Big Brother in an effort to ensure that terrorists never win on that show.

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